Mike Mentzer’s beach physique at its peak was shocking. Imagine seeing this on the beach (Gallasch photo). Even today Mentzer’s mass is still jaw dropping… [Read more…]
We’ve featured Danny Padilla in our Zen installments many times, but this is a shot we haven’t seen before. It’s a great stage shot that highlights his mass and symmetry, things his training style emphasized and amplified… [Read more…]
Q: I’ve made some of the best gains ever with your 4X training, but I may be going stale. I can’t seem to go up in weight any longer. Don’t I need to get stronger to get bigger?
A: If you get stronger, you MAY get bigger—but you can get bigger WITHOUT getting stronger. In other words, size and strength are NOT directly intertwined. Check out this quote from Peary Rader, founder of IRON MAN magazine, who was doing size and strength research more than 50 years ago… [Read more…]
Q: I tried your 4×10 method on every exercise, and I’m amazed. The pump was incredible and my nervous system didn’t feel so hammered at the end of my workout as it has in the past. My question is, shouldn’t I do at least one warmup set on the more dangerous exercises, like squats?
A: In theory the first set or two in a 4×10 sequence should be a sufficient warmup. That’s because you use a weight you could get 15 reps with, but you only do 10. And you use that same poundage all the way through… [Read more…]
We often look back through our ebooks for motivation and to find mass-boosting techniques we haven’t used in a while. We recently reminded ourselves about Stage Sets from our second e-book, Beyond X-Rep Muscle Building, which also discusses the X-Fade technique, Double-X Overload and X/Pause. When we first used Stage Sets and other X-hybrid techniques within the program outlined in that e-book, we each gained 10 pounds on top of our previous year’s great gains. Definitely something to add back into the mix once in a while when you have a training partner… [Read more…]
Q: I remember back from your old daily training blog that Steve often did Downward-Progression 4X with only three sets. If I remember correctly, he would add weight so his reps were 12, 10, 8. I like the idea of three sets because I do more than one compound exercise for each muscle. Do you think adding more weight to each set so my reps are 12, 8, 5 will work? I like to go heavier.
A: The reason Steve kept his last set at around eight reps is because he’s old. LOL! However, if you’re a bit younger and like to take your reps down lower, we’d give you the thumbs-up on your idea… [Read more…]
Q: I gained 5 pounds of solid muscle when I moved to mostly 4X mass training for every bodypart. Then I shifted to Pre-Ex 3X whenever I could, or modified pre-ex when the gym was crowded, and I put on another three pounds with more vascularity. I’m loving your density methods. What can I do now for another change? I don’t want to go back to heavy training but I will if you think it’s a good idea. I’m just looking to explode with more crazy muscle mass.
A: We’ve got something you can experiment with that we’ve had some excellent success with in the past. It’s a unique DOUBLE modified pre-ex mass builder—you superset the contracted-position exercise with the stretch-position move FIRST, using a 3X sequence. Take 45 seconds between supersets… [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: I just finished a six-week phase using the HIT workout with arm specialization [listed in the X-traordinary Arms e-book]. I made some good mass gains training each exercise with only one all-out set. I used my extra energy to blast my arms with more sets [with full Positions of Flexion] and got amazing gains using the different exercises at each arm workout. They’re looking big and full, and now I’m ready for a new program. Which one do you suggest after that 3D HIT Workout?
A: To clarify, on that 3D HIT Program listed in the X-Arms e-book you do full POF for each bodypart, but only one all-out set in each position. For example, for quads, you do squats (midrange), sissy squats (stretch), and leg extensions (contracted), each getting a warmup set or two and then only ONE mass-kicking set to exhaustion… [Read more…]
Q: Being drug-free, I was very interested in The 4X Mass Workout. Considering the colleague you mention in that e-book who has trained with a lot of pros while he was using drugs and that he also trained drug-free, his advice is priceless. For drug-free guys, he says he likes 3 weeks of high-intensity-style power training alternated with 3 weeks of lower-intensity, slightly higher-volume workouts. What do you think about this for a big mass blast: 3 weeks of total-10×10 training, followed by 3 weeks of total-4X workouts, followed by 3 weeks of the 3D Power Pyramid [a straight-set lower-rep Positions-of-Flexion workout listed in The Freak Physique e-book]?
A: That looks like a great mass-building, progress-yielding progression. You shift gears every 3 weeks for plenty of muscle-stimulation tweaks… [Read more…]