Type of Muscle Building that Lasts

Many retired body builders look a tenth the size they used to and, for some, except for all of the thickened and flabby skin, you might not new that they ever lifted.

So, I’m older and want to make as gains as permanent possible. I’m aware there are different types of lifting which stimulates different types of growth. Those guys that shrink so bad, I mean to where they don’t even look like they ever lifted, is that from chasing the pump?-

What are the different ways to put on mass (1), corresponding to rep ranges (2) and which is going to be more permanent (3)?
-Thanks very much!

It’s from discontinuing the use of performance enhancing drugs. You can only maintain what your test level supports. Generally, more weight for moderate to low reps adds mass. a million reps with light weight will give you a “Pump”, and tendonitis.


I just couldn’t think of a nice way to put it.

It’s amazing the difference a few grams a week makes. LOL.

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Cool. So, lifting in the hypertrophy (8-12 reps) the mass will be more likely to stay on versus higher re ranges, or extra sets?

the mass will always stay if you keep training wtf man

If you go from 3 grams a week to natty or TRT levels, you WILL shrink. I promise. Even if you were doing everything wrong while on, and everything right after going off. Continued training will preserve some, but not all. Many of those guys also either stop training altogether, or cannot train well due to injuries and accumulated damage. Ronnie C never quit training and he sure isn’t the same size.

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he never talk about using gear btw

Yeah, not sure if the original poster understood/caught the first answer he got.


The OP didn’t discuss gear, but it’s hard to retire from something you didn’t do professionally. Not a lot of retired Pro Naturals walking around. Unless you meant Coleman, but he definitely talks about using.

Excluding any gear use. The fact that most high level guys who are retired aren’t pushing it as hard to maintain the level of mass they once had. Be it training volume and intensity and or caloric intake.

Hey y’all, I appreciate all of the answers but my question really wasn’t about elite bodybuilding or gear use. The question posted perhaps should have not included anything (elite bodybuilders) and it is my fault for providing the distraction. Yes, I agree, if a person doesn’t do enough lifting to maintain the mass it’s “use it or loose it.” Yes, gear is a factor but not the emphasis of this question and so, all things being equal, it isn’t factored into my question.

It is about what is the type of lifting which creates mass which stays? I’m very vaguely familiar with the terms or I would have been more specific. Gear is interesting but a separate topic. People lift in low (strength), med (hypertrophy), and high (endurance/pump) rep ranges. Which of these leaves more permanency?

Yes, I agree, although it is my thread, it’s your forum so, I’m asking as modestly as possible and thank you all for the answers provided and in advance for anything else posted.

The lifting that you do.


Affirmative, that’s what my question is about.
TY for clearing it up.

A nice, steady, well rounded approach will give you the gains you are after.

You’ll want some powerful lifts in the “strength range” to build your fast twitch fibers. And some bodybuilder 8-12 stuff to build up your IIa muscle fibers. Then some work in the higher ranges to pump nutrients into your muscles and build your stubborn slow twitch fibers.


The problem with your question is that there’s no way to compare A vs B vs C.

I can’t unlift the weights and start over to see what the differences in results are if I, say, change up the rep range. Even if I could get back to where I was with a different approach you still need to not lift weights for a few years to see how much you retain.

I built my muscles naturally over years working in a variety of rep ranges. Took a few years off, lost some strength and size but remained a big, strong dude. It doesn’t evaporate quickly.

Can I or anyone say if I’d be comparatively stronger or bigger if I had lifted in the 12-15 rep range or 3-5 rep range instead of the 1-20 rep range and then taken a few years off?

Of course not.

If you don’t drop a ton of weight and remain moderately active I believe you can retain most, but certainly not all, natural gains for at least a few years.

I think all muscle will stay as long as you use it. If you stop using them, they shrink, no matter what type of muscle you put on. Although, I will say from personal experience that I gained more mass lifting heavy weights in the 2-6 rep range. I like this rep scheme better as well. Maybe that’s why I grew using it (consistency?).


Okay, I’ve done a little research to be able to ask differently.

Chasing the pump swells the muscle with fluid, perhaps interstitally. vs. Hypertrophy which increases inter-cellular fluid.

The fluid between cells, interstitially, rapidly declines when not performing in that rep range vs. hypertrophy which is slower to shrink.

Sorry to have been difficult and I appreciate all your answers.

Flats Farmer, Thanks for focussing on my question.

So, is their anyone who knows or CAN answer the question directly?

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Nerdy science bros can answer your question.

The swelling between fibers caused by high reps is good, but goes away. The thickening of fibers caused by bodybuilding training is good, but it also goes away. Forceful, heavy lifting damages the fibers and then they absorb the juice from between the fibers.

To the biggest, longest lasting muscles you need the 3 prong approach to get more fibers, thicken the fibers and pump up the muscles.