Rachel McLish was the very first Ms. Olympia winner way back in 1980. Her symmetrical physique, not to mention her head-turning beauty, catapulted her into the public eye and established women’s bodybuilding as a brand-new sport. [Read more…]
Q: I get really winded on some exercises, like squats and rows, with only 35 seconds between 4X sets. I’m still sucking air when it’s time to start my next set. Is it okay to take more time?
A: Yes, but we believe that to get the DENSITY size effect you’re after with the 4X mass method, you should have a countdown so you don’t rest more than one minute between sets. Former pro bodybuilder Lee Labrada said… [Read more…]
Q: Your 4X training is fantastic. It has me growing again, and it’s perfect with 3-way POF. My question is about muscle feel. How important is it for size increases? I ask because I have trouble feeling some major body parts, like shoulders and chest.
A: We think it’s EXTREMELY important to feel the target muscle working; if you don’t, you may be using other muscle groups to move the weight or simply not innervating enough muscle fibers for a big anabolic response. [Read more…]
Q: After reading some of your previous newsletters, I’ve been thinking about trying your 10×10 method. It sounds good, except I can’t get myself to accept using such a light weight. Will that really build muscle? I bench 300 pounds for a single, so that means I should use 180 pounds for 10×10. Man, how can that work?
A: You’re falling for the old the-heavier-you-go-the-more-you-grow myth. It’s been ingrained in all of us, but once you understand how muscle mass is created, you’ll know that you can build a lot of size with more moderate poundages and short rests—like with 10×10 or 4X… [Read more…]
Q: I’ve seen you guys recommend behind-the-neck pulldowns before in your newsletter as long as lighter weight and a specific range of motion is used, but you never seem to mention behind-the-neck presses. Is the behind-the-neck press not a good shoulder exercise?
A: First understand that any type of behind-the-neck move—pulldown or press—can overstress the shoulder capsule. It’s not a natural position; however, the behind-the-neck position can provide a unique angle of pull on the target fibers for new development… [Read more…]
It never took much to get Arnold to throw his arm up into a jaw-dropping flex—like this shot at the old Gold’s Gym in Venice, California. Incredible, unreal peak—no Photoshop necessary. [Read more…]
Q: For us home-gym rats, how can we incorporate Positions-of-Flexion mass training with a very basic setup? I only have a barbell, rack (for squats/bench, etc.), and a dip/chin station; I don’t have any dumbbells. Is it possible?
A: It’s very difficult to do full POF routines for most bodyparts without dumbbells because most finishing contracted-position exercises are single-joint moves, like laterals for delts or bent-arm bent-over laterals for midback. Nevertheless, you can improvise and create some very effective NEAR-full-range bodypart programs. [Read more…]
Q: I love 4X training. It’s gotten me bigger than I’ve ever been, but my gains have leveled off. I’m thinking about doing the last set in stage style for more intensity. Do you think that will work? Any tips if I try it?
A: We love experimentation. It can make good gains great, so we say try it on for SIZE…
Let’s start by explaining the 4X method for our new readers who aren’t familiar: You pick a weight with which you can get 15 reps, but you only do 10; rest 30 to 45 seconds, then do 10 more—and so on until you complete four sets. If you get 10 reps on your last set, you add weight to that exercise at your next workout…. [Read more…]
Danny Padilla was “the Giant Killer” of pro bodybuilding back in the ‘80s. At only 5’2”, his symmetrical sculpted mass allowed him to beat bodybuilders who were much taller and larger than he was.
From the pic here, you can see why—no flaws anywhere. [Read more…]
Q: I’ve had phenomenal muscle-size gains and strength increases since switching over to X Reps. I gained five pounds my first month with them! My question is, Do those build more of the myofibril strands or sarcoplasm fluid [in the muscle fibers] that you guys have been talking about? And can I use X Reps on 4X sequences?
A: For the uninitiated, X Reps are eight-inch partials you do in the semi-stretch position at the end of a set to failure. For example, when no more full-range reps are possible on incline presses, you lower the bar to about two inches off your chest and fire up to just below the halfway point for about three to four controled X-Rep explosions… [Read more…]