T Nation

Another Failure vs Volume Thread

Currently on mountain dog workout (for intermediates)… My target is pure muscle hypertrophy.
In a split program(bp / 7 days), would you do ALL your work sets to failure or you would just do the last couple of sets to failure so you hit more total reps therefore more volume?
Personally , I am trying to get every single work set to failure (or maybe 1-2 reps before failure in a few sets)…

Go

I usually go for volume over failure. Even then I’ll only go to failure on my last set or two, depending on what I have next. Personally I don’t see the point in going to failure of you’re not trying to max or prepare for PL meet. I think it’s just asking for a break down in form; which leads to less of MMC and possible injury. Just my two cents.

Why don’t you ask john?

[quote]myself1992 wrote:
Why don’t you ask john? [/quote]

Avi looks good, when was the previous pic taken? New one looks twice the size. apologies, PM’s disabled /threadjack.

I’m following a similar program and only take the last set or two to failure only on a few exercises though, not all

already asked him… pretty much said what lemony said

just wanted your opinions aswell not just for mountain dog :slight_smile:

This is in the first email that John sends to every single one of his client

"Using the right weight

When I say 3 sets of 10, I don't mean every set should be flat out failure at 10 reps. The reps should always be hard. Usually with this pattern, you should feel like you have one MAYBE 2 reps in the tank after the first set or two, but the last one is a really hard 10, and you may not even get all 10.
Many times I will say go up to a weight until you can do x number of reps with it, and we?ll count the last 3 sets as working. So if you are doing barbell inclines for example, and 225 for 8 is as much as you can muster. You wouldn?t want to do 135 and then right to 225. You would want to do a set of 8 with say 200, then one with 215, then the one with 225. Make sense? That would be a typical pyramid. Another example, on the leg press you may do 1 plates a side, and keep adding plates all the way to 10. We would count the set with 8, 9, and 10 as work sets. You wouldn?t want to do 3 or 4 sets, then go right to 9 or 10 plates, that?s how you strain things and get injured.
The deeper you are into a workout, the less number of ?feeder? sets you?ll need. Feeder sets are just sets to get you to your working weight. So let?s say the leg press was last. Now you might be able to start with say 5 plates a side, and do one there, one with 6, and one with 7. You don?t need to do one plates, two plates, etc. Feeder sets deeper into the workout can be lower in reps too. So maybe if you are doing a hack squat, and this is last, you just do sets of 3 reps up to your working weight sets.
When I want you to go to complete failure, I will tell you so. When I want you to pyramid up, I will tell you so etc.
Bottom line, is just listen to what I say and ask questions when you need too!"

[quote]gato10 wrote:
I usually go for volume over failure. Even then I’ll only go to failure on my last set or two, depending on what I have next. Personally I don’t see the point in going to failure of you’re not trying to max or prepare for PL meet. I think it’s just asking for a break down in form; which leads to less of MMC and possible injury. Just my two cents. [/quote]

i do low volume but every set to failure

a routine with failure might have 15-20 total reps whereas a routine without might have 50-100, don’t see how the volume routine is safer

[quote]loukiss wrote:
already asked him… pretty much said what lemony said

just wanted your opinions aswell not just for mountain dog :)[/quote]

I’ve pretty much always ramped up to a max set and failed there and then depending on wether I did an intensity technique for my top set, I’d do another set to failure after that. That’s the case with compound movements and for the first movement of the day usually, but for my isolation exercises I do a warm up and then a few sets to failure or near failure depending on how I feel the exercise working for me

[quote]lemony2j wrote:

[quote]myself1992 wrote:
Why don’t you ask john? [/quote]

Avi looks good, when was the previous pic taken? New one looks twice the size. apologies, PM’s disabled /threadjack.

I’m following a similar program and only take the last set or two to failure only on a few exercises though, not all[/quote]
Do you mean the side bi? Both were taken at the same time, around late october or early november. That back double bi looks sick man

[quote]fr0gger666 wrote:

[quote]gato10 wrote:
I usually go for volume over failure. Even then I’ll only go to failure on my last set or two, depending on what I have next. Personally I don’t see the point in going to failure of you’re not trying to max or prepare for PL meet. I think it’s just asking for a break down in form; which leads to less of MMC and possible injury. Just my two cents. [/quote]

i do low volume but every set to failure

a routine with failure might have 15-20 total reps whereas a routine without might have 50-100, don’t see how the volume routine is safer
[/quote]

A volume routine is safer for me since i tend to use high rep stuff with low risk exercises ie, machine stuff single joing movements that would be harder to screw up something major, especially if you’re using a machine. Granted there are risks with either approach I just think that trying to go to failure on any major compound lift has more risk involved, then other exercises taken to failure. It’s not necessary the amount of reps, that’s dangerous IMHO.

Look at those monster. Did those guy train to absolute failure? NO. They train hard, but they complete their reps.



Never seen the point of lifting until failure over leaving a rep or two in the tank.

[quote]Adren wrote:
Never seen the point of lifting until failure over leaving a rep or two in the tank.[/quote]

i’ve never seen the point of leaving a rep or two in the tank

the guy who posted the video, they look like they were going to failure (taking 4 seconds to grind their last rep?)

obviously attacking a technique in isolation of a given routine is idiotic so I don’t see the point of a lot of these posts

it has its place in some routines and not others

I don’t see what the big fuss is about going to failure or not going to failure, my main focus is progressing in weight/reps while maintaining the same focus on the muscle.

also the myself/lemony bromance is looking good, both you guys are getting huge

[quote]fr0gger666 wrote:

[quote]Adren wrote:
Never seen the point of lifting until failure over leaving a rep or two in the tank.[/quote]

i’ve never seen the point of leaving a rep or two in the tank

the guy who posted the video, they look like they were going to failure (taking 4 seconds to grind their last rep?)

obviously attacking a technique in isolation of a given routine is idiotic so I don’t see the point of a lot of these posts

it has its place in some routines and not others
[/quote]

Far less CNS stress = easier to progress.

I’m an HITer, but if you’re going to do multiple sets, you sure as hell don’t want to take every one of them to failure unless you want to wreck yourself with massive overtraining. You build up fatigue over the course of several sets and fail on the last one or two.

Define failure.

[quote]belligerent wrote:
…overtraining…
[/quote]

Overtraining is hardly EVER the case for most people.

[quote]optheta wrote:

[quote]belligerent wrote:
…overtraining…
[/quote]

Overtraining is hardly EVER the case for most people. [/quote]

If they’re doing 5 sets to failure of every exercise in their routine, it is.

Over-training and Under-recovering are the same but different and applies here.