Weight Training, Routines and More

The Iron Game

January 18th, 2010 at 10:59 pm

Get Serious Or Go Home-A Key To Build Muscle

Welcome to a new challenge! Remember, we need to keep this great activity fun and sometimes a short term change can be a good thing! On occasion it’s a good idea to make a change from focusing on gut busting, heavy training for strength and instead focus on training to increase muscle size. Of course a certain amount of strength can be developed as a result of this program, but strength is not the goal here, rather our focus is on making greater muscle size gains.

There are two benefits from getting away from heavy training: 1. Allow your joints and connective tissue time to repair and heal. 2. This can revitalize you mentally and boost your enthusiasm for training because you’re doing something NEW, and who does’nt want to get bigger?

Weight training needs to be progressive if you want to continue making gains. Remember, it’s about stress and adaptation to that stress. You can make improvements in three ways:

1. By using more weight.
2. By doing more reps.
3. By doing more work within a given period of time.

Most of us focus on #1 and therefore don’t attach a priority on #2. In order to lift big weights longer, rest periods between sets are needed. Often times #3 is ignored, which in essence is all about intensity.

To increase muscle size you need to increase the intensity of work performed within a certain period of time. Your focus needs to be on how fast you can do a certain number of sets within a given time period. That means to compress your rest time between sets. For example; watch a track meet on TV and you will quickly notice how well developed the sprinters are in the 60 yard and 100 yard races. Compare their physiques to the long distance runners who are much leaner. It takes more work to run a mile than it takes to run 100 yards. However, the sprinter is doing more work per second and as a result his/her muscles have been forced to grow larger to accommodate the tremendous effort and energy required in a short period of time.

Doing a lot of work as quickly as possible will provide all the stimulation necessary for muscular gains without running the risk of overtraining, which most of us do including myself. Under this program our objective is complete fatigue and maximum pump-not hoisting monster weights! This type of training takes a heck of a lot of guts, courage and focus. It’s not for the faint of heart!

The training tempo is the most important part of this program. So what would be my training weights for this program? A good guide line is to use 50-60 percent of your normal training weights that you would use for a set of six reps, when you are fresh, not tired. Reduce your rest time over a four week period as follows:

Rest 40 seconds between sets
Second week – Rest 35 seconds between sets
Third week – Rest 30 seconds between sets
Fourth week – Rest 25 seconds between sets

If you’ve been training with heavy weight, your joints will thank you for the reprieve and your body will respond by adding more muscle mass! BigBack51 rule: All reps of every set need to be performed in a smooth and controlled fashion, no cheating, no bouncing the weights and no high speed stuff!

So I challenge you to give this a try. The first couple of sets are real easy, then it’s Oh-No!-as you’ll quickly find yourself dwelling in the “house of pain.” I further challenge you to conservatively increase your training weights while maintaining the short rest periods between sets. Nothing wrong with another challenge!

I am currently 56 yr. old and also do the following on a regular basis: Sumo deadlifts-10 sets of 2 reps per set with 295 lbs., rest time between sets is 5 seconds. I’m sucking air big time after this session! Hint: Don’t eat ANYTHING before these workouts! You need to love a challenge and you got to love this sport to try this program. Good training!

Success is best measured by the achiever.-Joe Paterno

Gary Lillvis

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