SCIENTIFICALLY BACKED GYMCEL/HYPERTROPHY INFORMATION/GUIDE (BLOWS ALL OTHER GYMCEL GUIDES INTO THE DUST)

redfacccee

redfacccee

:p
Joined
Nov 20, 2020
Posts
1,505
Reputation
1,835
SCIENTIFICALLY BACKED GYMCEL/HYPERTROPHY INFORMATION/GUIDE

When building muscle, the primary factor for muscle growth is mechanical tension. In this thread, we will try to understand the nuances behind hypertrophy so we can train intelligently. Let's go ahead and upgrade your knowledge. This is not for low iqcels although I did simplify as much as possible :)

if you don't bother reading or have the attention span of a monkey that's on you.​

Table of Contents
  • The Actual Principles Behind Hypertrophy
  • For Serious Bodybuilders
  • Mechanical Tension: The Primary Driver of Hypertrophy
  • Progressive Overload and Why It Is So Important
  • How Much Volume Do You Need To Make Gains?
  • The Only Time You Should Use High-Volume
  • Understanding Effective/Stimulating Reps Model
  • Understanding Fatigue
  • "Recovery"
  • The Concept of Failure and Its Types
  • The Importance of Variety and Exercise Choice
  • How to Warm-Up
  • The Myth of Time-Under-Tension
  • Lengthened Partials
  • Stretch-mediated Hypertrophy
  • Myth of Metabolic Stress, Muscle Damage/Micro Tears, Satellite Cells and Proliferation
  • Intelligent Training Design
  • How Much Muscle Can You Gain Over a Lifetime
  • Fiber Type Doesn't Matter
  • What You Should Do During A Cut
  • How To Overcome A Plateau
  • There is No Advantage to Free-Weights over Machines.
  • Steroids
  • Cold-Immersion Is Bad For Strength and Hypertrophy
  • Last 2-3KG of Muscle
  • The Biggest Mistake in Coaching
  • SHITTIEST COPES FOR BEGINNER HYPERTROPHY
(this thread will not include nutrition or how to exactly eat)

The Actual Principles Behind Hypertrophy

To help bodybuilders achieve their goals and excel, these three pillars can be adjusted and utilized as effective tools.
These pillars are:
  • Training
  • Physique-Enhancing Drugs (PEDs)
  • Nutrition
If you want to build muscle as an average joe, it's not as complicated as it may seem. Here are some basic principles to keep in mind:
1. Exercise 3-5 days a week.
2. Work out each muscle group 1-2 times a week.
3. Do 3-6 sets of 1-3 exercises for each body part.
4. Progressively overload in weight and reps, track it with a logbook or app.
5. Choose a workout routine that you enjoy and that challenges you.
6. Eat.

The two most important stimulus factors in hypertrophy are:
1. Mechanical tension
2. Progressive overload

What you don't need:
  • Pre-workout or test-boosters or other retarded supplements.
  • You don't need intensity techniques like supersets, dropsets, etc.
  • Sub-optimal training with no days off.
  • Endless sets/reps until you're absolutely fatigued.

For beginners, a three-day whole-body workout plan using compound exercises is a great way to get started.

As you gain more experience, you may want to learn more about how to build muscle and why certain exercises work better than others. However, there is no "secret" workout routine that will magically transform your body. What matters most is that you stay consistent, challenge yourself, and gradually increase the difficulty of your workouts.

It's important to remember that developing a great physique takes time and effort. You won't see results overnight, but if you stick with your workout routine and stay committed you'll see massive improvement.

It's not endless sets/reps.

For Serious Bodybuilders (Optional Read)
As a bodybuilder, it is important to approach training rationally rather than relying on intuition or randomness. A planned and systematic approach should be taken to maximize the desired adaptations and achieve your objectives. This approach should encompass phase potentiation phenomena, which is the gradual progression through different training phases.

For instance, during the off-season, a bodybuilder should use resistance training with heavy loads to increase tension on the sarcolemma/sarcomere over 3-6 weeks. This should be done in selected exercises based on biomechanical and anatomical principles, as well as the individual bodybuilder's anthropometrics and weak points. This will increase the recruitment of higher threshold motor units and prepare the body for subsequent methods that stimulate tissue and cell volume increases.

During the in-season, a bodybuilder should use resistance training methods that stimulate recomposition (increased lean body mass and decreased fat mass) in combination with a cyclical ketogenic-style dietary regimen. This can be achieved by using volume methods and low carbohydrate/calorie intakes for glycogen supercompensation, followed by tension methods with moderate carbohydrate/calorie intakes, and finally heavy maximal strength methods with high energy and carbohydrate intakes, on a 7 or 8 day microcycle.

Hypertrophy is best achieved by stimulating the sarcomere or muscle cell rather than destroying it through repetitive failure training. To achieve long-term progression, resistance training loads and volumes should be optimally and efficiently maximized while mitigating fatigue and catabolism induced by overreaching and overtraining.

Novice bodybuilders can benefit from any kind of resistance training. However, to advance towards an intermediate status, the principle of progressive overload should be followed. This means using increasingly managed loading schemes to increase muscular strength and the use of training methods including tension and volume training. For advanced trainees, a planned periodized plan designed by an expert becomes necessary to achieve competitive or ambitious amateur bodybuilding objectives, including limited but effective use of intensification methods. As the bodybuilder approaches elite status, the synergistic use of PEDs becomes necessary for continued progression.

The suitability of adopting a more aggressive or conservative approach to progression when it comes to training depends on several factors. These factors include the person's age, the strength and health of their joints and connective tissues, their experience with high-intensity training and heavy loads (i.e., 5-rep max or heavier), their inherent drive for motivation, and their ability to recover (which is influenced by genetic factors, nutrition, and drug response or performance-enhancing drug selection).

Nutrition is essential for human metabolism and performing tasks such as locomotion and resistance training. Macro- and micro-nutrients, along with water, provide the basic units of energy and necessary substrates that are not synthesized by the body. Nutritional approaches involve strategies like caloric restriction and increased protein intake to support fat loss and tactics such as structured refeeds and increased dietary fiber intake to increase stomach volume and feelings of fullness with low energy densities. Nutrition is fundamental and once planned rationally, it is straightforward, but not effortless. Nutritional adherence is crucial for success in accomplishing the objectives of a periodized plan aimed toward maximizing performance.

If I expanded on this, it would be a whole 'nother long-ass thread. If you want to learn more look up periodization.

Mechanical Tension: Primary Driver of Hypertrophy
Muscles are made up of many individual muscle fibers. When we train, we must stimulate these fibers to grow. As we increase protein content in the fibers, they grow in size, resulting in an increase in muscle size.

To trigger the need for remodeling, we need to engage muscle fibers in a way that generates mechanical tension. Contraction velocity plays a significant role in this process. Slow, involuntary muscle contractions generate a high level of force, effectively loading the active fibers.

Stimulating muscle growth requires the activation of as many muscle fibers as possible during a set. This is achieved through the activation of high-threshold motor units. Motor units are activated from smallest to largest. By activating more motor units, a greater number of muscle fibers are also engaged, leading to thorough fatigue of these fibers. Once the active muscle fibers reach the stage of fatigue where they can no longer produce enough force to move the external load, failure is reached.

This culmination of factors sets off the signal for muscle growth known as mechanotransduction, prompting mTOR signaling. This signaling pathway regulates muscle protein synthesis, kickstarting the growth process.

This means that our training necessitates a high degree of effort in the sets performed after warm-up, we must create a substantial intramuscular force that effectively loads the fibers and initiates the growth mechanism. These sets can be referred to as "work sets" or "growth sets," distinguished by their elevated effort and exertion compared to other sets in a training session. It's important to understand that simply lifting heavier weights or performing more reps doesn't necessarily equate to increased MT.

The proximity to failure is a crucial factor for MT, as the last few reps (research shows there are about 5 stimulating reps in a set) in a set leading to failure are the most stimulating for hypertrophy. These last reps involve full motor unit recruitment and a slower contraction velocity, which are key elements behind MT.

It's essential to recognize that "volume" in exercise primarily reflects the number of reps. What truly matters for muscle growth is the volume of repetitions that meet the stimulating rep criteria. Load or weight is just a proxy for failure, achieving failure with heavier loads requires fewer reps compared to moderate or lighter loads, but it's the stimulating reps that count.

While there are exercises that allow for greater motor unit recruitment of the target muscle, the level of MT experienced by muscle fibers depends on contraction velocity, rather than specific exercises. Factors like stability, joint angle, and range of motion are more related to motor unit recruitment and leverage than to MT.

It's also worth noting that each set in a strength training workout becomes slightly less effective than the previous one. Therefore, there isn't a linear relationship between sets near failure and muscle growth. When in doubt, training to failure with fewer sets could be more effective than aiming for higher volume with a certain level of proximity to failure.

Progressive Overload: Why It Is So Important
One of the most important principles of gaining muscle is progressive overload. This, along with mechanical tension, can help you achieve your fitness goals. However, it is also one of the most misunderstood principles. So, let me clear up what progressive overload really means, what it doesn't mean, and what it does and does not do.

Progressive overload means that you are capable of doing more reps, more weight, or some combination of both, under the same conditions that you used previously. This allows you to keep the stimulus on the muscle fibers being trained the same from workout to workout. Progressive overload does not increase mechanical tension; it simply allows you to keep it equal. Remember that any set to failure will have 5 stimulating reps in it. So
if I'm capable of doing 35kg curls for 6 reps in one workout, but in the following workout I'm capable of 35kg for 8 but only do the 6 reps again, then I provided less stimulus to those fibers. if you do the 8 reps that you are now capable of doing then you are progressively overloading, it doesn't have to be every week.

Progressive overload is keeping the stimulus on the muscle fibers being trained the same workout to workout by doing what you are maximally capable of doing or at least close to maximum capability. if you can repeatedly progressively overload on your exercises then that means your training is working and that muscular and neural adaptations are occurring.

What progressive overload is not is adding sets to your current program (or even new exercises). The appropriate term for adding sets or volume is progressive volume load or an increase in volume load. So, if you're not making progress, then the first step is always to make an effort to progressively overload the exercises you've been doing.

To accurately track progressive overload, use an app or logbook. Weights, reps, RIR, pain, "feeling".

How Much Volume Do You Need To Make Gains?
How much volume is needed to maximize muscular gains?

We already know that volume is simply a measure of contractions, but not all contractions are the same. Only contractions that cause mechanical tension can be counted as volume. This means that volume, in this context, refers to stimulating reps. The "stimulating reps" model suggests that only the last 5 reps in a set to failure cause hypertrophy. This is because there is an involuntary slowing of bar speed which indicates a high degree of force in the active muscle fibers. This is mechanical tension.

However, research shows that 12 sets compared to 8 sets only caused a small increase in myofibrillar protein synthesis and was not associated with more hypertrophy. This means that more sets only produce more muscle damage to recover from, and not more muscle growth. This means that volume has an effective "range".

Since training to failure or close to it is needed to create a volume of mechanical tension, what is the other factor? Rest periods. Longer rest periods (2-3+ minutes) consistently show that less volume is needed to maximize hypertrophy outcomes. Research shows that 2-3+ minute rest periods between sets give you the same muscle growth in about half the volume as short rest periods do.

The plateau for volume-creating muscle growth appears to be 4-6 sets for a muscle group per workout. Research shows that in some individuals more than 6-8 sets can cause regression. So, 4-6 sets appear to be the sweet spot of volume for most people to maximize gains. Even fewer sets, such as 2-3 sets, will still produce meaningful results.

If myofibrillar protein synthesis is elevated for over 48 hours due to 4-6 sets, depending on the training split, you only need to hit a muscle directly once every 5 days or so. This lines up with research that shows bro splits seem to work as well as higher frequency when volume is equated.

To sum it all up, the optimal volume for most people appears to be 4-6 sets per session for a muscle with 2-3+ minute rest periods. Hitting a muscle 1-2 times a week seems to produce similar results.

When you start training, you recruit small numbers of fibers, which are mostly oxidative in type. As you progress and develop the ability to recruit larger motor units, you activate bigger fibers that are more likely to be damaged. Every set you perform in a workout reduces motor unit recruitment as well. Therefore, doing tons of volume is not the answer to gaining more mass. In fact, it may lead to a reduction in motor unit activation and increase fatigue. The key to building muscle is improving motor unit recruitment and finding new ways to activate and load fibers that you are not using. Additionally, you need to minimize fatigue, both CNS and peripheral.

1 set to failure has been shown to increase MPS up to 130% 5 hours post training and doesn’t return to baseline until 29 hours later.
3 sets to failure increased MPS up to 210% within 5 hours, and it was still elevated by 130% 29 hours later.
study below shows that 12 sets instead of 8 did not result in more muscle growth even though there was a small increase in MPS suggesting that the increase was due to a greater amount of muscle damage and not a greater hypertrophy stimulus.

PMID: 20581041

The Only Time You Should Use High-Volume
I suggest that if you want to increase the volume of your training, you should choose shorter muscle-length movements. This is because the fatigue mechanism associated with these movements is metabolite accumulation, which is confined to the workout. As long as your reps are low to moderate, you can minimize the degree of fatigue interference.

However, it is important to note that not all muscles experience significant tension at short lengths due to their length-to-tension relationship. For the most part, it is safe to increase the volume of exercises like lateral raises, leg extensions, lying leg curls, glute bridges, thrusts, kickbacks, pushdowns, and partial range-of-motion pec deck exercises.

With longer muscle lengths, even the ones that benefit from stretch-mediated hypertrophy, those adaptations are limited in time span and are related to your training experience. Moreover, they activate the stretch-activated ion channels that cause the overflow of intracellular calcium. Once that happens, subsequent workouts may be affected by the inflammation caused by muscle damage.

This doesn't mean that you should avoid longer muscle-length movements altogether, but you should limit the volume of these exercises the most.

Understanding Effective/Stimulating Reps Model
If you’re not familiar with the effective/stimulating reps model, you may not fully understand what “junk volume” is and what sets contribute to hypertrophy. This model explains that all sets taken to failure, regardless of rep range, produce similar hypertrophy outcomes.

The stimulating reps model suggests that the only reps that produce growth stimulus are the last five reps in a set taken to failure. This happens because of the size principle and the force-velocity relationship. The size principle states that we recruit motor units from smallest to largest. Research shows that 85% of MVIC (maximal voluntary isometric contraction) results in full motor unit recruitment. EMG also indicates that in the last five reps or so, activation tends to plateau, which confirms full motor unit recruitment.

Since 85% of a one-rep max is about five reps, it follows that the last five reps of a set taken to failure should result in maximum motor unit recruitment. Additionally, during these last five reps, contraction velocity slows and produces high degrees of force, which creates mechanical tension in the active fibers. Mechanical tension is what drives hypertrophy.

Regarding the question of whether one should always train to failure, the answer is no. One to two reps in reserve will produce similar (but not the same) outcomes for hypertrophy with slightly less fatigue. However, if you keep your reps in the 5-8 range, the difference in fatigue is not significant.

Understanding Fatigue
Fatigue is a common phenomenon that occurs following physical exertion, characterized by the temporary decline of the body's performance, resulting in a feeling of tiredness and weakness. The more an exercise is repeated, the more pronounced this decline in performance becomes.

Fatigue is the biggest deterrent to making training progress.

Fatigue is caused by two main mechanisms that affect the body: central nervous system (CNS)-based mechanisms and local muscular mechanisms. These mechanisms interfere with the body's ability to produce force, thus limiting muscle fiber activation, leading to failure during exercises by restricting the body's capacity to perform repetitions.

Several fatigue mechanisms take place during a set of 15 reps, affecting the muscle at a metabolite and calcium level. While metabolite-related fatigue mechanisms have minimal effect on muscle fiber force, calcium-related mechanisms impact muscle tension and contribute to post-workout fatigue. At the systemic level, pain and discomfort sources cause a reduction in motor unit recruitment and increase effort perception without increasing recruitment level.

Pain and discomfort sources inhibit the ability to maximize central motor command and recruitment while reaching maximum effort perception. This inhibition impacts the comparison between light load training and heavy load strength training in terms of motor recruitment.

To maximize motor unit recruitment, it is essential to minimize interference mechanisms.

Spinal-level central nervous system fatigue develops with increasing repetitions, leading to resistance in signal transmission. Fatigue mechanisms, metabolite accumulation, and cardiorespiratory demands contribute to reaching the failure point. Interference mechanisms are responsible for the decrease in the maximum possible size of the signal to the muscles.

It is worth noting that fatigue in muscles is not caused by a lack of fuel supply but by the brain's interpretation of low fuel levels and metabolite accumulation. Recent studies refute the Energy Crisis Hypothesis, which suggests that ATP depletion causes muscle failure. Instead, fatigue mechanisms work to prevent ATP depletion by impeding its usage during contractions.

"Recovery"
Let me clarify the following before we proceed. Poor sleep and nutrition can negatively affect your training outcomes. This is a long-standing myth that says "There's no such thing as overtraining...only undereating and sleeping." However, that's not true. Feeling tired is not the same as fatigue, which is quantifiable and measurable. Fatigue can be caused by physiological factors, such as central and peripheral fatigue.

When it comes to training, there are some things to consider to determine whether it's an intelligent approach. One of the root mechanisms behind long-lasting fatigue is intracellular calcium ion overload, which can be caused by higher volumes, longer muscle lengths, intensifiers, and training to failure. This, in turn, triggers the release of calpains, causing muscle damage and fatigue interference at both the muscular and central nervous system levels.

Once this process starts, there's no way to reduce it. Therefore, the best "recovery tool" is not eating and sleeping, but having an intelligent training program that avoids these issues.

The Concept of Failure and Its Types
When it comes to exercising, understanding the concept of failure is crucial. Failure can be classified as task failure, there are "other" forms of failure but those don't really matter, like form failure or eccentric failure.

To quantify the task, we must establish a specific metric. For instance, in knee extension exercises, failure occurs when you are unable to achieve a fully extended knee. Standardizing the metrics in our training, including volume, rest periods, exercise sequence, and range of motion for each exercise, is essential to achieve progressive overload. Progressive overload is the best indicator that our training is causing adaptations in both neural and muscular systems.

While performing partials at the end of a set is acceptable, true failure is only achieved when you are unable to complete the range of motion established for that particular exercise.

Task failure is the point at which the brain reaches its maximum tolerable perception of effort, which limits further muscle fiber activation, despite the muscle's potential for more force production. Therefore, the brain terminates the exercise before reaching the actual local peripheral muscular failure point.

Task failure fundamentally involves the brain's regulation of effort perception, rather than the muscle's inability to produce force. The maximum tolerable perception of effort imposed by the brain determines the point of failure during exercise.

When it comes to force production, the brain is the limiting factor, not the muscles. The inability to continue recruiting motor units is due to the perception of effort. The corollary discharge acts as a copy signal from the brain's central motor command, and high levels of corollary discharge affect our perception of effort and recruitment. Fatigue mechanisms can influence corollary discharge and central motor command.

Sets are terminated when the maximal tolerable perception of effort is reached, and various factors can lead to the same reason for stopping a set. The size of corollary discharge affects central motor command, and interference mechanisms result in maximal tolerable perception of effort.

The Importance of Variety and Exercise Choice
It's important to choose the right exercises to get the most out of your workouts. Stable exercises are generally better for building muscle than unstable ones. While dumbbells are not useless, I would take machines over dumbbells any day. For example, using a chest-supported row is better than using a barbell row, and a converging chest press is better than using free weights or cables. Machines are stable. Machines will allow you to easily standardize your form on that exercise allowing you to accurately track progressive overload. There is an ease of setup with machines. There is a resistance profile through full ROM if it's a good machine. For example for chest: dumbbells are more difficult to coordinate and don’t offer up resistance to the pecs though-out the long-mid-short contractile ranges.

It's also important to use a variety of exercises over time to get the best results. Different parts of muscles need to be worked in different ways, so using different exercises that work the muscle at different lengths and with different resistance profiles can help it grow more evenly - this is called regional hypertrophy. This is why cables and machines exist.

Finally, it's not always best to stick to the basics like squats, bench presses, and deadlifts. These exercises may not be suitable for everyone, and relying solely on them will not maximize your muscular potential.

Machines > Cables > Free-weights

How to Warm-Up
Warm ups serve two main purposes. Firstly, they provide feedback on how an exercise is feeling on a particular day. Negative feedback may indicate the need for more warm ups or skipping the exercise altogether due to tightness or discomfort. Secondly, they help to determine where the loading should be for the top working set(s) to failure or close to failure. This is determined through a non-scientific method of eyeballing a place on the weight stack and seeing how it feels. Overcomplicating this process is unnecessary.

Thirdly, warm ups can prime the tissues for mechanical tension through the post-activation potentiation effect. However, overdoing warm ups is not necessary to achieve this effect. A difficult set is enough to potentiate the fibers for the working set, allowing you to determine where your loading for the top set will be.

There is no need for "nervous system priming" or other unnecessary complications. Motor unit recruitment is governed by the sensory part of the brain through voluntary activation, and this cannot be primed in any way.

The Myth of Time-Under-Tension
Bodybuilders often discuss the concept of "time under tension" to increase muscle growth. This involves slowing down the lowering (eccentric) and raising (concentric) portions while lifting weights. However, research shows that this is not an effective way to enhance hypertrophy. This is because it is not related to the force-time integral of maximal voluntary contractions that scientific research shows are related to mechanical tension in muscle fibers and resultant hypertrophy. The only reason eccentric and concentric portions should be used is to standardize your form to track progressive overload.

In other words, intentionally changing the speed at which you lift and lower weights of different magnitudes (e.g., heavy, light) doesn't matter. Muscle fiber pulling forces that generate growth (hypertrophy) only respond to the last few high-effort (i.e., maximal) reps of any set. Since these require the same signal as very fast lifting speeds with respect to the signal your brain sends to the motor neurons to lift the weight, slowing down submaximal reps doesn't do anything in terms of hypertrophy.

The only time under tension that is relevant is when high forces are being produced by the fibers controlled by the High Threshold Motor Units. This is about the last 4-6 reps in a set to failure. Longer times under tension will give you some endurance adaptations but that is mainly in the way of the RPE and fiber type shifts. So if you want to time the last 4-6 reps, sure. But it’s a meaningless thing to focus on.

However, a slower lowering phase can be beneficial. It doesn't need to be ultra-slow, and it won't add an excessive amount of mass. Ideally, you should aim for a lowering phase that is about three to four seconds. This is because the lowering phase in a rep is basically free tension, meaning it's not metabolically expensive. The force curve is flat in a lower phase, so whatever fibers are activated in that lowering phase will experience high degrees of tension. Slowing down the eccentric phase increases the amount of motor unit recruitment compared to just allowing it to "fall" or "drop." This is because when we slow the lowering, it increases the external forces, which requires a slight uptick in motor unit recruitment.

However, if the lowering phases become too slow, such as greater than four seconds, it creates fatigue that limits the number of repetitions that we can achieve. This reduces the total tension we will get from that set. Total tension = passive and active tension = more of a stimulus. If your lowering phase reduces the number of concentric contractions you can achieve, then the total tension drops comparatively.

It's worth noting that some exercises, such as laterals, barbell rows, and deadlifts, don't lend themselves well to slower eccentrics.

Lengthened Partials
Some research suggests that using partial lengthened range of motion (ROM) can result in more muscle growth than using full ROM. This is especially true for beginners who don't have longer muscle-length adaptations. Overloading the lengthened position can create more total tension, which leads to more muscle growth.

However, there are a few things to consider before using this method:

1. Not all muscles have good leverage at a longer length. If a muscle doesn't have good leverage at a longer length, it will not be trained well in that ROM. For example, the top of a lat pulldown may not be effective for some muscles.
2. Not all muscles benefit from stretch positions. Stretch-mediated hypertrophy is a very specific type of adaptation, and not all muscles experience it. If the research didn't measure the fascicle lengths, you cannot say that stretch-mediated hypertrophy occurred.
3. Some muscles are easily damaged. If this is the case, then it's best to avoid lengthened partials, as they may cause more muscle damage.
4. Highly experienced individuals may not see a lot of extra benefits from lengthened partials.

In general, partials are best used with caution. It's important to assess each muscle group individually to determine whether this technique is appropriate. For example, partials on lat pulldowns may not be ideal, but partials on lateral raises may be more effective. Finally, stretch-mediated hypertrophy is a specific type of adaptation, and it's important to understand the research before assuming that all muscles grow better from longer lengths.

Stretch-mediated Hypertrophy
If you do not know about SMH then don't bother worrying.

We have limited data on stretch-mediated hypertrophy, particularly in the upper body. The evidence that we do have mostly focuses on the lower body, such as the quads, hamstrings, adductors, and some glute research. Despite some biased claims, all research indicates that mechanical tension is the main driver of hypertrophy. Neither muscle damage nor metabolic stress has additive effects on it.

Stretch-mediated hypertrophy involves an increase in fiber size, which can be longitudinal or transverse. This is caused by the stretching of sarcomeres, which creates passive tension. The length-to-tension relationship via titin causes sarcomerogenesis, which is the addition of sarcomeres in a series. This increases the fiber/fascicle length. We determine if stretch-mediated hypertrophy occurred by measuring fascicle length. Concentric contractions create sarcomere addition in parallel, so we measure it by cross-sectional area. This is the default stance of the majority of science and scientists.

It should be noted that all muscle growth measurements that occur when using a stretched/longer length exercise are not stretch-mediated hypertrophy because concentric contractions did occur. The other telltale sign that sarcomerogenesis has occurred is a change in the angle of peak torque (APT). Not all muscles experience SMH, but the ones that do appear to be glutes, quads, hamstrings, and the pecs. No data shows that the biceps or triceps grow better from stretch, despite the belief of some that all muscles grow better at longer lengths. This is not supported by the data.

In all of the studies being used to support this claim, there’s a commonality: they are all on untrained subjects. Stretch-mediated hypertrophy is quite limited in the time of the first few months of training. This is because the adaptation to that type of contraction is sarcomerogenesis, which means adding sarcomeres in a series. Once there are enough sarcomeres in a series, the sarcomeres no longer lengthen as much as before, and passive tension isn’t generated to the same magnitude. So there is no more “stretch-mediated hypertrophy” because those adaptations are gone (this can also be seen in the changes in angle of peak torque).

To add, the idea that stretch can “overcome lack of leverage” is a made-up fairy tale. In strength training, for a fiber to experience tension, it must first be activated. That is a fact. Second, for a fiber to get an action potential from the central motor command in the brain, it has to have leverage (neuromechanical matching). That means when leverage is low or none, there will be little to no activation of those fibers. This means that even if their length-to-tension relationship could allow passive tension, they won’t experience the tension that comes from stretch because they aren’t activated. This is how physiology works.

Lastly, stretch-mediated hypertrophy also occurs during the lowering/lengthening phase of contraction mode. That means that you’re also dealing with about half of the number of active muscle fibers that you have in a concentric. The fibers that do experience SMH are the ones on the low to moderate end of the high threshold motor unit pool and have a limited degree of hypertrophy anyway. This is why only beginners or detrained individuals will experience SMH, and only in certain muscles. SMH/lengthened partials do not apply to trained individuals.

Myth of Metabolic Stress, Muscle Damage/Micro Tears, Satellite Cells and Proliferation
Recent studies, including the latest one (PMID: 37841321), show no evidence of metabolic stress being linked to muscle growth or anabolic signaling. Moreover, the mechanism of metabolic stress as a growth factor has never been proven.

Muscle growth is not a result of microtears or damage caused by exercise. The idea that muscle fibers get torn down and then built back bigger is incorrect. Additionally, the increase in satellite cell or proliferation does not contribute to muscle growth.

According to another study (PMID: 29282529), muscle damage is not the process that mediates or potentiates resistance-training-induced muscle hypertrophy.- The optimal volume for muscle growth is about 6 sets per muscle in a training session, and it is not recommended to exceed this limit.

It is incorrect to assume that all muscles grow better from stretching. Some people believe that stretching is the key to muscle growth, but this is not true. It is necessary to acknowledge that operating sarcomere lengths exist, the length-to-tension relationship exists, and muscle fiber length determines tension.

Intelligent Training Design
Heavy loads: This refers to lifting weights that are approximately 85% of your maximum weight for a given exercise.
4-8 reps: This is the recommended rep range when using heavy loads for maximum effectiveness during your workout.
3-6 sets per muscle group: When working out, group muscles together to make the most of your time. For example, you can group biceps, triceps, quads, hams, glutes, pecs, delts, and calves. Aim for 3-6 sets per muscle group.
2-3 minute rest periods: Allow sufficient rest periods to reduce fatigue and achieve optimal motor recruitment during your workout.
0-1 RIR on your work sets: While training to failure can be stimulating, it is not always necessary. Use heavier loads to activate motor unit recruitment from the first repetition.
Workout split: There is no one-size-fits-all approach to workout splits. Choose a split that works best for you and fits within your recovery ability. It is generally recommended to work each muscle group 1-2 times per week based on your own recovery ability.

Remember that these are general guidelines, and exceptions may apply based on individual preferences and physical conditions.

Based on the research data available, training a muscle group more frequently doesn’t show much of a benefit compared to training it once a week, as long as the total volume of exercise is the same. This means that doing the same amount of exercise divided into more sessions can lead to better results. The reason for this is that most training programs have some overlap in the muscles being worked, and it takes very little effort to maintain existing muscle mass. Therefore, even if you split up your workout into more sessions, your muscles will still receive enough stimulus to grow and maintain their mass. Some people think that working out a muscle group more often is better because it allows them to divide their workout into smaller parts and do more volume overall. However, it's important to note that the amount of sets and reps you do for each muscle group should be individualized and not the same for every body part. Ultimately, the frequency of your workouts is a very individualized factor, so there isn't a one-size-fits-all answer.

How Much Muscle Can You Gain Over a Lifetime
If you train intelligently, with appropriate volumes and close-to-failure efforts, and eat in a way that supports muscle growth, you can expect to add around 35-45 pounds of muscle if you're a man and 20-25 if you're a woman. This is the cap that most people hit after 5-8 years of proper training. However, if you start later in life, you will probably find it harder to reach this cap, as you will lose the ability to recruit the fibers controlled by the highest end of the motor unit pool as you age.

For men, you can expect to add around 20-25 pounds in the first year. In the second year, men may add another 10 pounds and women 5 pounds. In the third year, men may add another 5-8 pounds, and women should expect half that amount. After the fourth year, you can only expect to gain a couple of pounds a year at most.

While there are always exceptions, such as the 1% of people who can add more muscle than this cap, there are also non-responders who may struggle to gain much muscle at all, no matter what they do.

If you want to know where you stand, you can use any of the Fat-Free Mass Index Calculators, which require you to accurately know your body fat percentage or to be honest about it. A body fat percentage of 25 is generally considered the cut-off. Some calculators also take your joint circumference into account.

In summary, there is no black-and-white answer to questions about bulking, cutting, and starting older. However, understanding this information should help you get a rough idea of what you can expect to achieve with a decade of intelligent training.

Fiber Type Doesn't Matter
There's a lot of debate over whether certain types of exercises are better for building muscle than others. Some people say that the type of muscle fibers you have determines which exercises are most effective. But recent studies have shown that this isn't true. In fact, it doesn't matter what type of muscle fibers you have - you can still build muscle effectively no matter what type of exercise you do.

One thing that does matter is the number of reps you do. Studies have shown that if you do the same number of reps with heavy weights or light weights, you'll get the same results. The important thing is to do enough stimulating reps for your muscles. This means that you can choose whatever type of exercise you enjoy the most, and still get great results.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the way you recruit muscle fibers changes depending on how heavy the weight is. If you're lifting really heavy weights, you'll recruit all your muscle fibers from the very first rep. But if you're lifting lighter weights, you'll recruit your smaller muscle fibers first, and then recruit the larger ones as you get tired.

So, what's the bottom line? The type of exercise you do doesn't matter as much as how many reps you do and how heavy the weight is. And the best exercise for you is the one you enjoy doing the most.

What You Should Do During A Cut
During a cut, many people make the mistake of increasing the volume and frequency of their workouts, as well as using various intensity techniques. However, this is the worst thing to do if you want to lose fat and retain muscle mass.

Instead, if you want to change your training during a cut, the smart move would be to do the following:
1. Reduce the volume of your workouts to the minimum amount you need to retain your muscle mass, as you're not trying to build muscle during a cut.
2. Focus on your cardio and non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT) as your primary energy expenditure systems.
3. Remember that your diet is your main tool for losing fat.

Generally, you don't have to change your resistance training sessions from your gaining phase to your cutting phase.

The idea that more calories means more training is not accurate, as once the growth threshold is met, the extra calories will only be stored as fat. Having a higher caloric intake ceiling does not raise the amount of work you can do to increase hypertrophy stimulus either.

Being glycogen-depleted can indeed reduce motor unit recruitment and mechanical tension. However, this only reinforces the idea that you should focus on the minimum necessary to retain muscle mass during a cut, which is around 3-4 working sets per week.

By doing so, you can feel confident that your short and sweet training sessions are providing enough volume to maintain your gains while focusing on cardio, NEAT, and your diet to facilitate fat loss, as these are your three best synergistic weapons.

During a cut, the last thing you should be doing is high-volume, high-rep, high-frequency, or other intense workouts. Instead, focus on the minimum necessary for muscle retention in resistance training and maximize the fat loss effects that come from the calorie deficit via your diet, NEAT, and cardio.

Here are some simple tips:

1. Diet is the most important factor when it comes to losing fat. There is no specific training plan or exercise that can help you lose fat. You can lose weight even if you don't exercise at all. However, if you want to maintain or build muscle while losing fat, you should focus on good training principles.
2. Walking is a great way to get some cardio exercise. Aim to walk 10-15K steps a day, depending on your fitness level.
3. Find a nutritional approach that you enjoy. For example, you can eat in a significant calorie deficit during the week and have a cheat meal on Saturday.
4. Everyone is different, so what works for me might not work for you. The key is to find an approach that you enjoy and can stick to.
5. Remember that diet is the most important factor when it comes to losing fat. You need to get your diet dialed in first before you can see results.
6. Don't believe that steroids burn fat. They don't. Anyone can get lean with the right diet and exercise routine.

How To Overcome A Plateau
Plateaus in strength and growth are inevitable. Generally, we use progressive overload to measure if the program we are doing is working. By "working," I mean that we are getting the muscular adaptations we are training for. As per my post yesterday, the answer to more progress as you grow isn't "more volume." It's higher degrees of motor unit recruitment.

The reason we hit a plateau is usually because:
1. We have maxed out our leverage at the joint angles we are loading in those exercises.
2. Fatigue is too high and does not allow for progressive overload.
3. We are not getting enough motor unit recruitment for progressive overload to occur or continue.

If you hit a plateau in your training, here are some things to consider before changing the exercise:

1. Increase loading - If you have been doing sets of 12-15, increase the loading to something that takes you down to 5-6 reps at 1 RIR. This will increase the motor unit recruitment earlier in the set, rather than using loading that needs fatiguing mechanisms to create the need for greater effort. This also takes care of problem number 2.

2. Reduce fatigue interference mechanisms - This means resting at least 2 minutes between sets to allow the central nervous system to recover. This will also allow higher degrees of motor unit recruitment in the subsequent sets and should allow for more reps or load than you had previously done if you were taking short rest periods.

3. Add an extra rest day during the week - No one is getting adequate recovery training 7 days a week, even if you're seeing progressive overload occur training 7 days a week. It would be better to have some rest days in there that allow muscle damage and the inflammatory response to it to subside.

There is No Advantage to Free-Weights over Machines.
Some people believe that machine-based exercises don't build stabilizers, or that they will cause injury if used exclusively. Others argue that beginners should focus on mastering the basics. This is just silly.

  • PMID: 37340878
What the study did was have one group of trained individuals use free weights while performing exercises that targeted their stabilizers, and another group use machines to perform the same exercises. The study found that beginners should focus on using lighter weights to build a strong foundation. However, if your goal is hypertrophy, then the tool you choose should depend on what best suits your goals, not on arbitrary beliefs. To sum up the study's findings, they compared different training modalities on various athletic capacities, muscle architecture parameters, and maximum strength tests. Contrary to the traditional belief that free weights are superior, they found that athletic performance and muscle architecture adaptations were not significantly influenced by the resistance modality trained. Therefore, athletes who use resistance training as a complement to their field- or track-specific training can use either free weights or machines, depending on their preferences and possibilities.

Steroids
There is no such thing as "just one cycle". You will become addicted.

There is no point hopping on steroids if you have limited knowledge about training and dieting or what works best for you. If you hop on you must be ready to monitor how your body responds in terms of health, side effects, psychological effects, and benefits. You must pay attention to how your body responds to different types of drugs when taken together. It is also important to consider that you can get very far with very minimal drug use.
  • Steroids are not magic.
  • Everyone reacts to steroids differently, you will not know how much mass you can gain until you hop on, and you will not know if you have side effects until you hop on, the best you can do is minimize risk by taking low dosages at the start and then tapering upwards.
  • Blood work is extremely important.
  • Do your research on different compounds, there are very good informative youtube channels like vigorous steve, Leo and Longevity, and some others. Sometimes experience threads on forums are helpful to see what kind of side-effects people get on certain compounds.
  • If you can't afford to cycle then don't.
  • If you're too retarded to cycle intelligently then don't.
  • Health and preventative and reactive measures prepared before anything.

Cold-Immersion Is Bad For Strength and Hypertrophy
Cold water immersion, also known as ice baths, has been studied extensively. Every study that has looked at cold water immersion post-training shows that it reduces adaptations from resistance training. Therefore, if you're training for strength or muscle growth, avoiding cold water immersion post-training is a must. A meta-analysis of regular cold water immersion use on training-induced changes in strength and endurance performance found that it has a harmful effect on one-repetition maximum, maximum isometric strength, and strength endurance performance associated with resistance training. However, the same meta-analysis showed that it does not affect endurance exercise. Another meta-analysis on pre-cooling showed only moderate improvements to endurance performance, and the studies used are limited, weak in design, and subject to bias, as noted in the meta-analysis itself.

As for the health benefits of cold water immersion, the paper consistently cited support for that is "Health effects of voluntary exposure to cold water – a continuing subject of debate." However, this study is inconclusive as it only looks at mice cells in a lab and brown fat activation, and no research definitively connects brown fat activation with health benefits. There are no large randomized controlled trials, no strong study design, and no control group vs. cold water swimmers. Therefore, the review is a nothing burger of studies that prove zero about cold water immersion.

Regarding mental health improvements, there is absolutely zero proof that cold water immersion alone boosts mental health outside of a placebo effect. No studies have shown that the Wim Hof method or cold water immersion alone improves mental health without exercise such as swimming. Taking a dip in cold water might make you feel more alert and energized, but there is no significant health benefit as of right now. In summary, the science about cold water immersion says that it is bad for strength and hypertrophy but may have some benefits for endurance athletes. No strong randomized controlled trials are proving that cold water immersion has significant health benefits. Therefore, it needs better, stronger science to prove its health benefits.

PMID: 23249542

Last 2-3kg of Lean Tissue
To get the last bits of muscle as an advanced lifter, it's important to avoid the common misconception that doing a lot of volume is the key. In fact, a reduction in motor unit recruitment is the actual goal. Therefore, if we're just recruiting the motor units we're already good at, there will be no gains. Instead, we need to focus on bringing up lagging body parts, improving muscle divisions or regions, and doing this over many years/meso cycles to add up to that last 2-3kg

To achieve this, we should focus on using more single joint exercises, varying resistance profiles to target regions or divisions of a muscle at joint angles in the ROM, using highly stable exercises, and probably using some more unilateral movements for more motor unit recruitment. Additionally, we should train the target muscle first in the workout, use minimal volume/sets for the muscles that we are just putting into maintenance, and probably do some stuff we don't like/have neglected for years and years.

What we should not do is perform tons of volume, do the same stuff we've been doing, train muscles at longer lengths (unless it's a novel exercise), or do more of the big compounds or compound lifts in general. By following these guidelines, we can achieve the last 2-3kg of muscle growth without causing excessive volume, which can lead to more calcium ion related muscle damage and create an inflammatory response that also creates central fatigue.

The Biggest Mistake in Coaching
The worst thing you can do is the constant focus on "less of this muscle" in the cues. This approach is backwards and counterproductive. The cues should aim to help you get more out of the tissue you're trying to target, instead of focusing on less of something else.

For example, telling someone to "take the traps out of lateral raises" is poor coaching. The traps play an important role in stabilizing and articulating the scapula movement so that the middle delts can abduct the humerus. The goal here is to work on building more delts, not less traps.

Similarly, telling someone to "round your back to make it less erectors" is also poor coaching. The erectors are synergists that help stabilize the spine and pelvis. The goal here is to work on building more glutes, not less lower back. So, the focus should be on tucking your chin and focusing on hip extension, and not on spinal flexion.

Good coaching should focus on cues, movements, and motions that help get the absolute greatest amount of output from the muscle(s) we want to train and grow, instead of trying to take muscles out of movements when they have a job to do.

SHITTIEST COPES FOR BEGINNER HYPERTROPHY
  • You cannot weight train in a way to increase testosterone levels that increase total muscle mass. Your squats and deadlifts will do nothing for your test.
  • Cold-Water-Immersion/Ice-Bath For Recovery
  • "Biasing" the muscle.
  • The scapular plane isn't as magical as it seems.
  • Stretch-Mediated Hypertrophy.
  • "Hyperplasia Training"
  • Turning hypertrophy training into cardio by not taking adequate rest periods, they should be 2-3 minutes.
  • Only training with dumbbells or barbells.
  • Doing too much volume. Fatigue is the biggest deterrent in making training progress because it creates an interference effect to recruiting motor units or mechanically loading the fastest fibers.
  • Not accurately logging progressive overload and just doing whatever whilst training.
  • Mind-to-muscle connection.
  • Full ROM on everything. Simply doing more range of motion doesn’t mean “more development” of a muscle if it doesn’t even have leverage through that whole ROM.
  • Using different rep ranges.
  • trying to min-max PEDs, cortisol, hormones, etc. that comes later.
  • some other stuff I've forgotten
if you have read all of this thread, congratulations, you might've learned something.
 
  • +1
  • Love it
  • Woah
Reactions: zxim, Jeww, Deleted member 61309 and 60 others
Dnrd but I will look into it later
Very high effort and BotB tier from the looks of it
 
  • +1
Reactions: aber, EzikoIsHere, mathis and 9 others
DNR, just pick heavy weight up then put it down
 
  • +1
  • WTF
  • JFL
Reactions: cromagnon, Mewton, Aesthetic.pilled and 17 others
dnr
 
  • +1
Reactions: socialcel
Bump High effort
 
  • +1
Reactions: aspiringexcel, thecel and redfacccee
Jfl how Does racebaiting get more attention than this
 
  • +1
Reactions: Mewton, Deleted member 25377, triggr and 6 others
just blast roids bro
 
  • +1
  • JFL
Reactions: mike21 and socialcel
Jfl how Does racebaiting get more attention than this
i just hope this is useful and finds the ones that seek knowledge on how to intelligently and effectively train, it doesn't matter if it gets attention or not. i could have made this thread 10x longer but like 1% of .org cares about training.
 
  • +1
Reactions: Mewton, Maalik, Deleted member 51465 and 1 other person
Great thread. Already knew all of this but perfect formatting.

@thecel would like
 
  • +1
Reactions: Mewton, Deleted member 25377, lowiqNormie and 3 others
immaculate thread bro, read every word. don’t listen to the retards saying dnr
 
  • +1
Reactions: It'snotover, Deleted member 25377, Deleted member 51465 and 2 others
Jfl how Does racebaiting get more attention than this
pisses me off. people are less likely to make beneficial threads like these if someone posting bbc threads are going to get more attention with a tenth of the effort
 
  • +1
Reactions: Maalik, Deleted member 51465, murdah and 2 others
High IQ thread and a good collection for all current up to date information on hypertrophy.

I have one question here though: you say biasing the muscle is cope, however there are studies that show different activation of different heads in a muscle group. Eg, during my arm workout I will do 2x concentration curls w/ internal rotation for short head then 2x incline curl w/ external rotation for long head of bicep (not directly after each other). Are you saying this is pointless? I have seen an increase in my biceps since I started doing this
 
Last edited:
  • +1
Reactions: Maalik and redfacccee
dnr because my genetically engineered body does not need a hypertrophy guide… bumped because you tried
 
  • JFL
Reactions: ShowerMaxxing and redfacccee
High IQ thread and a good collection for all current up to date information on hypertrophy.

I have one question here though: you say biasing the muscle is cope, however there are studies that show different activation of different heads in a muscle group. Eg, during my arm workout I will do 2x concentration curls w/ internal rotation for short head then 2x incline curl w/ external rotation for long head of bicep (not directly after each other). Are you saying this is pointless? I have seen an increase in my biceps since I started doing this
Complicating things is not necessary to achieve desired results when it comes to building biceps. The truth is, elbow flexion exercises that are consistently performed with progressive overload can lead to maximum arm growth for nearly all individuals. This is because both the short and long heads of the biceps contribute very similarly in every type of curl variation. Therefore, choosing a curl variation that suits your preference is all that is required. The key to success is finding what works best for you. My personal opinion is that this approach (biasing) is more suitable for advanced lifters. I've achieved most of my gains by using machines due to the convenience of setup and stability and without any biasing.

Boeckh-Behrens & Buskies conducted a study in 2000 that investigated the activity of both biceps heads in various exercises. Their findings led them to conclude that there was no evident biasing present.
 
Last edited:
  • +1
Reactions: Deleted member 49130
  • +1
Reactions: Spergi, Maalik, Deleted member 51465 and 1 other person
Botb hopefully
 
  • +1
Reactions: redfacccee
pin guide mods @Gengar @NumbThePain @Squirtle @Gargantuan
 
  • +1
Reactions: Jason Voorhees
Bluecels and greycels making better content than rest of .org check.
 
  • +1
Reactions: Deleted member 51465, ShowerMaxxing, Skywalker and 3 others
Doing max rom on evwdything cost me time
 
Nigga just pick up and push some heavy ass weights around, its not that hard
 
Nigga just pick up and push some heavy ass weights around, its not that hard
nobody is forcing u to read this thread nigga. this is for people who have more than a singular brain cell and are interested in how it works
 
  • JFL
  • +1
Reactions: It'snotover, mike21, ShowerMaxxing and 3 others
high iq thread. Mirin the effort. I am trying to progressively overload with less reps for maximum hypertrophy.
 
  • +1
Reactions: redfacccee
Doing max rom on evwdything cost me time
the gym becomes time-consuming if you're taking adequate rest times, this is the only time dropsets, supersets, myo-reps, and rest-pause techniques are viable, they save you time.
 
Out of all routines I've tried, the one method that works the best is starting with heavy low reps let's say 3x3 and after doing 4 sets of 10-15

Also Isometrics are extremely underated, pushing as hard as you can against an immovable object, this will build dense powerful muscles
 
  • +1
Reactions: redfacccee
this will build dense powerful muscles
Not most of org's goal, I don't care all that much about how much I can lift just the size of muscle
 
  • +1
Reactions: ShowerMaxxing, redfacccee and R@m@
Not most of org's goal, I don't care all that much about how much I can lift just the size of muscle
For someone who doesn't have a barbell and weights is a good way to stimulate the muscle like you would do on low rep sets lifting heavy, it's a good way to build size, for example isometric deadlifts, push as hard as you can at the bottom position for 3 seconds and push as hard as you can at almost lockout position for 3 seconds.
Same for other exercises
 
honestly high IQ and probably BOTB worthy but I'm gonna say it's shit since you said my ascension guide was shit 😂👍
 
  • +1
Reactions: pentamogged9000
Out of all routines I've tried, the one method that works the best is starting with heavy low reps let's say 3x3 and after doing 4 sets of 10-15

Also Isometrics are extremely underated, pushing as hard as you can against an immovable object, this will build dense powerful muscles
isometrics are good but there's no secret sauce, i only use isometrics when its my failing rep
 
  • +1
Reactions: R@m@
Not most of org's goal, I don't care all that much about how much I can lift just the size of muscle
you should be caring how much you lift in terms of progressively overloading..
 
  • Hmm...
Reactions: pentamogged9000
All of that for zero horizontal clavicle growth and zero waist reduction :(
 
SCIENTIFICALLY BACKED GYMCEL/HYPERTROPHY INFORMATION/GUIDE

When building muscle, the primary factor for muscle growth is mechanical tension. In this thread, we will try to understand the nuances behind hypertrophy so we can train intelligently. Let's go ahead and upgrade your knowledge. This is not for low iqcels although I did simplify as much as possible :)

if you don't bother reading or have the attention span of a monkey that's on you.​

Table of Contents
  • The Actual Principles Behind Hypertrophy
  • For Serious Bodybuilders
  • Mechanical Tension: The Primary Driver of Hypertrophy
  • Progressive Overload and Why It Is So Important
  • How Much Volume Do You Need To Make Gains?
  • The Only Time You Should Use High-Volume
  • Understanding Effective/Stimulating Reps Model
  • Understanding Fatigue
  • "Recovery"
  • The Concept of Failure and Its Types
  • The Importance of Variety and Exercise Choice
  • How to Warm-Up
  • The Myth of Time-Under-Tension
  • Lengthened Partials
  • Stretch-mediated Hypertrophy
  • Myth of Metabolic Stress, Muscle Damage/Micro Tears, Satellite Cells and Proliferation
  • Intelligent Training Design
  • How Much Muscle Can You Gain Over a Lifetime
  • Fiber Type Doesn't Matter
  • What You Should Do During A Cut
  • How To Overcome A Plateau
  • There is No Advantage to Free-Weights over Machines.
  • Steroids
  • Cold-Immersion Is Bad For Strength and Hypertrophy
  • Last 2-3KG of Muscle
  • The Biggest Mistake in Coaching
  • SHITTIEST COPES FOR BEGINNER HYPERTROPHY
(this thread will not include nutrition or how to exactly eat)

The Actual Principles Behind Hypertrophy

To help bodybuilders achieve their goals and excel, these three pillars can be adjusted and utilized as effective tools.
These pillars are:
  • Training
  • Physique-Enhancing Drugs (PEDs)
  • Nutrition
If you want to build muscle as an average joe, it's not as complicated as it may seem. Here are some basic principles to keep in mind:
1. Exercise 3-5 days a week.
2. Work out each muscle group 1-2 times a week.
3. Do 3-6 sets of 1-3 exercises for each body part.
4. Progressively overload in weight and reps, track it with a logbook or app.
5. Choose a workout routine that you enjoy and that challenges you.
6. Eat.

The two most important stimulus factors in hypertrophy are:
1. Mechanical tension
2. Progressive overload

What you don't need:
  • Pre-workout or test-boosters or other retarded supplements.
  • You don't need intensity techniques like supersets, dropsets, etc.
  • Sub-optimal training with no days off.
  • Endless sets/reps until you're absolutely fatigued.

For beginners, a three-day whole-body workout plan using compound exercises is a great way to get started.

As you gain more experience, you may want to learn more about how to build muscle and why certain exercises work better than others. However, there is no "secret" workout routine that will magically transform your body. What matters most is that you stay consistent, challenge yourself, and gradually increase the difficulty of your workouts.

It's important to remember that developing a great physique takes time and effort. You won't see results overnight, but if you stick with your workout routine and stay committed you'll see massive improvement.

It's not endless sets/reps.

For Serious Bodybuilders (Optional Read)
As a bodybuilder, it is important to approach training rationally rather than relying on intuition or randomness. A planned and systematic approach should be taken to maximize the desired adaptations and achieve your objectives. This approach should encompass phase potentiation phenomena, which is the gradual progression through different training phases.

For instance, during the off-season, a bodybuilder should use resistance training with heavy loads to increase tension on the sarcolemma/sarcomere over 3-6 weeks. This should be done in selected exercises based on biomechanical and anatomical principles, as well as the individual bodybuilder's anthropometrics and weak points. This will increase the recruitment of higher threshold motor units and prepare the body for subsequent methods that stimulate tissue and cell volume increases.

During the in-season, a bodybuilder should use resistance training methods that stimulate recomposition (increased lean body mass and decreased fat mass) in combination with a cyclical ketogenic-style dietary regimen. This can be achieved by using volume methods and low carbohydrate/calorie intakes for glycogen supercompensation, followed by tension methods with moderate carbohydrate/calorie intakes, and finally heavy maximal strength methods with high energy and carbohydrate intakes, on a 7 or 8 day microcycle.

Hypertrophy is best achieved by stimulating the sarcomere or muscle cell rather than destroying it through repetitive failure training. To achieve long-term progression, resistance training loads and volumes should be optimally and efficiently maximized while mitigating fatigue and catabolism induced by overreaching and overtraining.

Novice bodybuilders can benefit from any kind of resistance training. However, to advance towards an intermediate status, the principle of progressive overload should be followed. This means using increasingly managed loading schemes to increase muscular strength and the use of training methods including tension and volume training. For advanced trainees, a planned periodized plan designed by an expert becomes necessary to achieve competitive or ambitious amateur bodybuilding objectives, including limited but effective use of intensification methods. As the bodybuilder approaches elite status, the synergistic use of PEDs becomes necessary for continued progression.

The suitability of adopting a more aggressive or conservative approach to progression when it comes to training depends on several factors. These factors include the person's age, the strength and health of their joints and connective tissues, their experience with high-intensity training and heavy loads (i.e., 5-rep max or heavier), their inherent drive for motivation, and their ability to recover (which is influenced by genetic factors, nutrition, and drug response or performance-enhancing drug selection).

Nutrition is essential for human metabolism and performing tasks such as locomotion and resistance training. Macro- and micro-nutrients, along with water, provide the basic units of energy and necessary substrates that are not synthesized by the body. Nutritional approaches involve strategies like caloric restriction and increased protein intake to support fat loss and tactics such as structured refeeds and increased dietary fiber intake to increase stomach volume and feelings of fullness with low energy densities. Nutrition is fundamental and once planned rationally, it is straightforward, but not effortless. Nutritional adherence is crucial for success in accomplishing the objectives of a periodized plan aimed toward maximizing performance.

If I expanded on this, it would be a whole 'nother long-ass thread. If you want to learn more look up periodization.

Mechanical Tension: Primary Driver of Hypertrophy
Muscles are made up of many individual muscle fibers. When we train, we must stimulate these fibers to grow. As we increase protein content in the fibers, they grow in size, resulting in an increase in muscle size.

To trigger the need for remodeling, we need to engage muscle fibers in a way that generates mechanical tension. Contraction velocity plays a significant role in this process. Slow, involuntary muscle contractions generate a high level of force, effectively loading the active fibers.

Stimulating muscle growth requires the activation of as many muscle fibers as possible during a set. This is achieved through the activation of high-threshold motor units. Motor units are activated from smallest to largest. By activating more motor units, a greater number of muscle fibers are also engaged, leading to thorough fatigue of these fibers. Once the active muscle fibers reach the stage of fatigue where they can no longer produce enough force to move the external load, failure is reached.

This culmination of factors sets off the signal for muscle growth known as mechanotransduction, prompting mTOR signaling. This signaling pathway regulates muscle protein synthesis, kickstarting the growth process.

This means that our training necessitates a high degree of effort in the sets performed after warm-up, we must create a substantial intramuscular force that effectively loads the fibers and initiates the growth mechanism. These sets can be referred to as "work sets" or "growth sets," distinguished by their elevated effort and exertion compared to other sets in a training session. It's important to understand that simply lifting heavier weights or performing more reps doesn't necessarily equate to increased MT.

The proximity to failure is a crucial factor for MT, as the last few reps (research shows there are about 5 stimulating reps in a set) in a set leading to failure are the most stimulating for hypertrophy. These last reps involve full motor unit recruitment and a slower contraction velocity, which are key elements behind MT.

It's essential to recognize that "volume" in exercise primarily reflects the number of reps. What truly matters for muscle growth is the volume of repetitions that meet the stimulating rep criteria. Load or weight is just a proxy for failure, achieving failure with heavier loads requires fewer reps compared to moderate or lighter loads, but it's the stimulating reps that count.

While there are exercises that allow for greater motor unit recruitment of the target muscle, the level of MT experienced by muscle fibers depends on contraction velocity, rather than specific exercises. Factors like stability, joint angle, and range of motion are more related to motor unit recruitment and leverage than to MT.

It's also worth noting that each set in a strength training workout becomes slightly less effective than the previous one. Therefore, there isn't a linear relationship between sets near failure and muscle growth. When in doubt, training to failure with fewer sets could be more effective than aiming for higher volume with a certain level of proximity to failure.

Progressive Overload: Why It Is So Important
One of the most important principles of gaining muscle is progressive overload. This, along with mechanical tension, can help you achieve your fitness goals. However, it is also one of the most misunderstood principles. So, let me clear up what progressive overload really means, what it doesn't mean, and what it does and does not do.

Progressive overload means that you are capable of doing more reps, more weight, or some combination of both, under the same conditions that you used previously. This allows you to keep the stimulus on the muscle fibers being trained the same from workout to workout. Progressive overload does not increase mechanical tension; it simply allows you to keep it equal. Remember that any set to failure will have 5 stimulating reps in it. So
if I'm capable of doing 35kg curls for 6 reps in one workout, but in the following workout I'm capable of 35kg for 8 but only do the 6 reps again, then I provided less stimulus to those fibers. if you do the 8 reps that you are now capable of doing then you are progressively overloading, it doesn't have to be every week.

Progressive overload is keeping the stimulus on the muscle fibers being trained the same workout to workout by doing what you are maximally capable of doing or at least close to maximum capability. if you can repeatedly progressively overload on your exercises then that means your training is working and that muscular and neural adaptations are occurring.

What progressive overload is not is adding sets to your current program (or even new exercises). The appropriate term for adding sets or volume is progressive volume load or an increase in volume load. So, if you're not making progress, then the first step is always to make an effort to progressively overload the exercises you've been doing.

To accurately track progressive overload, use an app or logbook. Weights, reps, RIR, pain, "feeling".

How Much Volume Do You Need To Make Gains?
How much volume is needed to maximize muscular gains?

We already know that volume is simply a measure of contractions, but not all contractions are the same. Only contractions that cause mechanical tension can be counted as volume. This means that volume, in this context, refers to stimulating reps. The "stimulating reps" model suggests that only the last 5 reps in a set to failure cause hypertrophy. This is because there is an involuntary slowing of bar speed which indicates a high degree of force in the active muscle fibers. This is mechanical tension.

However, research shows that 12 sets compared to 8 sets only caused a small increase in myofibrillar protein synthesis and was not associated with more hypertrophy. This means that more sets only produce more muscle damage to recover from, and not more muscle growth. This means that volume has an effective "range".

Since training to failure or close to it is needed to create a volume of mechanical tension, what is the other factor? Rest periods. Longer rest periods (2-3+ minutes) consistently show that less volume is needed to maximize hypertrophy outcomes. Research shows that 2-3+ minute rest periods between sets give you the same muscle growth in about half the volume as short rest periods do.

The plateau for volume-creating muscle growth appears to be 4-6 sets for a muscle group per workout. Research shows that in some individuals more than 6-8 sets can cause regression. So, 4-6 sets appear to be the sweet spot of volume for most people to maximize gains. Even fewer sets, such as 2-3 sets, will still produce meaningful results.

If myofibrillar protein synthesis is elevated for over 48 hours due to 4-6 sets, depending on the training split, you only need to hit a muscle directly once every 5 days or so. This lines up with research that shows bro splits seem to work as well as higher frequency when volume is equated.

To sum it all up, the optimal volume for most people appears to be 4-6 sets per session for a muscle with 2-3+ minute rest periods. Hitting a muscle 1-2 times a week seems to produce similar results.

When you start training, you recruit small numbers of fibers, which are mostly oxidative in type. As you progress and develop the ability to recruit larger motor units, you activate bigger fibers that are more likely to be damaged. Every set you perform in a workout reduces motor unit recruitment as well. Therefore, doing tons of volume is not the answer to gaining more mass. In fact, it may lead to a reduction in motor unit activation and increase fatigue. The key to building muscle is improving motor unit recruitment and finding new ways to activate and load fibers that you are not using. Additionally, you need to minimize fatigue, both CNS and peripheral.

1 set to failure has been shown to increase MPS up to 130% 5 hours post training and doesn’t return to baseline until 29 hours later.
3 sets to failure increased MPS up to 210% within 5 hours, and it was still elevated by 130% 29 hours later.
study below shows that 12 sets instead of 8 did not result in more muscle growth even though there was a small increase in MPS suggesting that the increase was due to a greater amount of muscle damage and not a greater hypertrophy stimulus.

PMID: 20581041

The Only Time You Should Use High-Volume
I suggest that if you want to increase the volume of your training, you should choose shorter muscle-length movements. This is because the fatigue mechanism associated with these movements is metabolite accumulation, which is confined to the workout. As long as your reps are low to moderate, you can minimize the degree of fatigue interference.

However, it is important to note that not all muscles experience significant tension at short lengths due to their length-to-tension relationship. For the most part, it is safe to increase the volume of exercises like lateral raises, leg extensions, lying leg curls, glute bridges, thrusts, kickbacks, pushdowns, and partial range-of-motion pec deck exercises.

With longer muscle lengths, even the ones that benefit from stretch-mediated hypertrophy, those adaptations are limited in time span and are related to your training experience. Moreover, they activate the stretch-activated ion channels that cause the overflow of intracellular calcium. Once that happens, subsequent workouts may be affected by the inflammation caused by muscle damage.

This doesn't mean that you should avoid longer muscle-length movements altogether, but you should limit the volume of these exercises the most.

Understanding Effective/Stimulating Reps Model
If you’re not familiar with the effective/stimulating reps model, you may not fully understand what “junk volume” is and what sets contribute to hypertrophy. This model explains that all sets taken to failure, regardless of rep range, produce similar hypertrophy outcomes.

The stimulating reps model suggests that the only reps that produce growth stimulus are the last five reps in a set taken to failure. This happens because of the size principle and the force-velocity relationship. The size principle states that we recruit motor units from smallest to largest. Research shows that 85% of MVIC (maximal voluntary isometric contraction) results in full motor unit recruitment. EMG also indicates that in the last five reps or so, activation tends to plateau, which confirms full motor unit recruitment.

Since 85% of a one-rep max is about five reps, it follows that the last five reps of a set taken to failure should result in maximum motor unit recruitment. Additionally, during these last five reps, contraction velocity slows and produces high degrees of force, which creates mechanical tension in the active fibers. Mechanical tension is what drives hypertrophy.

Regarding the question of whether one should always train to failure, the answer is no. One to two reps in reserve will produce similar (but not the same) outcomes for hypertrophy with slightly less fatigue. However, if you keep your reps in the 5-8 range, the difference in fatigue is not significant.

Understanding Fatigue
Fatigue is a common phenomenon that occurs following physical exertion, characterized by the temporary decline of the body's performance, resulting in a feeling of tiredness and weakness. The more an exercise is repeated, the more pronounced this decline in performance becomes.

Fatigue is the biggest deterrent to making training progress.

Fatigue is caused by two main mechanisms that affect the body: central nervous system (CNS)-based mechanisms and local muscular mechanisms. These mechanisms interfere with the body's ability to produce force, thus limiting muscle fiber activation, leading to failure during exercises by restricting the body's capacity to perform repetitions.

Several fatigue mechanisms take place during a set of 15 reps, affecting the muscle at a metabolite and calcium level. While metabolite-related fatigue mechanisms have minimal effect on muscle fiber force, calcium-related mechanisms impact muscle tension and contribute to post-workout fatigue. At the systemic level, pain and discomfort sources cause a reduction in motor unit recruitment and increase effort perception without increasing recruitment level.

Pain and discomfort sources inhibit the ability to maximize central motor command and recruitment while reaching maximum effort perception. This inhibition impacts the comparison between light load training and heavy load strength training in terms of motor recruitment.

To maximize motor unit recruitment, it is essential to minimize interference mechanisms.

Spinal-level central nervous system fatigue develops with increasing repetitions, leading to resistance in signal transmission. Fatigue mechanisms, metabolite accumulation, and cardiorespiratory demands contribute to reaching the failure point. Interference mechanisms are responsible for the decrease in the maximum possible size of the signal to the muscles.

It is worth noting that fatigue in muscles is not caused by a lack of fuel supply but by the brain's interpretation of low fuel levels and metabolite accumulation. Recent studies refute the Energy Crisis Hypothesis, which suggests that ATP depletion causes muscle failure. Instead, fatigue mechanisms work to prevent ATP depletion by impeding its usage during contractions.

"Recovery"
Let me clarify the following before we proceed. Poor sleep and nutrition can negatively affect your training outcomes. This is a long-standing myth that says "There's no such thing as overtraining...only undereating and sleeping." However, that's not true. Feeling tired is not the same as fatigue, which is quantifiable and measurable. Fatigue can be caused by physiological factors, such as central and peripheral fatigue.

When it comes to training, there are some things to consider to determine whether it's an intelligent approach. One of the root mechanisms behind long-lasting fatigue is intracellular calcium ion overload, which can be caused by higher volumes, longer muscle lengths, intensifiers, and training to failure. This, in turn, triggers the release of calpains, causing muscle damage and fatigue interference at both the muscular and central nervous system levels.

Once this process starts, there's no way to reduce it. Therefore, the best "recovery tool" is not eating and sleeping, but having an intelligent training program that avoids these issues.

The Concept of Failure and Its Types
When it comes to exercising, understanding the concept of failure is crucial. Failure can be classified as task failure, there are "other" forms of failure but those don't really matter, like form failure or eccentric failure.

To quantify the task, we must establish a specific metric. For instance, in knee extension exercises, failure occurs when you are unable to achieve a fully extended knee. Standardizing the metrics in our training, including volume, rest periods, exercise sequence, and range of motion for each exercise, is essential to achieve progressive overload. Progressive overload is the best indicator that our training is causing adaptations in both neural and muscular systems.

While performing partials at the end of a set is acceptable, true failure is only achieved when you are unable to complete the range of motion established for that particular exercise.

Task failure is the point at which the brain reaches its maximum tolerable perception of effort, which limits further muscle fiber activation, despite the muscle's potential for more force production. Therefore, the brain terminates the exercise before reaching the actual local peripheral muscular failure point.

Task failure fundamentally involves the brain's regulation of effort perception, rather than the muscle's inability to produce force. The maximum tolerable perception of effort imposed by the brain determines the point of failure during exercise.

When it comes to force production, the brain is the limiting factor, not the muscles. The inability to continue recruiting motor units is due to the perception of effort. The corollary discharge acts as a copy signal from the brain's central motor command, and high levels of corollary discharge affect our perception of effort and recruitment. Fatigue mechanisms can influence corollary discharge and central motor command.

Sets are terminated when the maximal tolerable perception of effort is reached, and various factors can lead to the same reason for stopping a set. The size of corollary discharge affects central motor command, and interference mechanisms result in maximal tolerable perception of effort.

The Importance of Variety and Exercise Choice
It's important to choose the right exercises to get the most out of your workouts. Stable exercises are generally better for building muscle than unstable ones. While dumbbells are not useless, I would take machines over dumbbells any day. For example, using a chest-supported row is better than using a barbell row, and a converging chest press is better than using free weights or cables. Machines are stable. Machines will allow you to easily standardize your form on that exercise allowing you to accurately track progressive overload. There is an ease of setup with machines. There is a resistance profile through full ROM if it's a good machine. For example for chest: dumbbells are more difficult to coordinate and don’t offer up resistance to the pecs though-out the long-mid-short contractile ranges.

It's also important to use a variety of exercises over time to get the best results. Different parts of muscles need to be worked in different ways, so using different exercises that work the muscle at different lengths and with different resistance profiles can help it grow more evenly - this is called regional hypertrophy. This is why cables and machines exist.

Finally, it's not always best to stick to the basics like squats, bench presses, and deadlifts. These exercises may not be suitable for everyone, and relying solely on them will not maximize your muscular potential.

Machines > Cables > Free-weights

How to Warm-Up
Warm ups serve two main purposes. Firstly, they provide feedback on how an exercise is feeling on a particular day. Negative feedback may indicate the need for more warm ups or skipping the exercise altogether due to tightness or discomfort. Secondly, they help to determine where the loading should be for the top working set(s) to failure or close to failure. This is determined through a non-scientific method of eyeballing a place on the weight stack and seeing how it feels. Overcomplicating this process is unnecessary.

Thirdly, warm ups can prime the tissues for mechanical tension through the post-activation potentiation effect. However, overdoing warm ups is not necessary to achieve this effect. A difficult set is enough to potentiate the fibers for the working set, allowing you to determine where your loading for the top set will be.

There is no need for "nervous system priming" or other unnecessary complications. Motor unit recruitment is governed by the sensory part of the brain through voluntary activation, and this cannot be primed in any way.

The Myth of Time-Under-Tension
Bodybuilders often discuss the concept of "time under tension" to increase muscle growth. This involves slowing down the lowering (eccentric) and raising (concentric) portions while lifting weights. However, research shows that this is not an effective way to enhance hypertrophy. This is because it is not related to the force-time integral of maximal voluntary contractions that scientific research shows are related to mechanical tension in muscle fibers and resultant hypertrophy. The only reason eccentric and concentric portions should be used is to standardize your form to track progressive overload.

In other words, intentionally changing the speed at which you lift and lower weights of different magnitudes (e.g., heavy, light) doesn't matter. Muscle fiber pulling forces that generate growth (hypertrophy) only respond to the last few high-effort (i.e., maximal) reps of any set. Since these require the same signal as very fast lifting speeds with respect to the signal your brain sends to the motor neurons to lift the weight, slowing down submaximal reps doesn't do anything in terms of hypertrophy.

The only time under tension that is relevant is when high forces are being produced by the fibers controlled by the High Threshold Motor Units. This is about the last 4-6 reps in a set to failure. Longer times under tension will give you some endurance adaptations but that is mainly in the way of the RPE and fiber type shifts. So if you want to time the last 4-6 reps, sure. But it’s a meaningless thing to focus on.

However, a slower lowering phase can be beneficial. It doesn't need to be ultra-slow, and it won't add an excessive amount of mass. Ideally, you should aim for a lowering phase that is about three to four seconds. This is because the lowering phase in a rep is basically free tension, meaning it's not metabolically expensive. The force curve is flat in a lower phase, so whatever fibers are activated in that lowering phase will experience high degrees of tension. Slowing down the eccentric phase increases the amount of motor unit recruitment compared to just allowing it to "fall" or "drop." This is because when we slow the lowering, it increases the external forces, which requires a slight uptick in motor unit recruitment.

However, if the lowering phases become too slow, such as greater than four seconds, it creates fatigue that limits the number of repetitions that we can achieve. This reduces the total tension we will get from that set. Total tension = passive and active tension = more of a stimulus. If your lowering phase reduces the number of concentric contractions you can achieve, then the total tension drops comparatively.

It's worth noting that some exercises, such as laterals, barbell rows, and deadlifts, don't lend themselves well to slower eccentrics.

Lengthened Partials
Some research suggests that using partial lengthened range of motion (ROM) can result in more muscle growth than using full ROM. This is especially true for beginners who don't have longer muscle-length adaptations. Overloading the lengthened position can create more total tension, which leads to more muscle growth.

However, there are a few things to consider before using this method:

1. Not all muscles have good leverage at a longer length. If a muscle doesn't have good leverage at a longer length, it will not be trained well in that ROM. For example, the top of a lat pulldown may not be effective for some muscles.
2. Not all muscles benefit from stretch positions. Stretch-mediated hypertrophy is a very specific type of adaptation, and not all muscles experience it. If the research didn't measure the fascicle lengths, you cannot say that stretch-mediated hypertrophy occurred.
3. Some muscles are easily damaged. If this is the case, then it's best to avoid lengthened partials, as they may cause more muscle damage.
4. Highly experienced individuals may not see a lot of extra benefits from lengthened partials.

In general, partials are best used with caution. It's important to assess each muscle group individually to determine whether this technique is appropriate. For example, partials on lat pulldowns may not be ideal, but partials on lateral raises may be more effective. Finally, stretch-mediated hypertrophy is a specific type of adaptation, and it's important to understand the research before assuming that all muscles grow better from longer lengths.

Stretch-mediated Hypertrophy
If you do not know about SMH then don't bother worrying.

We have limited data on stretch-mediated hypertrophy, particularly in the upper body. The evidence that we do have mostly focuses on the lower body, such as the quads, hamstrings, adductors, and some glute research. Despite some biased claims, all research indicates that mechanical tension is the main driver of hypertrophy. Neither muscle damage nor metabolic stress has additive effects on it.

Stretch-mediated hypertrophy involves an increase in fiber size, which can be longitudinal or transverse. This is caused by the stretching of sarcomeres, which creates passive tension. The length-to-tension relationship via titin causes sarcomerogenesis, which is the addition of sarcomeres in a series. This increases the fiber/fascicle length. We determine if stretch-mediated hypertrophy occurred by measuring fascicle length. Concentric contractions create sarcomere addition in parallel, so we measure it by cross-sectional area. This is the default stance of the majority of science and scientists.

It should be noted that all muscle growth measurements that occur when using a stretched/longer length exercise are not stretch-mediated hypertrophy because concentric contractions did occur. The other telltale sign that sarcomerogenesis has occurred is a change in the angle of peak torque (APT). Not all muscles experience SMH, but the ones that do appear to be glutes, quads, hamstrings, and the pecs. No data shows that the biceps or triceps grow better from stretch, despite the belief of some that all muscles grow better at longer lengths. This is not supported by the data.

In all of the studies being used to support this claim, there’s a commonality: they are all on untrained subjects. Stretch-mediated hypertrophy is quite limited in the time of the first few months of training. This is because the adaptation to that type of contraction is sarcomerogenesis, which means adding sarcomeres in a series. Once there are enough sarcomeres in a series, the sarcomeres no longer lengthen as much as before, and passive tension isn’t generated to the same magnitude. So there is no more “stretch-mediated hypertrophy” because those adaptations are gone (this can also be seen in the changes in angle of peak torque).

To add, the idea that stretch can “overcome lack of leverage” is a made-up fairy tale. In strength training, for a fiber to experience tension, it must first be activated. That is a fact. Second, for a fiber to get an action potential from the central motor command in the brain, it has to have leverage (neuromechanical matching). That means when leverage is low or none, there will be little to no activation of those fibers. This means that even if their length-to-tension relationship could allow passive tension, they won’t experience the tension that comes from stretch because they aren’t activated. This is how physiology works.

Lastly, stretch-mediated hypertrophy also occurs during the lowering/lengthening phase of contraction mode. That means that you’re also dealing with about half of the number of active muscle fibers that you have in a concentric. The fibers that do experience SMH are the ones on the low to moderate end of the high threshold motor unit pool and have a limited degree of hypertrophy anyway. This is why only beginners or detrained individuals will experience SMH, and only in certain muscles. SMH/lengthened partials do not apply to trained individuals.

Myth of Metabolic Stress, Muscle Damage/Micro Tears, Satellite Cells and Proliferation
Recent studies, including the latest one (PMID: 37841321), show no evidence of metabolic stress being linked to muscle growth or anabolic signaling. Moreover, the mechanism of metabolic stress as a growth factor has never been proven.

Muscle growth is not a result of microtears or damage caused by exercise. The idea that muscle fibers get torn down and then built back bigger is incorrect. Additionally, the increase in satellite cell or proliferation does not contribute to muscle growth.

According to another study (PMID: 29282529), muscle damage is not the process that mediates or potentiates resistance-training-induced muscle hypertrophy.- The optimal volume for muscle growth is about 6 sets per muscle in a training session, and it is not recommended to exceed this limit.

It is incorrect to assume that all muscles grow better from stretching. Some people believe that stretching is the key to muscle growth, but this is not true. It is necessary to acknowledge that operating sarcomere lengths exist, the length-to-tension relationship exists, and muscle fiber length determines tension.

Intelligent Training Design
Heavy loads: This refers to lifting weights that are approximately 85% of your maximum weight for a given exercise.
4-8 reps: This is the recommended rep range when using heavy loads for maximum effectiveness during your workout.
3-6 sets per muscle group: When working out, group muscles together to make the most of your time. For example, you can group biceps, triceps, quads, hams, glutes, pecs, delts, and calves. Aim for 3-6 sets per muscle group.
2-3 minute rest periods: Allow sufficient rest periods to reduce fatigue and achieve optimal motor recruitment during your workout.
0-1 RIR on your work sets: While training to failure can be stimulating, it is not always necessary. Use heavier loads to activate motor unit recruitment from the first repetition.
Workout split: There is no one-size-fits-all approach to workout splits. Choose a split that works best for you and fits within your recovery ability. It is generally recommended to work each muscle group 1-2 times per week based on your own recovery ability.

Remember that these are general guidelines, and exceptions may apply based on individual preferences and physical conditions.

Based on the research data available, training a muscle group more frequently doesn’t show much of a benefit compared to training it once a week, as long as the total volume of exercise is the same. This means that doing the same amount of exercise divided into more sessions can lead to better results. The reason for this is that most training programs have some overlap in the muscles being worked, and it takes very little effort to maintain existing muscle mass. Therefore, even if you split up your workout into more sessions, your muscles will still receive enough stimulus to grow and maintain their mass. Some people think that working out a muscle group more often is better because it allows them to divide their workout into smaller parts and do more volume overall. However, it's important to note that the amount of sets and reps you do for each muscle group should be individualized and not the same for every body part. Ultimately, the frequency of your workouts is a very individualized factor, so there isn't a one-size-fits-all answer.

How Much Muscle Can You Gain Over a Lifetime
If you train intelligently, with appropriate volumes and close-to-failure efforts, and eat in a way that supports muscle growth, you can expect to add around 35-45 pounds of muscle if you're a man and 20-25 if you're a woman. This is the cap that most people hit after 5-8 years of proper training. However, if you start later in life, you will probably find it harder to reach this cap, as you will lose the ability to recruit the fibers controlled by the highest end of the motor unit pool as you age.

For men, you can expect to add around 20-25 pounds in the first year. In the second year, men may add another 10 pounds and women 5 pounds. In the third year, men may add another 5-8 pounds, and women should expect half that amount. After the fourth year, you can only expect to gain a couple of pounds a year at most.

While there are always exceptions, such as the 1% of people who can add more muscle than this cap, there are also non-responders who may struggle to gain much muscle at all, no matter what they do.

If you want to know where you stand, you can use any of the Fat-Free Mass Index Calculators, which require you to accurately know your body fat percentage or to be honest about it. A body fat percentage of 25 is generally considered the cut-off. Some calculators also take your joint circumference into account.

In summary, there is no black-and-white answer to questions about bulking, cutting, and starting older. However, understanding this information should help you get a rough idea of what you can expect to achieve with a decade of intelligent training.

Fiber Type Doesn't Matter
There's a lot of debate over whether certain types of exercises are better for building muscle than others. Some people say that the type of muscle fibers you have determines which exercises are most effective. But recent studies have shown that this isn't true. In fact, it doesn't matter what type of muscle fibers you have - you can still build muscle effectively no matter what type of exercise you do.

One thing that does matter is the number of reps you do. Studies have shown that if you do the same number of reps with heavy weights or light weights, you'll get the same results. The important thing is to do enough stimulating reps for your muscles. This means that you can choose whatever type of exercise you enjoy the most, and still get great results.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the way you recruit muscle fibers changes depending on how heavy the weight is. If you're lifting really heavy weights, you'll recruit all your muscle fibers from the very first rep. But if you're lifting lighter weights, you'll recruit your smaller muscle fibers first, and then recruit the larger ones as you get tired.

So, what's the bottom line? The type of exercise you do doesn't matter as much as how many reps you do and how heavy the weight is. And the best exercise for you is the one you enjoy doing the most.

What You Should Do During A Cut
During a cut, many people make the mistake of increasing the volume and frequency of their workouts, as well as using various intensity techniques. However, this is the worst thing to do if you want to lose fat and retain muscle mass.

Instead, if you want to change your training during a cut, the smart move would be to do the following:
1. Reduce the volume of your workouts to the minimum amount you need to retain your muscle mass, as you're not trying to build muscle during a cut.
2. Focus on your cardio and non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT) as your primary energy expenditure systems.
3. Remember that your diet is your main tool for losing fat.

Generally, you don't have to change your resistance training sessions from your gaining phase to your cutting phase.

The idea that more calories means more training is not accurate, as once the growth threshold is met, the extra calories will only be stored as fat. Having a higher caloric intake ceiling does not raise the amount of work you can do to increase hypertrophy stimulus either.

Being glycogen-depleted can indeed reduce motor unit recruitment and mechanical tension. However, this only reinforces the idea that you should focus on the minimum necessary to retain muscle mass during a cut, which is around 3-4 working sets per week.

By doing so, you can feel confident that your short and sweet training sessions are providing enough volume to maintain your gains while focusing on cardio, NEAT, and your diet to facilitate fat loss, as these are your three best synergistic weapons.

During a cut, the last thing you should be doing is high-volume, high-rep, high-frequency, or other intense workouts. Instead, focus on the minimum necessary for muscle retention in resistance training and maximize the fat loss effects that come from the calorie deficit via your diet, NEAT, and cardio.

Here are some simple tips:

1. Diet is the most important factor when it comes to losing fat. There is no specific training plan or exercise that can help you lose fat. You can lose weight even if you don't exercise at all. However, if you want to maintain or build muscle while losing fat, you should focus on good training principles.
2. Walking is a great way to get some cardio exercise. Aim to walk 10-15K steps a day, depending on your fitness level.
3. Find a nutritional approach that you enjoy. For example, you can eat in a significant calorie deficit during the week and have a cheat meal on Saturday.
4. Everyone is different, so what works for me might not work for you. The key is to find an approach that you enjoy and can stick to.
5. Remember that diet is the most important factor when it comes to losing fat. You need to get your diet dialed in first before you can see results.
6. Don't believe that steroids burn fat. They don't. Anyone can get lean with the right diet and exercise routine.

How To Overcome A Plateau
Plateaus in strength and growth are inevitable. Generally, we use progressive overload to measure if the program we are doing is working. By "working," I mean that we are getting the muscular adaptations we are training for. As per my post yesterday, the answer to more progress as you grow isn't "more volume." It's higher degrees of motor unit recruitment.

The reason we hit a plateau is usually because:
1. We have maxed out our leverage at the joint angles we are loading in those exercises.
2. Fatigue is too high and does not allow for progressive overload.
3. We are not getting enough motor unit recruitment for progressive overload to occur or continue.

If you hit a plateau in your training, here are some things to consider before changing the exercise:

1. Increase loading - If you have been doing sets of 12-15, increase the loading to something that takes you down to 5-6 reps at 1 RIR. This will increase the motor unit recruitment earlier in the set, rather than using loading that needs fatiguing mechanisms to create the need for greater effort. This also takes care of problem number 2.

2. Reduce fatigue interference mechanisms - This means resting at least 2 minutes between sets to allow the central nervous system to recover. This will also allow higher degrees of motor unit recruitment in the subsequent sets and should allow for more reps or load than you had previously done if you were taking short rest periods.

3. Add an extra rest day during the week - No one is getting adequate recovery training 7 days a week, even if you're seeing progressive overload occur training 7 days a week. It would be better to have some rest days in there that allow muscle damage and the inflammatory response to it to subside.

There is No Advantage to Free-Weights over Machines.
Some people believe that machine-based exercises don't build stabilizers, or that they will cause injury if used exclusively. Others argue that beginners should focus on mastering the basics. This is just silly.

  • PMID: 37340878
What the study did was have one group of trained individuals use free weights while performing exercises that targeted their stabilizers, and another group use machines to perform the same exercises. The study found that beginners should focus on using lighter weights to build a strong foundation. However, if your goal is hypertrophy, then the tool you choose should depend on what best suits your goals, not on arbitrary beliefs. To sum up the study's findings, they compared different training modalities on various athletic capacities, muscle architecture parameters, and maximum strength tests. Contrary to the traditional belief that free weights are superior, they found that athletic performance and muscle architecture adaptations were not significantly influenced by the resistance modality trained. Therefore, athletes who use resistance training as a complement to their field- or track-specific training can use either free weights or machines, depending on their preferences and possibilities.

Steroids
There is no such thing as "just one cycle". You will become addicted.

There is no point hopping on steroids if you have limited knowledge about training and dieting or what works best for you. If you hop on you must be ready to monitor how your body responds in terms of health, side effects, psychological effects, and benefits. You must pay attention to how your body responds to different types of drugs when taken together. It is also important to consider that you can get very far with very minimal drug use.
  • Steroids are not magic.
  • Everyone reacts to steroids differently, you will not know how much mass you can gain until you hop on, and you will not know if you have side effects until you hop on, the best you can do is minimize risk by taking low dosages at the start and then tapering upwards.
  • Blood work is extremely important.
  • Do your research on different compounds, there are very good informative youtube channels like vigorous steve, Leo and Longevity, and some others. Sometimes experience threads on forums are helpful to see what kind of side-effects people get on certain compounds.
  • If you can't afford to cycle then don't.
  • If you're too retarded to cycle intelligently then don't.
  • Health and preventative and reactive measures prepared before anything.

Cold-Immersion Is Bad For Strength and Hypertrophy
Cold water immersion, also known as ice baths, has been studied extensively. Every study that has looked at cold water immersion post-training shows that it reduces adaptations from resistance training. Therefore, if you're training for strength or muscle growth, avoiding cold water immersion post-training is a must. A meta-analysis of regular cold water immersion use on training-induced changes in strength and endurance performance found that it has a harmful effect on one-repetition maximum, maximum isometric strength, and strength endurance performance associated with resistance training. However, the same meta-analysis showed that it does not affect endurance exercise. Another meta-analysis on pre-cooling showed only moderate improvements to endurance performance, and the studies used are limited, weak in design, and subject to bias, as noted in the meta-analysis itself.

As for the health benefits of cold water immersion, the paper consistently cited support for that is "Health effects of voluntary exposure to cold water – a continuing subject of debate." However, this study is inconclusive as it only looks at mice cells in a lab and brown fat activation, and no research definitively connects brown fat activation with health benefits. There are no large randomized controlled trials, no strong study design, and no control group vs. cold water swimmers. Therefore, the review is a nothing burger of studies that prove zero about cold water immersion.

Regarding mental health improvements, there is absolutely zero proof that cold water immersion alone boosts mental health outside of a placebo effect. No studies have shown that the Wim Hof method or cold water immersion alone improves mental health without exercise such as swimming. Taking a dip in cold water might make you feel more alert and energized, but there is no significant health benefit as of right now. In summary, the science about cold water immersion says that it is bad for strength and hypertrophy but may have some benefits for endurance athletes. No strong randomized controlled trials are proving that cold water immersion has significant health benefits. Therefore, it needs better, stronger science to prove its health benefits.

PMID: 23249542

Last 2-3kg of Lean Tissue
To get the last bits of muscle as an advanced lifter, it's important to avoid the common misconception that doing a lot of volume is the key. In fact, a reduction in motor unit recruitment is the actual goal. Therefore, if we're just recruiting the motor units we're already good at, there will be no gains. Instead, we need to focus on bringing up lagging body parts, improving muscle divisions or regions, and doing this over many years/meso cycles to add up to that last 2-3kg

To achieve this, we should focus on using more single joint exercises, varying resistance profiles to target regions or divisions of a muscle at joint angles in the ROM, using highly stable exercises, and probably using some more unilateral movements for more motor unit recruitment. Additionally, we should train the target muscle first in the workout, use minimal volume/sets for the muscles that we are just putting into maintenance, and probably do some stuff we don't like/have neglected for years and years.

What we should not do is perform tons of volume, do the same stuff we've been doing, train muscles at longer lengths (unless it's a novel exercise), or do more of the big compounds or compound lifts in general. By following these guidelines, we can achieve the last 2-3kg of muscle growth without causing excessive volume, which can lead to more calcium ion related muscle damage and create an inflammatory response that also creates central fatigue.

The Biggest Mistake in Coaching
The worst thing you can do is the constant focus on "less of this muscle" in the cues. This approach is backwards and counterproductive. The cues should aim to help you get more out of the tissue you're trying to target, instead of focusing on less of something else.

For example, telling someone to "take the traps out of lateral raises" is poor coaching. The traps play an important role in stabilizing and articulating the scapula movement so that the middle delts can abduct the humerus. The goal here is to work on building more delts, not less traps.

Similarly, telling someone to "round your back to make it less erectors" is also poor coaching. The erectors are synergists that help stabilize the spine and pelvis. The goal here is to work on building more glutes, not less lower back. So, the focus should be on tucking your chin and focusing on hip extension, and not on spinal flexion.

Good coaching should focus on cues, movements, and motions that help get the absolute greatest amount of output from the muscle(s) we want to train and grow, instead of trying to take muscles out of movements when they have a job to do.

SHITTIEST COPES FOR BEGINNER HYPERTROPHY
  • You cannot weight train in a way to increase testosterone levels that increase total muscle mass. Your squats and deadlifts will do nothing for your test.
  • Cold-Water-Immersion/Ice-Bath For Recovery
  • "Biasing" the muscle.
  • The scapular plane isn't as magical as it seems.
  • Stretch-Mediated Hypertrophy.
  • "Hyperplasia Training"
  • Turning hypertrophy training into cardio by not taking adequate rest periods, they should be 2-3 minutes.
  • Only training with dumbbells or barbells.
  • Doing too much volume. Fatigue is the biggest deterrent in making training progress because it creates an interference effect to recruiting motor units or mechanically loading the fastest fibers.
  • Not accurately logging progressive overload and just doing whatever whilst training.
  • Mind-to-muscle connection.
  • Full ROM on everything. Simply doing more range of motion doesn’t mean “more development” of a muscle if it doesn’t even have leverage through that whole ROM.
  • Using different rep ranges.
  • trying to min-max PEDs, cortisol, hormones, etc. that comes later.
  • some other stuff I've forgotten
if you have read all of this thread, congratulations, you might've learned something.
Okay one question how muscles are grow?
 
Okay one question how muscles are grow?
our muscles grow in two different ways: either by getting longer or by increasing in width. when we exercise, our muscles adapt by either increasing in fascicle length (longitudinally) or increasing the thickness of existing fibers (radial growth). these adaptations can be measured by looking at the number of tiny muscle units called sarcomeres in a row or by looking at the thickness of the muscle fibers themselves.
 
Last edited:
our muscles grow in two different ways: either by getting longer or by increasing in width. when we exercise, our muscles adapt by either adding more muscle fibers in series (longitudinally) or increasing the thickness of existing fibers (radial growth). these adaptations can be measured by looking at the number of tiny muscle units called sarcomeres in a row or by looking at the thickness of the muscle fibers themselves.
So exercise maggicaly build a muscle lol go and study first how muscles grow clown
 
So exercise maggicaly build a muscle lol go and study first how muscles grow clown
yes magically build a muscle

Cells 09 01658 g004
Cells 09 01658 g003


(b of first diagram isn't even proven)
 
A its fake because you only making cell bigger and never getting muscles so you always hit domain size limit b doesnt have that thats why dorian yates was monster because he figure out how to do b
 
Everybody have done b who was first time at the gym no more leak if u have high iq u will know how to do anyways all guide im selling and its not a scam at all like other fitness guru does for real honestly its real i dont need to scam anyone i just spend 3 years to find all infos so im doing diet and i need money
 
That the point that im doing b 20 times already works and its best thing ever i have sold programs on my insta already and people who tried have insane results so b its top secret but its simple
ah yes you just disproved science with your anecdotal evidence :lul:
A its fake because you only making cell bigger and never getting muscles so you always hit domain size limit b doesnt have that thats why dorian yates was monster because he figure out how to do b
domain size limit? we arent playing crusader kings 3. myofiber hypertrophy is, by far, the longest-standing and most widely acknowledged contributor to the mechanical load-induced growth. all of these studies about hyperplasia never quantify or measure the amount of fibers that have split, meaning it's a bad study.
 
ah yes you just disproved science with your anecdotal evidence :lul:

domain size limit? we arent playing crusader kings 3. myofiber hypertrophy is, by far, the longest-standing and most widely acknowledged contributor to the mechanical load-induced growth. all of these studies about hyperplasia never quantify or measure the amount of fibers that have split, meaning it's a bad study.
How to know if u have more fibers in number u would look not bloated like ronnie coleman or other bodybuilders like blurry big muscles even on 5 %bodyfat muscles look bloated if u gonna see oldschool bodybuilders they have denser looks or greek gods sculptures so the more fibers u have the denser and detailed u look even on high body fat
 
How to know if u have more fibers in number u would look not bloated like ronnie coleman or other bodybuilders like blurry big muscles even on 5 %bodyfat muscles look bloated if u gonna see oldschool bodybuilders they have denser looks or greek gods sculptures so the more fibers u have the denser and detailed u look even on high body fat
i need science not "look".
 
i need science not "look".
its are science biology if u adapted your muscles will not gonna have mechanic tears adapted means muscles protect himselfs
 
its are science biology if u adapted your muscles will not gonna have mechanic tears adapted means muscles protect himselfs
no, muscle damage doesn't = muscle growth, muscle growth is also not a protective mechanism from "microtears", that's one of the things mike mentzer got wrong. when scientists studied and investigated muscle damage, they found that it happens several hours after the workout.

this should clarify that any stimulation or muscle work/contraction in the workout is not causing the "mechanic tears" you're talking about.
it only contributes towards hypertrophy after the proteins have been exposed to damage and then a protective mechanism is in place that stops it from hindering muscle growth, which it does. muscle damage = less growth when the fibers have not been exposed to that degree of damage before. you don't want muscle damage.

muscle damage = overload of intracellular calcium into the muscle cells. this triggers an activation of calpains which cause apoptosis and cellular proliferation.

cellular proliferation or hyperplasia only occurs in babies
 
Last edited:

Similar threads

barettrealrx
Replies
38
Views
4K
sub5pslathlete
sub5pslathlete
kiyopon
Replies
29
Views
3K
Deleted member 69666
D
lestoa
Replies
51
Views
7K
gl4zing
gl4zing

Users who are viewing this thread

Back
Top