Q: I really like the 4X mass method with all sets X-centric as a one-workout shocker as you’ve recommended before. You’ve also talked about 10×10, which I’ve made great gains with before, but how about the old 8×8 method that Vince Gironda used to pack muscle on his pupils with.
A: We actually discuss Vince and his 8×8 method in the very first chapter of The Ultimate 10×10 Mass Workout e-book. It’s a great method, but you need to heed Vince’s advice if you use it…
Vince said he returned to this “honest workout” more often than any other for “maximizing muscle-fiber growth in the quickest time possible, but working within the 8×8 guidelines is NOT sufficient to guarantee gains.”
So how do you “guarantee gains”? Vince says the secret is tempo: You must reduce the rests between sets to 15 to 20 seconds. Now that’s workout density for immensity.
Similar to 10×10, you pick a weight with which you can get 18 to 20 reps, but you only do eight. Rest 20 seconds, then do eight more—and so on for eight sets.
That’s a little less monotonous than 10×10—but you don’t get quite the volume of reps either. It’s 64 reps as opposed to 100 with 10×10…
But that’s probably why Vince prescribed two to three exercise for each muscle with 8×8…
So if you’re going to use 8×8 instead of 10×10 or 4X X-centric on your “shock” workout day, you can pick two exercises. For example, you could use a big midrange exercise first, like bench presses for chest, for 8×8. Then follow with cable flyes or pec-deck flyes for 8×8…
If 8×8 seems like too much to face after 64 reps of bench presses, do your flyes in 4X style instead. Pick a weight with which you can get 15 reps, but only do 10; rest 30 seconds, then do it again—and so on for four sets, going all out on your last set.
You can do that 8×8 + 4X blast for every bodypart when you’re ready for a mass-shock day. It even works for older bodybuilders. Check out this shot of Vince in his 60s…
We suggest you start each bodypart with its Ultimate Exercise. You’ll find those for each major muscle group in The 10×10 Mass Workout e-book.
Pack on new muscle weight with 8×8.
Till next time, train hard—and smart—for BIG results.
—Steve Holman and Jonathan Lawson
Mass-Building Lessons From the Master Trainer
Vince Gironda was the Iron Guru, a bodybuilding legend ahead of his time. His most famous pupil in the bodybuilding world was the very first Mr. Olympia Larry Scott, and he also trained many Hollywood stars back in the day, like Clint Eastwood, and even Arnold consulted with him and was a fan (even though Vince told Arnold that he was a “fat f**k” when he first arrived in the U.S.).
Many of Vince’s mass-building tricks and methods have been forgotten, buried by information and misinformation overload on the Internet, but now you can find them all, his true methods, in this must-have, 330-page Vince Gironda e-book anthology…
You get everything from “Train 21 Rest 7” to 10-8-6-15 to Vince’s Stone Age Nutrition, the 8×8 method and program and much, much more (remember, it’s 330 pages). And it’s on sale at a discount for a limited time: Simply use the code GIRONDA20 at checkout for an extra 20 percent off.
Vince Gironda: Legend & Myth (300-page anthology + many bonus gifts and programs) HERE