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Best Program for Fast LBM Gains?

So I feel like there should be an answer to this question, but Google hasn’t turned it up… So sorry if this has been asked before.

Is there a particular program that is generally recognized as the best for LBM gains?

Every program seems to claim to be great, but I have had no luck finding a results based comparison.

Some programs I’ve looked at are GVT, high frequency training, 531 BBB, the 1000 rep approach from Kroc and they are similar in that they are all high volume, but differ significantly in frequency.

Depending on how you set it up…
HFT: each muscle group every 2 days
531: each muscle group every 4 days
GVT: each muscle group every 5-6 days
Kroc: 500 reps per muscle group once every 2-4 weeks in addition to normal program

Back in university i got bored one summer and lifted full body 5 days a week on weekdays and got huge prety fast too…

BTW I’ve been lifting for almost 2 years and am looking for something appropriate for intermediate-advanced lifters.

By virtue of asking this question, you are still a beginner and/or a troll.

Pick any reasonable (there are probably hundreds on this site) hypertrophy focused program that works for you, dial in your nutrition, and go forth. It’s that simple. There is no magic routine, I promise.

if you already know how to get “huge prety fast” then why not just do that again?

Thanks for nothing guys… Of course I know about hypertrophy targeted system - I listed a couple! Why I’m asking is because I’m looking for an EVIDENCE BASED COMPARISON. You call me a noob/troll/ignorant and have at the same time NO ANSWER.

I expect that there has been no study but wanted to ask anyways.

Not free but cost is minimal and is by far the best approach for what you’re after: http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B0001KFXAG

I think your routine is better since you say “got huge pretty fast”. So use yours.

[quote]canucknje wrote:
Is there a particular program that is generally recognized as the best for LBM gains?

Every program seems to claim to be great, but I have had no luck finding a results based comparison.[/quote]

There is no such thing. There are three factors that are present in every program - intensity (AKA how heavy the weight is relative to your strength), volume, and frequency. The issue is that people are different - they react differently to the same program, so there is no objective best, really.

If I were you, I’d use what has worked in the past as a starting point - so make frequency a priority and evaluate your progress after 2-3 months. Make sure you eat right to rule out diet if progress stalls.

[quote]canucknje wrote:
So I feel like there should be an answer to this question[/quote]
Let me stop you right here. There isn’t an answer to your question, because there is no such thing as the best way to train. Period. End of sentence. End thread.

Lots and lots and lots of different stuff works, and that you’re still looking for a magic bullet miracle training program shows that your approach to training is fundamentally flawed. It’s all trial and error always, for everyone, regardless of goal.

We might refer to other people’s experiences and advice, but at the end of the day, 100 people could all do Training Program X and their results will be all over the place. And that’s not even bringing nutrition into the conversation. Take 50 sets of triplets, give each person the same training routine but have #1 eat a certain way, #2 eat another way, and #3 eat a different way and… you’ll get different results.

Dude, that’s like saying “Sushi, bacon, and beef jerky are similar because they’re animals, but differ significantly in how they’re cooked.” You’re oversimplifying quite a bit because the details matter and you’re neglecting a few major variables.

Not to mention that GVT is double the volume of BBB, and Kroc’s 100 rep routine (which is a short-term specialization, by the way) is literally five times as much volume as GVT. But you’re comfortable calling them “all high volume”?

And do you think you, at 36 with a bad back, could replicate those results with the same routine? Why or why not?

@ Chris Colucci and nighthawkz: thanks for the answers! It seems you both say “it depends on the individual”. And I guess I was grappling with how all of this applies to me.

I think the issue I was considering was the following…

If in general a higher frequency is better, and also if in general a higher volume is better, how do you combine these aspects into training? There are many different programs out there… and I mentioned a few. What I noticed is that generally programs with a high volume, have a lower frequency and programs with a higher frequency have a lower volume.

Before I posted, I was considering if there was an optimum in this trade off? Also, why not combine a high volume with a high frequency? I think this would probably only work if you periodize it and add in a deload after a stretch with high volume/high frequency.

These thoughts were triggered by this article:

BTW, I was pretty clueless back then, but when I did a full-body 5x per week (weekends resting) I did a week with 3x15, a week with 3x10 and a week with 3x5 and a week with 3x10 reps (and repeat) and I alternated daily between 2 different routines. As I said, fast results, but with several overuse injuries and burnout followed by quitting lifting for years at the end of the summer. And to answer your question Chris - yes I think I can replicate these results at 36 with a bad back - in particular the injury part - but I’m interested in finding something sustainable that won’t lead to injury and quitting.

BTW after some more digging I found this article, which answered a bunch of my questoins:
“The influence of frequency, intensity, volume and mode of strength training on whole muscle cross-sectional area in humans” by Wernborn, Augustsson and Thomee.

Results are all over the place with no discernible (to me at least) optimum with respect to volume, frequency, etc., which confirms what you both have said.

[quote]canucknje wrote:
If in general a higher frequency is better, and also if in general a higher volume is better, how do you combine these aspects into training?[/quote]
Those are both pretty big “ifs” because you might not need to. You will, or should, learn over time (through trial and error) what your body responds best to. To flip the perspective, why train with high frequency if you don’t need to? Why train with high volume if you don’t need to?

Yep, that’s fundamental program design. You’ve got volume, frequency, and intensity, and any program you follow will juggle those three variables. They’re interconnected and usually inversely related, unless you took steps to gradually condition yourself towards balancing them out.

Every successful program does have an “optimum” trade off, it’s just rarely “high volume AND high frequency”.

If the lifter isn’t conditioned to the workload, you’re looking at an increased chance for legit overtraining, increased risk of overuse injuries, and a reduced load becomes necessary (that’s the other variable I mentioned - intensity. If you’re training for lots of sets many days a week, you’re not going to be lifting very heavy too often).

Since a deload is a period of reduced intensity and/or volume… yes, agreed.

If full-body worked for you in the past, try it out again. 5/3/1 has a full body template, Madcow 5x5, Stronglifts 5x5, DC training (maybe in a few years), HIT training… my fastest gains were from doing Surovetsky’s Deadlift peaking cycle with heavy pressing and deadlifting Monday and Friday, with light squats and bench on Wednesday, and lots of chin-ups at the end of all three days. The best way to get LBM gains is diet with whatever kind of training your body responds well to.

The juggling is the fun, huh. High frequency is fun, but for how long? I’m all about training efficiency too. If you double or triple your time in the gym over the course of a week, when does the payoff cease?
Whole body routines…why can’t these be done but some days are dedicated to 1 or 2 main lifts or body parts, but the other parts simply get a set or two at most of a fraction of the intensity, say 85% of the load of the rep range of choice.