Originally Posted by bruteforce
Give yourself over to a few basic routines, plenty of food and rest, and solid progression for a year. I know it sounds like a long time, but if you had started in 2011, you'd be there now. In the end, its a lot faster to do it right the first time.
Over that first year, you will experience almost inhuman gains in strength and size, increase your experience under the bar, and learn what does and doesn't work for you. I say almost inhuman because its still going to be slower than those using illegal PEDs. After this first year, you will be one of the stronger people in your gym, supposing you're at a commercial one. Give it another couple years with the same focus and intensity, and you'll be in the top 1%.
A few FAQs. (These are a bit tongue in cheek. My rage is not directed at you or any of the people on this forum, but rather at the kids at my gym who ask me how I got strong and then ignore my advice)
Q. OMG, this routine is boring. How long do I have to do it?
A. For as long as you want to get bigger and stronger. As much as I hate this sort of philosophic talk, if you have to ask if you're ready to move on, you aren't. Give a nice basic routine at least 3 months to work its magic, use good form, and then if you feel that you have mastered the lifts, branch out a little, but DO NOT throw away the basic big movements.
Q. Squatting is hard, what can I replace it with?
A. A spine. Once that grows, get back to squatting. Seriously though, once you get your form correct on squatting, its pretty much the best exercise you can do to get stronger.
Q. I really just want big arms, why aren't there more curls?
A. Because I could tear the arms off your body and use them as grisly back scratchers if you don't have a strong back to go with them. Get back to deadlifting, rowing, and pull-ups! Once you get some good strength on these, you'll be strong enough to lift enough weight to work your arms more directly. Until then, you need more basic overall strength to make a difference in your physique.
Q. My friends are all on supplement x. Will that make me grow?
A. Probably not, unless its an illegal PED. Supplements can help, but give whole food and lots of hard work a chance to show you what can be done. Sandow and Grimek didn't have access to BSN's latest placebo, but still managed to do pretty well.