The Shrink Wrap Effect


What is the Shrink Wrap Effect?

The shrink wrap effect is an advanced technique that I first read about in Visual Impact Muscle Building. It allows you to maximize muscle tone!

Checkout the results I got from utilizing this little known trick in the video below:

As you can see my skin is literally shrink wrapped around my muscles. This makes for a very impressive look. So what is the shrink wrap effect? The problem is that when most people diet down they end up dropping fat faster than their skin can keep up. So when they finally hit their goal weight they never look as good as they hoped. This is because their skin lags behind and this will blur definition.

In order to look really sharp you need to maintain your body size for a period of at-least a few weeks and possibly more depending on how much weight you lost. After your skin has tightened up and adapted to your smaller body size you will look much better. However this alone will not accomplish the shrink wrap effect. The next step is to switch to a high volume, pump style workout routine to quickly maximize the size of your glycogen stores in your muscles over a period of a few weeks. The result will be incredible.

Sample Pump Up Chest/Delts/Tri’s Workout

Incline Bench Press: 4 x 8-12 reps (60 seconds rest between sets)

Flat Barbell Bench: 4 x 8-12 reps (60 seconds between sets)

Machine Flye’s: 4 x 8-12 reps (30 seconds between sets)

Machine or Dumbbell Shoulder Press: 4 x 10-15 reps (60 seconds rest between sets)

Lateral Raises: 4 x 12-15 reps (30 seconds rest between sets)

Skull Crushers: 4 x 10-12 reps (60 seconds rest between sets)

Cable Rope Extension: 4 x 12-15 reps (30 seconds rest between sets)


You will notice that this workout will cause a lot of fatigue and you will have to go pretty light. This fatigue is crucial for fully depleting your muscles glycogen stores. Your body super-compensates to high volume workouts by storing more glycogen in your muscles. This will cause your muscles to fill out rather quickly and give your muscles that shrink wrap effect. High volume workouts are very effective for a short period of time. 3-6 weeks at a time. Unfortunately very little real muscle growth occurs from high rep, pump up training. Therefore you should spend most of your time lifting heavy and utilize high rep training for a few weeks when you want to shrink wrap your skin around your muscles.

For more information about the Shrink Wrap Effect and the best techniques to achieve it I highly recommend investing in Visual Impact Muscle Building. A must read for any kinobody reader.

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About the Author


I'm Greg O'Gallagher the founder of

131 responses to “The Shrink Wrap Effect

  1. Do you have any thoughts on protein powders with soy in them? I’ve read that soy can cause an increase in estrogen in men. Sorry if this is an unrelated post.

    1. haha! Thanks Dave. Yah i’ve definitely stepped things up since then.

      I actually want to cut another 5 lbs of fat. Im starting to see big changes in my physique as I get leaner. I am literally noticing all of the characteristics take place in my physique that the book SLICED talks about for the different phases of definition. For example I developed an indentation in my waist below my rib cage on both sides. This is a characteristic from the ‘defined stage.’ As well I noticed my facial features – cheek bones and jaw line become much more defined as I became slightly leaner. And I also started to noticed the final 2 abs come in. There not fully there yet though.

      My next goal is to get the lower abs veins. There starting to come in actually. As well I would like to have my last 2 abs become more visible.

      After that than I am going to try to maintain. For me thats the hard part haha. I find fasting very effective for maintaining my weight effortlessly and I love to fast after big carb refeed days. If I have dieted strict for a few days I will pretty much never fast.

  2. So how can you correlate all of your workout routines to someone who doesn’t have a gym or access to a gym. i am currently deployed and dont have weights, only weight i have is myself. Any and all advice on the shrink wrap working with own body weight work out would be very helpful. I have somewhat of a pull up bar, yoga mat for laying down and my body weight. i am wanting the shrink wrap affect so when i get back my wife has this bad ass body to well…i am sure you get the picture! : )
    please help with a work out regimen, routine that will shred !!!! P.S. dieting and eating correctly is impossible out here because we have limited selection of foods and fruits and i have to eat what i am given and well lets just say its not really full of nutrients and beneficial. however, maintaining my weight isn’t a problem, i just want that extra so i can shred like a mad man and get the shrink wrap look?

    1. You can definitely utilize body weight movements to give you the same benefits as weights. First you want to get super lean and strong. So reduce carb portions and eat the same amount of protein. Work on pull -ups, hand stand push ups, one arm push ups, pistols (one leg squats)…. These will build great strength.

      When you reach a low level of body fat you want to maintain and then switch to high rep pump up bodyweight exercises. Example do 50-100 reps for a given exercise in as many sets as it takes. So you can start with 50 pull ups and 50 hand stand push ups.

  3. Dude amazing effort. I’ve been working out for 6 months and I’m nowhere near that, I just feel like i’m getting fatter. Is there any chance you could post your diet? even just a few days. and how often do you work out? any cardio or just weights? did you follow the visual impact workout exactly or not because I bought it but am worried about all the squats and deadlifts, I don’t want to get puffy and bulky from them (or get massive thighs and a huge ass) I want the lean cut look like you’ve got. how long did it take for you to get to this stage roughly. (sorry for all the questions I’m just really lost and working out hard with little results)

    1. Utilize phase 2 or 3 in visual impact. That will give you the lean, hard look. I’ve been working out for 4 years but only been doing visual impact for 8 months. Thats when I noticed big changes. It also made a big difference when I became more strict on my diet. And started to create large calorie deficits to drop fat.

  4. Hey

    Just found your website after being a big fan of Rusty’s, this website is also awesome and will keep a close eye on it.

    I’m currently in a tricky situation, I’m 19, only been weight training for about a year now. I’m 6’1 and currently 173lbs at maybe 12% body fat. I can see my top 4 abs most of the time. However i still think i should gain more mass to get wider shoulders and a bigger chest. But at the same time, want good abs!
    What would you suggest i do?
    Also, what are you thoughts on lifting slightly lighter weights on each exercise to really target the muscles you are working on rather than having other muscle contribute to the exercise.

    Thanks and keep up the good work!

    1. Hard to say. 12% bf is decent. Main thing is focus on one goal at a time. So try and build up some more muscle and then you can cut down. Don’t try and bulk where you use it as an excuse to eat burgers, fries and cookies. Eat lots of quality food. I like to do one or two days per week of low calories when I’m putting on size. The low cals help so I don’t lose fat and also you get a good testosterone rebound effect.

  5. Thanks man. I’m thinking of doing the leangains IF protocol, with a high amount of carbs and protein PWO and high protein high fat on days I’m not doing weight training.
    What do you think of milk when trying to add lean mass?

    Cheers again!

  6. Great physique dude! Lets get the meal plans down bro. I want to see what exactly i’m doing wrong when it comes to nutrition, I don’t eat often so I guess I gotta eat more or eat big.

    1. Yah I naturally have decent size legs. When I train they become quite bulky. I did the upper body specialization and performed intervals on the treadmill and bike to work my legs and keep them trim.

  7. Hey Greg,

    Im a skinny 14 year old (6 ft, 138 pounds) who has a few questions. First of all, can I see results with visual impact muscle building cause im so young. (I started puberty this year). Second of all, i know the first phase is for sarcoplasmic growth. So, will I be kinda flabby at the end of the first phase?? Also, how long do the workouts take you cause they look realllly long?? Is there a way to shorten them? Finally, I also have decent sized legs so can I make them more defined while in the first phase??

    Thanks for any help you can give Greg

    1. In the first phase the rest periods are pretty short. Around one minute so the workouts shouldn’t take too long. However your young and a beginner so you probably don’t need much volume to induce muscle growth. As a result I would reduce the number of sets by 1 or 2 per exercise. This will really shorten the workout up too. If your happy with the size of your legs then you can do the upper body specialized version of phase one. This is discussed at the end of the book.

  8. I have decided I’m gonna try and cut down so i can get full visible abs, at 6’1 and 174 at the moment, I understand this may leave me slightly skinny, but I’d rather be leaner for the summer and then put on a few lbs of muscle after the summer.
    My plan is to have 1 shake around lunch time, 1 shake in between lunch and dinner, then a small healthy meal for dinner. This is the quickest way to lean out right?

    Also to go with this, i should do strength training correct? So low rep, heavy weight?

    Or could i go for higher volume with creatine, to maintain/increase size?


    1. Hey Loyd! That diet plan would definitely work. I also recommend getting some fibre with your protein shakes. You can either have a tablespoon of flax meal with each shake or a table spoon of chia seeds (if you can find them).

      Lift heavy for low reps and low volume. High reps and creatine won’t be very beneficial during a strict dieting phase.

  9. Hey there! looking amazing!
    Just want to clarify some things, i’m new to all this,so maybe i didn’t understand right, but in Rusty Moore’s book he says the first phase to build muscle, we need to high rep and high set, to fatigue the muscle and it will grow, and for the muscle strengh and definition on the second phase it’s big weights,small reps and high sets, and its kinda different from what u wrote above. so am i following correctly or where is my mistake?)

    thanks! jules

    1. Rusty Moore is absolutely right. High reps and high volume is great at causing quick muscle size by increasing glycogen stores and increasing the volume of fluid in the muscles. However if you want to build real, dense muscle than you need to train heavy.

      1. Hi there. I’m a little confused. I bought the book and about to start the program but here you’re saying we should start by losing fat instead of gaining mass muscle to let skin adapt to smaller body?? However the book phase 1 starts off by focusing on quick mass gains??
        either way I have fat to lose. but I’m not sure where to start now.. diet hard to focus on fat loss? or quick mass gain like the program’s phase 1 says (which will probably give me some extra fat)?
        P.S I’m trying to look similar/like you by june. lol
        Thanks for your response!

  10. Hey Greg,
    I had 240 pounds and know i have 190 i’m 6’1 and i have 18 years old . I worked out one year to get this results but now i have loose skin on my abs and a little bit of fat . My upper body it’s ok it’s defined. How can i get rid of that skin ? Can u help me ?

    1. It’s going to take a few months for your skin to really tighten back up to your smaller size. There is no way around it. Even when I drop 5 pounds my skin becomes a little bit loose.

  11. Hi Greg, when going low carb, how many grams of fat should you eat? The recommendation for one self or much more ( for example I need 69 grams of fat per day , but on low carb days I increase it to 100 grams, for five days with a lot of protein and low carbs for five days) ??

    1. Keep carbs around 50-80 (100 tops). Get at-least 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight. If weight loss is your goal I recommend eating 8-10 calories per pound of bodyweight. So just make up the difference with fat. So i

  12. so basicly its :

    -doing a strict diet with low rep range exercises
    -when at the wanted weight i lose a couple of more pounds
    -than go for a big rep range (6-15reps) workout for 3 weeks?

    or am i wrong/forgetting something?

    1. @Peter
      Yes thats it. You got the right idea.

      If you don’t need to lose fat then you can lift heavy and low reps on your regular diet. Then go to higher reps.

  13. One thing escapes me… I do realize that more often than not people want to lose fat in order to be toned and what not but in my case, I am 5’10 and about 149 pounds. I am trying to actually gain weight and I have been at this weight for quite some time now.
    Should I skip the first step in this case? I am already quite toned but I want to be straight up ripped. Any advice?
    PS: I eat a lot…Like a looooooot.

  14. Hee man, i got a question.. i really want to loose some fat, its not that im fat and chunky, the most fat is around the stomach and waist(as usual). Im not fat, im just regular, with fat especially around the lower abs. So what is an effective way to loose fat over my body? I want to get lean so I was thinking about HIIT training, but i dont know how well it will work.

    Also my diet is clean i guess, i eat a lot of soup to help me stay full, and i take in a lot of protein and i reduced my carbs intake. I also eat fruits and vegetables and i try to drink a lot of water.

    Can you plz give me some advice on losing that fat?
    Keep on working out man, got a lot of respect for you, the way you pumped up!

    1. @Ryan

      If fat loss is your goal I recommend you track your calorie intake. Fat loss is the result of eating less calories then you are burning. Increasing exercise isn’t the best way to go because it will only increase your appetite. I recommend you drop your calories 500-700 under your maintenance. A good estimate for your calorie maintenance is 14-16 calories per pound of bodyweight.

  15. Hi Ryan.

    I ordered visual impact to try and turn my life around. When I am “Fit” I am 6 ft tall and weigh about 180 pounds. My age is 31. The last year I have been diagnosed with depression. For the last year, I have slept about 12 hours a day, don’t exercise, eat poorly and have ballooned up to 215 pounds.

    I have decent muscle mass and abs that I build up in high school. How should I go about the program? Can I adjust the phases at all? I really want to lose all this weight and look ripped. I have an event in about 5 months and I want to show people the new me.

    Any suggestions? God bless in advance for your help

    1. @Kevin

      Looks like you’re main priority is to cut. For that reason I would recommend you follow a lower calorie diet and go straight to phase 2 or phase 3.

  16. Hi Greg

    I been following VIMB phase 3 for 4 weeks now and my lifts have all increased and my waist has droped from 29.5 to 29 wile my shoulders have stayed at 49 so really happy with the results.. just wondering would i have build muscle density in 4 weeks or should i keep doing the program for 3-4 more weeks for the skin to catch up? only asking because i didnt need to loose much fat so was thinking my skin would already be pretty close to my new size? body fat caliper says 5% so id say im around 7-8% because i can see veins on my lower abs and my face has really gone defined and cheek bones are visible !


  17. hello Greg. You’ve taken some super efforts and its beyond admiration for me. its much more.

    I am 5′ 5″ in height and weight 125 pounds. I am fairly slim except I have a bit of fat bulging on my tummy and love handles and a bit on my lower back. my first two packs are subtly visible. I have been working pretty intensely for years now and haven’t been able to lose the last few kilos. I started with the first phase of visual impact a couple of months ago, and have seen progress but its been quite slow.
    Could you please guide me as to what my diet should be like? I am quite confused whether to focus on bulking or cutting down on fat first. If i maintain a deficit,i lose muscle and if i eat a littlebin excess, i dont lose the last few kilos. Please show me the way. I am very confused.

    1. Sounds like you need to get your diet in order. Start tracking your food intake. 10-11 calories per pound of bodyweight is a good amount for fat loss. Once you get lean you can bring the calories up for muscle gaining.

  18. Hey almost to this stage. Hopefully by end of June. But i was wondering, how many workouts per week? I would think 5 so the volume is more and also its ehat you posted on your mass gaining posts but I’d like to be sure :)

    1. @Marcus

      For the high volume phase I like to lift 4-5 times per week and work 2 muscles groups per workout. This allows me to hit each muscle with sufficient volume. I only do this training for 3-4 weeks no more than a few times per year. I much prefer to focus on low volume strength training most of the time.

  19. Hey what would you suggest eating after an intense workout such as the example above? Are there any particular muscle building protein supplements that you can suggest?

    1. I like to eat one main meal per day at night. During the day I eat very light. 2 small meals of some protein (protein shake or greek yogurt or cottage cheese) and some fruit. For your main meal I would have some lean protein (chicken breast), veggies and a big serving of starchy carbs (potatoes, yams or brown rice).

  20. Your video is giving me motivation to get back into training, so thank you.

    One question though. I know in Phase 3 Rusty says one should do some HIIT to cut excess body fat, so would you surmise Tabata training 3 days a week as sufficient with strength training?

  21. Hi,

    i almost finish phase 3, and i will do the bonus phase(shrink wrap effect) but i am little confused what type of creatine it is better or you recommed:
    the creatine monohydrate or creatine micronized.

    thanks, regards

  22. Hey m8!!
    I really wanner try this out and im also wanting to get a good look but my problem is i dont know any of the excersices… If you could make a video showing it or something would be good cause i really feel like i want a six pack now that i have had my kinda beast 4pack that i just need to split and get v shape and some more chest and im good looking and this would help the process so please help me with this m8 and thnx for everything else :)

  23. Hi
    I have a holiday in 5 months and was going to do a lean gaining program for 2 months then diet down for 2 months leaving 1 month for the shrink wrap is this realistic or would i need more time to diet down ? I am 8-9% bodyfat at the moment and after 2 months of lean muscle gain probably looking at 12% bodyfat and i want to be 7% by the holiday would 2 months of dieting be sufficient time for this goal ?

  24. Hi Greg

    Great body. Really fit and ripped. Wow. I’m looking into getting back into shape. After my days in the army, the better of the last 10 years have gone by with kids, family, work and so on.

    Been keeping a bit in shape by playing tennis and running, But have gotten those nasty love handles that definetly needs to go. I’m at 5.9′ and 170 lbs.

    Been considering investing in the books, but want to get started right away. I’m not overweight so does not have a lot of weight to loose, more the extra bodyfat that’s the problem. So:

    – diet change while doing low rep exercises to slim down.
    – When bodyfat is down to around 5-7 %, then change too High Rep Exercises.


    1. To slim down you will have to start eating at a calorie deficit. 12 cals per pound of bodyweight is a good starting point. As well, training volume should be reduced. Sets of 4-8 reps is ideal. After attaining a low body fat you want to bring up calories to 15-16 per pound and increase training volume – more reps, more exercises and more sets.

      1. Thanks Greg.

        Though I have a question with regards to keeping the diet and my workouts. Would there be anything specific to pay attention to, when the workouts are in the evening? Cause I’ll be able to workout after work 1-2 days a week, but most days it’ll be in the evening at around 8 pm.

  25. Hey greg just purchased VIMB and am excited to start! I’m very athletic and have about 12 pounds to shed by july, so I’ll be starting phase 3 right away. I don’t have any muscle that I need to gain I’m big enough already. Will being in the calorie deficit and only training for strength cause my functional strength to wane? I need to be in top athletic shape for all the sports I’ll play throughout the summer, and I am worried that my competitive performance will lack. Any thoughts? P.S.- Nice job on your transformation, exactly the physique I was aiming to achieve.

    1. Dude, you’ll be fine! Your fitness will improve as you get stronger and leaner. As well, phase 3 has lots of intense cardio so your fitness will get better.

  26. ok like dude ya I totally get it ok but I’m kinda confused did you use the common method or advanced method to sculpt your abs? could you explain the more advanced method to me? and like what are some example exercises of sarcoplasmic muscle growth? please help me out :)

  27. when you do the high rep (8-12 range) work outs, you eat say a 500 calorie surplus to gain 1 pound/week (currently what im doing and gainin). Is this similar to what you do before and after this hi rep phase workout? Do I need to go from surplus calories diet to just eating at BMR or caloric deficit when done with the heavy weight training phase, in order to get ripped and shrunk wrapped?

    1. For the shrink wrap you don’t want to use too big of a surplus. I’d suggest about 15-16 calories per pound of bodyweight when going back to phase one for the shrink wrap effect. You should fill out without spilling over.

  28. Damn man looking at your body makes me depressed. I am same height as you and about 150 pounds. Pretty much no muscle on me.. Looking at your video gets me motivated to start working out. What supplements do you suggest to get me going? I’m already a conscience eater and know whats good for me diet wise. I just that little oomf to get me going and be able to see some results quick so I stick to it. I don’t like being this thin anymore.

  29. ok dude this is hard to kind of put my finger on. I’m just trying to basically tone out my muscles and shrink-wrap my skin really tight over my muscles. However, I’m really not understanding all this information because I’m not a professional body builder kind of a guy but if you could. Would you please at least define what sarcoplasmic muscle growth is to me and could you give me a couple example exercises that help with increase or completely depletes sarcoplasmic muscle growth to me. I’ve watch the shrink wrap effect video at least a half of a million times and I don’t understand it. Thanks in advance for all the support if you do get back to me that is!

  30. Hey, so I’m kind of a calisthenics guy, but I also want to follow the visual impact routine. Do you think it would be ok if I alternate between the VI routine one week and do calisthenics the other week? I don’t mind if it takes a bit longer.

    1. That wouldn’t work well! It would be hard to make consistent progress if you’re switching the routine every week. Better to implement some bodyweight movements into your weekly routine.

  31. I know the Rusty suggests drinking two large glasses of milk with chocolate powder added to them after a workout, but is this as good as a protein shake? Also, how many calories and protein does this roughly give?

  32. Should I follow what Rusty suggests by grouping similar muscles together into splits e.g. Monday is chest, tricep and shoulders, or should I split my muscles into days e.g. Monday is chest, Tuesday is arms, etc? What do you think is more effective? Also, how many exercises do you recommend per muscle if it was the latter?

  33. Hey Greg,

    I’ve been reading your studies the last couple of days and think it sounds really great. I have a question though. I’ve been exercising the last couple of years by using only freeweight exercises to just stay at my level. Now I want to increase my strenght and become stronger and slightly bigger. I’m 184 cm and my weight is 75 kg and I would like to round 80 kgs.
    Which of your 2 programs would you suggest? I’m a little confused whether I should go for The Shredding Program or the The Greek God Program.

    Thanks in advise!

    1. I cover it in the 5 roadblocks to building muscle report. It should be on the side banner of the site. If it’s not, you’ll have to go to a different post and it will come up on the side bar

  34. Good morning, Greg! Hope you’re doing well! I finally decided to give the Shrink Wrap Effect a try. I was wondering what your cardio adjustments were. I only have a few weeks left, and I’ve only done HIIT one or maybe twice a week so I wasn’t sure if that was enough cardio during this phase. I wasn’t sure if was I supposed to do the Steady State either because Rusty only mentions doing sprints for 15 mins. Thank you for your time, and I hope you have a great day!

  35. Good afternoon, Greg! I hope all is well. I decided to give the Shrink Wrap Effect a try because I’m so impressed with your results. I only have a few weeks of Phase 1 left, and I’ve been unsure how many days I should do cardio. I’ve been doing the 15 min sprints twice a week, but I wasn’t sure if I should add any steady state or if I should wait all the way until Phase 3 to start incorporating that. What would you suggest? Thank you so much! Hope you have a great day!

      1. Hey Greg! Hope you had a great weekend! Now that I’m doing Phase 2, is it a good idea to reincorporate steady state after the 15 min sprints? I’m doing 10 mins of steady state since I’m not in the cutting phase yet. I noticed after both days 1 and 2 he suggests that you do the sprints so then I would be doing the sprints and 10 mins of steady cardio at least 4 or 5 times a week. Is that correct? He’s not very specific about the cardio portion so I was just curious. Thank you so much!

  36. Hey Greg, I’ve been doing phase 3 for a month now. I was wondering when or how do I know when its time to switch my workouts to focus on sarcoplasmic growth? Thanks man

  37. I wonder how you shrink-wrap your abdominal area. I’ve understood the main principal which is high set low rep as long as you desire and then going low set high rep a few weeks before beach season or whatever.

    1. Well as long as you’re adding size to your entire physique while staying lean, then naturally your abs will become more shrink wrapped because the skin will tighten everywhere.

  38. Loving your philopsophy bro but I have a concern. Can I get strech marks from this, how long can I maintain that form and how to prevent Strech marks if it does

    1. No you won’t get stretch marks from this as long as you don’t go too high in calories. If you’re not gaining any fat then you won’t get stretch marks. ANd this can last a while if you do it properly.

  39. Hey! I was just wondering about the diet during the shrink wrap phase. Did you keep calories insanely low like Rusty says for phase 3? (8-10 x target bodyweight) Or just low or maintenance? This is just during the shrink wrap.


  40. Greg, thanks for all you do! 41 yr old male. I am an endomorph so build muscle easily. Right now i am down to 14% BF. I am struggling to push lower even with IF. Carrying a lot of muscle now. Should i switch to higher reps and increase my HIIT after workouts or on of days? Great motivation. I had back surgery in 2000. Best i have felt since college!!!!!! LG

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