Supermen: Building Maximum Muscle for a Lifetime

By Craig Cecil
Paperback and e-book formats, 276 pages
ISBN: 978-0-9847414-0-3








Description

This book presents a weight training program and nutrition system for intermediate to advanced weight trainers that maximizes the muscular development of an individual, while creating a complete, balanced and symmetrical physique. This book will save you years of trial-and-error in the gym and provide you with decades of weight training techniques and insights. It's a book for the rest of us—those with average genetics, strong minds and stronger hearts. More significantly, it represents a long-term plan for lifting weights wisely throughout your life while building and maintaining significant muscle mass. This is weight training for life.

Photo of Prone Incline Shrugs on the Smith Machine Photo of a muscular back

In this book, you will learn:


Table of Contents


Save Years of Trial and Error in the Gym

Small adjustments can make big differences--this book provides the insight that other weight training books lack, from minor hand position adjustments to optimal exercise ordering and rotation, based on your goals, level of development and recovery ability.

Hundreds of plateau-busting, battle-tested bodybuilding routines and workouts

See if you can make it through Bombastic, Viking Ship, Handle of the Earth, The Final Countdown, and hundreds more. These bodybuilding workouts and weight training exercises are guaranteed to initiate muscle growth.

Viking Ship

Viking ships were heavy, massive structures of wood. The men that rowed these ships forged themselves in the bowels of the rowmen’s seats. Here, you get to row one for the last half of the workout.

Exercise

Sets (13)

Reps

Chins (to front)

4

To failure

Reverse-Grip Pulldown

3

15, 12, 10

Seated Cable Row

6

6, 6, 6, 6, 6, 6


Hold the Presses

This time we’re going to pre-exhaust the front delts with front raises, then have you perform some very heavy Military presses standing. That will take everything you’ve got. The rear delts will get hit with an unusual exercise, standing Pulldown to the face—just concentrate on form and stability here and really squeeze those rear delts in the fully contracted position. You should feel an intense burn in the rear delts and see them pop out. Finally, a devilish ending to cap off the workout.

Exercise

Sets (13)

Reps

Barbell Front Raise

3

12, 12, 12

Standing BB Military Press

2

Warm ups

Standing BB Military Press

3

4, 4, 4

Standing Pulldown (to face)

3

15, 15, 15

Standing DB Side Lateral

2

6>6>6,  6>6>6


Zottman Lives!

The Zottman curl is an oft-neglected tool in the arsenal of bicep development. You get supination and a reverse curl in one movement—quite the bargain, especially if you’re short on time. Oh, and if you haven’t noticed, you’ve got a 20-rep set to finish out the preacher curls. That will definitely keep your biceps guessing.

Exercise

Sets (12)

Reps

Dumbbell Curl

5

12, 10, 6, 6, 8

Barbell Preacher Curl

3

5, 5, 20

DB Concentration Curl

2

6, 6

Zottman Curl

2

8, 8


Back to the Future

Before fancy equipment, like cable machines and E-Z bars appeared, muscular men of yore built massive triceps with the pullover and press, for good reason. It’s a demanding exercise, which works the long head through an unusual angle, topped off with a close-grip pressing finish. I’ll also throw in some high intensity drop-sets on the pushdowns and end with a futuristic cable extension. Bring back the memories and feel the hurt.

Exercise

Sets (12)

Reps

Barbell Pullover & Press

4

5, 5, 5, 5

Pushdowns

4 drop sets

[6 > 6] x 4 (one drop in weight per set)

Overhead Cable Extension

4

10, 8, 4, 4


Fear Factor

Often, what holds back your progress is your mind. This workout will test the strength of both your head and your heart. First, you have to set in your mind that you can do this—then, when your mind starts to doubt, let your heart take over. For the leg extensions you need to increase the weight each set AND increase the reps. For the squats, perform decreasing reps and increasing weight until you get to the first set of 12 reps. Pick a weight you think you can do for 10 reps and use that. Then, keep using that weight for the final two sets, including the 20-rep set. Confront your fears and grow.

Exercise

Sets (13)

Reps

Leg Extension

4

10, 12, 14, 16

Squat

9

15, 12, 4, 4, 4, 4, 12, 12, 20


About the Author

Photo of the author Craig Cecil

Craig Cecil has been involved in sports and the science of exercise since his days of high school athletics in baseball, through his collegiate career in NCAA Track & Field, to his devotion to weightlifting and bodybuilding pursuits over the past 20 years. During that time, Craig has trained with professional athletes, as well as multitudes of dedicated, ordinary individuals just wanting to build lean, muscular body weight. Craig is a member of the National Strength & Conditioning Association and holds an MBA from Loyola University of Maryland.


Customer Reviews

A must-have book for weight trainers

"Supermen is without a doubt one of the best body-building books out there. Craig Cecil has jam-packed this book with lots of helpful strategies and tips to maximize your workout at the gym today and for life. Backed by his twenty years of experience, Cecil shows how to fast-track your progress towards your muscle-gaining goal while avoiding injuries and overdoing it along the way. He has also added detailed pictures, instructions on how to work each individual muscle group, how to be courteous when sharing the gym, and how to track your progress. If you want serious body building results, this is a must-have book for intermediate users."

Angel

Supermen Review

"Easy read with tons of excellent information. Loaded with a variety of workout[s] for all body parts. A worthwhile read for everyone interested in adding muscle to their physique. Highly recommended."

Bryan D Klatt

Solid introduction to lifting

"This is an excellent book for the lifter looking to move up their muscle. Good for the absolute beginner as it sets out the ground rules very well and hammers them home through the book. A beginner will also need YouTube to look up specific exercises as the lifts are not always explicitly described. Best thing for the intermediate are the routines from which you can mix and match a program - you do need to be an intermediate to do this."

bookweasel

Excellent

"Excellent book which combines many effective bodybuilding concepts into one easy to read format. No other book contains all these concepts in one place. There is not a section for supplements but the training concepts are concise and effective."

power_engineer100

Craig Cecil is a man who knows his subject

"As of the writing of this review, I have been lifting weights for 35+ years. This is probably the best book I have read in that entire time on the subject. Many of Craig's training tips were consistent with what I found worked for me over the years and I quickly implemented others that I encountered for the first time when I read this book. The result was a productive, noticeable gain of about 7 lbs in bodyweight, which when you consider that I am 50 years old, speaks highly of Craig's recommendations. My training poundages also increased although Craig points out (correctly) that it's more important to focus on proper performance of the exercise rather than poundages. Any person wanting to up his/her lifting game would be doing themselves a favor by reading the book and putting Craig's knowledge to work in their program."

Noah Stern

One of the best books on the subject

"Awesome book... I've learned so much from it! If you are not having real results at the gym, you need to read this!"

Splinter

A rare gem of muscle building guidance

"What's unique about this book is the experience the author pours in. Beginners should pick this book up, but the guys who have been lifting for a little while and hit a plateau or two will appreciate it the most. Troubleshooting, Pitfalls to look out for I've never heard of...ever done behind-the-head dumbbell tri extensions? Better get this book before you do the next set. I've always had trouble developing my pecs but my front delts are a little over developed. I never understood why until I read the section on how some body types tend to develop the front delts more than the pecs from flat benching no matter how good the form. Then he follows up with two excellent solutions. The book is full of these useful morsels. He also gives a bunch of pre arranged routines that I'm looking forward to torturing myself with. The one problem I have with this book is when he gives a rundown of all the various body parts and the best ways to attack them he skips the glutes. Not sure why, but this book is still at the top of my list."

Nathan I. Wirt

Supermen vision and results

"I have found this book entremely helpful and encouraging. Craig Cecil does an excellent job of providing technique, etiquette, and encouragement regarding being in the gym and provides comfortable, doable workouts that even an average gym rat can use to enhance workout routines and develops better technique and skill sets...Myself and several others are following his method and have found extremely helpful."

MB

Great e book. Ive now started the workouts

"This book is honest, truthful and slightly humerous. It give you tips and methods. And then it gives you a comprehensive list of workouts for each body part. Let me tell you this list is huge so your never going to get bored. Some of the workouts seem like they were created by a complete phsico. Awesome just awesome, they are the places you have to go to change your body. Only con is he doesn't lay out a split for the workouts but thats some of the beauty of it you can do things your way."

jodi

Wow - this is an incredible, all-in-one, highly detailed guide!

"This is an incredibly detailed, highly specific guide to superman training. Fairly lengthy (which is necessary as there is a lot to cover), and clearly presented in separate sections that make it easy to follow, you will find it is an excellent reference book. As the author explains, even though genetics do play a large part in the outcome, the fact is, if you put in the work and work out consistently over a long period of time, you WILL push yourself ahead of those people who may have better genes, but are lazy and lack focus!! Do the hard yards and the rewards are definitely there, no matter what your size and body-type. Unfaltering consistency with your efforts is key! I picked this up for some tips and general information on muscle training for myself at the gym (although I am a female and not intending on becoming a "superman"!). The information is completely relevant to any muscle-building exercises, although it is of course especially designed for those looking to build a "superman" body. At the beginning there are chapters on muscles and their function, training frequency, workout scheduling, training volume, signs of over-training and rep ranges. There is also a detailed chapter on the kind of diet you should be following to maximise results, with a complete list of foods and beverages to consume and ones to avoid. Diet and nutrition obviously play a crucial role in the success of your body building, so this is very important. There are photos right throughout the book to demonstrate the correct technique in the various exercises. Following the first few chapters, the next part of the book is a series of chapters devoted to each separate part of the body that you will be focusing on - including the different methods in which to exercise the muscle, and the best way to get the most out of the workout, including both free weight and machine techniques. The different chapters focus on abs, chest, back, shoulders, traps, biceps, triceps, forearms, quads, hamstrings and calves. There is also advice on how to work out when you are injured (including the different types of injuries and why you might have sustained them), keeping track of your progress, planning future workouts, the different types of cardio and how frequently you should do cardio and for how long. The last part of the book is devoted to a second chapter on the different muscles, this time including a collection of specific workouts for the muscle in question, presented clearly as tables divided into 3 columns, showing the type of exercise, and the sets and reps for each exercise (I love the names of some of these exercises, for example "Mr Smith Goes to Hell", "Guillotine", "Exhaustion", "Confusion", "Deception" and "Keep on rollin", to name just a small handful! These are very handy as they give you specific workouts to follow. Clearly an enormous amount of sweat, effort and love has gone into creating this fantastic, high-quality and highly-detailed, professional guide to body building! Sometimes finding the right information on any particular exercise program can be frustrating, because you end up having to get two or more different books/guides, and then piecing them all together (not to mention diet advice!) - with this guide, you are getting absolutely all the info and advice you could ever need on body building/superman training! It's truly all you will ever need on this subject. I can't recommend this highly enough!"

Anna Elizabeth

The weightlifter's companion

"I wish I would have found this book 5 years ago when I started at the gym. I've learned more from this book in the past three weeks than I have in my past five years. This book has so many tips that will help improve you in the gym, now and in the future. I recommend this book 100%."

josh

Well-organized enough to take to the gym as a quick reference

"If you're serious about building muscle, you should read this book. Unlike most bodybuilding books, which are thick and heavy enough to use in place of dumbbells, this one is well organized and very concise while also being expansive in what it covers. It also explains things in simple language, instead of using kinesiology terms. No more running for the medical dictionary to find out what the heck a transversus abdominis is. The book breaks up exercises into major muscle groups, and further breaks those into a variety of exercises that can be used on those muscles. There are a lot of options given for each muscle group. Want to find out what exercises you can do for biceps? Just flip to the Biceps section and each exercise within Biceps will have its own section with bulleted bite-sized chunks of instruction. This makes it very easy to use as a quick reference. The section on Intensity gives you a variety of exercise options on how to break through barriers and shock the body into growth, some of which I've never even heard of in my 27 years of bodybuilding. The last part of the book contains the workouts. This section is also broken into muscle groups and gives you a smorgasbord of options. First, it lists the "foundation" exercises and number of sets and reps for each. The foundation exercises are what you would do during a normal workout. Following those are lists of routines that will put fear in your heart just reading them. If you get bored with the same old workouts, this is the section you want to live in ... but only occasionally. Actually doing some of them will make you cry like a little girlie man. I know. I've done a few of these before. The book also covers areas integral to bodybuilding, such as diet, cardio, safety and how to work out if you're injured. Overall, I highly recommend this book as a concise and complete guide to building some serious muscle."

Smitty

One of the best workout books

"To all my dearest boys, guys and men. And all our dearly beloved women of influence: moms, girls and wives, please get this book. Save yourselves trouble - Craig is incredibly thorough in his description. He explains exactly how to avoid injury, and get results that you might want. Something I wish my husband could have done when he was 16. Workout injuries are possible - and yes they can be debilitating. I pray my husband finds relief someday - until then I will follow the advice in the book, and gift this book to every person that wants to work out seriously. The book is exceptional in depth of it's detail. Humor and love for working out is infectious. Only thing I might need to do is put some of the information in this book on giant posters in our workout room. At least until I remember it."

Nataliya Field

Great book

"I am spot reading this book. I have had the opportunity to work out at the same gyms as Mr. Cecil and have learned a lot from him through observation and listening. He is incredibly knowledgeable, intense, at the same time is conscientious of the health implications that are incorporated in a workout program. He approaches working out with a sense of direction and a plan. Behind all of his light-hearted repartee, he knows exactly what he is doing and imparts his knowledge in his book. It's written such that it speaks to the reader and thus makes it an easy read, easy to comprehend. It makes sense. The lay out describes working each muscle group. He has recommendations of which exercises work best for specific goals and specific body types and issues. For instance, people who work their chest using a smith machine should consider the impact that it has on the upper chest when done properly; however, if there's an existing shoulder injury, this exercise should be avoided. Cecil's experience is so magnificent, he references his workouts with those of famous athletes he has met: 'This was a favorite exercise that Larry Scott used to build his upper pecs, as described in Loaded Guns.' I have been in exercise and gym programs over the last 20 years and have also worked out and trained with body builders, gymnasts, martial artists and a variety of other athletically inclined people. I have also read and collect many other exercise books. I am a trained medical informatician with a health sciences background. This book is a cut above the others because it clearly explains working out and the impact that movements have on the human physique. It assists the reader to reach their desired physical appearance, athleticism and over all health. This is a highly recommended book for athletes of all levels."

Nicola J. Cecchino

One of the Best Weight Lifting Books I've Read

"I have read countless fitness and nutrition books and this is by far one of the most detailed and informational books I've read. This book covers every aspect of weightlifting including information about cardio, nutrition, and so much more. I also liked the fact that the author included a blurb to those people who know they need some cardio, but refuse and continue to just lift weights. It really drives me crazy to see them at the gym knowing that they are just building muscle on top of the fat they need to lose! I'm not looking to do extensive weightlifting, but this book gave me some great pointers. I currently incorporate both cardio and strength training. I wondered before beginning this book if it was going to be geared only for those who are looking for hulk muscles. I was pleased to see that it covers topics that I needed also. I especially enjoyed sections that discuss using the correct form and the section that talked about making sure I'm not just swinging my weights around...in other words making sure I'm actually using them for the purpose they were made for! I'm definitely recommending this book to my friends who really focus on building those mean muscles. I'm certain they will benefit from this book! Another great part of this book is the final thought from the author...so true!"

jenny31

More in-depth than any other Kindle book I've read on the subject...

"If you buy a lot of books for the Kindle, I'm sure you've noticed the same thing. Not many Kindle books are very in-depth. This book is an exception! It covers tons of exercising to target every muscle group, ways to change your intensity, working out while injured, tracking your progress, cardio, diet, and more. He offers workouts and gives you all of the information to customize them to be perfect for you. I really loved that this book isn't about "just do this." It is about WHY you should do these things and HOW to do them."

Amanda

Everything you need

"This guide is very thorough. It gives you the perfect workout to build you unbelievable amounts of muscle as quickly as possible. It does this with carefully thought out, and carefully laid out plans, and extreme detail. It gives you what workouts you should use to target a specific muscle group, and how much weight you need to be lifting, and how often you need to be working out, and what foods are best to be eating for muscle growth. It is just the best weightlifting book on Kindle. Anyone who is really serious about building muscle should buy this book."

J. Hollister

Results Driven

"The workouts contained in this book are sweet and simple. I found that taking this book to the gym with me has improved my focus and workout intensity. I keep this book in my gym bag at all times. I no longer wander into the gym trying to figure out what I'm going to do as I go. At the end of a workout I now feel accomplished and that my time was well spent. Don't just read this book and put it away. I'm working through every workout routine in this book, and plan to go through it again and again."

Panthra78

Doctor Approved

"As an avid weightlifter and a physician specializing in physical medicine and rehabilitation, I found this book to be a well-written, die-hard approach to muscle and fitness. Craig has the uncanny ability to combine the key ingredients of basic muscle physiology, proper techniques, and hard core lifts into a practical, organized and entertaining guide to building muscle. This book is a must read for anyone who is serious about building maximum muscle for a lifetime."

— Dr. Mark Gloth

Incredible!

"I have read countless fitness and motivational books. 'Supermen' is truly as real as it gets. The principals in this book can be applied to not only fitness, but all facets of one's life. It is not unlike 'Think And Grow Rich' by Napoleon Hill, in that 'Supermen' spells out the guidelines to laying the foundation for excellence in ANY endeavor - fitness or otherwise. I would highly recommend this book to anyone interested in both physical and intellectual fitness, and overall well-being!"

— J. Wasserman

One of the Best Weight Lifting Books I've Read

"I have read countless fitness and nutrition books and this is by far one of the most detailed and informational books I've read. This book covers every aspect of weightlifting including information about cardio, nutrition, and so much more. I also liked the fact that the author included a blurb to those people who know they need some cardio, but refuse and continue to just lift weights. It really drives me crazy to see them at the gym knowing that they are just building muscle on top of the fat they need to lose! I'm not looking to do extensive weightlifting, but this book gave me some great pointers. I currently incorporate both cardio and strength training. I wondered before beginning this book if it was going to be geared only for those who are looking for hulk muscles. I was pleased to see that it covers topics that I needed also. I especially enjoyed sections that discuss using the correct form and the section that talked about making sure I'm not just swinging my weights around...in other words making sure I'm actually using them for the purpose they were made for! I'm definitely recommending this book to my friends who really focus on building those mean muscles. I'm certain they will benefit from this book! Another great part of this book is the final thought from the author...so true!"

Amazon Reviewer

Holy Muscles Batman!

"This book may be entitled Supermen however as the author also states it is definitely applicable to women who weightlift as well and I wholeheartedly agree! The book is very engaging, easy to read, and highly humorous at times. More importantly, Supermen is motivational in that the author shares real life stories and experiences he doesn't just preach. One of the best features is the list of workouts at the end of the book and their very witty monikers. Having done several of these workouts I can say that I have definitely felt them the next day but in a good way and if you don't feel them then you must be inhuman! The descriptions and photos explaining the exercises are very good at laying out proper form and educating both the novice and experienced weightlifter alike. There are great tips for modifying workouts for injuries, avoiding over-training, and the sad but true diet/nutrition section. The actual supermen in the book are motivation enough to get moving!!!"

Amazon Reviewer

Excellent writing, easy to understand, appeals to the intellect

"This book is the best! Craig Cecil explains exactly why working out this way produces better results. And it's not just for men. Women, particularly those in my aging group need this information to understand why they need to stay active even after injury, and how to get back to being in good shape following down-time, how not to reinjure yourself. I plan to buy a few copies next Christmas, my father, son, and sister can use this information."

Amazon Reviewer

Entertainingly informative

"The information in this book is like having a personal trainer, nutritionist, and exercise consultant at your fingertips. The information is easy to read due to its down-to-earth narration and (funny) sidebar overviews and comments. These "nuts and bolts" exercise routines are not only practical and effective; but they will help the novice, intermediate and seasoned workout enthusiast achieve a more defined and improved physique! The routines can be customized...if you're not ready for the challenge,yet do-able for both men and women."

— M. Alexander

Workout Enthusiast

"A very user friendly, step by step manual for anyone goal oriented about their workout results. The book includes, workout schedules, cardio workout recommendation, and diet. Craig lightens the read with many witty comments that are amusing as well as educational. I especially find the weight lifting techniques, with photos, very helpful in obtaining a proper technique."

Amazon Reviewer

Very well organized

"This book is very well organized and contains lots of tips you can't find anywhere else. It's really helped me add some muscle in a short amount of time."

Adam Gertz

Top of Class in Basic Training

"I was able to go from 159lbs to 219lbs of lean muscle in three years using the techniques described in this book. It helped me go to the top of my class in Basic Training when I joined the Army."

— Rob Aquino

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Companion Software

MuscleCALC is the workout tracking and planning software described in the Supermen e-book.

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