Muscle Gain How To – This Works!

What’s up, everyone! Welcome to another Full Affect Fitness article! Today I will be giving the most effective information for your very own muscle gain how-to! There are 3 main concepts to this topic, all of which I will be talking about in this article! Below is a list of these 3 concepts:

  1. Training Volume
  2. Exercise Selection
  3. Progressive Overload

Volume Volume Volume:

The main driver of hypertrophy (muscle gain) is the amount of training volume you are putting on your muscles. This because it has been shown to have a dose-response relationship with hypertrophy. The more volume you apply, the greater the gains.

However, this is dependent mainly upon one key factor, which is your ability to recover. In order for you to continue growing muscle, you need to be able to recover from the training you are doing. This is why you cannot simply do 70 sets per muscle group per week and expect to receive extraordinary gains!

Volume is the main driver in hypertrophy because it is the amount of training stimulus you are applying to your muscles. It is the reason you are giving your muscles to grow, and it must be a balanced approach. If you give your muscles too little reason to grow, they won’t be forced to adapt and grow bigger. On the flip side of this, if you give your muscles an overwhelming training stimulus, they won’t be able to properly recover which will prevent long term gains!

So just how much training volume should one be looking to use? Well typically, between 10 and 20 sets per muscle group per week of training volume between 5 and 30 reps within 4 reps of failure is enough training stimulus for your muscles to grow. This isn’t a set in stone number, it is a rule of thumb. It may vary depending on one’s personal circumstances. It may also progress/change throughout a program as a training variable you can manipulate to suit your goals.

Exercise Selection:

Exercise selection is huge when it comes to any training you do! In relation to hypertrophy, it is crucial for ensuring you are receiving training volume in the most optimal way, and to work around and take into account your specific circumstances. Let’s explain these concepts in further detail below!

As I said above, the 10-20 sets rule of thumb is for direct work to a muscle group. Exercise selection plays a part in this as you must choose the exercises and number of exercises that will allow you to achieve this volume.

For example, a bench press is a targeted chest exercise. Meanwhile, a standard bench press is not a targeted triceps exercise. However, if you performed a close grip bench press, it then becomes a targeted triceps exercise.

When it comes to exercise selection and working around your specific circumstances, this is in regards to any injuries you may have or exercises that you personally respond better to.

For example, someone may have a shoulder injury, so instead of a bench press, they might perform a machine press if it helps alleviate any pain. Always seek medical advice for injuries! Another example may be someone not responding well with a dumbbell row, so they might choose to use a machine row that they can more optimally benefit from!

Progressive Overload:

Now that we know how important training volume is, and guidelines on actually implementing it, it is time to discuss how we progress from this starting point! This is where the progressive overload principle comes into play! Progressive overload means gradually increasing the amount of training stress you are putting on your body over time. This is important for one main reason!

As you train, your body becomes accustomed to the work you are putting it through. Much like you need enough volume to give your body a reason to change, you also need to continually increase this volume over time to give your body a reason to change after it has already received a certain degree of training stimulus.

I made a whole article explaining what progressive overload is, and I will link it below. However, the main methods of progressive overload include increasing the amount of sets, reps and weight you are using. These aren’t the only methods of progressive overload, however. There are more minutia ones that I explain in my previously mentioned article!

Wrapping Up:

All in all, gaining muscle is actually a very simple process. It is not easy to build muscle, it requires effort. However, the process of actually gaining it is simple. To sum things up, make sure you are using enough training volume for your body to grow, while not exceeding recovery limits. Ensure you are picking exercises that are suited for you and your goal. Lastly, don’t get complacent with training, you must continue to give your body a reason to adapt!

Has this information helped you? Give us a follow on our social medias through the buttons at the top right for more beneficial content! I am glad to have the opportunity to give you this information that can help benefit you in your pursuit of gaining muscle! I thank you so much for taking the time to read this article and as always, if you have any questions or comments please do not hesitate to leave them below and I will be sure to reply!


Here are some other articles that may be beneficial for your knowledge!

What is Volume in Training?

How to Target Muscle Groups!

What is Progressive Overload?


Until Next Time,

Kohl Johnson

Please refer to my liability disclaimer to ensure you know who is responsible for use of this information after reading.

Support is much appreciated if you benefited from this:

Kohl Johnson

I am a 16-year-old fitness fanatic! I have learned nothing but quality training and nutrition information from the utmost well-respected individuals in the field. Now, my only focus is to share this knowledge with you for your benefit, in the most honest way possible. We are all in this together! LET'S GO!

10 Responses

  1. I really enjoy the simple step solutions at the beginning of your posts. It is extremely helpful to me to know where your post is going and whether or not it is going to lead to the answers I am looking for me.

    Today, I am particularly interested in learning more about muscle gain because my boyfriend is very interested in me to begin weight lifting with him. While I haven’t weight lifted in the past with training, I never truly showed any real interest. I am trying to change that now and honestly most of the things I have read have been very overwhelming so I really really appreciated reading your post here. You made it simple and easy to understand, and not at all overwhelming.

    I am going to bookmark your site for future reference on my new journey!


    • Hi Kara, that is certainly something I try and do within each and every one of my articles. I am glad you appreciate that!

      I am also glad that the straight forward structure of this information has been able to help you!

      Best of luck in your journey and feel free to ask any questions you may have!

  2. Thanks for sharing this insight into muscle gain as no one wants to put in effort that isn’t going to be effective. I like how you break it down into 3 easy to understand concepts of training volume, exercise selection, and progressive overload. Personally, I think I need to revisit training volume to make sure things are being pushed the correct amount for the desired growth. Thanks for the guidelines to approach new numbers.

    • Hi Aly, my pleasure! I am so happy that you got the information needed to help you with your results! Best of luck in your journey!

  3. Hey there Kohl, 

    First of all, you should feel very lucky that on this young age, you know already so much on exercising. I was not so lucky and I struggle.

    I have been reading a lot coz I am trying to improve my strength and cardio, while I try to run away from boredom with crossfit and hiit (high intensity interval training) series. 

    One thing that worries me a bit when doing crossfit, is sometimes the exercises seem random and do not respect the worked volume or the required resting of the muscles for healthy development.

    Do you have any experience on that? I would like to read your opinion in contrast to the classic workout methods, hope to read that from you soon, 

    Thanks, Luiz

    • Hey Luis, thank you so much!

      CrossFit and H.I.I.T style training certainly have their pros and cons.

      As for the cons you mentioned, they are totally understandable.

      CrossFit can be extremely hard on ones joints and body in general. Especially considering the poor form that often comes along with that style of exercise.

      While I personally don’t have experience with CrossFit, I understand the style of exercise and the outcomes of it (both good and bad). 

      If it is possible, I would try and tailor the frequency of your sessions to one that allows proper recovery for yourself.

      This way you can still go hard during the actual workouts, benefit from them, and give your body adequate time to recover.

      I will look into putting together a more thorough article on this in the future!

      Have a great day and feel free to ask any other questions you may have!

  4. Hi kohl. Muscle gain is something I wanted to give a try some few years ago but I wasn’t consistent with it, I didn’t put the efforts and works just as you have said. I know a few that did and they are reaping the benefits. Well now I don’t want to gain huge muscles anymore, I just want to be fit.

    This well structured article is true and helpful for muscle gain.

    • Hi there, the effort one puts forth truly is a driving factor in their results. Good on you for not feeling obligated to pursue a specific goal for no reason, rather what you truly want to do to be happy!

      Also, thanks for the kind words!

  5. Thank you, Kohl.  Muscle gain, indeed.  It’s the name of the game for fitness, and you nailed it.  I love that you give us clear and concise instructions on how to set our goals for whatever muscle group we’re targeting.  I really appreciate that, because I’m the type of person that likes goals and following a specific plan.  Love the site!  Thanks!

    • Hi Babsie, I am very happy that you enjoy the format and information within my articles! Best of luck with your goals!

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