Bodybuilder Shares His 5 Golden Rules for Muscle Building

While there are many health, fitness, and muscle-building videos on YouTube and other platforms, Joe Delaney is a bodybuilder who is known for making his videos clearer for his viewers. In one of his more recent videos, Delaney shared his five golden rules to help viewers gain muscle mass with minimal ineffectual activity.

Joe Delaney Focuses His Training Philosophy On the Absolute Fundamentals of Muscle Building and Consistency

Famous Youtube Bodybuilder Joe Delaney
Delaney explained that his whole training approach and philosophy focuses on the idea that 90 to 95 percent of the progress people make during exercise comes from centering on the absolute fundamentals and being consistent. He believes that people who want to be in good shape throughout their lives should focus on those basic aspects that give the best return on investment when it comes to the time and effort being put in.

Maintain a Calorie Surplus

A plate of juicy steak and eggs, sunny side up
Delaney’s first rule is to maintain a calorie surplus because no matter how hard or often one is training, muscles come from food. People who are training need some calories in surplus to enable the muscle-building process. This happens when tiny tears in the muscle fibers grow back after training but this time bigger.

Volume, Frequency, and Intensity

person lifting weights
Volume or quantity of working sets per muscle group is crucial to Delaney. He also says the frequency of working sets over the week for every muscle group is very important. Frequency is just how often people are training a muscle group, and a high-frequency training split is one that focuses on hitting each muscle group often. He also puts the focus on intensity, which for him describes how heavy the weight is compared to the one-rep maximum.

Sleep and Recovery Are Crucial

A person sleeping in bed
Sleeping and getting adequate rest is what Delaney states as another golden rule focused on proper muscle and strength recovery. He points out how lack of sleep can affect the ability to build muscle mass and is detrimental to any workout performance. To him, training while being tired and lethargic is not worth as much as training when fresh and full of energy.


A man working out outdoors
Joe Delaney points out that one can do everything right, but if there is no consistency in training, one cannot get very far. Delaney explains that the body can adapt to the new demand on it but will do that effectively if the process is consistent. While if the demand is high one week and much lower on the next one, the body will consider the demand to be average.

Progressive Overload

a rack of weights
Delaney stresses that as strength and fitness progress, one should be looking to progressively overload the repetitions on each movement or the total weight being lifted. He also says that as movements are being repeated week in and week out, mobility may start to increase and a wider, longer, and bigger range of motion can be considered. According to him, two or three years into training is when one would start thinking of progressive overload more methodically.