Bigger Smaller Bigger

by with John Berardi & Martin Rooney

Really? More Food?


With only 2 weeks left and more than 10 pounds to go, I need to eat more food.

This morning JB dropped the bomb on me. Every day for the next two weeks — not counting fast days — I’ll add a Super Shake between my breakfast and lunch. (A Super Shake, by the way, is like a fancy protein shake made with almond milk, protein powder, fruit, and other stuff.)

The good news, according to JB, is since it’s a shake, I won’t actually be “eating” anything. I’ll just drink it. Which sounds to me like a clever way of him trying to sneak a few hundred extra calories into my diet without it seeming like a huge change.

Look, Nate, you’re not actually eating any more food. You’re just… drinking it.


But I’ve gotta do whatever it takes to gain another 10 pounds.

The Super Shake

So I make the Super Shake.

And to be honest, it’s not that bad. Sure, it’s thick. And I do still kind of have to chew.

But it’s a welcome new flavor and it goes down easily. So easily in fact, I think, maybe I can blend my other meals into a shake and just drink them. Which sounds good in theory but not in practice. There’s no way I’m drinking liquid steak and potatoes.

On top of my new meal addition, I have a new workout program, too.

It’s a progression from the first two weeks with the same movement patterns but slightly different exercises. For instance, instead of doing a regular bench press, I’m now doing a band barbell bench press. A small change, but one that will challenge my muscles in a new way which will — hopefully — lead to more muscle growth.

And right now I need all the growth I can get.

Other highlights from Day 15

  • Feeling super-bloated and pregnant around dinner time. Guess that extra meal is gonna take some getting used to. We need to put some candles or something sweet-smelling in the bedroom. For Richelle’s sake.

Knowledge Bomb!

The Six-Step Super Shake

The Super Shake combines high-quality protein, fiber, good fats, antioxidants, and more in a tasty formula. It can replace a meal when you’re in a hurry, or give you some extra protein and calories when trying to build muscle.

For optimal mixing, flavor, and consistency, follow the steps in order.

Step 1: Start with ice

Use 1-4 cubes for a thin, chilled shake and  5-10 cubes for a thicker, pudding-like shake

Step 2: Pick a fruit

You’ve got lots of options here. Choose whatever you like. If you like a thick shake, go with frozen over fresh.

Step 3: Toss in some spinach

Yeah, I know it sounds gross to put veggies in a shake, but if you use spinach, you’ll barely taste it.

Step 4: Scoop some protein

Add 1 or 2 scoops of a protein powder of your choice.

Step 5: Select a nut or seed

Make sure you’re not allergic. (You’d probably know by now.) Aim for 1/3 cup of nuts/seeds per shake. Use whatever you want.

Step 6: Pour in some liquid

Use water, chilled green tea, or unsweetened almond milk.


Progressive Overload – A Little More, a Little Better

I’m not kidding when I say this is the most important thing you’ll ever learn about exercise for building muscle.

Progressive overload means consistently challenging yourself to do a little more, or a little better.

With Martin’s workouts that means either adding more weight to the bar with every workout, changing the exercise from week to week, changing the sets and reps, or simply trying to do a better job and lift with better form.

The fact is, your body won’t grow if you don’t constantly challenge it. By making small changes and trying to do a little more, a little better every workout, you’ll continue to build muscle and make gains.

Need an example?

Let’s say in your last workout you lifted 150 pounds. Well, today, you’re gonna lift 155 pounds.

Or let’s say you could only do 7 reps on your last exercise. Well, today you’re gonna do 8 reps. Or you do 7 awesome reps instead of 7 shitty half-assed reps.

That’s progressive overload.

Every time you do a workout, you write down what you did, and the next time, you do more, or you do it better.


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