So you don’t need to lose a ton of weight. In fact, you need to put on some muscle mass! And most of the people on P90X that you’ve seen were fat and needed to lose weight …. Will P90X work for you? Great question! And the answer is YES! In fact, that’s exactly what I’m doing myself during Round 4. I started Round 4 at 208 lbs, but my goal is to build lean muscle mass and finish the round at 220-222 (a gain of 12-14 lbs). There are some key things I will focus on to help me reach that goal, and those are the same key things you will need to focus on if you wish to gain muscle mass with P90X. And what are those things? I have them listed below.
Things that are critical for building muscle mass while going through P90X:
Do you wonder if this will really work? You’ve seen my pics, right? I look pretty muscular at 220 lbs with very low body fat. There were no trips to the gym in my routine. You’ll hear people say you can’t add mass with P90X and that you need to be in a gym doing squats, dead lifts, and bench press. Well, I haven’t been in a gym in 2 years and I beg to differ! The muscles don’t care if you are in a gym or in your living room. What makes them grow is to push them to failure, and then fueling them correctly with nutrition and supplements to help them recover and grow.
So stick to that plan, focus on your goals, and you can expect to build muscle mass with P90X. BRING IT!!
Hey coach! I´m not sure if I should do body beast or p90X for gainig mass.... I prefer p90X style but I dont know if I am going to get the same results.... Can you help me?
Fabio Pinto Beast is designed purely for mass. Yes you can gain well with P90X, but it's single goal isn't mass. You need to tweak it for mass. If you want a program for all out mass, go with Body Beast. The nutrition guide is great for really dialing in a mass building diet.
Hey coach are you familiar with the body bugg, or body media? Im trying to bulk up using the 30/50/20, 3400 calorie total from the math in the book and the body beast. The device is really cool but Im a little confused it says I averaging a total daily calorie burn of around 4000 for many days straight now. The device considers a day to be from midnight to midnight. This also includes my body beast workout. How will I ever gain if only consuming 3400 per day. Do you have any thoughts on this device and my total daily burn number. Thanks Much
Kevin, I would rely on your collected data. Run 3400 and see if you gain. All devices and calculations are jsut estimates. Some more accurate than others (the Body Bugg could be right on). Hit 3400 consistently for 2 week and see what the scale says. If you aren't gaining, add calories (+200 a week). Finding your maintenance and surplus is a lot about experimentation.
Hey coach i got the message you sent me, thanks for the extra advice, ill be sure to give it a try and tell you how it goes after my next round of p90x!
Right now i'm running a 50/30/20 percentage with a calorie surplus of 500 giving me a total of 3200 cals and when i cut i follow the calorie ratios set out in the p90x guide. When i cut i was down to 176 lbs and now i'm up to 190 lbs, problem is that these are the exact same as my numbers in 2011 when i gained and lost weight after my first bulking phase and every time i do bulk, i always gain weight in the form of fat and then lose it after the fat shredder phase of p90x and then i'm back at 176 lbs again. When i cut i do continue to lift weights, usually a insanity/p90x hybrid is what i use and i'm running a 2200 cal diet. I eat 5-6 meals a day when both cutting and bulking. I've run out of ideas to shock my body and no matter what i try i haven't been successful at busting this plateau for at least a year or more.
Hey Garrett, I will send you an email tonight with some specific things to look at. I will use your hotmail address.
Coach i am trying to build mass and i can't seem to get it to work for me. I have worked out since i was 15 at a gym and done p90x twice, i always switch up my routine constantly. I use protein powder, an intra workout called Xtend, proper nutrition, excess calories, heavy weights and lower reps, lower weights and higher reps, always get at least 8 hours of sleep, everything you can imagine i have tried in the past two years. I am now 20 and since i was 18 i haven't gained any weight and when i do its only fat, then when i lose the weight and get ripped again, i'm back at the exact same weight i was at with no increases in size at all and its frustrating me beyond belief. In two years i might have gained three pounds of muscle if that and since 2010 my measurements haven't changed at all, for example, my arms have only grew half an inch in two years?!?! I do everything trainers say you should but get no results, could i have some medical problem of some kind or am i expecting too much at age 20? Im taking one step forward and two steps back, slowly losing motivation to keep this up and not seeing any progress, even with p90x!
Garrett, that has to be frustrating man. Are you tracking all of your calories and macros? What percentages are you running and what calorie goal? When you bulk, do you gain weight? Then when cutting, what are your macros and what is your deficit. Are you continuing to lift when you cut? are you only using P90X? Lots of questions... but trying to figure it out.
Coach: Question on shoulders, they appear to be lagging behind other body parts any suggestions? Should I hit them twice a day on shoulder day or should I add another round in my routine or is it I creasing cals/carbs?
Hey RippedVenom, make sure you are really destroying your shoulders when you do work them. Extra carbs on your shoulder day will help them recover and grow. Getting Diamond Delts would be great choice for a dedicated shoulders routine.
Coach, I am following your 4 round Hybrid to build mass. I actually came to realize that I am happy with the way I look so maybe 5 lbs max and then stay on maintenance or maybe a little over. What's a good strategy for maintenance? In terms of macros? Also, I am having a hard time getting sore. I am giving a 100% on my workout. Failing everytime. I am even using 30 lbs. for chest exercises and about 10-15 for pull ups. But I am not getting very little soreness. Nowhere near what I used to get. I am taking 2 scoops of RR daily. I was drinking it before but very randomly. I am not sure if that's the reason.
Hey Marlon, I tend to do well at 50% carbs / 35% protein / 15% fat for maintenance. And I've also discovered that I can cheat once a week while on maintenance without it hurting my results a bit. That's the nice thing about maintenance -- you don't have to be quite as strict since your goal is to stay the same as opposed to trying to change your body.
Thanks coach, and sry for the re-post. I just thought that you might not see it because it was an old article.
Hey Coach! I am on a cutting phase with asylum right now (day 7) I plan to go on a semi-bulking plan afterwards, meaning that I will be eating a 40/40/20 ratio for macros...I do not want to gain that much muscle, plus I want my body fat to stay low enough for my abs to show (summer time). Do you think that this will work? I plan to do P90X, except switch out plyo with vertical plyo (asylum), and kenpo with gameday. I think that the higher intense cardio will help me with my body fat staying low...what do you think.
Hey Birsa, that will probably be a great plan, but you'll have to wait till you finish the Asylum round and see where you are at before planning the details of the next round.
Thanks Coach. I will probably be happy with 5 or 8 lbs. I am not trying to gain too much fat in the process. Thanks. Now, I have to decide if my next round is P90X or X2. I think I want to try X2 even if it doesn't give me 10 lbs.
I am on my last week of P90X/Insanity Hybrid. I lots tons of weight. I think I want to add about 5-10 on my next round. Really aiming for 10. I have been on 40/40/20 and about 2700 calories. Should I switch to 45/35/20 next round or even 50/30/20?
Hey Marlon, for adding about 10 lbs over the course of a round (13 weeks) you would be best to go with 50% carbs / 30% protein / 20% fats and to go at 500 cals above your maintenance level (which would add about a pound per week). But as you transition, just keep an eye on weight and body fat and adjust as needed.
Coach, lol, what I meant was, when bulking, did you do AB Ripper X every Lift Days? Or strictly did ABS on your Cardio Days? I'm sorry for the misunderstanding!
During my bulking round, I did the "constant confusion" hybrid, so the abs are on their own days (not on lift days).
Coach, For the last 2 years, I've noticed you push AB X to the cardio days so your workouts last 1 hour. When bulking, whats your take AB Ripper?
What's my take Ab Ripper? Not sure what you mean by that. Are you asking if I like the Ab Ripper program from the original Power 90? Yes. I like to mix up ab routines rather than do the same one week after week, twice or 3 times per week. My favorite ab routines are the 1-on-1 Ab Ripper X2 (it's long though, about 45 min). I also like Killer Abs from the 1-on-1's, Abs/Core Plus from P90X Plus, Insane Abs from the Insanity series, and of course Ab Ripper X.
I'd say to do that Marlon. Both are great options, but if I were you I'd do a bulking round of X, and then do X2.
Coach, I mentioned that I wanted to gain some mass on Round 2. I said some because I really have no clue how big I can get in time. I am only 5'6" and I don't like the idea of being too bulky(for my body frame and height). So I am going into phase 3 of my P90X hybrid and I am considering going with X2 for round 2. I know you are going through X2 now and bulking. Which would you recommend to get the best bulking results for my round 2? X2 or P90X? Keep in mind that I am only 145 lbs. and I would think that at 160-165 I would be at my limit of looking muscular and looking short and too muscular. LOL. So yeah, I ideally, I would aim for 5-10 lbs on a 3 month period.
Hey Marlon, I think Classic P90X is still the best for straight bulking. I have found lots of success myself with X2 though, because I had been doing X for so long that I was kind of maxed out on progress with that. The X2 has improved my weak areas (which were holding me back) and now it seems my muscle building has gone through the roof as I've got those weak areas caught up. But I think it's more because I've already spent so much time doing several rounds of X.
Coach, Great site, it has really helped motivate me to start getting back in shape. A little history real quick, I am 26 and have been separated from the army for about 2 years after 6 years as an infantry grunt. I was in great shape while in, but I was always the "skinny strong guy". This time around, I am looking to get bigger. I am currently about 10-15 lbs over weight, but I am still very much able to do anything P90X throws at me. My question is, in order to get much bigger, should I just start with the bulking diet, or should I lose the 15 lbs of padding first? My end goal is to be bigger, about 20lbs of muscle bigger, if not more. Thanks for any advice, and I plan to be on this site quite a bit in the future while I work towards my goal. Devin
Do i need to take casien protein before bed? How many grams of glutamine should i buy ? 300 , 500 , 1000 ,5000 ?
Hey Kyle, you probably don't need glutamine separately if you are getting enough in your whey protein (your body needs about 10g per day). And casein is a good choice for an evening serving of protein, but I don't use it. I just go with whey.
Hey Coach, Its Anthony I am finishing my first round of Insanity and now I am going to start P90X this Monday. I was wondering if its okay to take creatine and protein shakes now since I'm trying to gain muscle. If I did take creatine and protein shakes would it take away the definition of my abs? Will the creatine increase or decrease any visual appearances to them?
Yes Anthony, creatine and whey protein are both great supplements to take during P90X. Protein is protein (no different than a piece of chicken really). And creatine helps muscle building but has no effect on body fat. So no, neither will affect your definition -- that is determined by body fat which is all about your nutrition.
Hey Ray, I'm not doing that so I don't have any feedback. I don't know if anyone else is. I'm sticking to the exercises as they are designed, at least this entire round. Let me know how it goes for you though!
Hey coach , I have taken the balance out of p90x2 to focus on heavy weight I have even modified the medicine ball moves to focus on heavy weight. Has anyone else on the team been doing this?
Can you define "bulking"? I want to put on muscle weight not waterlogged body builder guy weight. I've done 2 rounds of X and in phase 3 of X2 and need all the help I can get at 156lbs! Thanks
Hey Jeff, I would describe bulking as adding 1 lb per week, since under ideal circumstances a person can add about 3/4 a lb of muscle per week. You have to run a calorie surplus to facilitate that, and it's impossible to know the exact amount of surplus your body will use for muscle building vs. storing it as fat, so targeting 1 lb per week is a good target.
Hey coach, I'm 5'7, 140 pounds. I'm planning on starting my mass building plan on Monday and I want your opinion on something. My maintainence is 2400, should I go up to 3,000? Should I follow a 20/50/30 ratio? If so I'll be taking in 375 grams of carbs a day. Doesn't that seem like a little much for someone my size?
Yes, Robert, 3,000 would be fine (you may not need to go that high but the only way to know is to pick a number and try it for a week or 2). You may find 2800 or so to be your sweet spot. And go with phase 3 % (50% carbs, 30% protein, 20% fat).
Hey Coach , what type of cardio would you recommend when I try to cut and lose the fat not the muscle? I heard HIIT burns muscle as well as fat.
Hey Albert, the key to losing fat but not muscle is to do resistance training and dial in your diet with high protein and a calorie deficit. I'd recommend P90X with a fat shredder diet, just like I did in my first 90 days. BTW HIIT doesn't cause you to lose muscle if you are mixing it with resistance training. What WILL cause you to lose muscle is endurance cardio (like long runs and long cycle rides -- over 1 hour). After an hour your body goes into a catabolic mode and can cause you to lose muscle. So keep cardio session short (45 min or so) but intense (like HIIT).
Hey Coach, do you think I can still build muscle by just adding 500-600 calories and follow a 40/40/20 ratio? It's just that I know for my body type that I am sensitive to carbohydrates so I can't eat that many or else I'm going to get fat. Thanks!!
Hey Albert, sure you can build muscle with a 40/40/20 split. It's important for us to all know the differences between our body and others (none of us are the exact same). So go for it!
hey coach, Thank you so much for that!! I'll follow the program the way it is, until I get to single digits as you recommended. My Idea before, was to shorten the cardio sessions by finishing it earlier and starting right after ABS, like I would do both in one hour.
Hey Coach, I'm 35, 5'9", weighting 184, my BF is around 18.5% I really would like to gain more weight, but reading here I'm thinking maybe I should loose my love handles first, and only than start gaining more weight, do you think this is correct? Other thing I'm not really sure if it would work, but I was planning to ending my P90x cardio earlier and completing it with ABS. So it would be a little less of cardio, to help some muscle building but keep doing the ABS to support my back and better posture, what do you think?