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Inthegrass
03-21-2008, 09:00 AM
Generally what I shoot for in reps is around ten per set. In other words if I do three sets, the first set I might get 12 reps out (I could push it further) of it but by the last set I'm pushing failure at around 8 to 10. That's when I really feel a burn.
Now I've tried to go with even heavier weights were I might get 4 reps but I don't get a burn at all. All that happens is I get failure.
My question is this...... is this beneficial? I keep reading about people doing larger weights with very low reps but I just don't get any kind of a burn that way. Do you need the burn to get something out of it?
My recovery is very fast that way too on more weight with shorter reps. I don't get many reps but I can repeat it a lot more easily than if I take it to more reps with a bit lighter of a weight were I get the huge burn.

Jeff

abcreations
03-21-2008, 09:16 AM
With advice from a female bodybuilder friend, she told me to go heavier and shoot for 6-8 reps. I was a 10 rep 3 set gal. She even asked me to go alot heavier in weight. So this was my first full week in the really heavy and 6-8 rep range. If I could only get out 3 or 4 I would go down to the next weight and crank out some more till I know I hit failure. Yes I hit failure but never got a burn. Light DOMS set in 2 days after for every bodypart. I can already see gains just from one week and no burn.

Today was a new milestone for me. I leg pressed 360lbs. I did 4 sets. When I do leg presses I do one set feet in, one set feet out and one set calves all superseted. So I am still pushing it about 30 times at one shot. Next week I want my husband to take a picture. I'm still in shock and need to see me pressing with 4 plates on each side. I still never felt a burn while I was doing it. I'm sure I will feel sore on Sunday.

So after this week, I am a believer in heavy weight lower reps to failure and not feeling a burn while doing it. If you go past 8 reps then the weight wasn't heavy enough.

Delaware_Dad
03-21-2008, 09:31 AM
go heavier and shoot for 6-8 reps.

x2



So after this week, I am a believer in heavy weight lower reps to failure and not feeling a burn while doing it. If you go past 8 reps then the weight wasn't heavy enough.

I used to go 3 movements with 3 sets of 6-8 reps.. Now to up the fun factor I am going with 4 movements 4 sets with 6-8 reps... Same heavy weight.. It's amazing what simply adding another exercise/movement and set does!

DOMS are killer at the moment but getting better.. When I get DOMS I just laugh.. who would have thought putting on a shirt or pants would be so difficult! :)

-DD

Inthegrass
03-21-2008, 09:34 AM
Stupid question but what's DOMS?

GnomusMaximus
03-21-2008, 09:37 AM
Not an expert by any means, but it all depends on your goal or what you are working on at that time. From a strength standpoint I think the short answer would be "yes".

Delaware_Dad
03-21-2008, 09:38 AM
Stupid question but what's DOMS?

Nahhh Stupid questions are the ones not asked or asked over and over again...


Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) describes muscle pain and soreness that is felt 12-48 hours following exercise..

http://sportsmedicine.about.com/cs/injuries/a/doms.htm

-DD

ntrllftr
03-21-2008, 09:38 AM
Stupid question but what's DOMS?

Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) is the pain or discomfort often felt 24 to 72 hours after exercising and subsides generally within 2 to 3 days. Once thought to be caused by lactic acid buildup, a more recent theory is that it is caused by tiny tears in the muscle fibers caused by eccentric contraction, or unaccustomed training levels.

Inthegrass
03-21-2008, 09:40 AM
Nahhh Stupid questions are the ones not asked or asked over and over again...


Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) describes muscle pain and soreness that is felt 12-48 hours following exercise..

http://sportsmedicine.about.com/cs/injuries/a/doms.htm

-DD

Thanks! Okay I can relate now. lol

Jeff

Guff
03-21-2008, 09:41 AM
A few months back I became a big advocate of the heavier weight/lower rep method. I've seen nice gains in both strength and size by staying around a 5 rep range. However, it's all very personal. If you don't like the way it feels then find a workout regimen that you are comfortable with.

BergMuscle
03-21-2008, 10:04 AM
The "rule of thumb" I've heard is 3-6 reps builds strength, 8-10 builds mass/bulk, 10-12 or more builds endurance. And that's a gross generalization.

I've been training with 3 sets of 8-10, but after reading a few posts I may try 4 sets of 6-8 with the same weight to see what kind of a muscle pump I can get.
I make no excuses - I'm going for the big muscles.

boathead
03-21-2008, 01:23 PM
please, noone flame me.

my experience is that low reps do nothing for me. higher reps do. maybe you are the same as me. two strength training authors that i enjoy opine that for endomorphs, low reps high weight, and for ectos, higher reps, with time under stress being more important, i.e. 30-45 seconds per set.

just my opinion, and i understand it is contrary to views of many here.

Geoff Richards
03-21-2008, 02:05 PM
please, noone flame me.

my experience is that low reps do nothing for me. higher reps do. maybe you are the same as me. two strength training authors that i enjoy opine that for endomorphs, low reps high weight, and for ectos, higher reps, with time under stress being more important, i.e. 30-45 seconds per set.

just my opinion, and i understand it is contrary to views of many here.

hey boat
you dont have to worry about being flamed
this is the O35 section where we can differ peacefully :)

John Prophet
03-21-2008, 02:24 PM
all roads lead to Rome

if u do sets of around 8-12ish..especially with somewhat short rest periods (30-90 secs), you will experience a lot of burn, pump and probably a lot of soreness afterward. That is sort of the standard "bodybuilding for size" style of training.


if you were to use mainly, say, 5 rep sets with heavier weight, youd also generally take longer rests between sets (2-3 minutes) and youd hardly get much pump or burn at all and probably wont get as much soreness. This is more toward the "training for strength" end of the spectrum. It is training the central nervous system as much as the muscles

Either of those approaches works fine and obviously the best approach is to use both styles and also "in between" approaches like 6-8 reps with medium rest of about 90 secs.


one way to sort of hit all of these is along these lines. Start with a big compound movement for low reps, then go on to higher reps on the next exercises etc. for instance:

1) bench press 4x5-6 reps done in explosive style with full lockout and pause between each rep, about 2:00 between sets

2) incline db press 3x8, done with more moderate speed and stopping just short of lockout to keep tension on the muscle, 90 secs rest

3) pek dek 3x10-12, slow continous tension style, 60 secs rest between sets


Thats sort of an example of how to use various styles in one workout...you are hitting a wide range of strength and size parameters that way

bodyhard
03-21-2008, 02:25 PM
Generally what I shoot for in reps is around ten per set. In other words if I do three sets, the first set I might get 12 reps out (I could push it further) of it but by the last set I'm pushing failure at around 8 to 10. That's when I really feel a burn.
Now I've tried to go with even heavier weights were I might get 4 reps but I don't get a burn at all. All that happens is I get failure.
My question is this...... is this beneficial? I keep reading about people doing larger weights with very low reps but I just don't get any kind of a burn that way. Do you need the burn to get something out of it?
My recovery is very fast that way too on more weight with shorter reps. I don't get many reps but I can repeat it a lot more easily than if I take it to more reps with a bit lighter of a weight were I get the huge burn.

Jeff

The burn is only an indication of lactic acid buildup has nothing to do with growth. But on the other hand if you are looking for hypertrophy you need to lift heavy but you have have to up the reps. I.e 6-10 reps is the norm, anything under 6 reps 1-4 is more for power/strength. But that doesn't mean lifting a weight and just stopping at 4 for the sake of doing 4 reps you should start to fail at or around that number.

FitIron
03-21-2008, 02:27 PM
Generally what I shoot for in reps is around ten per set. In other words if I do three sets, the first set I might get 12 reps out (I could push it further) of it but by the last set I'm pushing failure at around 8 to 10. That's when I really feel a burn.
Now I've tried to go with even heavier weights were I might get 4 reps but I don't get a burn at all. All that happens is I get failure.
My question is this...... is this beneficial? I keep reading about people doing larger weights with very low reps but I just don't get any kind of a burn that way. Do you need the burn to get something out of it?
My recovery is very fast that way too on more weight with shorter reps. I don't get many reps but I can repeat it a lot more easily than if I take it to more reps with a bit lighter of a weight were I get the huge burn.

Jeff


Exellent question.

Going heavy and/or going light have their respective benefits.

Superficial rep ranges.

1-5 reps = Strength

6-12 = Hypertrophy........most muscle growth comes in this range.

12+ = Endurance




What you are feeling in the difference of lifting light and heavy is simply a difference in fatique in your fast and slow twitch muscle fibers.
They respond differently to different loads.

Moderate to heavy loads fatique the fast twitch fibers...while lighter loads fatique the slow twitch fibers.

Thus producing different types of muscle burning and/or failure...

BOTH have their benefits...

John Prophet
03-21-2008, 02:31 PM
if u have extra time to waste..google for these terms: "sarcoplasmic" and "myofibrillar"

then you'll be REALLY confused!

BePrecise
03-21-2008, 02:35 PM
please, noone flame me.

my experience is that low reps do nothing for me. higher reps do. maybe you are the same as me. two strength training authors that i enjoy opine that for endomorphs, low reps high weight, and for ectos, higher reps, with time under stress being more important, i.e. 30-45 seconds per set.

just my opinion, and i understand it is contrary to views of many here.

Hehe...I got your back Boathead....

Actually I think you bring up some other good points. It's hard to make any absolutes out of reps and sets as so many factors have to be considered. An individuals own fatigue rate may vary...for example I can easily perform multiple sets with quality reps for my quads, but when training chest or triceps I'm toast after the first set.
Also, I've trained some guys who are very overweight but they excelled like powerlifters with low reps and the motivation stayed high. However once they'd get over 10 reps, they were burned out for that exercise and the exercises after that in many cases. Other folks just can't stand the lactic acid burn while some can keep pushing.
Therefore I think each individual just really needs to figure out what works for them and their body more than anything else. As they say, sometimes the best routine is the one you're not doing.

John Prophet
03-21-2008, 02:55 PM
Hehe...I got your back Boathead....

Actually I think you bring up some other good points. It's hard to make any absolutes out of reps and sets as so many factors have to be considered. An individuals own fatigue rate may vary...for example I can easily perform multiple sets with quality reps for my quads, but when training chest or triceps I'm toast after the first set.
Also, I've trained some guys who are very overweight but they excelled like powerlifters with low reps and the motivation stayed high. However once they'd get over 10 reps, they were burned out for that exercise and the exercises after that in many cases. Other folks just can't stand the lactic acid burn while some can keep pushing.
Therefore I think each individual just really needs to figure out what works for them and their body more than anything else. As they say, sometimes the best routine is the one you're not doing.


yeah, a lot of times people refuse to get out of their comfort range. Like a guy who has done lots of 5-6 rep stuff...the minute he tries 10 rep squats its super hard and he internally decides he wont do it...then he starts to make reasons (excuses) why, lol

same goes the other way. the guy used to 10 reps freaks out when he feels that heavy first rep of 5 and he decides its too dangerous or something.

dbx
03-21-2008, 03:08 PM
Here is a great article that can help (or confuse you :)):
http://www.t-nation.com/readArticle.do?id=651322

But keep in mind, the one thing I didn't see mentioned in this thread so far is the importance of periodization. In other words, don't stop your 3x10 sets and never go back. For instance, you can do 10x3, 3x10, 4x7, 5x6, 6x5 etc.. And you can and should vary any of the "3 ranges" mentioned in this thread, as well as in the article. Intensity cycles are one of my favorite cycles, but personally, I can only hang about 6-8wks, instead of the usual 10-12wks with say, 3x8 type workouts. Always change things up!

greyhair
03-30-2008, 01:17 PM
Here is a great article that can help (or confuse you :)):
http://www.t-nation.com/readArticle.do?id=651322

But keep in mind, the one thing I didn't see mentioned in this thread so far is the importance of periodization. In other words, don't stop your 3x10 sets and never go back. For instance, you can do 10x3, 3x10, 4x7, 5x6, 6x5 etc.. And you can and should vary any of the "3 ranges" mentioned in this thread, as well as in the article. Intensity cycles are one of my favorite cycles, but personally, I can only hang about 6-8wks, instead of the usual 10-12wks with say, 3x8 type workouts. Always change things up!

Just caught this and I can't agree more.
My best "OV35" progress has come from using periodization. I wish I used it when I was 20. I'd give oldsupe a run for his money.

oldcool
03-31-2008, 11:34 AM
I tend to use 10 reps as a finishing point, meaning that if I can do three sets of ten reps and not be failing on the back end then I need to increase the weight. Add weight and work in the 5-6 rep range until I can get 10 with that weight and then time to add weight again.

IronCamp
03-31-2008, 11:44 AM
I use very heavy weight/low reps for my legs, b/c I don't need to build mass, but only maintain what I have. I am currently doing 5x5 on legs with 2 minute rests. I have been doing this for 4 weeks now and it seems to be working. I have never trained like this and have never really seen much improvement in my legs with low weight/high reps or moderate weight/lower reps.

I don't feel the burn either and thought it wasn't working at first. But, the past couple weeks I have seen definition in my legs that wasn't there before. It could be do to decreased BF%, but I really think this type of training is working.

domineaux
03-31-2008, 02:07 PM
Generally what I shoot for in reps is around ten per set. In other words if I do three sets, the first set I might get 12 reps out (I could push it further) of it but by the last set I'm pushing failure at around 8 to 10. That's when I really feel a burn.
Now I've tried to go with even heavier weights were I might get 4 reps but I don't get a burn at all. All that happens is I get failure.
My question is this...... is this beneficial? I keep reading about people doing larger weights with very low reps but I just don't get any kind of a burn that way. Do you need the burn to get something out of it?
My recovery is very fast that way too on more weight with shorter reps. I don't get many reps but I can repeat it a lot more easily than if I take it to more reps with a bit lighter of a weight were I get the huge burn.

Jeff

The burn is just lactic acid buildup in your muscles. It won't make you bigger "the burn that is". The burn will strengthen connective tissues.

Your goal should be to micro-traumatize the muscles, and then eat like a horse the stuff your body needs. If you don't eat right you won't grow.

It's a simple formula.

You breakdown the muscle with training and you build the muscle back up, bigger with nutritious food and supplements.

Also, you need good rest between workouts so that workouts are productive.

----------------------------------

Reps... I train HST, which you can check out with the link below.

You should get and stick with a training program, then you will get results and not waste alot of time jumping around in the gym trying to figure out what will work and what won't.

You can post abunch here, but you'll get best results if you make a dedicated study of training. Click on the 1000's Of Articles in the line above. There is a preponderance of good advice for free.

-----------------------------

Good luck

Mr. Someday
03-31-2008, 02:19 PM
My advice...never base anything on whether you get "teh burn" or not. :D As has been mentioned previously, it has little to nothing to do with growth. I have made a living off of heavy weights/low reps...always been a staple of my plan. I don't advocate it for arms because I think the majority of people respond better to higher rep ranges, but I will also mention I am not an arms expert as it is my weakest bodypart (basically, nothing has worked very well for them!).

AdmiralNaismith
03-31-2008, 02:23 PM
I tend to use 10 reps as a finishing point, meaning that if I can do three sets of ten reps and not be failing on the back end then I need to increase the weight. Add weight and work in the 5-6 rep range until I can get 10 with that weight and then time to add weight again.

That is exactly what I do.

I've only been lifting (again) for three months, so I'm still seeing nice jumps in weight. Once I plateau I'll start changing things up, varying the number of sets, reps and weight to keep my muscles guessing.

greyhair
03-31-2008, 02:29 PM
To continue to develop, you need to do both volume (lots of reps) and intensity (heavy weight) training.
If you've been doing a lot of 10-12 rep sessions, you'd probably benefit from some intensity training.
But eventually, you're going to have to go back and do some volume again.
Basically, this is one of the cornerstones to periodization training.

SmokeNB
03-31-2008, 07:05 PM
please, noone flame me.

my experience is that low reps do nothing for me. higher reps do. maybe you are the same as me. two strength training authors that i enjoy opine that for endomorphs, low reps high weight, and for ectos, higher reps, with time under stress being more important, i.e. 30-45 seconds per set.

just my opinion, and i understand it is contrary to views of many here.

No flame here...I make much better gains in the 8-10 rep range then the lower rep ranges. Everyone is different and with different goals...

Tommy W.
03-31-2008, 07:24 PM
all roads lead to Rome

if u do sets of around 8-12ish..especially with somewhat short rest periods (30-90 secs), you will experience a lot of burn, pump and probably a lot of soreness afterward. That is sort of the standard "bodybuilding for size" style of training.


if you were to use mainly, say, 5 rep sets with heavier weight, youd also generally take longer rests between sets (2-3 minutes) and youd hardly get much pump or burn at all and probably wont get as much soreness. This is more toward the "training for strength" end of the spectrum. It is training the central nervous system as much as the muscles

Either of those approaches works fine and obviously the best approach is to use both styles and also "in between" approaches like 6-8 reps with medium rest of about 90 secs.


one way to sort of hit all of these is along these lines. Start with a big compound movement for low reps, then go on to higher reps on the next exercises etc. for instance:

1) bench press 4x5-6 reps done in explosive style with full lockout and pause between each rep, about 2:00 between sets

2) incline db press 3x8, done with more moderate speed and stopping just short of lockout to keep tension on the muscle, 90 secs rest

3) pek dek 3x10-12, slow continous tension style, 60 secs rest between sets


Thats sort of an example of how to use various styles in one workout...you are hitting a wide range of strength and size parameters that way

repped

Stenn
03-31-2008, 08:55 PM
if you were to use mainly, say, 5 rep sets with heavier weight, youd also generally take longer rests between sets (2-3 minutes) and youd hardly get much pump or burn at all and probably wont get as much soreness. This is more toward the "training for strength" end of the spectrum. It is training the central nervous system as much as the muscles

This is how I've done the majority of my training and as a result I've gotten great strength gains but only modest size gains.

rea99
03-31-2008, 09:39 PM
for strength and size I am an advocate of low rep/high weight but I vary a great deal for example

typical tri workout

CHBP - 3 warm up sets 10rep, 8rep, 6rep gradually increasing weight then heavy 3x5 or 4x4.

Weighted dips or skull crushers 3x8reps

Lat bar tri extentions 3x12-15

ServoScanMan
04-01-2008, 03:56 AM
....
Now I've tried to go with even heavier weights were I might get 4 reps but I don't get a burn at all. All that happens is I get failure. ....

I am currently on a 5X5 routine. I don't feel a burn at all but the muscles will fail just like turning off a light switch...all of a sudden without warning. I am very pleased with the strength gains of the 5X5 routine but, I am concerned about possible injury (jointes, tendons) if I lift heavy weights. In 5 weeks I will switch to a higher rep, lower weight workout. I feel my best burn when I am in the 3 sets X 15 rep range.