T Nation

Question for Professor X


#1

I had read through your entire thread. I noticed you now do one body part per day with the exception of triceps which are paired with shoulders or chest. I also remember you saying that people shouldnt ask what the big guys are currently doing. They should be asking what they did to get big. So basically thats what I am asking you. I feel my training methods are similar to yours and im just curious if you did something like:

Chest/back/off/shoulders/arms/legs/off = Hit everything once a week

or something more along the lines of

ChestBicep/BackTricep/ShouldersLegs/OFF/Repeat = Hitting everything every 4-5 days.

Ive always done everything once a week on a 4 day split which suits my recovery needs. Although ive always felt by the 5th day most muscles are healed.


#2

I may do one body part a day right now, but I also train twice a day.

Either way, it looked like you just threw body parts together. There is NOTHING wrong with training chest and biceps on the same day...HOWEVER, that means if you train back the very next day, how much have your biceps rested?

Get it?

This is about basic logic. Nothing complex. If I train chest today, I may want to avoid shoulders tomorrow. Doing things like that could even lead to overuse injuries.

Understand?


#3

Yea I understand what your saying I never train muscles back to back like that. I was just wondering what kind of training split you did back in the day, that helped get you so big. Say the one you used to get you from, lets say when you were benching 250lbs, to the point when you were benching nearly 400lbs. I know the training split probably varied in that time frame. But you probably had different variations of the same split. I know now for instance you do a six day split, and you do a lot of machines for safety reasons. Back then maybe you always stuck to 4 or 5 day splits, for strength purposes. Or you always had arm days. Or never gave shoulders their own day so you could hit chest and back more often.


#4

I actually use more dumbbells right now.

Anyway, when I was benching around 250, i guess I was still in college....so my training was retarded. I didn't even train legs back then and was training arms 3 times a week or more along with whatever other muscle group I was working. My arms got big, but looking back, I was very imbalanced even down to having biceps that outsized my triceps.

I would not recommend that. After figuring out that mistake, my routine stayed about the same until maybe a year ago or so. It was just a six day split, sometimes not taking a day off for two weeks. I was in and out the gym in about 40min most days back then but trained almost everyday. That meant about 3 exercises for muscle groups like biceps and triceps....and then going all out for muscle groups like shoulders and back because of the different angles you had to hit it.


#5

Prof X,

Bit of a random question but the thread is titled "Question for Prof X" so I will throw one your way..

When you do DB curls do you start the curl with your hand facing forwards and leave it supinated the entire time or do you start with the db in a hammer curl grip then twist your pinky inwards as you curl the db up?

I feel my biceps better the first way but it limits the amount of weight I can use.


#6

I just did biceps today. I focus way more on form now than I used to, but did manage to get back up to the weight I used to do on alternate dumbbells after avoiding them since I hurt my arm.

I start out with my palms facing inward. As I curl the weight up, I turn my wrist until my palm is facing upward. I try to make this one constant smooth motion.

This is only for alternate dumbbell curls. For preacher bench, I keep my wrist supinated for the entire rep.

Form is very important...but so is the weight used. I can benefit more now from curling a 45lbs dumbbell than I could have when that was the most I could lift. This is because I am now strong enough where a weight like that can be done for "slow reps" with way more mental focus on the muscle contracting.

This is something I never really understood before...you know, how some huge guy gets anything out of curling a 35lbs dumbbell.

I know now. What he got out of that 35lbs dumbbell is squeezing the muscle, increased volume and really focusing on the "feel" of that muscle working.

You can not get the same from it when this is the most you can lift.

So get stronger first.

I was going to post how much I am now curling but I'll just say I am back to where I used to be.


#7

Prof, I've got another random question.

do you not receive PM's or cannot send them? I sent you a PM re: my thread in beginners (cut carbs or keep on eating?).

or are you just ignoring me... (sniff...)


#8

LOL. I rarely check my pms. I get a good number of them and some take some time responding to.

I don't do it on purpose.


#9

hah ok I figured as much. in the meantime I reset the flickr privs to public. I'll be checking for your reply so I can set them back to private and away from the prying eyes of the general public.


#10

Holy crap, dude. I just saw them. You were afraid to show these??

Man, anyone who would talk shitb about that is a jackass. Keep whatever you are doing up and reevaluate in a few weeks.

I mean, seriously dude. You deserve props for that.


#11

-_- can't.. tell.. if.. being.. serious....

haha but since you said you are, I'll take your word for it.

it's_just_me had approved of my development also. he had suggested that I maybe gain about ten more lb, hold that weight for 3-4 months then cut about 15 lb worth over some time. I really don't know how much more I can take of bulking/overfeeding as I think my GERD is acting up again, and I'd much rather be as lean and cardiovascularly conditioned as I was in my avi... but this being my first bulk, I originally planned to get as big as possible until February to test my limits and I've still got three whole months until then.


#12

I experienced GERD as well when I was 285. I get it much less now but it will still happen if I am eating more.

No, I was being serious. You are now more filled out and you still have abs showing for the most part. No one in their right mind would say you made poor progress. I would say keep doing what you are and then hold whatever weight you feel comfortable at for a while.

For me, I think holding a weight more than 2-3months is good. Holding it longer is better. Holding it less than 2 months before dieting is like not gaining anything. I think you are way more likely to lose new gains when rushing from one extreme to the other like that.

lastly, I don't joke about the progress someone is making. I damn sure wouldn't make fun of you for trying that hard.


#13

excellent. it's great to hear concurring opinions from two experienced members. it gives everything I'm doing a lot more validation.

since you both advocate holding a certain higher weight for a while, I just have to figure out how long my next diet period should be, and how exactly to go about it. then I'll know when I should start holding.

we (gf, her sister and her bf) are talking about possibly going to the Bahamas in march, which would mean holding now if I were to take only 12 weeks to diet (I had dieted for 16 weeks previously). but I think that would rob me of more gains as I'm probably still riding a wave of newb gains after healing from injuries.

perhaps if I start holding in january until march, then start dieting in April for a target date of July... just in time for the summer.

I'll need to look up more info on how to hold a certain bw. right now I just eat until I really can't eat anymore (read: before I get nauseous) but I don't think I can do that by feel when holding... or can I?


#14

Hey professor X since this topic has been bumped. And my original question might have been a bit confusing and long, I have one more thing id like to ask. When you were training to get big, did you do "roughly" one bodypart per week type of deal. Or did you do more of a higher frequency such as hitting each muscle 2x per week (upper/lower) or everything ever 4-5 days? What type of frequency do you believe the best for gaining mass?

I have always felt like hitting everything every 7 days is holding my gains back (muscles especially like chest seem to flatten out by the 5th day). Although I have tried a Push/Pull/legs before and it just seemed like too many muscle groups in one workout.


#15

I think I have always hit either chest or shoulders twice a week. I still do. Those are my favorite body parts and they respond to the increased volume.

No, I don't think I ever just hit a body part once every seven days. Your body does not have a constant threshold of recovery ability. Especially as a beginner, you can train your body to be able to accept greater stresses. This can't happen if you always play it safe as if "overtraining" is always just around the corner.

For me, I usually chose whatever body part I wanted to come up the most and that is what I trained twice weekly. I believe that put me in the gym 5 days a week.

I am one of those who doesn't believe we all die if we dare train more than 4 days a week.

In fact, if you are eating enough, I personally see no reason why someone who isn't genetically decrepit can't train 6 days a week assuming these aren't 3 hour marathon sessions.


#16

Haha I remember when I would do concentration curls with 45's, swinging them up and thinking that was somewhat impressive. Except my biceps didn't really get bigger, oops. Somewhere along the line, it became clear that some muscles respond better when you train them based primarily on how they FEEL during any given exercise, not just on how much weight you used.

But I still like heavy Barbell Rows.


#17

not sure if you're out there, big guy, but I sent you a PM.


#18

oh he's always there whether you see him or not


#19

Just say his name aloud three times and he'll appear.

S


#20

XD