Watch any high-level bodybuilder or well-muscled guy and you know it’s true: You have to be a little crazy to get that big. But self-sacrifice, a badass attitude, and an ironclad constitution in the gym aren’t always enough to guarantee dramatic gains. Knowing what kind of training you need to do and when to apply it can mean the difference between toiling in vain for years and making steady progress until you’re scraping up against your genetic ceiling.
Here, we bridge theory and practice to bring you a crazy-like-a-fox muscle-growth program. It’s a proven plan based on hard science, but it will push your tolerance for hard work and intensity to the max. The training may seem insane, but so will your gains at the end of four weeks.
A Three-Tiered System
You’ll train only three days per week on the Mad Scientist plan, but as you’ll soon find out, that’s plenty. Each day has a different training focus, outlined here.
Day 1 - Structural Training
You’ll use very high reps to improve the energy production capacity of your muscle cells. You’ll also employ heavy partial-range sets to strengthen the connective tissue and prime your nervous system to handle heavier weights.
Day 2 - Accumulation
You’ll increase training volume to overload the body and force adaptation. You’ll perform a massive amount of work without stressing your central nervous system with heavy weight. This will be the main source of your mass gains.
Day 3 - Intensification
You’ll lower the volume and increase the intensity to allow a rebound from the previous workout but also spur pure strength gains. This will teach your nervous system to recruit every available muscle fiber to handle the heaviest loads.
Each workout hits the whole body and focuses on compound movements to stimulate the bigger muscles like the pecs, quads, and lats. Your shoulders, arms, abs, and other smaller muscles will get plenty of incidental work, so don’t be tempted to train them directly on top of what you’re doing here. Stick to the program for four to six weeks, mixing up the exercises (see the directions for each workout day for your options) and increasing the weights you use as often as you can.