(1) Work the big lifts- Many lifters try to add mass by simply adding more isolation movements on top to what they are already doing, but now more than ever, you will get the most bang for your gym time by doing lots of big compound movements. Isolation movements and machines have their place, but if you are after maximum mass gains, focus every week on the bench presses, deadlifts, military presses, squats and barbell rows. Some people think this exercise is just for getting stronger, but that because they do them for low reps.
Work these lifts in the 8-10 rep range regularly, with good form, and you will start using more weight and gaining more muscle mass. Then hit a few select isolation moves for a serious pump and walk out of the gym feeling immense.
(2) Use good form most of the time- Always start your set with strict form, and then, as you approach the end of a set, do not be afraid to cheat a bit. Use somebody English or momentum to get the weight up, then focus on the negative portion, which should still be strict. Of course, this approach is better suited to certain movements than others. One arm dumbbells rows, curls, and lateral raises? sure, squat and deadlifts? Just do as many reps in good form as possible and call it a day.
(3) Train consistently and consistently hard- This is where it all starts consistent, hard training. From now on, every workout counts, so go at it with a vengeance as time goes by, your goal should always be striving to use a little more weight, or do a few more reps. You should routinely take sets to failure not necessarily every set, but the final set of a movement is a no-brainer. As a rule, never walk out of the gym feeling like you could have tried harder. A half effort will give you half results. Do all you can.
(4) Get yourself to a real gym- There was a day when gyms were the domain of serious lifters, and when benching 405 for reps or stripping down to practice posting was no big deal. Nowadays, corporate gyms have rules against tank tops and Deadlifting. Needless to say, these places are not conducive to getting hung. Do some research and see if there’s a real gym nearby where you can toss weight around without feeling like you are disturbing the peace. These gyms probably have more free weights and better machines.
(5) Listen to your body- If you are constantly paranoid about getting injured, you will never learn to push yourself. On the other hand, when lifters get injured, it is usually because they ignore that little voice that told them something was off- some muscle complaining or shoddy form they were hoping the lifting gods would not notice. Listen to your body, if you feel an odd or sharp pain when doing an exercise, stop immediately. If it still hurts doing something else, abandon the workout and take it easy on that area for a while you would not regard it what you will regret is getting injured.
(6) Find a great training partner- Once you have a great place of the train, your gains will come faster if you have a great person to train with. This person does not necessarily have to share your exact goals or be a strong as you are. At the same time, the absolute best partnerships and those that have a touch of friendly rivalry. When you are closely matched to your partner, you never slack off because you do not want to be shown up. The main qualities you are looking for is someone who shows up on time, knows how to spot you properly, and is able to be motivating without being obnoxious.