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Review of "Advanced Mass Building"
Book by "The Muscle Nerd" Jeff Anderson

Right off the bat, let me just say, the title of this book is dead on. The strategies in Jeff's book are targeted for the more advanced lifter (or the intermediate lifter looking to become advanced).

If you're in your first year of training, these techniques aren't necessary in order for you to get results. Learning proper exercise technique and getting comfortable with a more basic training program will get you excellent results.

But when you get PAST the initial stages of training and move into intermediate and advanced stages, THEN you need more advanced strategies.

THIS is where "Advanced Mass Building" finds its home.

And let me just say, this manual is a far cry from the usual "dry" training programs. This is not just great information, Jeff has a very entertaining writing style as well, making this an easy read.

His military analogies (taken from his time in the Army) will really help you understand exactly where he's coming from with his training, nutritional and supplementation techniques.

And there is a LOT of excellent stuff to be found here. Jeff takes you step-by-step through the EXACT rationale he used to put together this program. You'll learn how one phase builds into the next phase, which sets up the next phase. It's not random - it's very obvious from the start, there is a method to Jeff's madness - it's a highly-targeted approach.

What you'll notice is that Jeff uses a variety of what you would normally consider "intensity techniques" (for example, pre-exhaust supersets). But as I mentioned, unlike the way most people use intensity techniques, these are not placed at random.

They are used with very specific purposes in mind. For example, when you start off, you'll find there is a VERY high-rep phase of the program. Why would you use high reps in a muscle-building program?

This very specific high rep training physiologically PREPARES your body for future muscle growth by increasing capillary density (capillaries are the tiny blood vessels where nutrient exchange happens) and the number of mitochondria (the energy factories that reside within the cells of your muscles).

You're basically setting the stage by building a foundation. Plus, as a bonus, you're also hitting the endurance-oriented Type 1 muscle fibers to maximize the overall muscle-stimulating effects of the program. Naturally, Type 1 fibers, being more for endurance, don't have huge growth potential but still have SOME, so you don't want to leave them out.

Once you've set the stage, THAT is when you move to specific training targeting the OTHER muscle fibers…the ones that REALLY have maximum growth potential.

And here's where Jeff's program really goes for broke - you'll be using several more intensity techniques in a very controlled manner (so as not to completely overtrain yourself in one day) over the course of the next 3 weeks, each phase setting up the next phase (as I mentioned above) for better results.

This is the major "stand out" point that I'd like to get across with this program. It's NOT a bunch of random intensity techniques thrown together and hope they work.

Jeff has done the research to show you exactly how each intensity technique affects the body at a physiological level. This is a far cry from the guys I see on the bench press doing "forced reps" every day (I should say, forcing their spotters to do the reps for them!).

He also goes into detail about how the training affects hormonal levels (such as GH and testosterone) and how to maximize those hormonal levels for best results. It's very well thought-out information.

Here's the thing…overall, this is a TOUGH program. If you're "recovery-impaired", even these targeted intensity techniques might be too much for you to recover from and make progress with.

This is one of the major downsides I've found with programs that utilize techniques that go beyond straight sets. Some people can recover from there. Some people simply CAN'T. If you're a beginning trainer, you're going to have a very hard time with this program, which is why it's not recommended.

If you're at the appropriate training level, however, the layout of this program will really help you understand how these intensity techniques affect your body.

Plus, in the book, Jeff also includes a good deal of information on how to find the optimal training frequency for YOUR body. So even if you ARE somewhat "recovery impaired," you'll still be able to get a great deal out of this program.

Nutrition and supplementation also covered in the program. There is some very useful information in this section. If you've been "around the block," you'll probably know quite a bit of this already but there is some unique info that you'll enjoy (plus, a refresher never hurts).

What I found really interesting was Jeff's take on customizing your eating plan for your body type (i.e. endo, meso, or ectomorph). He's also included a variety of meal plans, covering calorie loads from 1500 up to 4000 calories per day. It's good, solid information.


Overall, "Advanced Mass Building" offers a well thought-out, unique approach to muscle building. It's a short program and packed with challenge.

The only downsides may be the degree of difficulty for those who have a hard time recovering. Also, the program does contain a lot of different training techniques, so you'll need to read through carefully to make sure you understand exactly what to do in each section before you do it. If you've been training awhile, you'll most likely recognize a lot of these - but now you'll know the "WHY" as well!

So if you're looking for something different and a quick growth spurt sounds good, this might be just what you need to gain some quick pounds of muscle.

Excellent info - definitely worth checking out.

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