Interested in unlocking your bodies muscle building potential?
I’m talking about gaining super strength and building slabs of muscle.
I know, it sounds like another supplement ad but what I’m about to tell you is one of the most powerful techniques you can implement into your training routine.
Let me ask you a question first.
How do you structure your weight training routine? I mean, do you have a routine that you follow or do you just show up at the gym and start lifting?
I’m guessing that you have a set routine that you have laid out and follow it each time you go to the gym.
I’m also guessing that you do the same exercises with the same weight, and on occasion, increase the weight based how you’re feeling that day.
Believe it or not, this is what 90% of the gym population does. Whenever I go to the gym, I generally see the same kind of activity going on. The same weight trainers are there doing the same thing they’ve always done and using the same weight that they’ve used for the last three months. I don’t know what the goals are for these weight trainers are but I’m guessing it’s not being stagnate for months on end.
Now, if you find yourself in this category, please, read on but if you’re satisfied with this type of training and you’re quite happy with your gains, than you probably don’t need to read the rest of this page (however, who doesn’t want to get stronger?).
What if I was to tell you that there was a way you can train that would allow you to gain super strength, build huge muscles and cut down on the wear and tear on your body? Well, there is such a training style and it’s a technique that’s used by all professional body builders, power lifters, and strength athletes.
Have you ever wondered why some body builders and power lifters seem to be lifting very light weights when you know they can handle much, much more? Have you ever noticed how they train? You might have noticed that when they train, it looks like there not using all that much weight. You might have even have thought to yourself, “hey, that weight isn’t all that impressive”. I hear it all the time, “so and so is huge but I though he was stronger than that!”
Well, I got news for you, these guys (and gals) are plenty strong, but they know something that most trainers don’t . They know how to train heavy at optimal times to produce maximum muscle and strength gains.
Take a look at that statement once again. They know how to train heavy at optimal times to produce maximum muscle and strength gains . What does this mean?
First, top pro body builders and athletes have known this for ages (well the smart ones anyways) and this will always be the number one principle that will always allow a person to gain muscle, month after month, and year after year, injury free!
You see, the human body can only put up with so much stress in a certain period of time. After a certain point, no matter how well you construct your diet, how much rest you get, or how much supplements you take, you simply cannot go all out day after day, month after month and year after year without getting injured or burning out. The body just can’t handle all out stress for extended periods of time.
The secret to getting super strong and building large amounts of muscle is to apply the correct amount of intensity to your body at an optimal time for a certain period of time, than giving your body the time it needs to repair itself through rest and feeding it the correct amount of nutrients.
This is called “periodization training” and is done in periodization cycles. Sometimes the cycle will last 8 weeks or 16 weeks depending on the type of training you are doing.
This is what top power lifters and bodybuilders call periodization training or cycling. Once you have completed a cycle, take a couple of weeks off from training and let your body repair itself (you may need more rest). Once you master this technique, you will start to gain a lot of muscle!
Weight training periodization can be done for your compound lifts such as the bench press, squat, dead lift, or shoulder presses.
Here’s how a typical periodization training cycle looks like:
Week 1: Start out using lighter weights and get your body used to the exercises. No heavy lifting or all out maximum lifts. Should be at 65% of your maximum. The last set of your program should be 65% of your max. Work set (last set): 1 x 7 reps
Week 2: Add a little more weight to core compound exercises. Do not go for all out maximums. You should not be taking your body to failure. You should be using 70% of you maximum. Work set (last set): 1 x 6 reps
Week 3: Add more weight to exercises and lower the repetition range. No maximum lifts. You should be pyramiding your sets up to the final work set. You should be using 80% of your maximum. Work set (last set): 1 x 5 reps
Week 4: Drop back down and use 60% of you maximum lift. Work set (last set): 1 x 6 reps
Week 5: Increase the weight and use 85% of your maximum lift. Work set (last set): 1 x 4 reps
Week 6: Use 75% of your maximum lift. Work set (last set): 1 x 5 reps
Week 7: Use 80% of your max lift. Work set (last set): 1 x 4 reps
Week 8: Use 85% of your max lift. Work set (last set): 1 x 3 reps
Week 9: Drop back down and use 70% of your max lift. Work set (last set): 1 x 4 reps
Week 10: Use 90% to 95% of your max lift. Work set (last set): 1 x 2 reps
Immediately after a periodization cycle, take two weeks off from training – VERY IMPORTANT!
Now the trick is to repeat the cycle using slightly heavier weights than your previous cycles. This is where you build some serious muscle and power. Seriously start thinking of training with cycles.
Now, periodization has been around since the 60’s and can get very complicated as the routines for professional athletes are quite structured but the principles can be applied quite successfully to anyone who is serious enough about their training routine. Here is a very interesting study that you may find interesting done about periodization training:
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.