Here’s a great tip of how you can build quality muscle mass with a simple adjustment in your weight training routine.
As you know, super slow reps increase the intensity of your exercise by increasing the demands on the muscle fibres.
It does this by lengthening the amount of time you spend in a particular exercise movement.
The next time your doing a barbell curl, instead of doing your usual repetition, try doing super slow repetitions.
I can guarantee you that you will not be able to do the same amount of repetitions as you normally would. This is a good thing because you are placing more demands on the muscle group.
Now, If you were to actually alternate your repetition speed by using super slow reps together with your usual rep speed, you can possibly add a whole new dimension to your training. You see, most people in the gym who want to build muscle, all focus on the amount of weight that is being lifted and the number of sets and reps they do. The next time your in the gym, take a peek around the weight room and check out what kind of rep speed people are using.
Chances are your going to see about 98% of the people doing exactly the same thing, fast reps up and down. That is, you will see weight trainers doing a fast motion up (concentric) and basically letting the weight drop back down on the downward motion (eccentric). If your not familiar with the concentric and eccentric movements they are basically this:
• Concentric movement – when the muscle fibres become shorter while exercising. At this part of the movement, your going against gravity. I.E. that part of the barbell curl when you curl the weight up. See image below.
• Eccentric movement – when the muscle fibre is lengthening while exercising. At this point, of the movement, your going with gravity. I.E. that part of the barbell curl when you are allowing the weight back down. See image below.
I’m going to give you a very valuable weight training tip. On your next visit to the gym, try doing super slow reps on your concentric movement as well as the eccentric movement. For example, if you are going to do barbell curls, try and take a little more time to curl the weight up and slowly lower the barbell down. Count to four on the way up and count to 4 on the way down. This technique will take a little time to get used to but give it a shot for a couple of weeks or so.
You won’t be able to handle the same amount of weight that your used to but it will be well worth it. This slight variation will add more intensity that the old reliance on negatives. I will do this type of training when I feel my routine going a little soggy. Instead of piling on the weight, I will strip off the plates and do super slow up and downs. I’ll do this for a couple of weeks and before you know it, I’m back on track.
I really think the magic in this type of technique is to re-establish your form and to re-connect the weight with your muscle. And we all know the real key to building large, powerful muscles is the mind – muscle connection.
Give it a shot for a couple of week, I’m sure you won’t be disappointed!
Good luck and all the best,
Blake has been weight lifting for about 28 years now. He's 45 years of age and started seriously training when he was 18 years old.
Blake is the founder of Building-Muscle101.com, a successful fitness website that has been around for more than 15 years.