Here is the secret to making good strength
gains. COMMON SENSE is what you need. First of all you got to
be honest with yourself. When you create a pyramid, you got
to start off with a reasonable weight. Like I said before, too
many people, want to do what everyone else is doing in the gym
and not what they themselves can do. Once you have found a honest
pyramid, here is what you do week after week.
You should try adding 2 to 5 pounds a week
to your last 3 all out sets. It doesnt sound like much, but
if you are lifting naturally thats what you got to expect. Once
you get to a point to where you cannot add any weight, you then
start to drop 2 reps from the last 3 all out sets. This will
help you from getting worn out, so you can lift heavier (i.e.
from 10,8,8,6,4 to 10,8,6,4,2 to 10,8,4,2,2). Once you cannot
gain anything from that, you then go back to the original 10,8,8,6,4
When going back to the old pyramid style you
might have to drop some weight from your sets. But if done correctly,
you will still be ahead. You got to pay somewhere. Dont worry
about your max, it will still be the same. Remember you are
in the gym to get bigger and stronger. Just because you lift
a little lighter, does not mean that you have lost any strength.
Dont confuse your workout, with how strong you are. I usually
use 75#s on the preacher curl bar, while others use more.
But I usually have bigger arms than them (so
what gives with that? Im bigger and use less weight and they
are smaller and use more weight. Hmmm I wonder whos training
method works?). I lift to get big and not to impress my ego.
The purpose of lifting is to stimulate the muscles and not to
see how strong you are. I save my strength for competitions.
If someone wants to challenge me in a strength contest, Ill
give them a contest. But, I will not sacrifice my workout, to
satisfy someones expectations.
Lifting slow is superior to lifting fast! I
take 2 seconds on the positive and 2 seconds on the negative.
I used to swing the weight up fast, until I started incorporating
the 2 second rule. I have found that I make better gains utilizing
a slower movement. The goal to getting big, is to exercise the
muscles, and not to impress yourself. I try and try to tell
people this, but they never listen. Stupid, stupid people.
Too many people waste their time by, saving
their strength for the duration of their workout. I dont. I
try to beat the hell out of my muscles starting with the first
set. Too many people think that they do negatives properly (Yeah
Fig, I lower the weight). Only a small percentage of people
do negatives at all. (usually the big guys in the gym are the
only ones who lower the bar!) They like to drop the weight.
They feel that if they do negatives, they will be weaker on
the following sets.
Isnt that what weightlifting is all about?
How can anyone expect to keep the same level of strength, while
they are working out? Some people call negatives "burn
out sets". That is a bunch of crap! Negatives are a fully
functional part of any workout. They must be accomplished. If
you do not lower the weight during every set, you will not receive
the gains that you anticipated. Remember a workout is just a
workout. A workout is not a means of justifying strength.
A workout is a tool to gain strength. Think
of it this way. If you can bench 315, real strict, then you
should be able to bench 350 with momentum. Not that using momentum
is correct, it is just supposed to show you that you can move
that much weight. I usually bench up to 345. But I can bench
485. I am working out when I bench up to 345 (2 second positives
and negatives 10x 135, 10x 225, 8x 295, 8x 325, 6x 335, 4-6x
345. If you can do this the normal way of lifting, try to do
it with the 2 second rule).
I max out to show my strength when I bench
485. Maxing out, is way different from working out. This is
the main problem with lifters. They just wont listen.I once
worked out with this guy. He never lifted weights before. The
first and last day we worked out was a disaster! We were doing
curls. I was curling 95#s and he decided that he was going to
do what I do. He would swing the weight up and down. Even after
I told him to lift lighter.He wouldnt listen to me. He was under
the impression that if you can move the weight, it is the proper
I did not want to workout with this idiot
ever again and didnt. I just dont know how I can stress this
point any further. You got to use the proper amount of weight.
If you do not you will not get any stronger! You will not get
any bigger. Heres another story for ya! I was talking to these
two guys in my gym. I said to them how is it going. They said
that they were having trouble gaining weight. I said to them,
are you doing your squats? No, we dont workout on our legs.
IDIOTS, THATS ALL I CAN SAY !!! Stupid people,
STUPID!!! Even after I told them , that they wont get anywhere,
by not working out their legs , they told me that they run,
and that is their leg workout. Running makes your legs smaller!!!
So, I gave up on them. I dont like calling people stupid, but
damn! It is only common sense, your legs are the largest muscle
group on your body, they also help to release testosterone.
When you workout, you should try to make it as short as you
My workouts, get shorter and shorter. I am
now realizing, that if I concentrate on making the exercise
work better, I dont have to do as many sets. This is simple
HIT criteria. The more and more I incorporate, HIT training
the more I agree. About 3 years ago I bought a Dr. Darden book,
"Bigger Muscles in 10 weeks". In that book he had
a super slow section. I tried the super slow style of lifting
(4 seconds up and 4 seconds down). I did not gain much strength.
I was basing results on my workout strength
and not my size and max strength. I felt that I wasnt gaining
any strength. So, I felt that the workout did not work. But
that is what I am doing now. After years of trying to gain workout
strength, I find that the workout is just the means to gaining
max strength. I dont try to lift heavy. I just try to stimulate
muscle growth. I know I keep throwing this at you, but this
is the most important point on this page.
Workout strength, should not be confused with
max strength. What is workout strength? Thats the amount of
weight you lift on a daily basis and not to be confused with
your max lifts. Too many people pyramid up to 90% of their max
strength, with crappy form every workout. I only bench up to
60 - 70%, in good form SLOW. Too many people look at their workout
as a weekly max out session.
I have seen people workout their biceps for
1 and half hours. I only spend 25 minutes or less. In fact my
last biceps workout lasted 20 minutes. If you are truly working
out with 100% intensity, it should only take that long. If you
are just trying to measure your strength, it will take longer.
The purpose of lifting is to inflict damage on the muscle, so
that it heals and gets stronger.