posted on 07 aug 2017 by Lisa Prather

Q&A

Q: I am interested in building muscle mass and my friends say I should only use machines because free weights will cause injury. Should I avoid free weights.
A: If you are a natural bodybuilder and you don't plan on taking steroids then free weights is a MUST in your bodybuilding training. People always ask me how I built my thickness and I always say free weights. I squat, deadlift and I bench press. I train like a powerlifter but I eat like a bodybuilder. That gives me the lean muscular and thick look. People always question whether or not I am on the "juice", I take it as a compliment and I know that my training is working. Your friends are half right. Free weight exercises can potentially cause injury if performed incorrectly. I suggest that you hire a personal trainer for a couple of sessions to teach you proper form when training with free weights. Most people who are injured from weight training were performing the exercises incorrectly.

Q: I am a high school senior who plays football and I want to gain weight. Will creatine help me or cause me to cramp?
A: I am going to err on the side of caution but I am also going to be frank. Creatine will help you gain weight, strength and even help increase your speed. The mainstream media would have you believe otherwise. There has been a ton of research that proves that it does not cause cramping. There is a new study from the researchers at Arkansas state that actually proves that using creatine does not cause a football player to cramp more than normal. Actually in their study the football players taking creatine experienced less cramps than the football players not taking creatine. That being said, if you were my brother or son or friend I would tell you that you should not take creatine yet. You said you were a high school senior and I assume that means you are between 17 and 19 years old. If that's the case you should try to push your body to as far as it can go without taking any muscle enhancing products. I suggest you take a multi-vitamin supplement and a protein supplement every day. The vitamins will help your body to maintain a healthy state and the protein will help with muscle repair and growth. I know there are a lot of products that will work to help you achieve your goals but it's my opinion that people start taking supplements to soon.

Q: I have been training for about 2 years and I've made good gains, I am considering going on a small steroid cycle. What do you suggest?
A: I cannot and will not give you advice on what steroids to take. However I will tell you how I gained 10 pounds of muscle in 7 weeks without taking steroids. I trained like a powerlifter. For me that meant training 4 times per week. I did speed volume sets, for instance if I were training back I would to 10 sets of 3 reps with a minute rest in between each set on deadlifts. Followed by 1 set of barbell rows and 1 set of pulldowns. My weight on the rows and the pulldowns was heavy enough to where I could perform 6-8 reps. If you are interested in serious powerlifting training you can contact me and I will coach you or you can purchase the Powerlifting USA magazine. There's always good training articles in that magazine. The supplements I took on this program were as follows: HMB by EAS take as directed, 19-nor andro by AST I took 7 to 10 per day, I also took Muscletech's Celltech as directed and 5 servings of Nitro tech a day. I was eating about 3000 calories per day where I was taking in about 250 grams of protein (not counting the Nitro-tech) and 300 grams of carbs. I also did cardio 3 times per week, 25 minutes each session. This program worked for me, change it and adapt it to suit your needs. Now, if you plan on being a competitive pro bodybuilder you will need to take steriods, I will not advise you on what drugs to take. You can purchase the "Underground Steroid Handbook" or the "Anabolic Reference Guide". These books are advertised in muscle magazines all the time. Good Luck.