T Nation

Help for Optimal Training Routine


Hi I'm new here though I've been working out for about a year now and have been doing a lot of research on hypertrophy and mps, and I have three questions.

1) what exactly happens to your muscles during training for myofibrillar Hypertrophy, in detail? Do they tear? Is it just micro trauma? Is it depletion of atp that creates myo. Mps?

2) when you train your nervous system under the 1-3 rep ranges, do you get stronger only from greater recruitment of more motor units? Or can your nervous system make you stronger by more efficiently recruiting the same number of motor units, all things remaining the same?

3) do drop sets mimic a Fibre Sweep training plan? And by how much?
Wouldn't it be smart to pyramid>1-3rm>4-6rm>8-12rm>30-34rm to hit all fibre types, hence taxing your cns, myofibrils, and energy in one shot??




How are the answers to these questions going to help you develop an "optimal training plan," per the title of this thread?


If 1-3 rep ranges ONLY help recruit ore muscles, an optimal periodization could be calculated for size; teach your body how to use more muscles->teach your body how to damage more muscles. As for what actually happens to your muscles to activate Mps, it would help prove it that FASTER negatives are better. It could help to know what to focus on while workin out.


I don't think it would. I don't know the answers to those questions, but they are technical in nature and would not necessarily translate into practical significance.

There is no "optimal" training plan. There are sound training principles, and programs based on those principles. You can read about them -- the principles and the programs -- in countless articles on this site.


1.) There are several theories, but nobody knows "exactly" what happens to your muscles when they grow. Tension, and time under tension seem to be important tho.

2.) Again, I don't think there is one, simple, clear cut answer. If you practice the move you get better at it, recruiting fibers better. If you keep practicing the move over and over you recruit more muscle fibers as you fatigue.

3.) Most good programs use different load and rep ranges. You could work up to some heavy singles, then do a couple back off sets of 6-8. Or you could do a big exercise heavy (bench press) a "secondary exercise" for medium reps (incline dumbbell press) and then "assistance exercises" (flies, dips, tricep pushdowns) for high reps to hit all the different fibers.

Over the years lifters have developed all kinds of different plans based on the principles you are considering. High reps, low reps, moving the bar fast, moving the bat slow, assistance, no assistance, on and on and on. Some guys go more by "feel" and some like to go by the numbers/science more.

Regarding faster/overspeed negatives; Louie Simmons of Westside Barbell agrees with you. A faster "down" means more force, resulting in a more forceful or faster up, similar to plyometrics. That is one of the reason they attach chains and especially bands to the bar.

Check out his articles at westside-barbell. There are over 120 articles and many of them talk about using these ideas to develop the sort of "optimal training" you are thinking about. In fact, one is called "Optimal Training."


I wasn't asking what happens when muscles grow(not that that's not important), I want to know specifically what happens DURING the workout the causes myofibrillar mps. This could help show me how much time to spend on negatives, and to calculate an optimal TUT for each excercise.

And I'm sure there's an answer to these, I just don't have the resources to find them-I've looked.
And everyone has an optimal training routine specific to their goals, I'm simply looking for one specific to mine
That is, strength training with cardio and hiit(learn to use more fibres), then myofibrillar mps(more fibres, long term size) THEN sarcoplasmic hypertrophy to induce long term skinwrap effect.


Majoring in the minors. Use a variety of rep schemes, intensity levels, compounds, and isolations. What looks perfect on paper may not yield the ideal results you're looking for. Eat, lift, sleep.


Can you give an example of someone who has achieved these sort of goals you are after? I am having difficulty envisioning it.


So you want to magically increase the number of myofibrils using your "optimal training routine" while simultaneously maximising your cardiovascular conditioning using the "optimal cardio routine" and then maximise the sarcoplasm in your muscle cells using the "optimal size routine" on your newly upgraded myofibrils with heightened cardio? Sounds legit.


I second this. Do you reckon Dan John or Jim Wendler or Mark Rippetoe could give you a detailed answer to these questions? Does that mean they couldn't get you beastly strong?