The 8 Craziest Things People Do to Build Muscle

June 17, 2014

Must See Strength Training Videos

Athletes and gym-goers do whatever it takes to build muscle. Some strategies are super intense and maybe a bit crazy, but effective. Others are simply ridiculous and do nothing except make you look like a fool.

We polled eight strength coaches to hear the craziest or most ridiculous things they’ve heard someone do in order to build muscle. Here’s what they said:

RELATED: 7 Reasons Your Workouts Don’t Work 

Restricting Blood Flow

Tony Gentilcore: I think the current blood restriction trend that's happening ranks right up there. I'm sure there're a handful of studies out there showcasing its efficacy. But, wrapping elastic rubber bands around your arms to restrict blood flow under the premise that [it] will somehow increase muscle mass is a bit extreme in my opinion. This is the last thing a 150-pound dude needs to be doing to make his arms bigger.

10-Hour Bench Press Session

Mark Roozen: I once had six guys come to me and ask if I could keep the facility open all night. They wanted to do a Bench Press workout where they had to do 10 reps every two minutes—for 10 hours! That equates to 300 sets of 10 reps for a grand total of 3,000 reps. I have no idea where they got this idea from, but that was one of the strangest requests I’ve received. And of course, I said "no."

Consuming 10,000 Calories Per Day

PJ Nestler:  I've been weight training since I was 13 years old, and I've seen and done a lot of crazy things in the quest for muscle mass. But it wasn't until this past year that I worked with a trainer who takes muscle gain to another level. This trainer consistently eats well over 10,000 calories per day, typically in a few giant meals. I have personally witnessed him eating eight half chickens at a BBQ restaurant—with his bare hands. Each day, he eats a full angel food cake along with eight cups of oatmeal mixed with protein powder and peanut butter. He eats 250 pieces of sushi for lunch, causing him to get kicked out of five all-you-can-eat sushi restaurants in the area.

RELATED: 9 Things Elite Strength Coaches Wish They Knee When They Were High School Athletes

Eating Potatoes Between Sets

Nick Tumminello: When I was a teenager, I trained at a Gold's Gym. There was a guy there who was trying to bulk up, so he'd eat potatoes in between sets. Yes, he carried around cold baked potatoes in the gym and took bites between each of his sets.

Training Each Muscle Group Only Once Per Week

Tony Bonvechio: The craziest thing is way more common than you'd think: training each muscle only once per week. Bodybuilding splits where you train chest one day, back the next and so on are ridiculously ineffective for most people. These routines usually require the lifter to smash each muscle group into oblivion with tons of sets and reps to failure and beyond. We now know it's not necessary to completely annihilate a muscle to stimulate hypertrophy, so it makes more sense to stop short of pure exhaustion, eat, rest and train that muscle again a few days later.

Running

Stan Dutton: I really wish that I was making this up, but more than once I've had people tell me that they're going for 3- to 5-mile runs to make their legs stronger. Each time, I asked them if they ever saw a marathon runner before. They look like toothpicks running on chicken nuggets, and certainly are not known for their size.

Upper-Body Exercises Only

Rick Scarpulla: It was around 1992 or 1993. I was training in a local gym and there was a guy who was always doing Bench and biceps. That's all he ever did. To make it worse, he wore tight jeans—while working out. One day I asked him why he never did lower-body work. This was his answer: “I don’t need to do legs because the girls don’t care about that. It’s all about the chest and guns.” To this day, I clearly remember this guy as the biggest moron I ever met in the gym.

Drinking 1 Gallon of Milk Per Day

Rob DeCillis: The craziest thing I’ve heard is people drinking a gallon of milk per day to pack on weight. That does not seem to be a very enjoyable way to build muscle due to bloating and potential stomach issues.

RELATED: The 15 Most Misunderstood Terms in Fitness

 

Topics: BUILD MUSCLE
Andy Haley
- Andy Haley is the Performance Director at STACK. A certified strength and conditioning specialist (CSCS), he received his bachelor’s degree in exercise science from Miami...
Andy Haley
- Andy Haley is the Performance Director at STACK. A certified strength and conditioning specialist (CSCS), he received his bachelor’s degree in exercise science from Miami...

Featured Videos

Path to the Pros 2015: Devin Smith Path to the Pros 2015: Devin Smith Views: 181,250
Path to the Pros 2015: Marcus Mariota Path to the Pros 2015: Marcus Mariota Views: 1,271,129
Path to the Pros 2015: Trae Waynes Path to the Pros 2015: Trae Waynes Views: 80,757
Load More

Resources

STACK Fitness

Everything you need to be fitter than ever

STACK Conditioning

Sport-specific conditioning programs

Coaches and Trainers

Tips and advice for coaches and trainers

Magazine

Latest issues of STACK Magazine

STACK 4W

Women's sports workout, nutrition and lifestyle advice

Gamer

Gaming, entertainment and tech news

Basic Training

Military-style training for athletes

News

Find the latest news relevant to athletes

Most Popular Videos

Colin Kaepernick's Core Workout Colin Kaepernick's Core Workout
Views: 896,781
Drew Brees Will Not Be Denied Drew Brees Will Not Be Denied
Views: 12,195,981
Robert Griffin III Pocket Presence QB Drill Robert Griffin III Pocket Presence QB Drill
Views: 6,866,292
Ohio State Football Open Field Plyo Drill Ohio State Football Open Field Plyo Drill
Views: 9,501,437
Dustin Pedroia on Training Dustin Pedroia on Training
Views: 10,920,995

Load More
More Cool Stuff You'll Like
Are You Using the Right Weight for Every Exercise?

Are You Using the Right Weight for Every Exercise?

3 Bear Crawl Variations for Better Core Strength

3 Bear Crawl Variations for Better Core Strength

What Sport Coaches Need to Know About Strength and Conditioning

What Sport Coaches Need to Know About Strength and Conditioning

Perfect Planks: How to Make this Classic Exercise More Effective

Perfect Planks: How to Make this Classic Exercise More Effective

2015 Summer Training Guide: Baseball

2015 Summer Training Guide: Baseball

2015 Summer Training Guide: Basketball

2015 Summer Training Guide: Basketball

2015 Summer Training Guide: Track

2015 Summer Training Guide: Track

Use Single-Leg Strength to Enhance Soccer Performance

Use Single-Leg Strength to Enhance Soccer Performance

2015 Summer Training Guide: Lacrosse

2015 Summer Training Guide: Lacrosse

Full-Body Training: 4 Dumbbell Ring Training Exercises

Full-Body Training: 4 Dumbbell Ring Training Exercises

Build Lower-Body Power with This Squat Workout

Build Lower-Body Power with This Squat Workout

2015 Summer Training Guide: Wrestling

2015 Summer Training Guide: Wrestling

Why Reverse Lunges Are Better Than Forward Lunges

Why Reverse Lunges Are Better Than Forward Lunges

2015 Summer Training Guide: Football

2015 Summer Training Guide: Football

The Squat Variation That Torches Your Core

The Squat Variation That Torches Your Core

5 Things to Remember When You Wing Your Workout

5 Things to Remember When You Wing Your Workout

9 Ways to Improve Your Squat Technique

9 Ways to Improve Your Squat Technique

Fix 7 Common Problem Areas with Exercises From Todd Durkin

Fix 7 Common Problem Areas with Exercises From Todd Durkin

2015 Summer Training Guide: Softball

2015 Summer Training Guide: Softball

Building Brakes for More Speed

Building Brakes for More Speed

Bulletproof Shoulders: A Shoulder Training Guide

Bulletproof Shoulders: A Shoulder Training Guide

A Modern Twist to the Original Burpee

A Modern Twist to the Original Burpee

10-Minute Dynamic Warm-Up for Any Workout

10-Minute Dynamic Warm-Up for Any Workout

The 10-Minute Grip Strengthening Workout

The 10-Minute Grip Strengthening Workout

Strength Isn’t Just How Much You Can Lift on a Barbell

Strength Isn't Just How Much You Can Lift on a Barbell

Marcus Mariota's Speed and Strength Workout

Marcus Mariota's Speed and Strength Workout

Troubleshooting the Lunge: How to Fix Your Form

Troubleshooting the Lunge: How to Fix Your Form

2015 Summer Training Guide: Volleyball

2015 Summer Training Guide: Volleyball

Mix Up Your Workout With Unique Partner Exercises

Mix Up Your Workout With Unique Partner Exercises

Building Functional Balance for Figure Skaters

Building Functional Balance for Figure Skaters

Heavy Rope Workout for Big Gains

Heavy Rope Workout for Big Gains

Build Powerful Muscles With Velocity-Based Training

Build Powerful Muscles With Velocity-Based Training

2015 Summer Training Guide: Soccer

2015 Summer Training Guide: Soccer

Why Single-Arm and Single-Leg Training is Better for Athletes

Why Single-Arm and Single-Leg Training is Better for Athletes

How to Build Strong Neck Muscles

How to Build Strong Neck Muscles

3 Simple Tips to Gain Muscle Mass

3 Simple Tips to Gain Muscle Mass

Olympian Carrie Tollefson's Core Workout

Olympian Carrie Tollefson's Core Workout

Why You Should Add Depth Jumps to Your Workouts

Why You Should Add Depth Jumps to Your Workouts

Build Elite Strength With This Training System

Build Elite Strength With This Training System

There Might Be a Good Reason Tim Tebow Looks This Ridiculous

There Might Be a Good Reason Tim Tebow Looks This Ridiculous

Go Against Traditional Workout Order for Bigger Gains

Go Against Traditional Workout Order for Bigger Gains

YardBarker