Do you always do drop sets for every lift, or just your major ones? If you are doing drops for every lift, it seems like a quick way to overtrain. This may one of those crazy programs the OP was asking about.
Well, I do it for my major lifts: Bench pressing, overhead presing, rowing and pulling, squats and deadlifts.
To clarify my volume of work, allow me to tell you what I did last week in my workouts (Total body workouts)
I Started with Flat bench presses with a wide grip, squeezed a good 15 reps as a starting point and racked the weight for 30 seconds and loaded the bar 10% heavier ( I don’t drop or add more than 15%, or less than 10%, of the previous load used ). Then I squeezed out a set of 10 reps, racked the load, dropped some weight off, (this took me 10 seconds for i train too early to have good spotters available) and got only 8 reps, and then racked the load again and dropped some more weightand only got 6 reps out. I racked the load and without more than a couple seconds of rest, grabbed a pair of light dumbells and maxed out, I guess at the 18th rep of chest flyes.
Total time under tension, for those worried about it: around 60 seconds (that’s counting from the first rep with the initial load until the moment I dropped the dumbells at the botom of the 18th flye, substracting the 10 seconds of rest between weight reductions)
I do this 3-4 times and move to the next muscle. I only use one exercise per bodypart, but never use the same exercise for two consecutive workouts. I train chest, back, shoulders and legs 3 times a week.
I train forearms on fridays, and biceps and triceps are cycled doing one on monday and the other one on wednesday, basically running-the-rack after a heavy set.
can’t say that all of his knowledge is worthless, he is simply asking for people’s opinions on programs that he does not consider the norm. I would say that never counting a rep or worrying about tempo is out of the norm for most people looking for hypertrophy.
I know that if you look for hypertrophy, you’ll want to get the most bang for your buck, therefore make sure you follow some basic guidelines.
Christian Thibaudeau says that if you want to hit the fast-twitch fibers, the volume of exercise can be set at 80 total reps per muscle group in a week. If you lean more towards a mixed ratio of fast and slow twitch fibers, you aim for 100 reps a week.
If you have been listening to tempo advise, you know that the mainstream idea is that you must ensure that a rep is productive, in its negative phase, as much as it is in a positive phase. So you eliminate the stretch-shortening cycle energy by making sure you spend 4 seconds between the lowering of the load and the pause at the bottom or reversal point.
That’s why some people lower in 2 seconds and pause for 2 seconds, and why others don’t pause and lower in 4 seconds. You just do your best, and do it as best as you can. Personally, I think the 3 seconds lowering and 1 second pause is a universally accepted guideline that works. As for the lifting, I prefer to lift in 1 second. there are guys who believe in lifting in 2 and so on…
This means that if a set must last anywhere between 40-70 seconds of T.U.T. to produce growth, you should just make sure you have the right tempo, so that when you multiply the number of reps per set by the number of seconds that each rep needs to be completed, you fall within this timeframe.
Problem is that some people forget that 3 x 10 is the same as 10 x 3, NUMERICALLY…they think they can use their 411,311 ,401 or 221 tempos and go heavier for the number of reps lowers enough for them to really make it hard.
This makes sense NUMERICALLY, but if you look at physiology, there are guys who lift with the same 10 x 3, with the same total reps per muscle a week than this guys, and yet, their tempos are something like 101, 201 and such…and they get just as big as the other guys do…?why? because they may be lifting faster, but they also lifted heavier…and at the end of the day, T.U.T. and Intensity are sitting in the plates of a scale, and they do balance each other out…
You can train with T.U.T. in a simpler way: Total T.U.T…doing a 3 sets of 10 reps scheme three times a week is staying between those 80-100 reps that Thib once prescribed in his “Game Plan” article (which ironically, goes out the window with any of his HSS-100 chest or back specialization programs, where he multiplies by 3 the normal HSS100 for a given bodypart to grow when it’s lagging, and the Hss100 is already a lot of reps above the 100 reps per week bracket)…when you do 3 sets of 10, you do 3 sets in the 40-70 seconds T.U.T. timeframe you need for growth…but you can also do 10 sets of 3 reps, and if you used the same tempo than to do 3 sets of 10, and each rep lasts the same, you will end up with the same T.U.T. per session than in the 3 x 10 method, only that your sets won’t be that long, and you’ll induce more damage by using heavier weights.
That’s why I told Louis that his knowledge was relative…and yes, I have the balls to accept that I did go a little hard on the guy (hope you forgive me dude, sometimes I get a little mad)… I don’t really believe in H.I.T. programs, but I do believe in their principles of training hard and go past disconfort and pain to give it your best and work hard… I don’t really advocate for tempo but I do feel that T.U.T. plays an important role, which goes above and beyond the simple timeframe for a given set, and I think that this is a factor which comes off as a product
In other words: I believe that if you put a lot of hard work into something, without abusing yourself in the process, you get a lot of big rewards, and not by accepting any given program that the so-called Iron Guru’s write for the masses. I have seen guys train with a balls-to-the-wall, no-guts-no-glory attitude that can be hard to get into, but that gives them amazing results…and I hope, I know Lou’s got what it takes (just by posting his questions, he shows that he has enough balls to have it)to become a winner…
And those were my two-cents worth…hope to hear more from you guys, hit me on pvt, give me my 98 cents change for my buck, dammit!!
This is a very good post and written by someone with experience. It takes alot of years to learn how to or be able to lift like this. I highly second, recommend, and exercise these same principles and workouts. this is highly valuable information if you’re reading my post. I would highly suggest reading what is wrote above me and commiting it to memory.