Q: In Chapter 6 of The Super-Size Crash Course, you outline an alternate Phase 1 with Progressive-Speed 4X at one workout followed by Downward-Progression 4X+ at the next. Can I do both methods at the same workout?
A: Before we answer, let’s describe both mass tactics for those who aren’t familiar with them:
Progressive-Speed 4X (PS): Take your 15-rep max weight and do an X-centric set—lift in one second and lower in six. Rest 45 seconds, then do a standard set—lift in one second, lower in three. Rest 45 second and do another standard set. Rest 45 seconds, then do a speed, or X-celeration set—1.5 seconds per rep. All sets should be to failure.
So you are changing the tempo/speed throughout the sequence: Set 1, X-centric; Sets 2 and 3, standard; Set 4 X-celeration.
Downward-Progression 4X+ (DP+): Take your 15-rep max weight and do 12. Add weight as you rest 45 seconds, then do 10. Add weight as you rest 45 seconds, then do 8. Add weight as you rest 45 seconds, then do 6—immediately reduce the weight by half and do a speed set—1.5 seconds per rep.
So you’re adding weight to each set so the reps decrease—and you do a light speed set immediately after the last “heaviest” set in the sequence.
Those are both very intense, especially with only 45 seconds between sets. Plus, the speed set at the end of each can innervate dormant muscle fibers and get you growing quickly. You’ll feel the deep ache after.
If you use both of those tactics for the same muscle at the same workout, you might want to reduce each 4X sequence to 3X.
So your two new quick quad workouts might look like this…
M: Squats or front squats (DP+), 3 x 12, 9, 7(10)
S: Sissy squats (PS), 3 x 7, 10, 10
M: Squats or front squats (PS), 3 x 7, 10, 10
C: Leg extensions (DP+), 12, 9, 7(10)
Try those before you shrug them off as not enough work. Then, if those workouts don’t feel like enough for you, up one or both to 4X…
Or add the missing Positions-of-Flexion exercise at the end of each of those workouts to complete the POF full-range chain—leg extensions to the end of Workout 1 and sissy squats to the end of Workout 2. Simply do a couple of standard sets of each.
DP and PS 4X are two more size shockers in your mass tool chest.
Note: The Super-Size Crash Course includes Jordon Williamson’s 18-pounds-of-muscle-in 12-weeks program plus alternate workouts (moderate-weight for older trainees). Also includes the Progressive-Speed 4X mass method and Steve’s radical 2-Days-On, Muscle-Up, Fat-Gone Diet. Learn more <==
Till next time, train hard—and smart—for BIG results.
—Steve Holman and Jonathan Lawson
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