Ithink the premise is that you must make “inroad” to stimulate gains and going to momentary muscular failure accomplishes this. MMF is best achieved through completing 8-12 reps in good form in a slow and controlled fashion. In the context of HIT, you will be able to see progression in both the amount of reps per exercise at a specific weight and, when you can complete 12 reps in good for at that weight, you will see progression by increasing the weight.
It’s been a few days since this post. I wanted to respond immediatly but got sidetracked with some other things.
Anyway, Artur Jones’ definition of inroad is basically pseudo-science. It goes like this: if you reach failure with 80% of 1RM - you have made 20% inroad. He doesn’t not quantify that in any way. How much inroad do you make if you stop short of failure? Then, a few minutes from that set, you take 80% again, reach failure again, but get less reps. Inroad is still 80%. He doesn’t take total work performed into account. And if inroad is what’s needed, than how come people improve while not going to failure? In other words, he just made that up to sound scientific.
Inroad is also accomplished by following many, if not all, of the different routines found on this site. As I am sure I have mentioned somewhere in the past, I utilize this method most for 2 main reasons:
1)Efficiency. Why do in three/five/eight sets what I can accomplish (or come close to accomplishing) in one? At my age (47) and with my time constraints, it works well for me.
2)At my age (47) sometimes your short term memory goes and you can’t remember #2. But I do remember there was a #2 somewhere. Maybe later. (scratching his head, furrowing his brow, then roflhao [“h” = his])
I guess this is the main point. You seem to be under the impression that people resort to higher volume workouts just to amuse themselves, where in fact they can have the same or better results in half the time. But, the truth is, they workout the way they do because it is what’s needed to be done in order to make progress. (Good) Coaches create different programs and use periodization so the athlete can improve optimally. It is not just the question of “inroad” in a single training session; there are many factors to consider (neural, metabolic) that HIT just doesn’t take into account.
The New HIT by Darden explains that a new beginner would start with 3 WO’s per week, but the more advanced you get, the less you workout. The reason for fewer workouts: recovery. Workout schedules vary: Sometimes 5x/two weeks, sometimes 3x per week with the middle workout being not to failure, sometimes only twice per week. Throughout the program, there are times when a week, even two, are taken off.
Although it has been generally observed that elite athletes can withstand less volume, due to factors like increased neural efficiency, that level is not something you’ll be reaching after few weeks with Darden’s book. Also, you can tolerate more short term than you can long term. Recovery is dependant on many factors and generally speaking, your work capacity can be improved. The main point being, if you’re resting too much, you can undertrain.
And it took him 20+ years to realize that you can work NOT TO FAILURE and end up with Bill Starr-like approach (work up to heavy 1x3-5 on Monday and Friday, light work on Wednesday).
As for the success stories and the steroid use, that is not altogether accurate. Yes, when you are dealing with pro BB’ers, you will have steroid use, regardless of the protocol. The main success story was at the end in his case study with a guy who followed the New HIT protocol. No juice involved.
N=1. There is at least one guy for every training protocol under the sun that made great progress with it. While a case study is a nice approach to show the readers how to apply a training protocol in reality, it doesn’t prove the validity of his principles.
AS for some other “spokesmen” for HIT: yes, there are contradictions and divergent paths, but, as with any workout protocol, if you have three trainers in a room together, you will, generally, have four opinions.
Not really true. I think that many coaches that write for this site will agree on general training theory. Check out Thib’s “Training Quiz for Smartasses”. Also, in athletics training, a good coach will never subscribe to just one training protocol; they’re all viewed as tools to improve an athlete’s performance. And that’s why I’m saying I’m not criticizing low-volume approach or working to failure, but HIT as a system.
Please, I am not trying to convert people to HIT or any other system, simply answering, in as non-biased manner as possible, any questions that come up. Further, I am not saying that one method is superior to another, just different. Being different does not equate to rejection.
We’re just discussing things, on a discussion forum :)[/quote]
It seems as though you were missing my point(s).
1)There are many different systems available and many of those are quite effective. I am only making comments, in answer to a question.
2)N=1. True, we can’t base a study or results on one person. To be fair, Darden has written over 40 books and, though I haven’t read them all, he seems to have case studies in each. His principles are sound, as are many others.
3)Good coaches do adapt programs to individuals. I do the same with the different athletes I train. Some respond better to HIT than anything, while others respond to different styles/methods. The key, I am sure you will agree, is to identify the individual with the program that works best. (I am not articulating this as well as I would like, I’m at work)
4)It did take him 20 years to incorporate the Not To Failure, but he did and that says something. There are also many who were upset/disappointed with that concept. I personally think it is a good idea and when I do HIT, I incorporate it into my routine.
5)As you mentioned, these are all tools that can be utilized. HIT is one tool that I utilize among several others.
I was trying to be as neutral and unbiased as I could because I knew I would get crticism for my comments on HIT. Oh well.