Here’s an eye-opening quote from hypertrophy researcher Chris Beardsley on muscle repair and recovery:
It’s often assumed that muscle glycogen is replenished rapidly after a strength-training workout, just as it is replaced quickly after aerobic exercise. Yet, the presence of muscle damage greatly impairs the replenishment of muscle glycogen after exercise. While muscle glycogen is often replaced within 24 to 36 hours after aerobic-exercise workouts, delays of up to 10 days can occur after muscle-damaging eccentric training workouts. Such delays cannot be removed by eating carbohydrates, which indicates that the problem is not the availability of glucose to the muscle fibers but our ability to push that glucose into the muscle fibers… [That] inhibits hypertrophy from being stimulated. Low muscle glycogen is therefore another mechanism by which the presence of muscle damage can inhibit gains in subsequent workouts.
Once again, too much damage during your workouts will delay full recovery in a number of ways, such as the replenishment of glycogen in muscle tissue.
And you can’t accelerate repair by eating more carbs—the damage you’ve inflicted impairs the ability to replenish…
Beardsley mentions eccentric training, which is the lowering, or negative, stroke. That’s the very reason you don’t want to do too many sets with a slow lowering phase. Too much damage risks recovery draining and overtraining.
It’s why the OMYM workout has about half the sets in Speed style, a 1/1 cadence, to de-emphasize the negative stroke…
That results in less damage to allow faster glycogen replenishment and muscle recovery for optimal growth—rather than repair—after your workout.
OMYM is your efficient fast-mass blueprint: Learn how to accelerate your mass gains with the STX method, Speed Sets, and complete ideal-exercise-based training. The 35-minute workouts also include the best stretch and contracted add-on moves. Get Old Man, Young Muscle.
Till next time, train hard—and smart—for BIG results.
Former Editor in Chief, Iron Man Magazine
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