I’ve been working as an officer at a state prison for a while. Right now I’m working in Recreation 40 hours per week, so I have the unique experience of seeing inmates and their workout regimens. Here’s what you need to know to get huge like them:
1. Lift HEAVY! Forget the hypertrophy vs. strength debate. Go as big as you can for as much weight as you can. The key is to lift with your ego. Make sure you’re moving more weight than the guy next to you. If you can’t, see below.
2. There’s no such thing as overtraining. Workout every day. The biggest dudes in the gym are there every day. There are a lot of guys looking like a hunchback because of rounded, tight shoulders from doing nothing but bench press, shrugs, and biceps, but there are also many who are functional, strong, and BIG from hitting the weight pile with daily discipline.
3. Get lots of rest. We’ve all heard this one ad nauseam, but that’s because it’s so true. Most of these guys have nothing to do but lift and rest. Even on a diet of starchy carbs, limited calories, and just a few grams of protein per meal, they’re getting ripped with lots of lifting and lots of rest.
Bonus tip: Get vocal, (especially if you’re not lifting as much as the dude next to you). Consider this a self defense for smaller dudes. They sound like the hardest worker in the gym. Maybe they’re new to the pen and fresh off of street drugs that sucked up their gains from their last stint. Maybe they’re no Billy-Bad-Ass, but if you’re looking to pull one over on someone, this dude is going to make you work for it. Either way, best not to fuck with these crazy dudes and start stalking easier prey.
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Inb4 steroids. I’ve seen tobacco, weed, meth, heroin, spice, and cell phones make it in to prison, but I’ve never heard of steroids being available at any prison in our state. A few of the guys in the gym are former bodybuilders. Although they maintain a lot of their previously-earned muscle mass, there’s no question that the guys raised in the penal system –guys who have never had access to steroids– can build an unbelievable amount of muscle just from the above principles.