T Nation

High Volume Specializations?

Hey Paul, seen your Instagram post about volume and hypertrophy. I’m looking forward to the full write up and have my fingers crossed there is a sample routine.

Do you still stand by your higher volume stuff like the 500 rep shoulder as short term specialisation for certain body parts? Or would you now cut the number of sets down?

I’ve been doing 1 or 2 bigger exercises for 3 sets, aiming for quantifiable progression followed up with 2 or 3 runs of a giant/tri set aiming for maximum tension and failure. This approach has been working really well, much better than any higher volume approach I have ever tried for overall mass building. I’m looking at really bringing up my quads as fast as possible and I’m not really sure what kinda volume to go with!


Yes I still like short periods of even specialization stuff using higher volumes but it’s temporary.

There won’t be a routine in this piece because I will be looking at the dose response of volume to hypertrophy.

Basically, from every study ever done looking at said relationship, there’s an inverse U curve where volume does have correlation with muscle growth, but only up to a point. Then you’re just doing a lot of extra work with no benefit. Somewhere in the realm of 8-18 sets is going to be the right spot for 99% of people. My recommendation is to start on the low end of that and focus on increasing strength in the right rep ranges, i.e. 10-20 for legs. Volume is not the primary driver for growth. It’s tension and progressive overload.

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Thanks very much, looking forward to it.

This is my rough plan for legs, I train from home and don’t currently have a squat rack.

Trap bar deadlift 4 sets of 10-15
Goblet squat 350 method
Walking lunges 1 set of 100

Was planning on that 2× a week to spark some leg growth.

I would have a second day of other movements that are more hamstring and glute dominant.

An RDL of some sort. Db leg curls. Split squats, etc

Thanks, Yeah I can see that I’m lacking hams and glutes so will need to get that in.

I struggle with training hams from home, just can’t seem to get anything to feel right and get a good contraction. Getting the DB in place for ham curls is a nightmare!

You set it on the floor, you put your feet in the handle. It’s not THAT hard.