The Definitive Guide To Lifting Weights

This post is a complete guide to strength training for men.

One of the most common reasons that men don’t lift is information overload. Guys think that they don’t know enough about training. They think that resistance training is complicated, and if you don’t do it perfectly you’ll cripple yourself and never be able to walk again.

But the majority of guys in the gym with physiques you would be impressed by, are doing a lot of things wrong.  Still, they look OK. You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to lift weights and see substantial gains.

If you’re like a lot of young guys, you know you should be lifting weights. This isn’t the first blog post you’ve read that tries to get you into the gym. But this guide is different, because its goal is simply to provide the bare minimum of information you need to get off your butt and power through that first workout.

Follow these ten steps, and you’ll be getting more effective workouts than 99% of your peers.

1. Go to the gym

Going to the gym is always better than not going to the gym. A shitty workout is better than no workout. Make a commitment to spend three one-hour sessions in the gym every week. If you have no idea what to do, go anyways and fuck around. Find some floor and do push-ups. Try the machines you don’t know how to use. Hurt yourself. Run in place. No matter what you do, it will be better than staying at home.

2. Learn the basics

If you want to give yourself the bet chance to succeed, check out the resources on our page about getting lean and muscular.

If you are truly broke and don’t want to get the best information, that’s no excuse. There’s plenty of good free information out there. I just Googled “Beginner’s weight training routine” and came up with 3.5 million results. I clicked through every link on the first page and they were all good.

4. Push yourself

There is one litmus test that will measure if you are succeeding or failing in the gym. Are you tired? If so, you are working. If not, you are just fucking around. Your muscles should burn during a workout. You should fail. After a workout, everything should feel heavier – doors, your bag, the gas pedal. You should be extremely hungry. You should sleep like a baby. If you’re not completely gassed after a workout, and sore the next day, you’re doing something wrong.

5. Eat

What you eat and when you eat it will make a huge difference in how successful you are with your training goals. But, it’s down near the bottom of this list because our goal right now is to instill good lifting habits. In any case, you’ve already read the Definitive Guide To Nutrition and I don’t like to repeat myself.

6. Innovate

As you spend more time in the gym, you’ll be inspired to spend time on excellent blogs like Chaos and Pain, Lean Gains, Bold and Determined, Thumotic, and so on. You’ll make new friends who share your passion for the sound of clanking metal. You’ll read books, watch biopics, and generally absorb all you can on the subject of lifting.

When you reach this stage, start building your own routine that caters specifically to your own needs. Identify your weak points and blast through them. Find weaknesses in your body and correct them. Make your routine, your routine.

7. Compete

Track your progress and keep trying to beat your old self.

Bask in the manly thrill of new personal records.

Take progress pics and become an obnoxious instagram bodybuilder.

Learn to take the word “douchebag” as a complement.

If the iron chooses you, and you’ve got the drive and natural ability, consider competing in amateur powerlifting and/or bodybuilding.


That’s all there is to it friends. If you’ve read this guide, you officially have no excuse for not immediately heading to your gym and starting a lifelong habit of strength, discipline and health. This guide has given you every piece of information you need to get started. Make use of it.


Speaking of simple, actionable advice that you can immediately use to improve your life, check out The Thumotic Lifestyle Guide and 30-Day Challenge.

What You Should Know About Making Money Online

Ever since Benjamin Franklin flew a kite in a lightning storm, men have been trying to tame the mighty electron and turn it into dollars. Today, we call this practice online marketing, digital marketing, and a few other phrases that all basically mean the same thing – building websites that put cash in your bank account.

Some bloggers are hostile to the idea of monetizing their blogs. I’m not one of them. Note that every link to a book or product you click on here at Thumotic is suffixed by an affiliate code, and of course, here’s the snazzy sales page for the Thumotic 30-Day Challenge. Money is not the only reason, or even the most important reason why I write, but more money is always better than less.

If you’re new to the world of online marketing and considering investing serious time and energy into it, here are three things you need to know before you get started.

1) Making Money Online Is Easy

Anyone can start a blog. If you’re intelligent, write reasonably well, and invest a decent chunk of time to producing quality content, you will find an audience. It will probably be small, but it’s out there. Whoever you are, there are people who will relate to you, and there will be people who want to learn whatever it is you have to teach.

The most fruitful niche, in my humble and completely unbiased opinion, is the Red Pill Blogosphere, i.e. the PUA/Counter-Feminist/Reactionary/Dark Enlightenment community. It’s a small and tight group today, but there’s a lot of room for aggressive expansion as our offensive and un-PC ideas gradually, and then exponentially gain traction in the mass consciousness. Hey, stranger things have happened. You think history is over? But I digress.

If you find your voice, readers will find it too. Start a blog, pop off emails to Delusion Damage, Society of Amateur Gentlemen, Free Northerner, and all the other fine gentlemen hosting regular link love. Behold, on the second day, the blogger said: Let there be traffic.

Once you have a blog and a few readers, making money is easy. Sign up for Amazon and Clickbank affiliate accounts, and start earning a small cut off of whatever products you recommend to your readers. Of course, it goes without saying that you will only recommend genuinely good products, as the unscrupulous marketer who puts money ahead of his readers, quickly finds himself with neither one nor the other.

Here are a few financial success stories in the Red Pill Blogosphere:

Matt Forney is on track to live off his various online hustles.

Danger and Play is earning some good walking around money via his iHerb and Amazon affiliate accounts.

I make a nice side income from sales of The Freedom Twenty-Five Lifestyle Guide, The 2012 End Of The World Tour, and The Thumotic 30-Day Challenge.

Roosh is making enough purely from his online income to travel the world in style and basically live the location-independent international playboy dream.

In addition to these, the non-Red-Pill segment of the internet, i.e. about 95-99% of it, is filled with guys making decent to excellent money off of various business, generally selling obscure products to tiny market segments. I’m talking about business opportunities so small, they would not even strike the typical person as an opportunity. Review sites for adventure travel in northern Thailand, outsourcing guides to specific second world countries, importing knock off watches and purses, importing extremely specific industrial equipment, hotel and flight affiliate marketing sites, nightlife review sites, martial arts training DVDs – the list is literally endless.

Open a new tab and Google some random bullshit. The first ten results will be guys like you making money off it.

2) Making Money Online Is Really, Really Hard

Let’s revisit those success stories from above: Matt Forney, Roosh, D+P and myself. Here are a few things we all have in common:

1) We each have 5+ years of experience writing blogs, and we have each written hundreds of thousands if not millions of words.

If your business plan is to come out of the gate with comparable writing skills as us, you need a new plan.

2) We are all voracious readers and life experience-whores, the result being that we can offer our readers a unique offering of useful information and perspective on the world.

If your business plan is to do a better job writing about training and supplementation than D+P, or out-do Roosh in the sex and travel niche, you need a new plan.

3) We are all broke.

Or at least, we’re not making fuck-you money. The vast majority of bloggers make nothing. A small slice make beer money. A much, much smaller number make enough money to live off. In fact, I would bet the only Red Pill writer who makes a comfortable living off his writing is the guy with a pair of million-plus monthly pageview sites, and a dozen books.

Fortunately, these guys are generally running lucrative careers in their non-logging hours. But before you jump headfirst into a career as a digital marketer, consider that you will most likely not make any money off the hustle for years, and maybe not ever.

3 Making Money Online Is Still A Hell Of A Lot Easier Than Your Other Options

Building websites and earning money is hard, success is uncertain, and there will probably be a long and unfruitful ‘building’ period before you start making real money. It’s a long and arduous path, and there are a dozen reasons why it might not work out for you. Maybe you keep picking the wrong niche. Maybe you don’t have the guts to put in the work. Maybe you’re not smart enough to consistently write posts that other people care enough to read.

In a world with boundless opportunity, I would strongly dissuade anyone from investing time and resources into an online marketing career. In the world we live in however, the risks you take devoting finite resources to online hustling do not have an obvious opportunity cost.

Say you’re an 18-30 year old man with a 120+ IQ, a fire in your belly, and some basic writing ability. You have no idea what sort of career you’re interested in.

Should you go to law school?

Should you start a career in finance?

Should you become a software engineer?

Should you find a job in the public service?

Should you start mailing out resumes?

The paths above are not necessarily bad. Many in our generation will be successful in those fields. But you are kidding yourself if you think that there is any easy path to success for the 21st century American male. Yes, the online hustle may turn out to be a dead end.

So could anything else.

The only difference is, family and friends will stare at you with jaws agape if you drop a hundred bucks on a year of hosting fees, but nod approvingly if you spend a hundred thousand on a law degree from Podunk U.

There’s a lot of misinformation on both sides of the online marketing debate. The Optimists will tell you that it’s easy peasy Japaneasy. The Pessimists say its impossible. The reality is that making money online is possible but – like most things worth doing – will require your blood, sweat, tears and time.

Enough Foreplay. Let’s Make Some Money


Here are some excellent resources to get you started on the basics of web development, ecommerce, monetization, and the nuts and bolts of various online hustles.

Tropical MBA

Adsense Flippers

Sean Ogle

Post Masculine

Bold and Determined

Matt Forney (also here)

Danger and Play

Roosh Forum

Warrior Forum

All of these people are already doing a far better job than I am of monetizing their online presence, and they have been doing it for some time. If you have any interest at all in making money online, call in sick for a week and go through their archives from ass to elbow and back again.

If you have a niche that you think you can dominate, go for it it. It absolutely is possible. I have personally met dozens of men doing it and living the dream, dicking around Southeast Asia while Clickbank, Amazon, Cafepress, Zazzle, and Shopify deposit money in their accounts. Are you an expert in something? Start getting paid like an expert.

If you can string a decent sentence together, you’re ahead of 90% of your peers. Such is the world we live in that if you can write competently, you are exceptional. Can you write? If so, you have a rare and marketable skill. Start getting paid for it.

Do you have the requisite work ethic to learn what you need to learn, put in the hours building sites, and grind through long nights of creating content? If so, this guide has pointed you in the direction of a lifetime of freedom, wealth, location independence, and – if you choose to build products that help people, rather than just scam them – meaning.

Go get em tiger.

* * *

Speaking of making money online, check out The Thumotic 30-Day Challenge and The Lifestyle Guide.

Ask Me Anything

(Cross post from my other blog, Freedom Twenty-Five)

Reddit is a site where dorks waste time looking at pictures of kittehs and saggy boobs. But it’s also a key battleground in la revolucion for the hearts and minds of the best and brightest young minds in America. So it is with great pleasure that I introduce you to The Red Pill subreddit.

In a category that admittedly includes no better than the lickspittle manginas of r/seduction and whiny incel Bizarro Universe feminists of r/mensrights, The Red Pill is the best subreddit on the site by a wide margin.

But perhaps I’m biased, because the good men running it have done me the kindness of hosting an AMA (basically a crowd-sourced interview) today at noon. If you head over and create an account, which will take you all of five seconds, you can ask me any question you want. Yes, gentle reader, I will be coming down from my perch of D-List internet fame to mingle with you, the rabble. Never say I don’t have the common touch.

I encourage you to spend some time clicking around r/TheRedPill, upvoting that which is good, dropping the blue arrow hammer of Thor on that which is not. You may even make a habbit of submitting an article or two on your own. And once that’s all done with, drop u/RedPillSchool a line and let him know what a bang up job he’s doing on behalf of the movement. Or just report him to the SPLC. I’m sure he’d take either as a complement.

But don’t do it out of the kindness of your heart, dear reader.

I am hereby making an offer that will be good for the next twenty-four hours: Anyone who PMs my Reddit account in the next 24 hours will receive… drum roll please…. a free advance copy of A Generation Of Men, my first novel. Devotees will recognize it as Trig with new clothes and a haircut. It will retail for twelve bucks on March 1st, but in the coming week I’ll be giving copies away like a pedophile with a pocket full of candy at an elementary school for the blind.

So team, let’s summarize the action items:

1) Go to The Red Pill Subreddit. Create an account. Up or Down vote everything the light touches.

2) Participate in my AMA interview. Upvote it if you appreciate my irascible charm.

3) PM me from your brand spankin’ new Reddit account for a code that will let you download A Generation of Men for free.

The Definitive Guide To Nutrition For Men

This post is a complete guide to food and nutrition for the contemporary man. It is specifically tailored to young men who lift heavy weights, play real sports, and want to look like a piece of heavy construction equipment wrapped in skin.


The structure of this post is a twelve step program, ordered from the most essential actions you can take to improve your health, performance and physique, to the less essential and more difficult actions that are only required to push your body to the next level. The first five items are the low-hanging fruit, the 20% of actions you can take to reap 80% of the benefits. The second five are actions that are less essential, but will still have a huge payoff to your health relative to their cost. The final two are controversial and will induce anger from many, many readers.

So without further ado, let’s dive right in, starting with the absolute first step a man should take…

1. Cut out sugar

Sugar is terrible for you.

It is not a coincidence that, as a result of an unholy alliance between American agricultural lobbies, stupid and unscrupulous academics, clueless do-gooder public health professionals, and the human species’ natural but self-destructive love of glucose – Americans are disgustingly fat. Not to mention diabetic, heartless, gutless and just generally gross.

Eliminating sugar is not easy. Anything packed in a bag or can is probably loaded with it. In general, you can stay fairly safe by sticking to the outer perimeter of the grocery store, cycling through the produce, meat, and dairy sections. The centre of the store is a great sugary black hole of diabetes and gunts.

2. Eat your fruits and vegetables

As a general rule of life, anything that people used to take as common knowledge before 1960 was true. Eating lots of fruits and vegetables falls under this category. Plants are loaded with nutrients, your gut was designed to digest them, and naturally occurring fruit sugars are accompanied by enzymes that dampen the glycemic response. Eat a wide variety of plants, and eat a lot of them.

3. Eliminate grains

Most grains have a high glycemic index, and wreak havoc on your gut as a bonus. Take a month off bread and cookies and see what your body’s reaction is. If it makes no difference to you, maybe you’re just exceptionally gluten-tolerant. If not…

The initiated reader can read more about how much bread sucks here and here.

4. Eat fat

The public health establishment has been telling us that fat is the enemy for half a century. Purely by coincidence, this has been the half-century in which Americans grew to their current elephantine proportions. The truth is, saturated fats are essential for brain function and testosterone production, among a great many other things. Bring on the whole eggs and red meat.

5. Fast

Intermittent Fasting will extend your life. It’s a great way to cut back on your weekly caloric intake if you’re trying to lose weight. It builds discipline. Once you’re used to it, you’ll grow to appreciate the mental clarity and energy boost that comes from a one-day fast. There’s probably a common sense reason why virtually every religion and tradition, from Christianity to Ayurveda prescribes fasting as part of its overall recipe for proper living.

Learn more about IF with Martin Berkhan, and read up on The Warrior Diet. If you’re a big lifter and want to reap the benefits of fasting without hurting your gains, check out the Apex Predator Diet at Chaos and Pain.

6. Choose Local Meat

Supermarket meat is garbage. Packed with hormones, confined to muscle-atrophying crates, fed a diet of shit, antibiotics and the flesh of its dead brothers – its fucking gross, and pretty damn inhumane. Look into free range and locally slaughtered options in health food stores and online. Do some research because there are plenty of scam artists out there.

7. Supplement With Protein

Protein supplementation is theoretically unnecessary if you eat a serving or two of quality meat five times a day. Most of us do not have this option though, so a glass of high-quality whey protein dissolved in water will have to do.

8. Juice

Fresh vegetable juice is good for you, and it can help young men who want to build muscle and become stronger. Read more about the benefits of juicing for young men.

9. Fish oil, Zinc, ACV, Green Tea

Check out the RVF threads on Apple Cider Vinegar, Zinc, and Green Tea, the three most important supplements that a man can take. Honorary mentions go to Magnesium and Vitamin D.

10. Creatine and BCAAs

Creatine not only breaks through lifting plateaus, it’s also a cognitive enhancer.

Branch Chain Amino Acids (BCAAs) keep you body from breaking down muscle for energy, especially when you’re training on an empty stomach.

11. Reduce alcohol

I love alcohol. Alcohol has been a major part of my life since high school. I have literally come close to losing friends over my decision to drink less over the past year of my life. But the cold hard truth is, alcohol is poison. Drinking heavily is terrible for your body.

Giving up alcohol cold turkey will be an unacceptable sacrifice for most men. Every man must choose his own tradeoff between the enjoyment of alcohol and his commitment to his health. You can make whatever choice you want, but be honest with yourself about what you’re sacrificing.

12. Hormone replacement therapy

Many young men are looking into Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT).

As a twenty-seven year old with a natural testosterone level of 900+ and no desire to develop a bodybuilder’s physique, I’m not interested in TRT. But as the years go by, I’ll be watching my testosterone levels closely. I have no intention of becoming a shell of my current self in my mid-thirties.

* * *

This guide is not comprehensive. It is not a textbook. It does not contribute to the scientific field of human nutrition.

But that is not my goal. The purpose of this guide is to give you something actionable. If you want to start eating healthier, you can start at the top of this guide and work your way down.

Speaking of simple actionable advice that you can immediately use to improve your life, check out The Thumotic Lifestyle Guide And 30-Day Challenge.

Worried About Getting “Too Big”

Some men don’t want to lift heavy weights, because they’re worried about getting too big. A contributor to the usually excellent Return Of Kings made this argument today:

“This is the truth about bodybuilding: If you do everything about it right, expend huge amounts of time and energy, you’ll end up stiff and muscle-bound, with very little functional strength and out of breath from merely tying your own shoelaces.”

But you would be smart to ignore  anyone who puts down any sort of training approach on the grounds that it might leave you ‘bulky’ and ‘muscle-bound.’ Getting too big is simply not something that 99.9% of men have to worry about.

Take the author of the RoK article. I’m not going to talk shit about the selfie he posted, because he’s still in better shape than 90% of men his age. Given that he spends 1.5 hours a week in the gym and lives an otherwise sedentary life, he looks fine. I also have nothing bad to say about a training program that emphasizes Olympic lifts.

But let’s be clear: Men do not accidentally become too big. You are not going to do a few deadlifts, drink a protein shake, and wake up looking like the hulk. The amount of sweat, pain, sacrifice, and dedication required to get anywhere near too big is off the charts.

Trust me: I’ve been training for a decade. I have probably spent more time in the gym than 95% of men. I lift hard, I lift heavy, and I focus on the big power lifts. I chug protein shakes, I destroy plates of steak and eggs, I pop supplements. I work my ass off to get bigger, stronger, leaner. In many ways, my life revolves around the constant struggle to make gains.

And yet, No one would ever think to call me “too big.” I am 6’3 and 215lbs. At my most jacked, I have been a lean 230. If I stop lifting for a few months, I drop right back to 200. My Wilkes is a pretty modest ~235. I am strong. I am bigger than most. I look great. But I am not even close to being ‘bulky.’ It takes a lot of hours and a lot of discipline to look good. It’s hard to imagine the insane combination of effort, genetics, and drugs that are required to push past that into ‘bulky’ territory.

The author of the anti-bodybuilding hit piece at Return of Kings looks OK. Many 35-year-olds look a lot worse. But he would look much better (and not at all muscle-bound) if he gained 20lbs of muscle and lost 10lbs of fat.

I admit there is a such thing as ‘too big.’ But he is at absolutely no risk of ever becoming too big. You probably aren’t either. The only thing an anti-swole, bulkophobic attitude like that can do is subconsciously hold you back from building a better physique. Fear of bulk holds you back from the last rep. Fear of bulk keeps your diet sub-optimal. Fear of bulk keeps you away from valuable supplements. Fear of bulk is irrational, because bulk is incredibly hard to build and maintain.

So friends: Make insane size and strength and definition your goals. Perhaps one day you will attain a physique that you can plausibly fret about being too bulky. Until then, quit spouting bullshit about functional strength and your swimmer’s build, lift some weights and eat some steaks.