WHY WE USE DIFFERENT SET/REP RANGES, WEIGHTS AND REST PERIODS FOR DIFFERENT FITNESS GOALS
PART 3-HYPERTROPHY (Muscle Growth)
In Part1, we discussed the three different systems your body uses in exercise.
In Part 2, we discussed how to use the different energy to design programs for building strength. SEE IT HERE
In Part 3, we’ll discuss how to use the different systems to best design programs for muscle growth (Hypertrophy).
|ATP-CP||ATP STORED IN CELL||5-10 SEC||5 MIN||1||STRENGTH|
|GLYCOGEN||ATP CONVERTED FROM CARBS||1 MIN||1-2 MIN||2||GROWTH & FAT BURN IN RECOVERY|
|OXIDATIVE||OXYGEN & FAT||MIN TO HRS||VARIES||3||STAMINA & FAT BURN|
Competitive body builders are not as concerned with strength as they are with pure size and muscle growth.
But you don’t have to be interested in competitive body building to want to build more muscle. If you want to re-composition you body in any way you are bodybuilding.
Most people who are overweight want to lose fat and adding muscle has been proven to be the best long term solution to losing fat and keeping the fat off. You’ll note in the chart under the glycolytic system that is says ‘fat burning in recovery”.
You won’t burn a lot of fat in the actual workout but the fat burning (metabolic effect) of training burns calories and fat for hours after your workout ends. And as you build muscle you will increase the calories and fat you burn 24 hours a day. Muscle is metabolically expensive (Burns a lot of calories whether you are exercising or not).
Most people who are underweight want to add muscle to improve their appearance.
The majority of these are male but women are learning that there is a huge difference between “skinny” and “fit” and are choosing to build muscle and get more fit.
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So let’s design the best protocol for building more muscle.
Reps-9 to 12 reps. The glycolytic energy system can power your workout for up to about 1 minute (60 seconds) at a time. Science shows that, for building muscle a slow deliberate movement is best and that “Time under Tension” (TUT) is a major determining factor.
Tempo is important. From a starting position the concentric (raising) movement should be about 1-2 seconds, hold for 1 second(squeeze the muscle) at the top, lower the weight (eccentric phase) with at least a 3 second count and repeat. That’s about 5-6 seconds per rep. 60 seconds divided by 5=12 reps. Much more than that and you move into Oxidative and out of the best energy system for building muscle.
Rest period-The glycolytic system can replenish ATP in about 1 minute from carbs. Rest periods between sets should be 60 to 90 seconds. Rest for at least 60 seconds but you want your breathing to return to near normal also. Otherwise you’ve moved into the Oxidative stage.
Sets-3to 4 sets. While TUT is a major factor in building muscle, studies show there is a substantial diminishing return after 3 sets. There is a lot of argument about this simply because there are so many variations that work. One set to total muscle failure may work just as well as three sets to “technical failure” (form breaks down) but also puts more stress on joints. 10 sets x 10 reps work well …until it doesn’t. It comes down to what works best for you. Try different variables, change it up every 6 weeks or so and find yours.
Weight-Again, the weight you use is dictated by how many reps you can do with good form within the prescribed rep range. For most people the best weight will fall between 60% and 85% of your 1RM, anything lighter won’t cause the growth response you are looking for. If you can do 12 or more reps with good form you need to increase the weight. If you can only do less than 9 you need to decrease the weight. If you don’t know your true 1RM you can estimate it HERE
Training for muscle growth doesn’t require as much focus on technique as training for strength. But there are a lot different roads that will get you to the same place as mentioned in the paragraph on the number of sets.
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