Q: You recently mentioned that adding sets to 4X to make it 6X or higher emphasizes density with less power. Wouldn’t that be a good way to get more muscle gains in the endurance-oriented muscles like abs, calves, and forearms? Even quads?
A: That’s a good observation. Some muscles are much more endurance oriented and require a distinct density emphasis to grow as opposed to power. Exclusive low-rep power training doesn’t do much for forearm or calf muscle gains in most trainees.
So adding sets to a 4X sequence can help increase the density quotient…
- Try a 6×10 sequence for calves, abs, and forearms. On each set of the sequence, you’ll feel the density load increasing exponentially due to the short rests…
You’ll pick a weight with which you can get about 18 reps, but only do 10; rest for 30 seconds, then do 10 more—and so on until you complete 6 sets. If you get 10 on your last set, add a small amount of weight to that exercise at your next workout.
- Or you can use a standard 4X sequence for those density-oriented bodyparts, but with higher reps on each set. For example, instead of 4×10, do 4×12 or 4×15 for calves, forearms, and abs.
For more on 4X training, see The X-traordinary 4X Mass Workout.
Till next time, train hard—and smart—for BIG results.
—Steve Holman and Jonathan Lawson
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