72 Muscle Building Questions That Are All Answered With No

Steve Shaw
Written By: Steve Shaw
January 30th, 2013
Updated: June 13th, 2020
72.4K Reads
No, no and no! Next question? No! This article contains 72 common muscle building, nutrition, cardio and supplementation questions that can all be answered with "no."

"No" is perhaps a 2 year old's favorite word. It's also a word I find myself repeating over and over again when answering questions about muscle building.

Most lifters have a fear that results will only come once a complex magical formula is unlocked. What they fail to understand is that muscle building is really a simple process.

You lift consistently, use the best tools possible, progress (get a lot stronger), eat so that your body is able to gain muscle mass, and remain patient. Very patient.

To help simplify things I thought it would be fun to list common muscle building questions, and then respond with my favorite answer - no! Here goes...

72 Common Muscle Building Questions

Dumbbell Curls1) Will performing cardio several times per week slow my gains?

2) Will doing yoga slow my gains?

3) Will I lose a lot of muscle if I take a week off from training?

4) Is there a magical rep range?

5) Is there a magical workout routine?

6) Do I need the barbell bench press to build my chest?

7) Is the PCF ratio (Protein/Carbs/Fat) 40-40-20 the only way to go?

8) Will eating carbs at night make me fat?

9) Do I need to frequently deload if I feel fine?

10) Is the Smith machine just as good as barbell exercises?

11) Is squatting with good form still bad for your knees?

12) Is deadlifting with proper form still bad for your back?

13) Do you need to deadlift to build a huge back?

14) Do you need to squat to build huge legs?

15) Great, then it's ok to completely avoid squats and deadlifts for ever and ever?

16) Do I need a loading period when using creatine?

17) Do I need to eat every 2.5-3 hours?

18) If my post-workout meal is sub-par, will I lose my gains for the day?

19) Will having frequent sex limit my gains?

20) Do I need to eat all clean foods?

21) Is there a black and white answer to all muscle building questions?

22) Should I completely avoid lifting straps?

23) Do I need elaborate body part splits?

24) Do I need to train more than 4 days per week?

25) Does protein intake damage your kidneys if they are currently healthy?

26) Does weight training stunt your growth?

27) Can I add another chest training day to "program X"?

28) Can I add another biceps training day to "program Y"?

29) Will doing a lot of ab work give me a six pack?

30) Do I need to count every gram of protein, carbs and fat each day?

31) If I can't sleep 8 hours per day will I be unable to gain?

32) Do I need to train for the pump to make gains?

33) Do I need to train like Dorian Yates to make gains?

Muscular Man

34) Do I need to volume train to make gains?

35) I heard that full body workouts are useless. Is that true?

36) Should I use the magazine workouts of top bodybuilding stars?

37) Is Doggcrapp training magical?

38) Is Wendler's 531 magical?

39) Is Starting Strength magical?

40) Is StrongLifts magical?

41) So and so says frequent feeding is useless. Is that true?

42) So and so says intermittent fasting is useless. Is that true?

43) If I eat more than 40 grams of protein per sitting does it go to waste?

44) Will whey protein powder make me fat?

45) Is "eating healthy" good enough when trying to build muscle?

46) Do all pre-workout formulas have the same ingredients?

47) Do I need to train to failure on every set?

48) Can I get as big as a mass monster pro bodybuilder without steroids?

49) I am 5'9" and weigh 260 pounds. My mom's scale says my body fat percentage is 12%. Is this correct?

50) Can I gain 40 pounds of muscle in 8 weeks?

51) My bench press has "only" went up 10 pounds in the last 4 weeks. Is this a plateau?

52) Do I need to worry about TUT - time under tension?

53) Can I get big without adding much strength?

54) Should I curl in the squat rack?

Side Laterals55) Will a beard really help my lift totals?

56) Are all powerlifters fat?

57) Should I make up my own workouts from scratch if I've never made gains?

58) Will women look like Arnold Schwarznegger if they train with resistance?

59) Does eating fat make you fat?

60) When I decide to cut, do I immediately need to add a ton of cardio?

61) I heard I should never train when I am sore. Is this correct?

62) The 1-5 rep range doesn't build muscle, correct?

63) High rep sets can't build muscle, correct?

64) Should I deload every time I have a bad training day?

65) Do I need to change workout programs every 8 weeks?

66) If I train over 60 minutes will I lose all my gains?

67) Do I need slow negatives to build muscle?

68) I was told I can't build muscle with machine exercises. Is this correct?

69) Is creatine a steroid?

70) Does every Youtube form video really teach proper form?

71) Will high reps give me muscle definition?

72) Should I train differently when I am cutting?

The Answer:

No. Need clarification about any of these questions? Post a comment below or on the Muscle & Strength forum, and I will respond in a timely manner.

Are there any muscle building questions you would add to this list?

Dubai Mahfouz
Posted on: Thu, 07/20/2023 - 19:58

Can I take pre workout and creatine mixed together

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Sat, 07/22/2023 - 12:38

A lot of preworkouts have creatine in them, so you can. If you can only take creatine once because you want to make it last longer, save it for after. But if your preworkout doesn't have it in there already and you can do both, do both.

joe milone
Posted on: Tue, 07/28/2020 - 17:45

Senior citizen 70 years old, been losing size because of age. I stay at the same bodyweight all the time. I work out 3 times a week doing power exercises. To add to that I'm type 2 diabetic and maybe these meds are keeping me from gaining any type of weight. Currently not taking any protein products. I've been lifting many years and at the point of disgust because I WAS big and strong. Is there any help for me? Thanks so much.

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Wed, 07/29/2020 - 10:00

Hey Joe

Definitely check with your doctor to find out what supplements are safe for you to take. More often than not, people will lift big and not see the results they want because they aren't eating to support the growth they want. Make sure you're consuming enough (healthy) food to support those power days.

Posted on: Thu, 06/01/2017 - 11:13

I'm my wight is 350 lb . My body fat 40%
I do weight lifting with no cardio
Do u recommend any type of transform from fat man to muscler
Need program to lost fat and gain muscle in the same time. ..... is there any

Posted on: Wed, 06/08/2016 - 10:52

If im running 5 out of 7 days a week- with one long run, 1 day of interval training and 3 days of easier runs usually. Would it be possible to succesfully workout to achieve muscle gains simultaneously, or would doing the two together just significantly slow progress and most likely put to much strain on my body.


Sahil shorie
Posted on: Sat, 04/11/2015 - 07:10

No man, doctors and fitness professionals say that squatting and deadlift will stunt growing height.
Im 17 and my height is growing slowly. I never squat or deadlift. But I do hiit workouts to loose fat.

Any ideas to increase height? Please.

Posted on: Fri, 04/10/2015 - 12:40

Great article, I couldn't agree more to all of these points. It shows that bodybuilding, weight-lifting, exercising, working-out or whatever you call it, is not hard at all, it is a beautiful and easy lifestyle. Some "bro-science" like you described them, got us believing that we have to give up almost everything in life in order to attain a good physique. Looking forward to more truths from your next articles.

Posted on: Fri, 04/10/2015 - 12:23

number 49 lmfao

Posted on: Mon, 10/06/2014 - 10:33

Can you eat your high carbs in the morning and do weightlifting 8 hrs later.

Posted on: Tue, 11/05/2013 - 04:14

Damn I laughed so hard at after reading 13,14 and 15

Posted on: Thu, 09/12/2013 - 04:39


few years back i hurt my part of ankle joint bone & bone has been swollen & gives pain if i walk more, bone swollen not decreasing at all..... is there any exercize or remedy is there for my problem???

Posted on: Sat, 07/13/2013 - 02:31

dose masturbation reduce natural testosterone in the body and that effect muscles growth? We would love to know more about this matter

I am still 24, but interested to know if taking supplement of natural testosterone booster, would that increase muscle mass?

Posted on: Fri, 06/21/2013 - 12:24

How do I know when to start cutting?

Great article, by the way.

Posted on: Sat, 06/08/2013 - 02:52

48) Can I get as big as a mass monster pro bodybuilder without steroids?

best question lol

Posted on: Tue, 06/04/2013 - 05:41

Is one protine shake (after workout in evening around 8ipm) enough or is it a good idea to have them at other times?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Wed, 06/05/2013 - 17:30

It really depends on your diet. If you're getting plenty of quality protein from whole foods, then a protein shake isn't a necessity. That being said, if you're having trouble eating all of the protein you need to fuel recovery, then a protein shake would really come in handy throughout your day. Some lifters drink as many as 4 shakes a day, depending on their dietary needs.

Posted on: Mon, 06/03/2013 - 10:31

Do I have to take protein shakes to gain size and strength? And is there a wright and wrong time to take them?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Mon, 06/03/2013 - 18:36

Protein shakes are meant to supplement your diet. If you are getting enough quality protein through your diet, you don't necessarily need to invest in a protein powder. That being said, they are incredibly convenient, and I would recommend that you drink a whey protein isolate shake right after your workout.

Posted on: Sat, 04/06/2013 - 13:47

29? How else do you get abs?

Posted on: Sat, 04/06/2013 - 12:54

Speaking of weight progression... what is a good guideline for a weekly progression? Maybe 5 or 10 lbs. per week, if strength gains permit it... or maybe even more? Just wondering.

Tom O'Bray
Posted on: Sat, 04/06/2013 - 12:42

Great information! Thank you very much!

Posted on: Mon, 03/18/2013 - 22:45

I'm not sure if this one qualifies: Can a woman who is lifting for muscle tone and definition follow the same training strategy as a man who is lifting for size and bulk?

Thanks! (And this is a great list, btw!)

Posted on: Mon, 03/18/2013 - 03:27

I am 23 years old male, I have been lifting for the last 3 years and have gained 65lbs (all natural. 5'10 184lbs). It's one those "from zero to hero" situations. Anyways, my question is, why am I never satisfied with the size of my arms? I am doing everything by the book. People tell me that I will never be satisfied with my arms, its natural. What is your take on this? (current biceps size is 16.5 inches flexed)

Posted on: Fri, 02/08/2013 - 11:37

55) Will a beard really help my lift totals?-- NO???
Blasphemy!! Lies!!!
J/k..... Great list - it should be posted in every commercial gym across the world

Posted on: Tue, 02/05/2013 - 14:39


Great read! Many people need to read this. Certainly puts minds at ease with everything one can read online, in books and in magazines. I understand that SS and SL 5x5 routines are not magical, but can you tell me if they are good, effective routines for someone who has only been lifting about 6 months?

Posted on: Tue, 02/05/2013 - 12:39

Thanks for the response Joey

Posted on: Tue, 02/05/2013 - 11:27

Regarding #69 My question is what is the proper way to use creatine and for how long? Now that I have made good gains in muscle mass and want to cut the body fat should I quit using it?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Tue, 02/05/2013 - 12:36

Use 5g per day, and there's no reason to cycle off. I would still use it while cutting fat.

Posted on: Tue, 02/05/2013 - 11:21

Question #21 rings true for me. Being 47 now and getting back into the gym after an 11+ year absence I have to do things differently. In response to do cardio after resisternce to lose fat...i have more success and a better workout doing cardio first to warm up my muscles and joints.
This article was very helpful to dispell alot of the myths and "broscience" out there.
Thanks Steve

Posted on: Sat, 02/02/2013 - 12:19

if i run 6 days per week and im only 66 kg will i burn the muscles ive made?

Posted on: Fri, 02/01/2013 - 15:25

I'd just like to thank you for your no BS approach and I really look forward to your articles in the future!

Posted on: Fri, 02/01/2013 - 11:14

25) Does protein intake damage your kidneys if they are currently healthy?
I have (had) perfectly healthy kidneys, used protein shakes according to suggested directions on container. After a year went to the Doc and found out my kidney values were going in the wrong direction. (I was 42 at the time)
Backed off shakes and switched to protein from food. Kidney values are fine again. I'm not saying shakes are bad just used in moderation with good protein rich food intake.
Great article Steve.

Posted on: Fri, 02/01/2013 - 08:04

steve, i'd like to ask you about post workout meal.I don't have much appetite following workout but I get really hungry about 2 hours later.is there a problem if I wait that long? notice I always eat a high protein meal 2-3 h pre workout. I know the anabolic window is like 24h but what would you consider a good protocol regarding pre and post workout nutrition?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Fri, 02/01/2013 - 10:44

No, no problem. i would drink a protein shake post-workout, diluted with more water if you have no taste for food, and then eat when you feel hungry.

All that anabolic window stuff doesn't matter. Just train for progressive overload and get your daily calories, protein and macros in and you will gain.

Posted on: Fri, 02/01/2013 - 07:40

I am deployed overseas and it is almost impossible to keep my diet under control to build muscle and still loose some fat. I am seeing some improvement in my muscularity and size, but would like to cut some fat before I go back home. I have about 3-4 protein shakes each day to keep up my protein intake, but I only eat about one or two actual meals per day due to my schedule. Do you have any suggestions?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Fri, 02/01/2013 - 10:41

How much weight do you feel you have to lose, and how many pounds have you been losing per week?

Posted on: Fri, 02/01/2013 - 21:24

I would like to loose about 20 lbs of fat. I have just started to watch what I eat and I am loosing about a pound a week. I just want to make sure that I just loose fat. I am kind of new at this diet thing, so I am looking for any suggestions. Thanks.

Posted on: Fri, 02/01/2013 - 06:45

I'm a vegetarian, i dun eat meat and egg & also rice. I consume diary products though!
how should i plan my diet? I wanna get lean without much supplements
I'm taking protein shake Myofushion (Probiotic) post my workouts
i just bought a creatine monohydrate DYMATIZE
i avoid fat food, i play futsal and swim as cardioZ
What else shud i do for abs?
shud i also get a nitroxide elite fatburner?
pls advice

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Fri, 02/01/2013 - 10:37

Hi Thraz,

This question is best for the forum. Sorry i couldn't be more help on this topic.


Sahil shorie
Posted on: Sat, 04/11/2015 - 07:16

Do some HIIT workouts too. It may burn of fat and give you strength also. I enjoy hiits a lot.
Eat right but on right time also. Will help for your abs.

Posted on: Fri, 02/01/2013 - 03:02

Hello Steve
very great article..
could you please respond to no

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Fri, 02/01/2013 - 10:36

#3 - A week away from training isn't long enough to lose any important amount of muscle tissue. If it were, everyone on bodypart splits wouldn't be making gains because they are taking a week away from each body part. The body is not set up to drop muscle rapidly. Biological systems like the human body adapt slowly to specific imposed demands, and these adaptations won't go away overnight - or even with a week off - simply because that's not physiologically efficient or prudent.

#11 - Squatting with bad form is bad for your knees - high squats, bad knee alignment, etc. All exercises are inherently dangeorus if done incorrectly. If done correctly there is no unusual or unique risks associated with the squat in particular.

#12 ^ Same.

Posted on: Fri, 02/01/2013 - 02:57

61) I heard I should never train when I am sore. Is this correct?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Fri, 02/01/2013 - 10:29

Soreness comes from connective tissue inflammation, not muscle tissue inflammation. You can still make gains by training when you are sore.

Yasir Ali
Posted on: Fri, 02/01/2013 - 02:10

13) Do you need to deadlift to build a huge back?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Fri, 02/01/2013 - 10:28

"Need" - no. Is it a useful tool, yes.

Yasir Ali
Posted on: Fri, 02/01/2013 - 00:25

6) Do I need the barbell bench press to build my chest?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Fri, 02/01/2013 - 00:54

"Need" - no. Is it a useful tool, yes.

Posted on: Fri, 02/01/2013 - 01:15

Steve is right. I have seen impressive gains from just a regular pushup regimen with some dumbbell exercises thrown in. Try this for your chest next time:

Narrow stance pushup x 10
Normal stance pushup with fingers point outwards x 10
Wide stance pushup with fingers pointing outwards x AMAP

You can really feel a stretch in the inner cleavage of your chest and it will bring some definite results.