So you’re wondering how to get bigger shoulders? This article shares the results of my wild experiment about training shoulders every single day for 30 days straight! If you’ve ever wanted to try an extreme method to shock your deltoids into growth, this is for you.
How to get bigger shoulders is the goal of pretty much every guy that lifts because nothing will make you look more powerful and alpha. Do you have lagging deltoids and have thought to yourself that you will do anything to grow them? Listen up because you are going to love the concept of “nuclei overload.”
I wanted to write this article in response to a great Instagram DM I got that asked me “what is the fastest way to grow your shoulders?” Nuclei overload is one way that could potentially spark your shoulders into faster growth. So what is nuclei overload?
Nuclei overload training essentially implies hitting a muscle group every single day.
This video sparked up discussions in the comment section and there was a lot of negative backlash.
However, what you could also see in the comments is people who tried the experiment and saw some insane results!
So we figured, after two years, why not make another video where we show you actual RESULTS from such training.
Now just like you, I was thinking about how to get bigger shoulders, because the typical approach wasn’t working well enough anymore.
Yes, I was overloading on my overhead and lateral movements, but something just seemed to be lacking.
And so I decided to give the nuclei overload training a shot, even though popular belief would be that this will just lead to overtraining and no gains.
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Overtraining & how to get bigger shoulders
In this article I’ll take you through my personal journey, throughout which my lacking deltoids became pretty much my best-developed muscle group.
Why I think my shoulders went from flat to boulders?
Well, thinking about it, I give most credit to the fact I overtrained them TWICE.
One of the times I trained them for 30 days STRAIGHT.
Recently, I trained them 15 days in a row.
“But Troy, why are you doing this?! You will overtrain, your gains will diminish and you will underperform! Just overload on your overhead movements goddammit!”
While overloading on movements overtime does give results, I am a firm believer that there is ALWAYS a way to get to your goal faster.
And so, if you want to ask me why I did those experiments with my delts, the answer is simple – It came from my mindset.
My mind was telling me that if I train a lacking muscle group EVERY SINGLE DAY, and it stil doesn’t grow… Then I can at least say I gave my best.
Logically, you might be asking yourself – If I train a given group every day for a month, wouldn’t that require rest time for optimal growth? Do I not put myself in a risk of injury, such as tearing a tendon or even worse, the muscle itself?
If that’s bothering you, you are in the right place, because in this article, we’re gonna bust some myths about nuclei overload training.
The End Of Lagging Shoulders
So, one of your main goals is getting bigger shoulders to create a more prominent X-frame.
You feel like you’ve tried every single method and your delts still don’t seem to progress significantly, besides the few veins that popped up, probably because you were underfeeding yourself and lost some fat…
If that’s the case, you might want to give the method of nuclei overload training a shot.
Of course, as far as I’m concerned, no one on YouTube is really making videos like this anymore.
The last person to go in-depth on this concept and actually experiment with it, was Migan from Team 3D ALPHA.
Where It All Started
It was way back 5 years ago in 2014 that I was able to really objectively look at my physique and realize my shoulders were actually lacking.
The rest of my body was pretty well developed, but I felt like I looked small because I didn’t have those 3D, boulder shoulders.
Now of course, to some of you, this may look big and in proportion, but trust me – When you looked at my whole body and the proportions, my shoulders were just behind.
The same year, I went to the Mr. Olympia expo in September – This was my first EVER fitness expo.
By that time I had a solid amount of training experience and even though I knew my weak points, I thought I was in an amazing shape.
And then… At the expo, I was around THE BEST physiques in the world.
I came to the conclusion they were on a whole new level and instantly, my subconscious asked me “Do you EVEN LIFT BRO?”
Needless to say, I was aware that the majority of those seemingly diced to the socks physiques, were not natural.
However, I did not lose motivation because that – I knew that a natural physique can be well-built, if you wanted it bad enough and worked for it.
That was a pivoting point, at which I told to myself I’d do ANYTHING and go through EVERYTHING I had to, in order to build a world-class physique.
One of the focal points for me was seeing Sergi Constance in person.
If you don’t know, Sergi is one of the top level fitness models in the ENTIRE world.
I took a picture with him and when I got back home and checked the picture out, I realized his shoulder development was INSANE to say the least.
This seemed like a much-needed reminder that just affirmed to me how important it is to build huge, 3D-looking deltoids.
Think about it – You might have a nice chest, a wide back, big arms, but if your deltoids are not popping… It will look silly.
You just need that shoulder line development for a complete physique. That includes the front, side, rear delts, but also the upper chest and the traps – It’s that upper portion of the torso that really makes everything down the line look in proportion.
In the following month after the Mr. Olympia expo, I felt limitless.
I channeled an INSANE level of motivation.
Perhaps that was my body’s survival instinct, as I was also going through a lot in my personal life.
I was basically homeless and had to stay in Vegas for a week after the expo, because my roommate backed out on the rental, literally in the last minute.
And every single time I go through hardship, I do my best to motivate myself internally.
So, right after the expo, I decided to take a new path in my life – Both in terms of personal development and in my training.
That’s when I said to myself “F**k it, I’ll just annihilate my lacking group (shoulders) every single day and see what happens!”
The Source Of Motivation
Many people on here reach out to me to get advice on staying motivated.
I always tell them that for me personally, setting really hard challenges and actually sticking to and finishing them, is one of the BEST motivators.
That means going and digging through it even during your down moments where you feel 0 motivation.
At the time I knew that if I managed to smash my shoulders every single day for a month, then I could probably push through anything, mentally.
And so I set the goal – I decided to train my shoulders for at the very least 100 repetitions, every single day.
The exercises I did
I knew that intensity by nature was more strenuous so I relied more on lateral raise movements, moreso than overhead, intense pressing movements.
And so, I started doing cable lateral raises, dumbbell and plate lateral raises.
At this point you’re probably asking yourself this again – 30 days of straight training a muscle group, would require rest, wouldn’t you get injured otherwise?
If you’re on the verge of typing this question in the comments, let ME ask YOU a question:
Suppose that you are my friend and you haven’t seen me for an entire year, because I was in jail. You heard I was doing push-ups DAILY in jail. Like hundreds or maybe thousands a day.
Would you assume that:
- I was constantly overtraining and my chest was smaller or hasn’t changed at all during a year, because you need to let the body rest.
- My chest is WAY bigger because I’ve been doing push-ups daily
And let me tell you something, this is a relevant example, because 10 years back, I’d do at the very least A HUNDRED push-ups a day.
Just because I was obsessed. I had no idea about the concept of “Nuclei overload”.
Ever since this push-up experiment, my chest started growing like CRAZY.
As a matter of fact, I made a video on this about 2 years back.
What I’m trying to say here is that this wasn’t my first rodeo on overtraining a muscle group.
Why would you want to overtrain?
Most of you don’t understand this concept and stick to traditional principles and methods.
However, the goal with nuclei overload is to force the muscle to adapt to acute stress and increase the nuclei in the muscle cell, giving it greater potential for growth.
This is in fact, one of the things that happens when you “supplement” with anabolic steroids.
And so, the goal of overtraining a given group is to actually shock it and increase its growth potential for, well, pretty much FOREVER.
A doctor from the University of New Mexico, concluded the following throughout his in-depth research:
“The most adaptable tissue in the human body is skeletal muscle tissue. It is remarkably remodeled after continuous and smartly designed resistance training programs.”
Contrary to that, I’ve always intuitively understood that your muscles are stubborn.
If you are a natural lifter, you know this – You need to ALWAYS find a way to increase overload and cause the muscles to adapt.
This is especially valid after the “Newbie gains” phase, where everything you do, yields gains.
And so, knowing that I’m an advanced trainee, this is EXACTLY what I did – I trained shoulders daily, for a month straight.
In the following year after my original nuclei overload experiment, my deltoids became my best-developed muscle group.
TIME FOR A PUNCHLINE!
Guess which my two best developed muscle groups are as of today?
That’s right- The TWO groups I’ve done nuclei overload training on – Chest and deltoids.
My biceps nuclei overload experiment turned out to be a failure, mainly because the setup of the experiment was not optimal.
That poor setup included:
- Poor exercise selection
- Being in a caloric deficit
We’ll talk about it in another video.
For now, let’s answer some of the commonly asked questions about the first time I succeeded with this experiment.
#1 What was my EXACT protocol?
Many people noticed the gains after this experiment and so, I got a LOAD of questions on my protocol.
To put it simply, here’s what I did:
- Rep range- 15-30 repetitions
- Exercise selection – DIRECT Lateral deltoid work (DB and plate lat raises)
Now, this was the first time. A couple months back I did this experiment again.
However, this time the duration of it was twice as short, as I only did it for 2 weeks in a row, but also, with a more strict regimen.
From July 15th to July 30th, I did the following
- Volume – 100-200 Lateral raises, 5 times a week.
- Frequency – 5 times a week
- Principle – Maximum time under tension
I did this experiment at home, making the experiment easy to adhere to.
“But Troy, didn’t you say you were training shoulders daily? Why just 5x a week?”
Here it comes… On top of that 5x a week delt work at home, I would do an ACTUAL, high volume shoulder workout, using the balloon method.
I focused on heavy lifting and time under tension, using a total of 7-8 sets.
- 3 high-intensity (heavy) sets
- 2 drop sets
- 2 Time under tension sets
And guess what – The visual difference was there in literally 3 weeks!
#2 Did I get stronger?
It is an interesting note here that on day 1, I was able to do 33 repetitions of dumbbell lateral raises with the 15 lbs. dumbbells I had at home.
By day 14, I was able to do over 40 repetitions with the SAME weight – This is a 20% increase in strength endurance.
And guess what supports strength endurance? That’s right – The same thing that makes your muscles look bulkier – Increased glycogen storages.
My body was literally supercharging and adapting to the enormous volume of stress I was putting it through.
End result? 3D deltoids.
#3 What was the effect on the mind-muscle connection (MMC) ?
Here is something you won’t hear anywhere else – Soreness can help engage more muscle focus (MMC).
Think about it, you have probably experienced it – You became sore from the workout on the day before.
The next day, you perform a movement that engages that same muscle and guess what? You feel the muscle working right from the very start, due to soreness.
What does that lead to? It makes you think about that muscle, because, well, you are freakin’ feeling it and its soreness!
After a couple of sets, the blood flushes through, warms the muscle up and the soreness is not as prominent.
Now you may think I’m totally insane, but I’ve actually had 2 consecutive days of training the same muscle group and on day two, I was STRONGER.
Odds are, if you have never done this, you wouldn’t know.
#4 Did I injure myself?
This is easily the most common question I get about this experiment.
As a matter of fact, about 5 days into it I felt like I had to keep upping the intensity, as I felt little to no soreness.
I felt that my body was adapting to the acute change, meaning it was simply ready for MORE!
#5 How did this experiment affect my current shoulder training?
Even now, I’m getting stronger on each and every shoulder movement – Be it compound or more isolated.
I am more explosive on pushing movements and overall, I feel like I can add a bit more weight to my shoulder movements.
This was the a result of my little experiment!
Bottom line – Should YOU do this?
Well, the answer is YES and NO.
As I mentioned, this method IS NOT suitable for newbies.
People going through the newbie phase will enjoy the quick gains from even a non-structured approach to training.
If you’re a beginner, go for moderate to high-intensity, full-body workouts, 3-4 times a week.
However, if you’ve been in the gym for some time and feel like you’ve reached a plateau in development, then DO try this for your lacking body parts.
Then again, consider that your goal is not to go batshit crazy, but instead, carefully pick movements that won’t be excessively strenuous.
Last but not least, make sure to grant your body a big effin’ load of food.
It’s gonna need it.
If you enjoyed this article please follow me on Instagram @TroyShred where you can connect with me personally. Feel free to even send me a DM and if you want to try this experiment yourself make sure to use the #nucleiOverload so I can stay updated on your transformation.