T Nation

Myth: High Reps Give Definition?


ok this is an annoying question that has probably been asked already. if it has can someone who knows where it is, give me the link please.

ok ive just become friends with this dude who is apersonal trainer. he has a really defined body. you can see all the striations and his abs are just incredible. ive asked him about his training and he told me that he lifts light weights with loads of high reps. he told me that 20-50 is the best.

He really is defined but maybe he's lying?


I am willing to bet that the only reason he is ripped is because he has an impeccable diet plan. Is he big or just a really lean skin person?


what makes you think he is lying?


Maybe he is slow twitch dominant and therefore responds to higher rep ranges better which is why he believes 20-50 reps are best.


I'm willing to bet he has good definition because he A) has muscle and B) has low bodyfat


really lean. he is tall, and has broad shoulders and big arms. He is really lean and veiny too.

I don't think that he is a liar. but it's just that i've heard everywhere else that high reps like that don't do anything.

how do you find out if you are slow twitch dominant?


Definition is a function of first and foremost you bodyfat %, and to a much lesser degree skin thickness (genetics) and hydration

has nothing to do with rep range and whatever, but how much calories you consume versus how much you burn

vascularity and form of abdominal muscles is determined by genetics

to look muscular, you have to build some muscle first, about 0.5kg per 1cm of height (for pure structural hypertrophy, medium rep ranges 8-15 and relativly high total volume with long recovery time work better for most people than low rep ranges ~3-5, which in turn is better for strenght) and have a low bodyfat%, which is a function of your diet

search for any of the keywords here on google or whatever, you find literally 100's of articles, i cannot understand why people are still wondering about that


Petrichor your right for the most part, but there is still some part tone. Which is a muscle partially contracted, people who do high heavy reps tend to have a little more than others.


It's most definitely a myth.

I strongly suspect most guys fall for this because when they cut, they tend to nearly double their reps, which, along with dietary restrictions, simply puts more metabolic stress on their bodies (denser workout - more calories burnt). They see the results and believe in the old high reps= shreds fat.
So in a sense, it does help with cutting. But being constantly on a high rep training for vanity will produce minimal strength and mass results, apart from being dumb.

I hope you can follow my thoughts.


i do, thanks