T Nation

Question to You Guys: What Do You THINK is the Main Driver for Muscle Growth?

As a person who has spent a large percentage of my life with rehabilitative and preventative sport in both theory and activity I have to put this into the right light:

The above statements relate to “extreme” levels of exercise! Extremity here refers to recovery matters as well as compensatory matters. This translates to a certain amount of marathons, for example, which should maximally be run, as well as any amount that, for example, cartilage can not recover from or compensate!
On the other axis you will find exercise, moderate like in aqua aerobics, is prescribed in cases of degenerative cartilage symptoms, for example!
The same mechanisms apply to heart health!

Simply walking and eating ice cream can only be a bad joke, if at all, in our context here!

As goes with all that has been said here:
Recovery must always be possible, …elsewise we would be catabolic, to say the least!

I don’t understand the overall question of “what are we missing out on?”

Lifting weights is about growing muscle, gaining strength, creating certain adaptations systemically and cellular.

No one HAS to do the 8-12 double progression training. It’s just what I did and recommend for intermediates who want to simplify things in order to grow and get stronger.

Perhaps it was poorly phrased. I’ll rethink it and come back if I indeed come up with a better way to pose the question.

That is horse shit.


Spoken like an expert in such matters!

Read this about chins/pullups in another thread:

Paul, what’s your opinion on Meadows rows strictly talking about lats?
I’ve started doing them in the last few weeks as a mean of overload - my gym’s dumbbells only go up to about 80lbs and I’m really not a fan of the barbell row

Meadows says himself that Meadows rows are more about rhomboids/traps. For lats he prefers one-arm barbell rows.

Not in this article and his how-to video I saw, he strictly speaks about lats:

I do them following Meadows’ guidelines - 25 pounds plates and one hip higher than the other for increased ROM, I definitely feel them in my lats. More precisely, I get DOMS at the bottom insertion the day after

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Well these exercises might have sparked his lats development, but in his latest videos in his YouTube page, which are a few days old, that’s what he said.

Then it really doesn’t matter what Paul thinks - you’re good to go!

I saw this video as well and he does say that. I’ve seen him do them with perpendicular and parallel approach to the bar. I’ve done both and the parallel approach is more like a db row approach and hits the lats more. It would also depend where you stood in relation to the bar regardless of the angle of the movement since the bar is fixed.

The other day Israetel posted something on Facebook about starting a mesocycle with sets 3-4 reps short of failure, I asked him if it wouldn’t be more effective to push closer to failure and if there were any studies (because those guys love studies) backing up his opinion. He responded with a sales pitch for one of his books (which fortunately is available for free online, but still doesn’t say much abut the topic), and then conceded that “There are no direct studies relevant to this that will be able to give any sort of definitive answer.”

So if anyone wants to criticize @Paul_Carter 's opinion on the basis of it being nothing more than anecdotal evidence, remember that these so-called “evidence based” people have no evidence to contradict that.

I have lost all faith in the fitness industry.

Everyone that l’ve met that lifted in the 70s and 80s used double progression to get big and strong. My dad’s friend was telling me in the late 70s he did a basic Upper/Lower 4x a week split.

For example one of his Upper days looked like this:

OH Press - 8x2-3
Bench Press 4x10-12
Lots of rows, chin-ups, curls, dips/push ups, skull crushers, and pullovers.

That was it. He said he was able to workout like this for 15 years before needing to change “programs”.

Is there is a reason double progression isn’t more relevant? I feel like it’s the most “logical” form of progression. Like if you had no idea about training and someone gave you a barbell/plates and you had no internet I think double progression is what you would naturally do.

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You’re making a sensational claim without providing evidence. What kind of response do you expect?

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I manage my own expectations whenever I venture online, so don’t worry about that.

In terms of “evidence”, a huge portion of this thread is about debunking so-called “evidence-based” training. So don’t take such statements so seriously. I don’t. I merely relayed information from an experienced cardiologist. It holds little weight in the grand scheme of things so is not “sensational” by any means. Just a talking point.

Check out what some guy named Dorian said about staying a few reps short of failure to begin a training cycle.

T: Did you employ periodization in your training?

Dorian: No, not really. When I was younger, still guilty of overtraining, I’d go all out all of the time, until I noticed a pattern of my getting sick. I’d get really bad sore throats, colds, my immune system would get really run down, then I’d have to take a week off from training to recover. That was the pattern. Then it evolved into me training really heavy for six weeks, then backing off a litle bit for maybe two or three weeks.

T: Your body forced you into it, once you began listening.

Dorian: Yeah, it wasn’t planned, but it was something I noticed. I couldn’t work out that way fifty-two weeks a year.

T: For instance, the way you trained in your workout video, Blood and Guts, you didn’t do that five days a week all year 'round, right?

Dorian: I’d work out like that for probably five or six weeks, then back off, short of failure, no forced reps or any high intensity techniques like that. I was probably still guilty, in those two or three weeks, of overtraining. I thought I was backing off, but I probably wasn’t all that much.

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I can’t muster the effort to solve this for myself, but it’s possible that increasing your HR during training could extend your life by decreasing your resting HR.

But like I said, I’m not willing to do the theoretical math right now.

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If they’re working for you then there’s your answer.

Lee Boyce posted a “Tip” article on here about DB rows. Pulling the DB to your hip hits the lats better than just pulling the weight up. The weight moves in an arc.

I get your point, but Dorian was going beyond failure in his “normal” training so which would cause a ton of fatigue and you also have to wonder how “easy” his sets were when he was backing off. Paul isn’t advocating for forced reps and intensity techniques on every set, and in my case I deload every 5th week. You need some form of fatigue management for sure but you also shouldn’t need multiple weeks of deloaded training in every mesocycle, which is essentially what you would be doing if the first week or two are 3-4RIR.

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Arm path is going to dictate what area of the back is getting worked. Not “sensation”. It doesn’t mean they are mutually exclusive but “feeling” something isn’t always indicative of it producing a high amount of proper output in a movement.

For example, wide grip chins or lat pulldowns are common hailed as great “lat movements”. They aren’t. It doesn’t mean people won’t feel them in their lats but if you’re trying to bias the lats rather than the upperback (teres major, rhomboids, etc) then using an arm path where it slides close into your side from in front of the body is going to hit the lats better.