Arash Rahbar discusses in detail how to gain muscle without gaining fat and the thing people get wrong about lifting heavy.
Bodybuilders have a very unique problem that is different than most fitness endeavors. They want to build muscle mass while also cutting down fat at the same time. Normally the two are in direct opposition with each other. The leaner you become, the less muscle you carry on you as well. But bodybuilders, especially pros, have mastered being over 250 pounds while also displaying lean and shredded muscle. In our latest GI Exclusive, Arash Rahbar explains the tactics of gaining muscle without gaining fat using heavy lifting.
During our conversation with Arash Rahbar, he makes one thing very clear. You will certainly lose muscle when you cut back on fat. So what is an aspiring bodybuilder to do when he wants to build size while staying lean? How can he compete with a shredded mass monster physique?
The traditional bulking and cutting cycle comes into play here. But still, cutting will bring down some of your muscle size. How does one ensure that they can keep the mass monster size they are looking for while shredding down? Arash explains that time and experience are key factors in this.
Arash Rahbar breaks down how the first year of bodybuilding will bring on size easier than those who have been bodybuilding for years. So often young bodybuilders get discouraged after year one – when they start to notice their size going down as they shred. The solution, according to Arash Rahbar, is for bodybuilders to focus less on being shredded in their first few years.
Instead, focus on size and strength. The better muscle maturity you build over time – the more effective you will be at cutting down and maintaining your massive size. This doesn’t mean that young bodybuilders should dirty bulk and eat whatever they want for size. In fact, if they practice early on bulking clean – they’ll have an even easier time effectively cutting fat without sacrificing too much muscle.
But Arash Rahbar points out a bigger problem behind this tactic. Most people don’t understand what lifting heavy really means. Many fans of competitive bodybuilding might think that means they have to jump right into lifting 500 pounds. This isn’t the case. Every body is different. It needs to grow and adapt. Everyone starts somewhere.
On the flip side, that doesn’t mean you should lift to light either. Arash points out that far too often he’ll see a bodybuilder get a training routine, start lifting, and stop easily when they hit the suggested sets and reps. The problem is – they stop even though they didn’t struggle enough. Sure, over time you’ll still make gains – but you’ll have a harder time maintaining massive muscle and saying lean at the same time.
Lifting heavy doesn’t have to be Ronnie Coleman power lifts. What it truly means in bodybuilding – is to lift weight that will make you struggle by your last reps. Where you are hard pressed to keep your form. Where you feel like you can barely do one more rep. This needs to be the goal with every workout – especially in the early years of training.
This is what pro bodybuilders mean when talking about lifting heavy. It’s a different weight for everyone. It’s about finding the exact right weight to push you to the edge. This will help you master strength and size. This will make you more able to control conditioning in the long run.
Arash Rahbar wants more young bodybuilders to truly master building size through lifting heavy. Then they can focus on bringing in conditioning for a shredded mass monster stage-ready physique.
You can see Arash Rahbar explain his tactics in full detail by watching our latest GI Exclusive interview segment above.