Making the change from high to low volume training

  1. Making the change from high to low volume training

    Making the change from high to low volume training

    Many people eventually become disillusioned about spending so many hours in the gym with so little to show for their efforts. It becomes blatantly obvious that they just don’t respond well to many, many sets, of many lifts on a high frequency basis. So……they study and study and find out that the problem is common, and truth be told more people are hardgainers than are easy-gainers. They then learn that lowering the volume and frequency is usually the best approach for genetically typical trainees to allow themselves to recover from the demands of resistance training. And also learn that lower volume work is usually the best approach to add strength at a rapid pace.

    So, they implement a reduced volume and frequency training regimen and BAM! Strength starts to skyrocket! And in many cases the trainee finds…..they are SHRINKING! What?!?! How can this be? Well, when the trainee gets done doing their 12-20 set volume workout glycogen stores and other nutrients are depleted by the sheer volume of the workouts. Since each gram of glycogen in the muscle carries 3 grams of water along for the ride, not depleting the muscle as much, and thus not re-compensating as much when switching to a 1-6 set workout gives the trainee the impression that they are losing muscle on the lower volume routine. And of course they panic, and go right back to the previous routine that wasn’t working. But at least they regain the nutrient loading component of their workouts and are temporarily appeased.

    What they should have done is understood that while they may lose some temporary size that is attributed to nutrient loading and NOT to the amount of real muscle they are carrying. As strength levels rise new muscle tissue will eventually be accrued and they will soon surpass their previous size levels, but with newfound strength to go along with the size. Most people though just don’t have the mindset to tough it out and aren’t willing to accept any short-term setback even it will lead to long-term success. We live in a culture of instant gratification where any and all shortcuts are seen as viable routes along the path.

    After making the above statement about the cause and effect of the transitory reduction of size some experience when drastically reducing volume, and understanding that the correct course of action for most trainees should be to stick it out, I’ll now go into a few methods to reduce or eliminate the potential size loss.

    Lost some cell volume? Volumize the cell! Creatine and or Taurine both do a good job of doing this and are cheap and readily available. Of course gear and PH’s do a remarkable job of cell volumization, but of course that’s cheating-lol. And if you switch from high volume no gear, to low volume and gear the results will be skewed.

    Want to deplete the cell without depleting CNS and impacting overall recovery? One HIGH rep set of 50-100 reps with a light weight can do a wonderful job of this while actually helping with recovery for many individuals.

    Another, and probably my favorite method is pulling the weighted sled for time. Use pulls that hit the targeted muscles and make sure you don’t get too carried away and impact recovery. The best time for this is anywhere from RIGHT after your workout, or anytime from a few hours after, up to 24 hours after the workout. If the intensity isn’t too high and you don’t pull too long, many will find recovery is actually enhanced.

    If you are truly a hardgainer the last two approaches should be broken into VERY SLOWLY and should be tried only AFTER you have implemented your low volume plan and have already established it’s effectiveness. That way if you add the additional work and progress stops you know the cause. Reducing as many variables as possible is always the best way to implementing a new approach to your lifting and dieting. It sure does make troubleshooting easier.

    Iron Addict

  2. IA,what kind of routine would you consider this to be:
    maybe only the last set is to failure; most of the time it is shy of it

    Day 1
    Decline Bench or Dips 3x8
    Incline Bench or Shoulder Press 3x8
    Close-grip bench (elbows way in for maximum tricep involvement) 3x8
    Lateral raises 3x8

    Day 2
    Deadlift or Squat 3x8
    Bent over rows or BB rows 3x8
    Seated Rows or Chinups 3x8
    Calf Raises 4x8

    i've been making decent gains on and off cycle with this... its a little dialed down from the volume i was doing on my last cycle (which i did on purpose to switch things up a bit, and it worked)...
    doing it as:
    monday : day 1
    tuesday : off
    wed: off
    thurs: day 2

  3. A low volume hardgainer style routine.

    Iron Addict

Similar Forum Threads

  1. Best stack to make the jump from 315 to 405
    By amdd1124 in forum Supplements
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 11-04-2014, 07:28 AM
  2. Replies: 72
    Last Post: 08-23-2011, 02:52 AM
  3. making the move from phs to real gear?
    By ammoarsenal in forum Anabolics
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: 02-28-2010, 05:22 PM
  4. EPI/HAVOC - High or Low Volume Training Best?
    By mayneVayne in forum Supplements
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 08-23-2007, 01:38 PM
  5. Changing from bulk to cut during cycle?
    By ArnoldIsMyIdol in forum Anabolics
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 06-30-2006, 01:42 PM
Log in
Log in