Training is more complex than some let on, it isn’t simply a case of hitting rep ranges and the magic happens. Apart from needing a bloody good diet you need to really know what you are doing in the gym if you are going to make rapid gains! This means knowing the basics and how to apply them correctly. There is no sense in just aimlessly bouncing from one workout to the next with no application of principles which we KNOW lead to progression.
Here are 4 golden rules to an epic workout schedule, no fancy bull muck just straight talking, results based pointers!
1 – Volume
Volume is going to dictate what intensity you work at in relation to what energy systems, muscle fibres and even energy sources you will be utilising. It is wise to use a relatively high volume structure for 2 weeks in order to ‘’overload’’ the muscles in turn making them more responsive to heavier, more intense training.
2 – Intensity
People often confuse volume and intensity. Sure, high volume training is intense but in relation to ‘’intensification’’ and weight training lower volume has to be by definition more intense for it to work. This means going to failure, go beyond failure, using rest/pause, drop sets and even forced reps and maybe partial reps. See how much you have to do before the set is actually over during an ‘’intense’’ workout? That is simply because you are doing far less in the gym, in terms of volume therefore the workout needs to be stimulating via a different pathway.
3 – Rep Ranges
Don’t make the rookie error of sticking to one rep range every week. Most do, generally 8-12 which is very limiting. To unlock your full potential you want to be hitting lower reps to induce myofibrillar hypertrophy as well as much higher reps to target the slow twitch muscle fibres! With higher volume training look to work above 8 reps, and as high as 30 on upper body and as much as 60-80 on legs! During your ‘’intense’’ weeks go low reps, as low as one when needed and really utilise heavy weight!
4 – Rep Tempo & Rest Periods
You must apply rep tempos and set rest periods to your workouts otherwise it will drastically reduce the impact the entire workout has on your muscles. Rep tempos will dictate time under tension and rest periods will dictate which energy systems are working and which muscle fibres come into play. Both of these variables are key.
During higher volume sessions you want to focus on shorter rest periods, controlled tempo. During ‘’intense’’ workouts focus on longer rest periods to allow for adequate recovery to life heavy and slower negatives to really force further muscle stimulation.
Get more from your workouts by applying these simple rules!