The Best Way To Train For Size
muscle mass you must
muscle to be able to
more force - which in turn means the muscle must
grow. Increasing muscle size will help increase
performance strength - but increasing performance strength does not
necessarily mean that you will increase muscle size.
Muscle strength in the adult human is relative
to cross section area (size). An equal cross-sectional area of muscle from any
average trained women or man has about the same 'strength' (i.e.: can generate
the same amount of force, 6 kg - cm2), there is very little variation. To
increase muscle size, you must increase the cross sectional area.
Because there is a limit to the amount of force (strength) a set cross-sectional
area of muscle can generate - muscle tissue must increase in size
(cross-sectional area) to be able to handle a greater force (to become
'stronger') - the result: bigger muscles. So the best way to make your muscle
bigger - train in such a way as to increase the amount of force you can
generate - and, of course, to make the muscle grow as fast as possible.
Two sets (of maximum effort), are far more effective that
one (fastest increases in
growth and strength), and it appears that three
are slightly more beneficial than doing two. There is no evidence that doing more
that three sets will help - or hurt.
between sets should be at least 1 min. and no more than 5 min. - no difference
has been shown between taking a 1 min. or 5 min. rest - in terms of growth and
strength increases - the choice is yours. All sets should be done to the point
where another rep is not possible. (Warm up sets should be done first).
Reps ranging from 3 to 12 are all considered
good variations - this is not news to anyone - however this may be - it appears
to be important to do at least one set of 10 RM each session. (I'm not going to
go into details on this - this is what studies have concluded - take it or leave
it). For those who do not understand - this means that you should do one set
with enough weight so that you are only capable of doing 10 reps. You may mix up
the sequence any way you like, examples: 3-6-10; 12-11-10; 3-10-12; 10-10-10.
Any combination is acceptable - just do 1 set of 10 RM each time.
progressive part of PRE means that it is
very important to increase your 'load' on a weekly basis. Your 10 RM is the
control. You must increase the amount of weight you use for your 10 RM each week
by at least a small amount.
Shocker number two - it has been shown that
fast movements (contractions), produce the greatest increases in strength and
growth. This really should not come as a surprise. The speed of movement when
lifting a weight that you are only capable of doing 10 reps with, even
performing the reps as fast as possible with good form, is still very slow
compared to many sports movements - such as swinging a bat, throwing a ball, running - etc. The concentric part of the movement should be done as fast as
possible - however this does not mean to 'jerk' the weight - it is also very
important that the movement be done in a 'smooth' manner. This is important -
'jerking' the weight may cause an increase in strength due to neural
but it is not the best way to increase muscle size.
Benefits from PRE (Progressive Resistance
training) can be achieved by training
a muscle(s) as little as once a week. The best results for the trained individual
appear to be training a muscle no more than 3 times a week. It is also possible that
training more or less may have a
small advantage - the new trainer can get best results training a muscle up to 5
times a week.. Another possible shocker - training when muscles are 'sore' may
help speed recovery and is recommended - however you should not train to the
point of causing 'pain' (or if you are already in 'pain'). Working a muscle that
is sore - even one that has been injured - will cause the muscle to recover much
more rapidly that resting the muscle - you must know the difference between pain
and soreness however - and should not do anything that will cause pain. (If you
are recovering from an injury please be sure to follow your Doctors
Nutrition is a very important part of getting
'big'. This should be very simple to understand but still many people don't. If
you want to build muscle you have to feed them - plain and simple. To gain mass
you have to eat more calories than your body needs - or at least the exact
amount that it needs for energy, repair, etc. (because there is no way of
knowing your exact needs it is wise to eat a bit more than you feel you need).
If you don't YOUR MUSCLES WILL NOT GROW.
Research has shown that only drugs will make your muscles grow
beyond 'normal'. Other supplements do have their place. It is important that
your body has all the
nutrients it needs - any less will slow your progress.
There may be a very slight advantage to getting a little more of some things
than your body needs - but there is little doubt that if your body is not
getting enough of something it will hurt your progress. For example, most people
are known to be deficient in Zinc (there is not enough of it in our diets), in
which case it has been proven that supplemental Zinc will increase the
testosterone levels (in men). It has also been shown that taking twice as much
as you need will not be of benefit - and may even have adverse effects on your
If you train correctly you
will 'level off'. If your train correctly for maximum growth you
will make very fast gains for the first 3 to 6 months. At this point you will
gradually start to taper off - after two years of training you can expect the
gains to come very slowly - at some point, to be totally honest, further
'overall' gains will be almost impossible unless you take anabolic steroids or
other types of anabolic drugs. (Which I do not recommend). This does not mean
that you can't continue to improve your appearance. It is at this time that you
should start paying more attention to your weak areas, your
diet, etc. - you can
always improve - and hope - that more can be learned on how to increase muscle
size through natural methods - without the use of steroids.
The untrained muscle responds much better than the trained muscle. This
simply means that the untrained person will experience much faster gains in
strength and growth than the person who has several months of GOOD training
under there belt. This is a well known fact - not someone's opinion.
Dated 22 September 2011