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16 Muscle Building Mistakes that I Regret Making

Check out these muscle building mistakes and make sure you avoid them and maximise your training potential.

They come from the experience of Jeff Cavaliere from Athlean X.

16 Muscle Building Mistakes that I Regret Making

“I have made quite a few muscle building mistakes over the years that I regret, and today I’m sharing them with you. I’m going to discuss my 16 greatest regrets I made both in the gym and in the kitchen, when it came to my pursuit of building muscle and getting ripped.”

Copying without all the Information

“I started my journey of no longer wanting to be a skinny kid when I was about 13 years old. I trained alongside my older brother and tried to copy the exercises and workouts that he was doing. Along the way, I missed some important lessons and wound up paying the price.”

how to perform reps for more muscle growth Drop Sets vs Normal Sets for Muscle Growth
Muscle Building MistakeSource: Photo by Andres Ayrton from Pexels

What I Would Change

“Today, I’m going to share with you some of those that I really wish I could go back and change. If I could have had this video available to me as a young teenager and into my twenties, I feel like I’d have a much different physique these days and one that was less rife with physical issues that came from poor training and education.”

“As a physical therapist, it starts with being able to take my knowledge now and forgive myself for simply not knowing what I do today. For instance, when I first started working out, I would open up the muscle building magazines and try to follow the 30-40 set routines and workouts of bodybuilders like Shawn Ray.”

Incorrect Form

“Along the way, I would experience pain and joint discomfort from performing the exercises incorrectly and doing them with incredible amounts of what would be junk volume. Not being enhanced like the models were, led me to experience much different results than what I expected from looking at their pictures alone and not knowing the whole story.”

Nutrition and Supplementation

“I also was quite naive when it came to nutrition and supplementation. I thought, for instance, that all oats were created equal. This couldn’t be any further from the truth. My early days of eating Quaker Maple Brown Sugar oatmeal in the packets led to lots of consumption of sugar with little benefit. The regular slow cook oats had zero grams of sugar. Only with education was I able to identify that and make the change that would lead to lower levels of body fat and a more ripped physique.”



“I also had many mistakes when it came to performing exercises I probably should not have. Years of damage were done in a short period of time by performing strength based exercises without properly addressing my flat feet. The poor biomechanics and form on the exercises led to a quick breakdown of my knees which still plague me to this day.”

Incorrect Progressive Overload

“I often overlooked the benefits of progressive overload in my training. This was particularly true of my bodyweight and calisthenic exercises. Instead of opting for more overload in the form of a harder variation of the common exercise, I would just try to build more muscle by adding on more and more reps. This was a mistake I’d come to learn later in life but has paid big dividends since fixing.”

Struggles with Nutrition

“Nutrition has always been a struggle for me. I went from not caring enough to caring way too much and becoming almost obsessive about what I put in my mouth. In previous videos I discussed how I became fat phobic and avoided almost all dietary fats. Here I talk about the inflexibility I had when working in professional baseball and found myself on the road with very few options for healthy nutrition at my disposal – at least not cheaply.”

The Value of Eccentrics

“I also discuss my oversight when it came to the value of eccentrics, particularly on pulling exercises. It’s not hard to remember to slow down the rep on the way down in a pushing exercise like the bench press. This is often an automatic built-in body protection mechanism that keeps you safe under heavy loads. In pulling exercises however, the weight tends to fall away from you. It’s easy to forget about lowering it slowly and because of that, you forego one of the greatest stimuli for muscle growth and gains.”

Training in Pain

“Speaking of lost gains, it’s easy to do when you are training in pain. I made the mistake of trying to workout with pain rather than around it. There is a big distinction between the two. If you want to keep building muscle fast then you have to respect when things aren’t right in your body and find a way to keep training without continuing to aggravate the inflammation in your joints or injury to your muscles.”

Battles with Injury

“My personal battle with a shoulder injury took longer than I would have liked because I originally tried to keep performing the very exercises that were leading to pain and discomfort when performing them.”


Learn More

How to Increase Chest Size and Strength

Best Way to Train the Chest for Hypertrophy (Muscle Mass)

3 Hacks for a Bigger Chest

Upper Chest Exercises Ranked (Best to Worst)

9 Best Dumbbell Chest Exercises

Muscles of the legs

The muscles of the human leg are classified in different ways: extensor and flexor muscle groups, and adductors and abductors.

Quadriceps femoris

The quadriceps femoris is a group of four muscles on the front of the thigh. It extends the knee joint and flexes the hip joint.

The quadriceps femoris is made up of four muscles: rectus femoris, vastus lateralis, vastus medialis, and vastus intermedius.

They provide some stability to your knee joint while running or walking fast but are not as strong as they used to be due to lots of sitting down during our lifetime.

Muscle Building Mistakes that I Regret Making – Sartorius

The sartorius is a long muscle that runs from the pelvis to the knee. It is important for flexing and rotating the thigh.

Muscle Building Mistakes that I Regret Making – Rectus femoris

The rectus femoris is the longest muscle in the human body, and it plays a number of roles. Pronates the tibia and femur with respect to each other, flexes the hip joint, extends the knee joint (with quadriceps), and assists in laterally rotating your pelvis when walking.

Muscle Building Mistakes that I Regret Making – Vastus intermedius

The vastus intermedius is a part of the quadriceps femoris. It is located on the lateral side of the thigh and also known as an inner quad. The vastus intermedius forms an angle with its neighbour, vastus lateralis, which runs down to form a line across your knee joint.

The vastus intermedius acts in extension of the knee joint and is also involved in straightening out your leg while walking or running.

Muscle Building Mistakes that I Regret Making – Vastus medialis

The vastus medialis is a quadriceps muscle located in the medial compartment of the thigh. It is one of four muscles that make up the quadriceps femoris, which functions to extend the knee and flex or bend the hip.

This muscle makes up part of the medial wall of the femur (thigh bone) and originates from both sides of your pelvis, just below your bottom rib.

The vastus medialis is located on your inner thigh between two other muscles: iliopsoas (which flexes your trunk forward) and sartorius (which crosses over your hip joint).

Muscle Building Mistakes that I Regret Making – Vastus lateralis

The vastus lateralis is a large, flat muscle that covers the lateral (or outer) side of the thigh. It originates at the upper part of the femur and runs down to insert into the patella (kneecap).

Muscle Building Mistakes that I Regret Making – Gastrocnemius

The gastrocnemius is a two-headed muscle located in the posterior lower leg. It is responsible for plantar flexion of the ankle and knee, as well as flexion of the trunk at the hip joint.

Muscle Building Mistakes that I Regret Making – Soleus

The soleus muscle originates from the posterior surface of the distal half of the lateral condyle of femur. It inserts into the posterior surface of calcaneus. It acts to plantar flex foot at ankle, assists in knee flexion during gait, and helps stabilize foot during stance phase of locomotion.

Conclusion – Muscle Building Mistakes that I Regret Making

Avoid the mistakes above and maximise your results and health.

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