It’s not about how hard you can push yourself. It’s about how much you can relax while your body is pushing. Your body performs its best when it’s relaxed, so your goal in the gym should be more of a meditative state under different types of duress.
If you can’t do the same exercise every single day, you’re pushing too hard. I’m not saying you need to [quite the opposite], but this should help reshape your intensity. Think about whatever manual labor job you want, where you saw someone that was naturally ripped. That’s not a coincidence. You lift boxes all day, and you’ll have to learn to relax while you’re doing it, or you’ll need to find another job.
So how do I get stronger? Your body will still develop, but at it’s own pace. You deciding that you’re going to spend an extra hour in the gym just because you want it more than everybody else isn’t going to help you.
You’ve heard the term country strong. It’s that guy in college that never worked out but was built like an ox. His first day in the gym he lifted way more than you ever could. This is why.
Do not let your mind get involved with your workout. If you can’t relax with the weight you have on the bar, it’s too much. I’m not saying don’t push yourself, but if you start to feel muscles tear, that’s too much. Once it starts hurting, you’re done with that muscle group for the day.
Do not flex or clench at the top of any lifts. Stay relaxed the whole time. I assume you want to be chiseled when you’re just walking around, not just when you flex. Bring that intensity with you everywhere.
Listen to your body. It knows better than you do. Better than I do. And most certainly better than that article you read in Fitness magazine.
Let’s assume I’m wrong. I’m not, but just assume it. It’s still worth testing. If what I’m saying is true, you’re literally wasting away in the gym. Take it back a couple notches for a couple weeks and see if you notice any improvement.