Q: I’m reading the Super-Size e-book. Jordon’s 18-pound muscle gain is inspiring and a great story, but I’m 45 years old. He’s in his teens. I don’t think I can train heavy even at every other workout the way he did. Should I try it, even at my age? I got great gains with The Anabolic After-40 Muscle-Size Manual, but this one has me intrigued to see if I can get big during my next training phase.
Q: I train each muscle once a week with about 15 sets. I got some good gains when I first switched to it, but I seem to have stalled due to some lagging muscle groups. Should I swap in new exercises or what? I don’t really want to change my split [training each muscle once a week].
A: Well, how about working some muscles once a week with your normal 15 sets, then do a second “mini” workout during the week? It’s a great mini-max strategy for major muscle gains…
For example, take your two worst lagging muscle groups and add a second mini-workout for each later in the week. Just add it to the end of one of your other workouts. The mini should take you only an extra 10 to 15 minutes…
Say you work quads on Monday with your 15 sets. On Thursday, after your arm workout, tack on a mini-quad attack. You can use any of the mini routines in the MMX Fast Mega-Mass e-book…
For example, you no doubt did squats at your major workout, so your mini could be leg extensions supersetted with sissy squats. Notice that you do both exercises at the same station, and with only two to three rounds, it will take you about 10 minutes.
Or, if you’re more of a masochist and used free-bar squats at your main quad workout, how about hitting the Smith machine for your mini. You could do feet-forward front squats to get at hams and quad for five reps. Then rack it, set the bar on your shoulders and do regular Smith squats with your feet under your hips. Talk about major quad growth burn. Two rounds will take you 10 minutes or less.
Other options from the MMX e-book include antagonist supersets, one-exercise rest/pause or Progressive-Speed 6X (different rep tempos over six quick sets), and even 10×10 (grueling—not for those who can’t stand the pain of muscle burn).
Till next time, train hard—and smart—for BIG results.
—Steve Holman and Jonathan Lawson
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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…]
It’s always interesting to see studies that come out on muscle activation with varying protocols. One of particular interest is from the National Strength & Conditioning Association [May 29, ’15]…
It compared two protocol, but with the same time under tension and load, 60 percent of 1-rep max. The exercise was Smith-machine bench presses, and the subjects were experienced resistance trainers… [Read more…]
Q: I’ve been getting amazing muscle-size gains with Progressive-Speed 4X [included in The Super-Size Crash Course]. Should I do more speed reps or more X-centric slow-mo reps to get the best mass results? I want to grow as fast as possible.
A: Don’t we all—but it’s hard to say which is best, as both styles trigger specific hypertrophy results. For the uninitiated… [Read more…]
Q: I love the 4X mass method and am already seeing new size from it after only two weeks. I notice you’ve been recommending different methods on each set sometimes. Does that work better for mass? Should I be doing that?
A: One method we often recommend is the progressive speed tactic. We know one thing about it for certain: The feel is unreal—deep ache with a muscle-expanding pump after only three sets… [Read more…]