May 23 , 2011
So I’m happy to say Aaron and I finally completed our 4 week, 4 Hour Body, muscle building experiment. I get bored really easily with a routine so doing the same exercises over 8, 30-minute sessions started to take it’s toll on my patience after session 5!
I have to say that I’m not too thrilled about the results for I didn’t gain nearly as much lean muscle mass as Timothy Ferriss and a number of other people who tried this workout did. Check out my numbers below from the beginning to the final workout and you’ll see what I mean. I also decided to spare you the “before” and “after” pictures of me standing there holding a newspaper for I don’t believe you’d be able to tell any increases in measurements from pictures anyway. My strength definitely improved on pretty much all the exercises and I increased on all of my girth measurements too but nothing as significant of an improvement as I was hoping to see.
Keep in mind that I treated this as a science experiment so I made sure that I took all my girth, weight, %body fat measurements the morning of each scheduled workout day. During our training sessions, Aaron and I used a stop watch to count our cadence and to ensure that our prescribed rest period of 3-minutes was followed. I also did my best to eat as much as I possibly could throughout each day. I normally eat between 2200-2800kcal/day but I tried to eat 3250-3500kcal/day. I found this ridiculously difficult to do everyday! There were times I know I only ate my normal caloric intake. I also didn’t do any additional supplementation than my usual post-workout protein shake. Timothy Ferriss used a lot of supplements throughout his day while performing this experiment and I believe that’s the main reason for his impressive gains.
Here’s what his supplemental regimen consisted of (ref: The 4-Hour Body, Timothy Ferriss, page 186):
- Morning: NO-Xplode (2-scoops), Slo-Niacin (or timed-released niacinamide, 500mg)
- Each meal: ChromeMate (chromium polynicotinate 200mcg), alpha-lipoic acid (200mg)
- Pre-workout: BodyQUICK (2 capsules 30-mins prior)
- Post-workout: Micellean (30g micellar casein protein)
- Prior to bed: policosanol (23mg), ChromeMATE (200mcg), alpha-lipoic acid (200mg), Slo-Niacin (500mg)
Things to take away from our experience:
- It’s possible to workout as little as 8, 30-minute sessions over the course of 4 weeks and see improvements in the way of muscle size and strength.
- It’s possible to reach those improvements using the exercise protocol described in The 4-Hour Body (1 set for each exercise of a minimum 7-reps using a 10-second cadence/rep to failure)
- I don’t think it’s possible to reach those improvements only by eating as much as you can and without a lot of supplementation.
Now that that experiment is finally over, I for one am going to start training to get my deadlift up to over 400lbs! Here’s where I’m at now (it’s kind of embarrassing LOL!)… Keep you posted. 🙂
|Measurement||Workout 1||Workout 8|
|Tanita % BF||11.4||13.2|
|Waist (in)||30 1/2||31|
|Hip (in)||40 1/8||41|
|Inner Thigh (in)||23 7/8||24 3/8|
|Upper Arm (in)||15 1/2||16 1/8|
|Exercises||Workout 1||Workout 8|
|Incline chest press (lbs)||60||80|
|Wide grip pull up||body weight||body weight|
|Shoulder press (lbs)||95||110|
|Skull crushers (lbs)||75||95|
|Drag curl (lbs)||60||95|
|Back squat (lbs)||135||210|