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How To Get Stronger Without Getting Too Big

Yes, it's 'shopped.

Key Points:

  • Getting too big is not something you need to worry about

  • Gaining significant amounts of muscle is much harder than you think

  • Follow a programme that emphasises getting stronger on the basic lifts

  • Eat and sleep like an adult and the results will come

  • Consult a professional if you encounter hurdles

How Easy is it To Get 'Too Big' ?

So you want to start lifting weights for a better physique and stronger body. But, you don't want to look like one of the bulky gorillas you've seen on the cover of magazines, or maybe even in your gym. After all, if you aren't careful, one month in the gym could leave you accidentally looking like the brute above! No. In fact, anyone who has actually made a sincere effort at getting bigger knows this concern is hilarious. The reason why is because building muscle is VERY HARD, and takes a LONG TIME. The chance of you getting too big by accident is practically zero. Additionally, most of the lads you think you're going to look like have physiques that are probably not possible for you to attain unless you 1) have freak genetics and 2) take industrial amounts of steroids.

Therefore, you need to stop worrying that you are going to get too big by lifting weights a few times a week. Otherwise you should probably stop working as well, in case you get 'too rich'.

After just one week of lifting and a few scoops of creatine, Timmy knew he had gone too far.

Doing Things the Smart Way

Instead of taking the route of bodyweight exercises and light pink dumbbells, you need to lift some heavy shit if you want to look good. This involves focusing on the big compound lifts: squat, bench, deadlift, press, chins, and rows.

Getting progressively stronger on these exercises, in tandem with good sleep and nutrition practices, will get you exactly to where you want to go. Below are two examples of what is possible if you follow such a training plan, working extremely hard for years, and without taking steroids.

Eric Helms

Steve Hall

Notice how neither Eric Helms nor Steve Hall look anything like the two photos at the start, yet they are both competitive natural bodybuilders who lift heavy regularly. Steroids has skewed the general public's views on what is realistic expectations for muscle gain, and it's frustrating to watch that put people off getting strong.


Getting bulky or 'too big' is just not something worth worrying about. Just ask the thousands of men across the world who have worked their asses of to get to their desired physique. Get stronger on basic compound lifts by following a beginner strength programme like Starting Strength. Eat properly and sleep well and the results will come.

In Strength, Cill

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