Yesterday I mentioned that once Mike Mentzer retired from bodybuilding and began training drug-free bodybuilders, he got rid of forced and negative reps. They were too demanding, creating way too much damage… [Read more…]
Q: I think you’ve said that partials should not be performed on more dangerous stretch exercises, like stiff-legged deadlifts. So I should just keep doing all of my stretch sets with full-range reps?
A: I’ve said that X-Reps, stretch partials at the end of a full-range set, can be dangerous. That’s because the muscles are fatigued from the full-range work, so those end-of-set partials can be harder to control. However… [Read more…]
With the latest studies showing stretch-position loading for heightened hypertrophy, as well as a new one finding that stretch-partial reps produced more overall growth than full-range reps, it’s time to tweak our workouts… [Read more…]
Quite a coincidence. As I began writing this series on stretch overload, a new study appeared on the subject.
It was one I was hoping would eventually be done—although the trainees weren’t exactly to my specifications. The study… [Read more…]
Q: I need to build up the inside of my chest, the cleavage, so to speak. A training friend told me that really squeezing and flexing at the bottom of cable crossovers will get my inner pecs popping. Is that true?
A: While full-range cable crossovers can help develop the entire pec muscle—even the inner sections—believe it or not, the BEST way to attack that insertion point of the target muscle is by emphasizing stretch overload… [Read more…]
Q: After reading one of your articles that discussed the study where light, longer sets built muscle, I was thinking that maybe that’s why X Reps build so much size. Because they’re partial reps where the muscle is stretched, you block blood flow and get more tension time by making the set last longer. Do you think that’s the case—that X Reps work because they make a set last longer?
A: No doubt that ex-tending the set with X-Reps is one reason those power partials are so effective at building more muscle. As you said, you not only pulse at the
Q: I’m an avid reader of your e-books as well as your website. I’ve been experimenting recently with a heavy set to failure (approximately 10 reps), adding X-Rep partials to the end. Then I do a second X-Only set, often with added weight. This is an excellent trigger for growth, especially if you warm up using the DXO [Double-X Overload] technique. On the warmup set, I do anywhere from four to five X Reps between [full-range] reps, and the burn is incredible! That [combination] has had such a strong effect on my body, that I now have some stretch marks appearing. I’m definitely getting much more muscular while dropping fat. Another thing I’ve been experimenting with is shortening the stroke of X Reps, to the point where I’m almost doing a static hold. I just pulse out very small partial reps. Which brings me to static holds. Research shows subjects adding a few pounds of muscle after only one workout, but that workout was followed by two weeks of rest. Surely two weeks off between workouts is ridiculous. I was wondering how you stand on recovery time and static holds?
A: Thanks for the feedback and your confidence in our methods. We discuss a lot of what you’re discovering and experimenting with in our X-Rep Update #1 e-book. Former Mr. Olympia Jay Cutler used a lot of X-Only sets, as we discuss in Chapter 5, Mr. O’s Wild X-O Workouts. Notice Cutler’s short stroke on this exercise…[Read more…]
Q: In the description of your new e-book [The X-traordinary X-Rep Workout], you mention that Arnold used X Reps. How is that even possible? He was training [at his peak] way back in the 1970s, and X Reps didn’t come around till the 2000s. What’s the deal?
A: We coined the X-Rep term about fifteen years ago, but partial-rep training has been around for ages in various forms. What we did was take the most recent research on semi-stretch-point fiber activation and zero in on the BEST spot on the stroke for end-of-set partials, or X Reps…[Read more…]
Q: Okay, your before and after photos at X-Rep.com are unreal. I can’t believe you made those changes in only one month, and my friends say you used drugs. What’s the truth? How did you do it, what kind of training did you do, and were drugs involved? Please be honest.
A: Trust us, no drugs were involved. Truth: Jonathan is a drug-free for life bodybuilder and Steve experimented with 5 milligrams of Dianabol once a day back in his early 20s—but after three weeks of dreams that his liver would explode, he stopped. BTW, he saw no visual improvement during those 3 weeks on that dosage.[Read more…]
Q: I got your 4X Mass Workout and am already growing with TORQ [Tension-Overload Repetition Quantity]. You discuss Mr. America Doug Brignole, his version, and how he uses drop sets on the last set. You don’t mention that with your version [30-20-15 reps]. Should I do drops on the last round of TORQ?
A: Doug has been at this bodybuilding thing for decades—and even he is still learning and experimenting…[Read more…]