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  1. #1
    Registered User Ckdjim's Avatar
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    Hypertrophy vs Strength

    I know I'm probably beating a dead horse, but I can't get a definitive answer. If I want to build muscle size then I work moderate weights with higher reps. If I want to gain strength then I do lower reps with heavier weights. This is all the information I can find on every article I've read. So for example I've ran Starting Strength from Oct last year up until January first when I kind of switched to a hybrid strongman workout. I've gained some size in arms and shoulders and chest so that means it's working for strength and hypertrophy. So if all I've read is correct then if I wanted to go more of a bodybuilder look then I should do higher reps with moderate weights. If all of what I'm asking is true...is there a middle ground? Get stronger and bigger? Specific workout if so? SS was great but I stalled and I know lots of folks have complained about arm size, etc Whatcha think??
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    Registered User Reznovan's Avatar
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    I would say doing weight where you fail at 6-8 reps is a good way to blend hypertrophy and strength.
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    Registered User SoCalHurler's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Ckdjim View Post
    I know I'm probably beating a dead horse, but I can't get a definitive answer. If I want to build muscle size then I work moderate weights with higher reps. If I want to gain strength then I do lower reps with heavier weights. This is all the information I can find on every article I've read. So for example I've ran Starting Strength from Oct last year up until January first when I kind of switched to a hybrid strongman workout. I've gained some size in arms and shoulders and chest so that means it's working for strength and hypertrophy. So if all I've read is correct then if I wanted to go more of a bodybuilder look then I should do higher reps with moderate weights. If all of what I'm asking is true...is there a middle ground? Get stronger and bigger? Specific workout if so? SS was great but I stalled and I know lots of folks have complained about arm size, etc Whatcha think??
    See the charts in Fierce 5 FAQs for a visual on the relation between number of reps and strength vs. size. If you're still in the novice phase, just stick with a good novice program and you'll gain both.

    https://forum.bodybuilding.com/showt...post1267964801
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  4. #4
    Registered User DCSpartan's Avatar
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    you arent buildling hypertrophy with moderate weight. Thats where so many beginners get it wrong.

    hypertrophy comes from lifting heavy weights with volume.
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    Time to Work litljay's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by DCSpartan View Post
    you arent buildling hypertrophy with moderate weight. Thats where so many beginners get it wrong.

    hypertrophy comes from lifting heavy weights with volume.
    This. If volume is equal, heavy works better and you get the benefit of strength.
    You don't have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.
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    Registered User tdod101's Avatar
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    Strength and size are one in the same, you can't have one without the other. Unless you're an anomaly which I assume you are not.

    The only thing that's going to get you bigger and stronger is hard work and dedication, period! /Thread
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  7. #7
    I can do this all day Farley1324's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Ckdjim View Post
    I know I'm probably beating a dead horse, but I can't get a definitive answer. If I want to build muscle size then I work moderate weights with higher reps. If I want to gain strength then I do lower reps with heavier weights. This is all the information I can find on every article I've read. So for example I've ran Starting Strength from Oct last year up until January first when I kind of switched to a hybrid strongman workout. I've gained some size in arms and shoulders and chest so that means it's working for strength and hypertrophy. So if all I've read is correct then if I wanted to go more of a bodybuilder look then I should do higher reps with moderate weights. If all of what I'm asking is true...is there a middle ground? Get stronger and bigger? Specific workout if so? SS was great but I stalled and I know lots of folks have complained about arm size, etc Whatcha think??
    What are your height, weight, age, and current squat/press/deadlift/bench?
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  8. #8
    Registered User zGwild's Avatar
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    When you say strength. What are you talking about? 1 RM strength, 5 RM strength, 12 RM strength?

    See what I am getting at? Just because you are not doing 1RMs does not mean you are not training for strength. Like wise just because you are training low reps it does not mean you are not training for growth.

    Progressive overload, TIME and surplus calories will get you bigger regardless of rep range. Volume does play a role but that should be one of the variables covered with progressive overload while training intelligently on a good program.
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    Registered User bk1991's Avatar
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    Good advice from others in thsi thread, also my program I do 2 upper, and 2 lower days, with on of each being Power day, and other hypertrophy dy
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    Registered User Ckdjim's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Farley1324 View Post
    What are your height, weight, age, and current squat/press/deadlift/bench?
    44 years old, 80" tall, 275lbs.
    Squat-265x3x5 & 315x1 is rep max
    Deadlift-275x3x5 315 1rm
    Bench-155x3x5. 175 1rm
    Overhead press 125 1rm
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  11. #11
    I can do this all day Farley1324's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Ckdjim View Post
    44 years old, 80" tall, 275lbs.
    Squat-265x3x5 & 315x1 is rep max
    Deadlift-275x3x5 315 1rm
    Bench-155x3x5. 175 1rm
    Overhead press 125 1rm
    Right now your priority should probably be tracking your nutrition to slowly reduce bodyweight at a rate of 1-2 lbs per week on average while continuing on a progressive resistance training program.

    What is your program and are you tracking your nutrition daily?

    You are not at a point to really worry about differentiating between size and and strength.
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  12. #12
    Registered User mdonnelly80's Avatar
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    The difference between "hypertrophy" rep ranges and "strength" rep ranges in terms of gaining muscle is pretty minuscule. You see big, ripped Olympic lifters that rarely past five reps on any lifts. But as has been pointed out, they push a TON of volume. The actual different between these rep ranges is in motor neuron recruitment; you recruit more motor units (along with fast twitch motor units) with higher levels of resistance. You simply don't recruit as many motor units when training with lighter weights so, in layman's terms, you don't train the muscle to be strong. Big motor units and fast twitch motor units are the last to be recruited and that means applying a higher level of resistance.

    So, in order to be BIG and STRONG, you need to push heavier weights for volume. This is why 5x5 programs are so popular; folks gains muscle mass and strength on them. There's nothing wrong with living in that 8-15 rep range; you'll gain size. But, a guy following a 5x5 program of some kind who has his diet dialed in will gain just as much muscle mass but he'll also have the strength behind it. He will have trained the extra muscle mass he puts on to recruit motor units optimally.
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