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  1. #1
    Registered User peterm28's Avatar
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    which is better: higher weight for less reps or mid weight for more reps?

    what do you think is better for aesthetics, using higher weight for less reps or a smaller (middle) amount of weight for more reps? Why do you think so?
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    Registered User CactusMann's Avatar
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    According to research, it isn't the rep range that determines the resulting hypertrophy, but the achieved intensity. Doing 3 sets of bench press with more weight and less reps or less weight and more reps lead to roughly the same response if sets are taken sufficiently close to failure.

    That being said I find it easier to achieve intensity when training with heavy weights, as I find high-rep training boring, and often find myself giving up before I can get close enough to failure. For compound movements I use the 3-8 rep range, and 10-15 for isolation stuff. That's just personal preference, however.

    There's a very good article on this topic on Stronger by Science titled "The “Hypertrophy Rep Range” – Fact or Fiction?". (Sorry, I cannot post links)
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    Please just pick a good program and follow it. It'd save you making half (at least) your posts and you'd get better gains.
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    Registered User hardyboysare's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by peterm28 View Post
    what do you think is better for aesthetics, using higher weight for less reps or a smaller (middle) amount of weight for more reps? Why do you think so?
    Both combined simple.


    Originally Posted by CactusMann View Post
    According to research, it isn't the rep range that determines the resulting hypertrophy, but the achieved intensity. Doing 3 sets of bench press with more weight and less reps or less weight and more reps lead to roughly the same response if sets are taken sufficiently close to failure.

    That being said I find it easier to achieve intensity when training with heavy weights, as I find high-rep training boring, and often find myself giving up before I can get close enough to failure. For compound movements I use the 3-8 rep range, and 10-15 for isolation stuff. That's just personal preference, however.

    There's a very good article on this topic on Stronger by Science titled "The “Hypertrophy Rep Range” – Fact or Fiction?". (Sorry, I cannot post links)
    Here is the link for you makes it easier for others agree a very good article:-

    https://www.strongerbyscience.com/hy...-fact-fiction/
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  5. #5
    Registered User peterm28's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by CactusMann View Post
    According to research, it isn't the rep range that determines the resulting hypertrophy, but the achieved intensity. Doing 3 sets of bench press with more weight and less reps or less weight and more reps lead to roughly the same response if sets are taken sufficiently close to failure.

    That being said I find it easier to achieve intensity when training with heavy weights, as I find high-rep training boring, and often find myself giving up before I can get close enough to failure. For compound movements I use the 3-8 rep range, and 10-15 for isolation stuff. That's just personal preference, however.

    There's a very good article on this topic on Stronger by Science titled "The “Hypertrophy Rep Range” – Fact or Fiction?". (Sorry, I cannot post links)
    thanks for the insight and the reference! I found and skimmed the article you mention. (I can post links, so it's this one: https://www.strongerbyscience.com/hy...-fact-fiction/ and the companion piece this one: https://www.strongerbyscience.com/hy...s-adjustments/ ).

    good stuff.
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    Registered User WeightedDip's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by peterm28 View Post
    what do you think is better for aesthetics, using higher weight for less reps or a smaller (middle) amount of weight for more reps? Why do you think so?
    Both. To make things simple:

    If you want to look like a power lifter: low reps, heavy weight.
    If you want to look like a body builder: high reps, middle of road weight.
    If you want the best of both worlds: do both.

    Simple as that. I do strength sets (2, 2, 2, 2) first, than hypertrophy sets to finish off.
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    Registered User nomoreluke's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by CactusMann View Post
    According to research, it isn't the rep range that determines the resulting hypertrophy, but the achieved intensity. Doing 3 sets of bench press with more weight and less reps or less weight and more reps lead to roughly the same response if sets are taken sufficiently close to failure.

    That being said I find it easier to achieve intensity when training with heavy weights, as I find high-rep training boring, and often find myself giving up before I can get close enough to failure. For compound movements I use the 3-8 rep range, and 10-15 for isolation stuff. That's just personal preference, however.

    There's a very good article on this topic on Stronger by Science titled "The “Hypertrophy Rep Range” – Fact or Fiction?". (Sorry, I cannot post links)
    I completely agree with this. Heavy weight, low reps for main lifts, with higher rep counts and lower reps for accessory stuff. I train 5 days per week, full body sessions and each day has a "main lift" focus - basically one group of sets of high weight, low rep work, followed by accessory lifts for the other body parts. Looks something like this:

    Monday - Horizontal Push (wouldn't ever want to desecrate International Chest Day) - 3 sets of 5 reps - Flat Barbell Bench Press, followed by accessory lifts at higher rep ranges of 8-12 (3 sets of each - horizontal pull, vertical push, vertical pull, legs - quad, legs - hamstring, finished off with some bits of work which I find reduce injury - face pulls, etc., supersetted with some ab work)
    Tuesday - Legs (quad dominant) - 3 sets of 5 reps - Back Squat, followed by accessory work, much in the same way as Monday.
    Wednesday - Horizontal Pull - 3 sets of 5 reps - Barbell Bent Over Row, followed by accessory work, much in the same way as Monday.
    Thursday - Legs (hamstring dominant) - 3 sets of 5 reps - Deadlift, followed by accessory work, much in the same way as Monday.
    Friday - Vertical Pull - 3 sets of 5 reps - Weighted Pull Ups, followed by accessory work, much in the same way as Monday.

    I tend not to have a vertical push focus because I feel like my shoulders get a pretty heavy load anyway with the accessory work from both chest and shoulder routines.

    Works for me but long term consistency and progressive overload is key, as is making sure that EVERY set is at maximum intensity. I find this MUCH easier with a full body routine. I still hit 15 sets per bodypart each week, but those sets are split up into 3 each day. Allows me to REALLY focus on it and give each set my maximum focus.
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  8. #8
    Registered User Filmbuff81's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by nomoreluke View Post
    I completely agree with this. Heavy weight, low reps for main lifts, with higher rep counts and lower reps for accessory stuff. I train 5 days per week, full body sessions and each day has a "main lift" focus - basically one group of sets of high weight, low rep work, followed by accessory lifts for the other body parts. Looks something like this:

    Monday - Horizontal Push (wouldn't ever want to desecrate International Chest Day) - 3 sets of 5 reps - Flat Barbell Bench Press, followed by accessory lifts at higher rep ranges of 8-12 (3 sets of each - horizontal pull, vertical push, vertical pull, legs - quad, legs - hamstring, finished off with some bits of work which I find reduce injury - face pulls, etc., supersetted with some ab work)
    Tuesday - Legs (quad dominant) - 3 sets of 5 reps - Back Squat, followed by accessory work, much in the same way as Monday.
    Wednesday - Horizontal Pull - 3 sets of 5 reps - Barbell Bent Over Row, followed by accessory work, much in the same way as Monday.
    Thursday - Legs (hamstring dominant) - 3 sets of 5 reps - Deadlift, followed by accessory work, much in the same way as Monday.
    Friday - Vertical Pull - 3 sets of 5 reps - Weighted Pull Ups, followed by accessory work, much in the same way as Monday.

    I tend not to have a vertical push focus because I feel like my shoulders get a pretty heavy load anyway with the accessory work from both chest and shoulder routines.

    Works for me but long term consistency and progressive overload is key, as is making sure that EVERY set is at maximum intensity. I find this MUCH easier with a full body routine. I still hit 15 sets per bodypart each week, but those sets are split up into 3 each day. Allows me to REALLY focus on it and give each set my maximum focus.
    When you say every set should be maximum intensity what exactly do you mean.

    Think you need to define that a bit before just throwing it out there as advice.
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  9. #9
    Registered User air2fakie's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by peterm28 View Post
    what do you think is better for aesthetics, using higher weight for less reps or a smaller (middle) amount of weight for more reps? Why do you think so?
    Why is this even relevant to your specific workout or lack thereof?

    Cardio machines at max resistance still don’t count as smaller or middle amount of weight training at hi reps.
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  10. #10
    Registered User Filmbuff81's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by air2fakie View Post
    Why is this even relevant to your specific workout or lack thereof?

    Cardio machines at max resistance still don’t count as smaller or middle amount of weight training at hi reps.
    But his training is revolutionary and will change the landscape of bodybuilding and fitness in general.
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  11. #11
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    High weight, less reps. Low weight high reps make you very muscular and gigantic which makes you too heavy to do things well like hiking in these tall mountains of northern New Hampshire. I choose to be very strong in comparison and lighter in body weight doing the 5x5 method. Age 58 and strong as an ox, 5 feet 7 inches tall 218 pounds.
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  12. #12
    can only give insight etet1919's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Filmbuff81 View Post
    When you say every set should be maximum intensity what exactly do you mean.

    Think you need to define that a bit before just throwing it out there as advice.

    He means giving it everything you've got, or working hard as hell, from the beginning (if at the beginning, the weight is relatively heavy) to the end of each set...even if stopping just short of failure, in order to avoid potential injury, form breakdown or to intuitively manage muscular fatigue (higher volume naturally requires this, depending on the exercise, for example). At least, I believe that's what he means. But everyone seems to say the same thing regarding "maximum intensity," so that's why the term is highly subjective.



    I did overlook the most simple definition (pretty common to do this!) of "maximal intensity": the muscles simply do not contract anymore. Isn't that "true" muscular failure? You're doing a set, and your muscles don't contract any longer, or just stop working altogether... for that set. Until you recover and hit it again, even with fatigued muscles.
    Last edited by etet1919; 01-19-2020 at 05:26 AM.
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  13. #13
    Registered User edwardwhaskell's Avatar
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    I'm finding heavier weight usually gets me the results I'm looking for while still enjoying it. Ill have lighter workouts but around 5 reps is working great for me.

    If I do too light I usually end up getting bored
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