Our bodies can lie to us. For example, when you first start serious strength training, almost any program will produce dramatic results. It is possible to gain 10-20 pounds of pure muscle during your first year of training, depending on your genetics. Continue reading “Why Everyone Should Strength Train”
“Exercise to stimulate, not to annihilate. The world wasn’t formed in a day, and neither were we. Set small goals and build upon them.” Lee Haney
Determining optimal training volume is not a straight forward proposition. There is no one size fits all solution. I will simplify the process and provide some parameters, but you will have to discover what is optimal for YOU. Scientific studies should guide our training, but ultimately, we must decide what works best for us through trial and error. The primary factor to consider is your ability to recover.
The latest issue of Muscle & Fiction and all the High-Intensity zealots would have you believe that if you don’t take a set to absolute muscular failure, you are wasting your time. That just isn’t true. On an effective strength training program for the natural lifter, most sets should stop 1 or 2 repetitions short of failure. We should avoid going to failure on all but the last set of each exercise. A simple, yet effective way to evaluate your rating of perceived exertion (RPE), is using this table developed by respected strength coach and competitive powerlifter Mike Tuchscherer.