We featured Danny Padilla back in Zen #19, but after recently running across the gym photo below, we had to include him again. That’s because every time we see it, all we can say is, “Damn!” [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…]
Q: I’ve been using all-heavy training (6-8 reps) on everything up until now. I just started using your 4X method, and I swear I can already feel new growth happening. It’s also a relief on my tattered joints. I want to try it exclusively for a month or two. Will my weights increase or should I add sets? Just looking for the best “change to gain.”
A: Since this is your first time using the 4X mass method, you’ll get stronger as your muscle grow more adept at DENSITY training…[Read more…]
Q: What’s your opinion of loosening exercise form at the end of a set to get a few more reps? Like on curls I keep the reps strict for the first six or seven, then I use some upper-body motion to complete two to three more reps. I’m using the 4X method, so the weight [throughout the 4 sets] is only moderate, not heavy. I’m only using momentum to fight the fatigue buildup at the end of the fourth set. Is that okay, or should I keep my reps strict through the entire 4X sequence?
A: Because the poundage is moderate on a 4X sequence, that’s all the more reason to keep it strict all the way through. Momentum will only take the tension off the target muscle. A very SLIGHT form alteration is acceptable, but keep it as strict as possible to the end of the fourth set… [Read more…]
Q: I’ve been reading about the 4X training and am wondering if you have any advice on how to use it with a full-body three-days-per-week routine. I just started using the 4X method for each bodypart. I do one exercise per muscle. Monday I do chest, shoulders, back, bi’s, tri’s, abs, legs. Wednesday I do the same body parts but in a different order and using different exercises. The same goes for Friday. I take the weekend off. I’m drug-free, so I think I’ve been overtraining till now. I’m hoping that 4X will help spark some new gains.
A: That sounds like a great plan for building more mass. First, skeptical readers need to realize that three-days-per-week programs can do incredible things. We discuss the Colorado Experiment in Size Surge 2.0 and 3D Muscle Building, a four-week research project in which Casey Viator gained 60 pounds of muscle… [Read more…]
Q: I love the 4X Workout method. It’s opened my eyes to a new way to build mass. I notice that you guys often superset opposing muscles with 4X, like forearm extensors (top) and flexors (underside), going back and forth. Can I do that with other opposing muscle groups, like biceps and triceps to save time and get a bigger pump?
A: We addressed that question in the Q&A section of the 4X Mass Workout e-book. The answer is, opposing-muscle-group supersets work great with the 4X method—as long as the exercises don’t force you to stop your sets from cardiovascular failure as opposed to muscular exhaustion… [Read more…]