We’ve featured Danny Padilla in our Zen installments many times, but he had such a great, well-balanced, and inspiring physique that he’s worth flashing back on again. This is a great twisting-back stage shot that highlights his mass and symmetry, things his training style magnified… [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…]
Q: Thank you for clearing up the muscle-growth mystery for me. I always believed in going heavier and heavier to get bigger. Now I know that’s only a small part of the puzzle. Working in the 4X method, X Reps, drop sets, and even some of your high-rep TORQ sets has already gotten me bigger in just a few weeks. My question is, Do you think some people get a better size response from power training and others get more size from density [endurance] work?
A: Absolutely. As we mentioned in a previous newsletter, the BIGGEST powerlifters don’t train for sarcoplasmic (endurance fluid) expansion yet have good muscle size. That’s because they were big dudes in the first place, which may signify more myofibril-building capacity. That would explain their extraordinary strength. The myofibrils are the actin-myosin strands inside the muscle fiber that generate force, but for most trainees that’s not the key to ULTIMATE SIZE… [Read more…]
Q: I’m a big fan of your workouts and have purchased most of your e-books. Thanks for all the advice and keep up the inspiring work! I have a 15-year-old son who’s starting to get serious about lifting. He wants to play football, so he’s looking to improve his overall size and strength. Would you recommend your 4X Mass Workout for him? I’m trying to figure out which of your programs would be best for someone his age.
A: For football, your son will want to concentrate on building strength and power with size as an after-effect. The 4X Mass Workout is primarily for muscle mass with less of a strength emphasis… [Read more…]
Q: I’ve been using the 4X mass method for over a month with good gains–now noticeable muscle. I just tried it with the “downward-progression” style [adding weight each set so the reps drop—12-10-8-6], and it’s fantastic. I feel a new level of stimulation. You suggested using it on the big midrange exercises, but what about on the stretch and contracted ones? Can I use it on those too, or is that not advised?
A: The really big guys, especially referring to pro bodybuilders, tend to use an abundance of almost anything and everything in their training—because they have, um, “special” supplements to help them recover. That and superior genetics allow them to train rather haphazardly and still grow like crazy (we know, it’s not fair). [Read more…]
Q: I am almost 50 and making incredible gains with the 4X method. I was reading that top trainer Charles Glass believes new muscle growth can be created with this style, thickening new fibers as well as expanding the sarcoplasm. However, he says you should still go “heavy” every so often. Every time I do that, my joints ache for days. Should I just put up with it and pile on the poundage every couple of weeks?
A: If you like going mega heavy, do it—but you’ll suffer the consequences. Glass says to train heavy every so often in order to keep the type 2B power fibers growing… [Read more…]
Q: I know that the short rests between sets with 4X get your fat burning jacked with growth hormone. How can I use 4X in The Ultimate Fat-to-Muscle Workout for a double-whammy? Where would you suggest I put it, or should I use it at all?
A: The Ultimate Fat-to-Muscle Workout has you train each muscle group only once a week. That’s because you use heavy sets as well as X-centric and high reps for more fiber microtrauma—which encourages fat burning as well as muscle-fiber remodeling…[Read more…]
Q: My gym always seems to be crowded—and people “camp out” on equipment. It’s hard to work in because I’m using the 4X method and rest only 30 seconds between sets (I love the Positions-of-Flexion version). Should I just lengthen my rest times to work in on a piece of equipment?
A: If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em. In other words, you can “camp out” on equipment too—sometimes you can do your entire POF 4X bodypart routine in one spot. For example…[Read more…]