So, you want to put on muscle. You want that “lean mass.” This is considered “Hypertrophy” training. Now, there are certain variables in which we can manipulate to achieve the results we strive for.
Whatever type of training you do, you will eventually see and feel the effects. If you try squatting twice a week for four months, and consume the right macros and calories; you will grow. There WILL come a time when your body adapts to your training. The way we combat this is through changing up several variables. Whip out your notebooks, kids.
HYPERTROPHY ACUTE VARIABLES:
3-5. The recommended (by science!) amounts of exercises per body part, per workout is 3-5. A full chest day can be: flat bench barbell press, incline dumbbell press, flat bench dumbbell fly, and chest dips. As well as shoulder exercises, and triceps, or any combination of what have you.
6-12. This is the most effective range of repetitions for hypertrophy training, 6-12 reps, per set. Higher reps will result from lower intensity, and inversely, lower reps result from higher intensity.
3-5. Similar to the exercises: we’re looking to get 3-5 sets of each exercise because this range will offer us the optimal amount of repetitions, and intensity.
75-85%. Lighter and heavier weights have their place and purpose, but in order to achieve the best optimal gains, we must aim to lift the weight that is 75-85% of your 1 rep maximum.
0-60 seconds. Lower rest periods are used for lighter weights, more sets, reps or exercises. Typically 0-30 seconds is for circuit workouts, while 30-60 seconds rest will be utilized in heavier, lower rep, or beginner programs.
2-6 times per week, per body part. Most programs run a 5 or, more intense, 6 day splits, which will also mean having to consume more calories, as well as protein and carbs in order to provide required energy, and rebuild broken down muscles.
Now, different people will say different things. Training preferences depend on you and what your goals are. Personally, if I feel like lifting heavy, I’m going to train heavy, if not, then I’m lifting for volume work. So, what happens if you would still like direction with beginning a hypertrophy program?
Because I know there are people out there that are looking to begin resistance training, I have developed a beginner’s level resistance training program available for $2.49 here:
If you do not have the funds, or time to work with an in-person trainer this program will be a superb choice for you. This program will build your base for multiple training styles such as: powerlifting, maximum strength, continuing hypertrophy, or even leading up to a fat loss program to expose the muscle that you’ve worked so hard to develop. Click the aforementioned link for the full breakdown.
I also have a Youtube video breaking down Hypertrophy, with examples, and even a workout edit available here: