Q: I love 4X because it’s 10 reps per set. I get the “hypertrophic tension time” of more than 40 seconds on every set. My workout partner likes DP 4X better, adding weight each set as the reps decrease (12-10-8-6). But I feel the last two sets are not enough tension time for best growth stimulation. Should we alternate, doing 4X at one workout and DP 4X at the other for best muscle gains? [Read more…]
Q: In X-treme Lean you have the “High-Definition Workout” (pages 76-78), and you say to use it five days a week. I don’t think I’ve seen you recommend that many workouts in a row. What’s the reason [for five consecutive days of training]?
A: After training for photo shoots for 10 years off and on, we realized that one of the keys to getting lean is hormone-zone training, which is where you keep testosterone, GH and other anabolic, fat-burning hormones up as high as possible. [Read more…]
Q: I was reading in one of my IRON MAN back issues about the “Blood Theory” of muscle growth. Can you explain it and tell me how to take advantage of it to grow?
A: Way back in the 1970s, an Iron Man author named Dennis DuBreuil explained his Blood Theory….
Basically, he said that there is a direct relationship between how well a muscle pumps and how well it grows… [Read more…]
Q: In a previous e-zine you mentioned combining two workouts with different bodyparts, such as chest and back with delts and arms. And you suggested using an X-centric set for each exercise in a Positions-of-Flexion routine. I was thinking about your first e-book, The Ultimate Mass Workout, which I.D.s the best exercise for each muscle. How about doing only those exercises, one regular set followed by an X-centric set? That way you focus on the ultimate exercise and get some power and density work as well as standard speed and slow-mo reps.
A: Sounds like a great plan. And you’re right: focusing on only ONE “best” exercise for each muscle would help you zero in and provide the most mass bang for your effort buck… [Read more…]
Q: I’ve read that I should always train my heavy exercise first—bench press, squats, etc. Then go to a more isolated one. If I use an isolation exercise first like concentration curls for variety and new stimulation, should I still train it heavy?
A: You can, but you don’t have to train it heavy (more on that in a moment). “Always” doing workouts a certain way is the road to stagnation and slower gains for most; however, you should make an effort to get the key mass triggers… [Read more…]
Q: I like to train heavy, but I fully understand that tension time, or density, can build size as well. My question is, won’t drop sets accomplish both?
A: The drop-set method is one of the best for getting size in the myofibrils as well as a hypertrophic sarcoplasmic burst. And even new veinage too… [Read more…]
Q: I’ve been using the 4X mass method on just about every exercise for just over a month and have gained five pounds of muscle. I’m still lean with abs, so I know it’s not fat. I often do 3X sequences, the way you sometimes recommend, but if I don’t do all 4 sets, I feel guilty. It’s just that I don’t want to overtrain, which is how I feel when I do 4X on all exercises. Should I just bite the bullet and do 4X on everything?
A: If you’ve gained five pounds of muscle in a little more than a month, you’re doing damn good! Most bodybuilders don’t gain five pounds in a year… [Read more…]
Q: I notice you guys never really mention doing dips for triceps. I know Mike Mentzer said that the parallel bar dip is one of the best triceps exercises—and he had some big arms with some of the biggest, most vascular tri’s I’ve ever seen from the “moderate-steroid era.” Do you consider dips a good triceps move?
A: Dips can work well as a compound, or midrange, exercise for triceps—in place of close-grip bench presses, for example… [Read more…]
Q: I like [3-exercise POF] for each muscle, and have added about six pounds of new muscle combining it with the 4X method. Heavy training is not for me—my joints tend to crumble these days (at 43 I’ve been hurt multiple times training heavy). My question is, now that my gains have stalled, I’d like to pull back to 3X but do more exercises for each muscle than just 3. What do you think?
A: One thing we preach with a vengeance is experimentation. We love 3-move Positions of Flexion too, but to get huge you have to change the groove. And that can be done with more exercises every so often as you suggest…. [Read more…]