We discuss a lot of mass-building studies, and we often get questions about altering the procedure of those studies to make the mass effect even more effective. What the heck are we talking about? For example… [Read more…]
Q: At your suggestion, I’ve been including higher-rep sets in many of my workouts. I’m seeing much more size and vascularity. My question is, do sets of around 20 reps work because I’m getting growth in more slow-twitch fibers or are the fast-twitch ones getting larger as well?
A: Yes, both—and as bodybuilders, we want to maximize ALL hypertrophic pathways, even size in the slow-twitch fibers. Higher-rep sets also give you anabolic hormone surges…
According to Brad Schoenfeld, Ph.D., who conducts studies on muscle hypertrophy,[Read more…]
Q: I’ve been using a drop on my last set, and I do speed reps on that lighter drop. It works great for finishing an exercise, but I’m wondering if I should do it on stretch-position movements, like stiff-legged deadlifts for hamstrings or overhead extensions for triceps? It seems like the proven anabolic effects of stretch with the fiber shock of speed reps would be an excellent mass combo.
A: X-celeration, or speed, sets are much more dangerous with stretch-position exercises because the target muscle is fully elongated. That said, we do use it from time to time, but not with a 1.5-second-per-rep tempo. It’s more like a 1/1 or even 1/2—lift in one second and lower in one or two seconds. [Read more…]