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  1. #1
    Registered User amberlyann2005's Avatar
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    How to bulk up legs...

    without over training. My legs are like sticks. I had worked my butt off for months to have decent legs, then I got pregnant and was on bedrest and now again I have stick legs. I would really like to get some size back. Any tips for getting it back fast? How long do you think it will take to see difference? I am a very impatient person lol.
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  2. #2
    pick it up, put it down acm807's Avatar
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    squat squat squat squat
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  3. #3
    deracate chinese frower Mindi912's Avatar
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    bulk what - quads, calves?
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  4. #4
    Registered User amberlyann2005's Avatar
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    Both.
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  5. #5
    deracate chinese frower Mindi912's Avatar
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    Well if you are going to build muscle firstly you wanna lift heavy assed weights

    keep your reps ranges between 6-8 this will allow you to lift heavy and not hypertropy completely

    sets for this I usually do 5/6

    Squats are great for quad and glute building

    if you want to hit the glutes more take a wider stance and keep the bar low on the back and lean more forward.

    Hack Squats
    Leg Press - position your feet in the upper three quarters of the platform and feet about 8 inches apart - toes straight ahead

    Lunges are great

    Standing Leg curls but instead of foot straight curl your toe inward slightly, curl your leg up as high as possible.

    Leg extensions

    Sissy Squats

    Good Mornings are excellent - be very careful if you have never done them before and get some one to show you before you do them (these are for your hammies)

    Glutes

    Side lunges are great for these

    Stiff legged deads

    Squat or bun squat

    Hyperextensions

    out of that list I would pick two maybe three exercises - decide which you like best and what works for you...

    sorry forgot one - conventional deads are also just as great
    Last edited by Mindi911; 01-16-2008 at 02:30 PM.
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  6. #6
    Registered User amberlyann2005's Avatar
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    Thank you so much!
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  7. #7
    deracate chinese frower Mindi912's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by amberlyann2005 View Post
    Thank you so much!
    pleasure
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  8. #8
    Registered User sportyhp's Avatar
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    sweet list i'm looking to change up my leg routine
    Michael Scott: Would I rather be feared or loved? Um... Easy, both. I want people to be afraid of how much they love me.
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  9. #9
    deracate chinese frower Mindi912's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by sportyhp View Post
    sweet list i'm looking to change up my leg routine
    honestly it's all about finding out what works for you
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  10. #10
    Fortified With Iron gfundaro's Avatar
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    Hehe, I'm trying to do just the opposite

    Hypertrophy (increase in muscular size) generally occurs between 3-4 sets 8-12 repetitions. When you enter into the higher numbers of 12-20, hyptertrophy occurs there, but for a different reason. The 8-12 reps will increase the number of muscle CELLS, while the 12-20 increases the SIZE of the cells because they swell with an increased number of mitochondria. 8-12 will give you more strength, while 12-20 will give you more endurance. Lower reps, into the 4-6 range, will increase your strength even more because it is a greater stressor to your central nervous system, but you won't get as much size out of it.

    I have recently read that, in women, 10 repetitions increases size the most, especially during the early follicular phase in women because we actually have more GH than men do at that time. If you're on B.C. and not ovulating, I'm not sure if that would still happen. I even stumped my exercise phys teacher with that question heheh
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  11. #11
    deracate chinese frower Mindi912's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by gfundaro View Post
    Hehe, I'm trying to do just the opposite

    Hypertrophy (increase in muscular size) generally occurs between 3-4 sets 8-12 repetitions. When you enter into the higher numbers of 12-20, hyptertrophy occurs there, but for a different reason. The 8-12 reps will increase the number of muscle CELLS, while the 12-20 increases the SIZE of the cells because they swell with an increased number of mitochondria. 8-12 will give you more strength, while 12-20 will give you more endurance. Lower reps, into the 4-6 range, will increase your strength even more because it is a greater stressor to your central nervous system, but you won't get as much size out of it.

    I have recently read that, in women, 10 repetitions increases size the most, especially during the early follicular phase in women because we actually have more GH than men do at that time. If you're on B.C. and not ovulating, I'm not sure if that would still happen. I even stumped my exercise phys teacher with that question heheh
    wicked explaination of hypertrophy...

    I guess i wasn't thinking about what I meant when I said hypertropy but yeah basically you want hypertrophy but you don't wanna go into the rep range for endurance

    how come you wanna do the opposite Gfundaro?

    honestly though do you really feel that you lift as much in rep ranges 8 - 12 compared to 6 -8 and see the same gains or possibly even better?
    Last edited by Mindi911; 01-16-2008 at 03:23 PM.
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  12. #12
    Bulking freebirdmac's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by gfundaro View Post
    Hehe, I'm trying to do just the opposite

    Hypertrophy (increase in muscular size) generally occurs between 3-4 sets 8-12 repetitions. When you enter into the higher numbers of 12-20, hyptertrophy occurs there, but for a different reason. The 8-12 reps will increase the number of muscle CELLS, while the 12-20 increases the SIZE of the cells because they swell with an increased number of mitochondria. 8-12 will give you more strength, while 12-20 will give you more endurance. Lower reps, into the 4-6 range, will increase your strength even more because it is a greater stressor to your central nervous system, but you won't get as much size out of it.

    I have recently read that, in women, 10 repetitions increases size the most, especially during the early follicular phase in women because we actually have more GH than men do at that time. If you're on B.C. and not ovulating, I'm not sure if that would still happen. I even stumped my exercise phys teacher with that question heheh
    Great explanation! And probably why my trainer started me at 3x20 reps, then 20, 15, 15 when he felt he could pyramid weights to 15, 12, and 10 now. At some point when I can lift heavier the reps will drop further. (I had almost no muscle to start with)
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  13. #13
    deracate chinese frower Mindi912's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by freebirdmac View Post
    Great explanation! And probably why my trainer started me at 3x20 reps, then 20, 15, 15 when he felt he could pyramid weights to 15, 12, and 10 now. At some point when I can lift heavier the reps will drop further. (I had almost no muscle to start with)
    exactly what my trainer did with me

    I do go 5 x 5 occasionally

    and we have started throwing in some really heavy weights for strength but my rep ranges are usually between 10 - 15 these days

    unless I want to change and train for mass then we would concentrate on the lower rep range I'm sure
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  14. #14
    Fortified With Iron gfundaro's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Mindi911 View Post
    wicked explaination of hypertrophy...

    I guess i wasn't thinking about what I meant when I said hypertropy but yeah basically you want hypertrophy but you don't wanna go into the rep range for endurance

    how come you wanna do the opposite Gfundaro?

    honestly though do you really feel that you lift as much in rep ranges 8 - 12 compared to 6 -8 and see the same gains or possibly even better?
    Thanks

    I would like to do the opposite because my legs already overpower my upper body. I don't want them to 'shrink' really, but I would like them to stay at their current size. By improving the neuromuscular development, I will have a better quality of contraction, which I think will make posing easier. I want them to stay dense while I lose body fat, don't want any 'wobble' in there. If I stuck with my current program of 4X10, I'd be doing exactly the right stuff for hypertrophy, which I no longer need.

    I started it today actually, 5X5 on ATG squats, extensions, and curls, and 4X5 on one legged leg press. I kept my calf reps high because I *do* want them to grow, they are looking wimpy lately; they will stay in the 12-15 range. I definitely noticed a difference in the type of fatigue on the 5X5...I wasn't 'burning', I was trembling, because there isn't much of a lactic acid buildup in such a low rep range. But my calves were on fire

    Honestly, if you're just starting out, anything will work. For the first month you don't grow at all...the only changes occur in your nervous system. After that you'll make leaps and bounds for a couple months before you need to decide which way to go (size vs. power vs. endurance). Now that I am well-trained and adapted to reps from 10-12, dropping down to 5 will be a huge shock to my system. I will have to see what happens in the next month or so to really gauge how I benefit. I know that my strength will go up though, that I am not worried about at all. I got some looks doing ATG with 160 today, and I can't wait to see them in a month hehehe 'Gains' are fairly subjective...when my legs gain size, I'm like, MAN, that's not what I wanted to do! But other people say, Wow, great job! So my 'gain' would be keeping my size static and just increasing my strength.
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  15. #15
    deracate chinese frower Mindi912's Avatar
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    Hey Gfundaro

    sorry to do this however I was reading this, this afternoon and I thought your first and second post kind of contradicted each other...

    I asked a friend to have a look and they pointed something else out to me...

    I wanted to get home before I really looked at it closely, and I know I said you're explanation of hypertropy was wicked however I failed to miss something...and I feel we need to back track a little

    HYPERTROPHY - growth of an organ or tissue due to an INCREASE IN THE SIZE OF ITS CELLS (only); HYPERTROPHY is a normal response of skeletal muscle cells when they are challenged to left execssive weight; differs to HYPERPLASIA, which is an increase in size due to an INCREASE IN CELL NUMBER

    Originally Posted by gfundaro View Post
    The 8-12 reps will increase the NUMBER of muscle CELLS,
    what you are explaining here is Hyperplasia not Hypertrophy - there is some debate about whether or not hyperplasia exists in terms of being able to produce more cells under normal conditions and not stemming from a disease such as cancer or tumours

    while the 12-20 increases the SIZE of the cells
    what you are explaining here is Hypertrophy (regardless of the rep ranges)

    Ok now lets look at the explanation of your rep ranges..

    When you enter into the higher numbers of 12-20, hyptertrophy occurs there, but for a different reason.
    any idea what that reason is?

    - if hypertropy is a normal response of skeletal muscle cells when they are challenged to left execssive weight

    then wouldn't it stand to reason that you would get a better muscle response in terms of mass if your rep ranges were they kept low?

    The reason for this, I believe, is because if you have to put your muscles under excessive weight in order for them to grow then you are going to have to pick up approximately 70/80% of your 1RM, which you can't achieve with high rep ranges

    with higher ranges, I believe you should be lifting 50/60% of your 1RM this burns the muscle out faster but it doesn't put the muscle under that much stress in terms of lifting a heavy weight...for this you need endurance but you aren't going to achieve that much muscle mass from it

    I believe its great training for definition...which is what I train for and have achieved excellent results so far, others may disagree with this and say it doesn't matter what you lift you are still going to achieve definition.

    8-12 will give you more strength, Lower reps, into the 4-6 range, will increase your strength even more because it is a greater stressor to your central nervous system, but you won't get as much size out of it.
    Originally Posted by gfundaro View Post
    Thanks

    I would like to do the opposite because my legs already overpower my upper body. I don't want them to 'shrink' really, but I would like them to stay at their current size. By improving the neuromuscular development, I will have a better quality of contraction, which I think will make posing easier. I want them to stay dense while I lose body fat, don't want any 'wobble' in there. If I stuck with my current program of 4X10, I'd be doing exactly the right stuff for hypertrophy, which I no longer need.

    I started it today actually, 5X5 on ATG squats, extensions, and curls, and 4X5 on one legged leg press. I kept my calf reps high because I *do* want them to grow, they are looking wimpy lately; they will stay in the 12-15 range. I definitely noticed a difference in the type of fatigue on the 5X5...I wasn't 'burning', I was trembling, because there isn't much of a lactic acid buildup in such a low rep range. But my calves were on fire
    with all that being said don't you think in terms of slimming (toning) your legs down you should be doing higher reps?

    and in terms of SIZE for your calves you should be doing lower/heavier exercise to build mass?
    Last edited by Mindi911; 01-17-2008 at 11:07 AM.
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  16. #16
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    Originally Posted by Mindi911 View Post
    Hey Gfundaro

    sorry to do this however I was reading this, this afternoon and I thought your first and second post kind of contradicted each other...

    I asked a friend to have a look and they pointed something else out to me...

    I wanted to get home before I really looked at it closely, and I know I said you're explanation of hypertropy was wicked however I failed to miss something...and I feel we need to back track a little

    HYPERTROPHY - growth of an organ or tissue due to an INCREASE IN THE SIZE OF ITS CELLS (only); HYPERTROPHY is a normal response of skeletal muscle cells when they are challenged to left execssive weight; differs to HYPERPLASIA, which is an increase in size due to an INCREASE IN CELL NUMBER



    what you are explaining here is Hyperplasia not Hypertrophy - there is some debate about whether or not hyperplasia exists in terms of being able to produce more cells under normal conditions and not stemming from a disease such as cancer or tumours



    what you are explaining here is Hypertrophy (regardless of the rep ranges)

    Ok now lets look at the explanation of your rep ranges..



    any idea what that reason is?

    - if hypertropy is a normal response of skeletal muscle cells when they are challenged to left execssive weight

    then wouldn't it stand to reason that you would get a better muscle response in terms of mass if your rep ranges where kept low?

    The reason for this, I believe, is because if you have to put your muscles under excessive weight in order for them to grow then you are going to have to pick up approximately 70/80% of your 1RM, which you can't achieve with high rep ranges

    with higher ranges, I believe you should be lifting 50/60% of your 1RM this burns the muscle out faster but it doesn't put the muscle under that much stress in terms of lifting a heavy weight...for this you need endurance but you aren't going to achieve that much muscle mass from it

    I believe its great training for definition...which is what I train for and have achieved excellent results so far, others may disagree with this and say it doesn't matter what you lift you are still going to achieve definition.





    with all that being said don't you think in terms of slimming (toning) your legs down you should be doing higher reps?

    and in terms of SIZE for your calves you should be doing lower/heavier exercise to build mass?
    Hyperplasia would *cause* hypertrophy; an increase in the number of muscle cells in a group would cause an increase in size of the entire muscle mass.

    Sarcoplasmic hypertrophy (12+ reps) is caused by an increase in the number of mitochondria in in muscle cells, which causes them to swell. The cells grow in SIZE but not NUMBER. You would still have the size but not the same quality of tone (which is not what people really think it is).

    You're right that there is some debate over hyperplasia, but evidence has been found in cadavers. Hyperplasia can be cause by stress and injury as well as neuromuscular disease and cancer.

    Either way, higher repetitions will cause an increase in the SIZE of my muscle, whether through proliferation or swelling due to an increased number of mitochondria.

    Lifting a near-maximal load with fewer repetitions employs the mitochondria less because it's more anaerobic, so glycolysis occurs in the cytoplasm instead. Thus, I don't need any more mitochondria, and the cells will not swell.

    "Tone" is used interchangeably with "definition," but they are not the same thing. Tone is neuromuscular, and describes the quality of the contraction of a muscle, while definition describes how visible the musculature is underneath the skin. This will improve my tone because I will be able to better recruit all of my muscle fibers through improved neuromuscular development. However, my diet and fat loss will improve my definition.

    I do want my calves to grow, regardless of how the hypertrophy is caused. They are wimply
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    Team Aggressive dvsness's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by amberlyann2005 View Post
    without over training. My legs are like sticks. I had worked my butt off for months to have decent legs, then I got pregnant and was on bedrest and now again I have stick legs. I would really like to get some size back. Any tips for getting it back fast? How long do you think it will take to see difference? I am a very impatient person lol.
    How much are you eating? No matter how much you lift and how great your form is, they're not going to grow without caloric support.
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  18. #18
    Squats traps to grass Defiant1's Avatar
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    Whoa. Some confusion here about hypertrophy.

    I think people are confusing myofibrillar hypertrophy (growth of the muscle fiber itself) with hyperplasia (increase in numbers of muscle fibers).

    Hyperplasia is a theoretical possibility in humans. It seems it is likely that it does happen, but no one knows why. Best evidence points to resistance in the stretch position of a muscle.

    Sarcoplasmic hypertrophy is an increase in the non-contractile elements of the muscle, including but not limited to mitochondria.

    There is no set cut off point for transfer from myofibrillar hypertrophy to sarcoplasmic. Sarcoplasmic hypertrophy is caused by metabolic stress on the muscle. Myofibrillar hypertrophy is caused by mechanical stress on the muscle. The reason that ultra low reps don't cause MAXIMUM myofibrillar hypertrophy is that the movement will "fail" before the GREATEST amount of fibers are stressed sufficiently..low reps stress very high threshold FT fibers.

    Something to consider, when talking about building muscle for caloric use, mitochondria are the engines of the cells.

    And GH release has more to do with workout parameters/structure than anything else.
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  19. #19
    Fortified With Iron gfundaro's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Defiant1 View Post
    Whoa. Some confusion here about hypertrophy.

    I think people are confusing myofibrillar hypertrophy (growth of the muscle fiber itself) with hyperplasia (increase in numbers of muscle fibers).

    Hyperplasia is a theoretical possibility in humans. It seems it is likely that it does happen, but no one knows why. Best evidence points to resistance in the stretch position of a muscle.

    Sarcoplasmic hypertrophy is an increase in the non-contractile elements of the muscle, including but not limited to mitochondria.

    There is no set cut off point for transfer from myofibrillar hypertrophy to sarcoplasmic. Sarcoplasmic hypertrophy is caused by metabolic stress on the muscle. Myofibrillar hypertrophy is caused by mechanical stress on the muscle. The reason that ultra low reps don't cause MAXIMUM myofibrillar hypertrophy is that the movement will "fail" before the GREATEST amount of fibers are stressed sufficiently..low reps stress very high threshold FT fibers.

    Something to consider, when talking about building muscle for caloric use, mitochondria are the engines of the cells.

    And GH release has more to do with workout parameters/structure than anything else.
    Thanks for the explanation I know there's no 'set' number and they bleed into other rep ranges, but the general range is pretty accurate for most of the population.
    And I know I won't increase my metabolism like I would be with higher rep ranges, but I'd rather add more cardio and prevent any more hypertrophy before worrying about that. But that's just my own plan. I've stuck with the high reps for a while to no avail.
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  20. #20
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    Originally Posted by amberlyann2005 View Post
    without over training. My legs are like sticks. I had worked my butt off for months to have decent legs, then I got pregnant and was on bedrest and now again I have stick legs. I would really like to get some size back. Any tips for getting it back fast? How long do you think it will take to see difference? I am a very impatient person lol.
    Muscle comes back FAST. You will be shocked.
    CSCS, ACSM cPT.
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