Q: I’m not gonna lie… I sometimes get bored with my training or just have random days when my motivation is a bit low. That makes it tough to get to the gym, but I really don’t want to skip a day because of that. What if I took random days here and there to do only one exercise for each muscle. Would that be good for growth, and how often could I do that?
Rich Gaspari was an impressive pro bodybuilder in the ’80s—but he will be the first to admit that his genetics were not ideal… [Read more…]
Q: I got the Power-Density Mass Workout 2.0 [with Super TORQ] after reading about all the great results people have had. Fantastic e-book! Might be your most interesting so far, and I’m already using your variation of Super TORQ. Wow! I’m sore to the core. Lol! My question is about stiff-legged deadlifts. You have it as a 30-20-15-10 sequence in your Modified Super-TORQ Program (page 49). Why not 40 or 50 reps on the first set, as with your other exercises?
A: From our vantage point, and experience, semi-stiff-legged deadlifts are one of the more dangerous exercises. One false move and your lower back can get whacked… [Read more…]
Q: I’m torn between heavy training and higher reps [TORQ]. I like ending bodyparts with lighter-weight, high-rep sets for longer tension times and more pump, and now I’m hearing that ALL-high-rep workouts are best. I’m almost 30, but I want to grow as fast as possible. Should I try all-high-rep training for a while, or is that more for when I’m older like you guys and can’t train heavy anymore?
A: Hey, we resemble that remark! LOL. The beauty of bodybuilding is that you can try whatever you want. Change is good. Plus, keep in mind that everyone responds to unique training styles differently—you may grow like never before (you’ll see an example below). And, no, you don’t have to be older to start experimenting… [Read more…]
Q: Holy crap! I just bought your Pre-Ex 3X e-book, and Jonathan’s back on the cover looks like Arnold’s. How did he build all that muscle? Did he use pre-ex? I want a back like that. What do I need to do?
A: Jonathan used pre-ex, X Reps, drop sets, and more. We’ve experimented a lot over the years—and of course we subscribe to the change-to-gain mantra: Do something different to trigger new adaptations and extra growth. [Read more…]
Q: I’ve been bulking the past few months, and now I need to start cutting since the new year is upon us. I want to get an early start so I have sharp abs by spring. Should I change my workout? I’ve been training mostly heavy but with some 4X added in.
A: Well, the first thing we suggest is cleaning up your diet. No more junk food—if you’ve been scarfing up too much of that, you’ve got too much body fat.
Also, if you haven’t been doing cardio, add 20 to 30 minutes AFTER two of your upper-body workouts each week. That will stimulate your metabolism and fat-burning mechanism.
Notice that those are subtle changes. You want to gradually move toward leanness—nothing drastic. That way you retain and even build muscle as you drop that ugly body fat…
As for your workouts, now is the time to introduce an X-centric set for each bodypart. And we suggest you do that on the last set of each big midrange exercise—squats, pulldowns, rows, bench presses, etc.
X-centric is using a slightly lighter weight than your normal 10-rep weight and raising it in one second and lowering in six on every rep. And it’s an almost magical fat-to-muscle method. Why?
Research shows that lowering slowly throughout the negative stroke causes more micro-trauma in muscle fibers. To repair those microtears, your body uses stored fat for energy.
So you burn off more fat 24/7 as you regenerate and pack on muscle. Nice…
Also, doing a set of seven or eight X-centric reps, at 7 seconds each, gives you a muscle-tension time of almost a minute. That helps expand the sarcoplasm in muscle tissue for new size and fullness, AND it produces intense muscle burn for growth hormone release…
GH is a very potent fat burner. So X-centric training is major acceleration for your body transformation.
NOTE: For more on using X-centric training as well as other methods and tactics to transform your physique from lean to mean, get The Ultimate Fat-to-Muscle Workout, HERE.
Till next time, train hard—and smart—for BIG results.
—Steve Holman and Jonathan Lawson
Build MASS with bodyweight training
One way you’re guaranteed to pack on stacks of muscle is through a process called muscle protein synthesis (MPS), which more than doubles 24 hours after an intense workout…
Until recently, MPS was only elevated when trainees would lift 70-90% of their one-rep max…
That’s not only dangerous for your joints, but it also sets you up for high injury risk every time you exercise…
It used to be believed that training with your own bodyweight couldn’t get you the same results as training with your 70-90% one rep max… Until NOW.
Q: You’ve said that training each muscle only once a week doesn’t work for most people. But I just got the Fat-to-Muscle Workout (thank you for the sale price!), and both the four-day and three-day workouts train each muscle only once a week. Am I missing something?
A: You’re not missing anything; we’re just insane. Seriously, in the Q&A section of The Ultimate Fat-to-Muscle Workout we mention a study on negative-style training and the need it creates for much MORE RECOVERY. That’s the answer… [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 to feel your muscles working for size increases? I ask because I have trouble feeling some body parts, like shoulders and chest.
A: We believe it’s EXTREMELY important to feel your muscles 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: I’m loving your 4X mass method. I’ve been using it for only three weeks, and I already feel bigger and look fuller. The scale says I’ve put on three pounds, but it looks like more than that. I feel pumped all the time. Anyway, I’m wondering if I should do a warmup set before I jump into 4X for an exercise. If not on all 3 exercises in Positions of Flexion, maybe just the first one will do the trick since it’s compound [or midrange], like squats.
A: Keep in mind that with 4X mass training, you’re using the same MODERATE weight from the first set to the last. In most cases you shouldn’t need a warmup set because your first in the sequence is fairly easy—you don’t go to failure… [Read more…]
Q: All the info I’ve read on full-range Positions of Flexion makes total sense. It’s a killer concept, and I’m so psyched to use it. My problem is time. Even though your POF [bodypart] routines are only about six sets, I only have time for half that [maybe 3 sets for each bodypart]. I don’t want to use only the Ultimate Exercise because I see the superiority of training the three positions for total development. Or should I try just the Ultimate Exercise for each muscle and use POF on only certain bodyparts?
A: Using the Ultimate Exercise for each bodypart in a program is one way to go. Your idea of using full POF on one or two bodyparts is a good one. Simply add one set of a stretch- and one set of a contracted-position exercise for those two muscle groups. For example, for chest, the Ultimate Exercise is decline presses… [Read more…]