The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness
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The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness

It’s no secret that when people contradict themselves, it has the effect of making the flaws in their actions or statements seem glaringly obvious. But what about when WE ourselves get caught contradicting ourselves by someone else?

By: Nick Tumminello Added: January 6th, 2014
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  1. #1
    Wannabebig Member neweracat's Avatar
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    Check out my hybrid HCT/ 10-8-6-15 workout for ectomorphs.

    I've been doing HCT-12 for a while now and while I'm still seeing improvements in strength and size, I'm starting to get burnt out on the routine. I lift for not only size and strength, but for fun. Lately I've been finding it more and more difficult to get my butt into the gym, mainly because I'm not having fun anymore. I really have to force myself to go to the gym, sometimes when I get there I do whatever lifts I want and this seems to break-up the monotony and I have fun. So I decided to do some research on a new routine. During my research I've found several articles stating that ectomorphs should lift different than people with the more common mesomorphic body type. So I've tinkered around with different ideas and came up with a hybrid HCT which is basicly a combination of HCT and a 10-8-6-15 workout designed for ectomorphs.

    Heres what the workout looks like.

    Work days Mon, Weds, Fri

    1st set- 12 reps. 2nd set- 8 reps 3rd set- 6 reps 4th set- 6 reps, plus 2, plus 2

    Squats
    Bench press
    Bent over rows
    V-bar pulldowns
    barbell curls
    skullcrushers


    Here's the link to the 10-8-6-15 workout that I mixed with HCT-12.

    http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/ecto...d_training.htm

    Any comments, positive or negative about this routine would be much appreciated. If you think this routine is complete garbage, please feel free to say so. That's the whole reason I made this thread.
    Last edited by neweracat; 12-05-2010 at 04:25 PM.

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  3. #2
    Moderator Off Road's Avatar
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    1.) How long have you been doing HCT-12, a month maybe?
    2.) Is making progress really that boring?
    3.) Do you see other multi-set routines using clusters?
    4.) Where's your exercise for glute/hamstring?
    5.) And while I think ectomorphs might need to train a little differently, do you think that includes using MORE volume?
    Last edited by Off Road; 12-05-2010 at 06:22 PM.
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  4. #3
    Wannabebig Member neweracat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Off Road View Post
    1.) How long have you been doing HCT-12, a month maybe?
    2.) Is making progress really that boring?
    3.) Do you see other multi-set routines using clusters?
    4.) Where's your exercise for glute/hamstring?
    5.) And while I think ectomorphs might need to train a little differently, do you think that includes using MORE volume?
    1. 9-10 months
    2. It gets old having to force myself to go to the gym. I'm worried that overtime that will become a losing battle.
    3. I've never seen another routine map out the clusters the way HCT-12 does. A lot of the guys I know use clusters, but they just throw them in there where ever.
    4. If I do decide to use this new routine I'll probably switch the squats to deadlifts and back every month or so.
    5. My current understanding is that the reps should very thoughout the the sets, because staying in one rep range for too long will overwork that particular motor unit. As far as the overall volume goes, I was going to dabble with that and autoregulate as my body requires.

  5. #4
    Moderator Off Road's Avatar
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    I like the 10-8-6-15 much better than your setup. The clusters just seem like extra work rather than extending a set with a high percentage of your 1RM.
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  6. #5
    Wannabebig Member neweracat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Off Road View Post
    I like the 10-8-6-15 much better than your setup. The clusters just seem like extra work rather than extending a set with a high percentage of your 1RM.
    I don't understand. The clusters are applied just like they are in a regular HCT set-up. I don't see the difference just because I'm adding a few reps to my first two sets. Please explain.

  7. #6
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    To me, doing 12 and then 8 reps before a very intense 6RM is kind of pointless and will really detract away from the whole purpose of this routine. Plus I believe ectomorphs would benefit better from less volume anyway. I was one (still am?) and I have never really done any high volume programs and have progressed pretty nicely.

    The entire point of HCT-12 is to hit a given muscle as hard as you can with LOW volume so you can recover in 48-72 hours 100%, then hit that muscle group again with just as much intensity..rinse-repeat. Its sort of like an offspring of DC training, at least to me. The idea is to maximize frequency without detracting from recovery. I would just do it as written. If you are doing the clusters correctly, you shouldn't be able to add anymore volume anyway.

  8. #7
    Moderator Off Road's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by neweracat View Post
    I don't see the difference just because I'm adding a few reps to my first two sets. Please explain.
    Quote Originally Posted by Off Road View Post
    The clusters just seem like extra work rather than extending a set with a high percentage of your 1RM.
    I did explain already. Clusters are meant to extend a set beyond failure with a very high percentage (over 80%) of your 1RM. If you are doing all that other work beforehand, plus two sets across, then finishing of with clusters, you are not using the clusters to their advantage. You would be better off sticking to the drop set in the original routine.
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  9. #8
    House Lannister
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    Quote Originally Posted by Off Road View Post
    I did explain already. Clusters are meant to extend a set beyond failure with a very high percentage (over 80%) of your 1RM. If you are doing all that other work beforehand, plus two sets across, then finishing of with clusters, you are not using the clusters to their advantage. You would be better off sticking to the drop set in the original routine.
    This.


    Listen to Off Road, op. He really, really knows his stuff and is strong as he!!.

    Frankly, I don't really see what is so special about the routine you posted. I don't like some of the exercise choices and I don't think it's anything to write home about.

    Daniel Roberts put a LOT of time in to the HCT-12 routine. There are numerous scientific citations in the explanation articles on why the routine is set up the way it is, plus there's a lot of real-world evidence to support the principles of the program. It's a solid, well-thought out program...why fuk with it?

    Also, the routine isn't nearly as important as your rest/diet. Any sensible routine will help you get bigger and stronger with the right intensity, it's the other variables that really matter.

  10. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by neweracat View Post
    I've been doing HCT-12 for a while now and while I'm still seeing improvements in strength and size, I'm starting to get burnt out on the routine. I lift for not only size and strength, but for fun. Lately I've been finding it more and more difficult to get my butt into the gym, mainly because I'm not having fun anymore. I really have to force myself to go to the gym, sometimes when I get there I do whatever lifts I want and this seems to break-up the monotony and I have fun. So I decided to do some research on a new routine. During my research I've found several articles stating that ectomorphs should lift different than people with the more common mesomorphic body type. So I've tinkered around with different ideas and came up with a hybrid HCT which is basicly a combination of HCT and a 10-8-6-15 workout designed for ectomorphs.

    Heres what the workout looks like.

    Work days Mon, Weds, Fri

    1st set- 12 reps. 2nd set- 8 reps 3rd set- 6 reps 4th set- 6 reps, plus 2, plus 2

    Squats
    Bench press
    Bent over rows
    V-bar pulldowns
    barbell curls
    skullcrushers


    Here's the link to the 10-8-6-15 workout that I mixed with HCT-12.

    http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/ecto...d_training.htm

    Any comments, positive or negative about this routine would be much appreciated. If you think this routine is complete garbage, please feel free to say so. That's the whole reason I made this thread.
    Are you doing those exercises in every session, 3 times per week?

    I'm assuming because you've classed yourself an ectomorph that you believe yourself a 'hardgainer'. If anything a 'hardgainer' needs less volume, and hitting those exercises in that fashion 3x a week does not look like a reduction in volume to me.
    By the way, I'm no classic mesomorph either, at 6'5" and a swimmer's frame originally, I'm well aware of what it takes to put meat on a tall, lean frame.
    Looking at your program I actually feel tired thinking about trawling my way through it, let alone doing it three times a week.
    Ultimately it's your call, I'm not a fan of the exercise selection and the full body 3 times a week does not look like 'fun' to me, but that's not to say it couldn't work for you. However if you're basing your program on your supposed needs as an ectomorph then you're likely going the wrong way down the path.

    Guess none of this is what you'd hoped to hear, but OR's point about progress is key. That should be your motivation. If you're still getting stronger and bigger then irrespective of the program, that'd be inspiration enough for me. After years under the bar I'm sure anyone will tell you that real excitement comes from progress not the program; the program is a means to an end.

    That's not to dismiss the need for enjoyment of the program but the direction you've taken it seems to be moving away from fun and progress.

  11. #10
    Wannabebig Member neweracat's Avatar
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    Thanks for your opinions guys. I guess I'm going to do the 10-8-6-15 program instead of my hbrid version for a few months before getting back to my HCT.

    Does anybody know why so many personal trainers/ writers say that ectomorphs should use a variety of rep ranges, yet HCT does not, but it still works well for ectos? I'm not knocking HCT, I have used it for several months and have made great progress during that time. But I'm a creature of variety, I always have been, so I need to switch things up ever so often.
    Last edited by neweracat; 12-08-2010 at 10:26 AM.

  12. #11
    Moderator Off Road's Avatar
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    It depends on where you get your information from. A lot of trainers are still stuck on the Weider Principals - LOL

    Seriously, where are these sources of information coming from? Everything I've read about training an ectomorph revolves around basic and abreviated training.
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  13. #12
    Skinny Feet Kiff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by neweracat View Post
    Thanks for your opinions guys. I guess I'm going to do the 10-8-6-15 program instead of my hbrid version for a few months before getting back to my HCT.

    Does anybody know why so many personal trainers/ writers say that ectomorphs should use a variety of rep ranges, yet HCT does not, but it still works well for ectos? I'm not knocking HCT, I have used it for several months and have made great progress during that time. But I'm a creature of variety, I always have been, so I need to switch things up ever so often.
    If you like variety HCT-12 gives you that, you have a deload week and you can change your exercises?

    Looks like you have made your mind up but 10-8-6-15 looks like a LOT of volume, and it is not going to help burning all those calories with an already fast metabolism if you ask me.

    I have only commented here not from years under the bar that OR and Daniel have but from going from a skinny little runt to a normal sized bloke on HCT-12 and I used to bet money with people that I could not gain weight
    http://www.wannabebig.com/forums/sho...?136143-Hct-12

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  14. #13
    House Lannister
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    Quote Originally Posted by Off Road View Post
    It depends on where you get your information from. A lot of trainers are still stuck on the Weider Principals - LOL

    Seriously, where are these sources of information coming from? Everything I've read about training an ectomorph revolves around basic and abreviated training.
    Quote Originally Posted by Kiff View Post
    If you like variety HCT-12 gives you that, you have a deload week and you can change your exercises?

    Looks like you have made your mind up but 10-8-6-15 looks like a LOT of volume, and it is not going to help burning all those calories with an already fast metabolism if you ask me.

    I have only commented here not from years under the bar that OR and Daniel have but from going from a skinny little runt to a normal sized bloke on HCT-12 and I used to bet money with people that I could not gain weight
    Kiff and OR are spot on. I weighted about 145 pounds when I first entered college, and I'm probably just under 6'. Not pretty. By training with sensible volume on a push/pull/legs split (usually 3x10 set/rep) with just a few exercises, I gained about 10-15 solid pounds my first semester at school, abs still visible. I then stayed around 160 or so for a while, and with the help of low-volume strength training (5x5) I'm now up at 170 lbs, abs still visible.

    I did a high-volume, high-frequency routine focusing on compound lifts last summer--it just doesn't work for us skinny guys. We need low volume with heavy-ass weights to spark some growth. Stick with the heavy compounds like:

    squats (my quad sweep/detail after training heavy squats is 10x better than it was doing lighter weight/higher reps)
    deadlifts (great for low back development)
    rows/chins (your upper back will thank you, so will your biceps)
    dips (target your shoulders/triceps/chest(
    Pressing (military/flat/incline pressing will hit your chest/shoulders/tris hard)

    These movements will pack muscle on to you. But you gotta train heavy (while maintaining solid form). I've gotten so nervous before a heavy set of squats before that I've gotten physically ill. But guess what, I made that weight my b!tch when I got under the bar.


    I would really, really stay away from that routine you posted. Just do HCT-12 or something like 5x5 and call it a day.

    -From a fellow ecto.

  15. #14
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    One thing I don't get...

    Chris and Daniel put months into this program. They even went so far as to recruit people from this site to give it months of testing on a wide variety of body types. Why even mess with it at all? Why not just trust it?

    Im all for switching things up, but doing a 10-8 then a top 6RM just seems counter-productive to me. If you wanted to add more volume, get on 5/3/1 and do boring but big. High rep sets should be added after the top weight of the day, not before, otherwise you are just burning yourself out before you touch the heavy set.

    Do yourself a favor and read the DC training articles. Im not recommending you do this program, but it really puts things into perspective on what works and what is useless. You don't need more volume to grow. You need adequete *frequency*, rest, and food.

    http://dc-training.blogspot.com/
    Last edited by mchicia1; 12-08-2010 at 01:20 PM.

  16. #15
    Wannabebig Member neweracat's Avatar
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    Well I have asked the members of this forum for numerous tidbits of advice and have yet to be let down. It seems that most you think the hybrid routine isn't that great, and nobody seems to favor the 10-8-6-15. So, I've decided to stick with my HCT, maybe switch up a few of my exercises just to keep it fresh. I think I'm going to switch the flat barbell bench to dumbbell bench, weighted dips to skull crushers or tri push-downs, and bent over rows to one arm rows. Speaking of one arm rows, do any of you use this exercise, like, or dislike it?

    Does this sound like a more sensible plan?

    Once again thanks for the feedback fellas, even though sometimes you probably want to crack me in the head with a boat oar. lol

  17. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by neweracat View Post
    Well I have asked the members of this forum for numerous tidbits of advice and have yet to be let down. It seems that most you think the hybrid routine isn't that great, and nobody seems to favor the 10-8-6-15. So, I've decided to stick with my HCT, maybe switch up a few of my exercises just to keep it fresh. I think I'm going to switch the flat barbell bench to dumbbell bench, weighted dips to skull crushers or tri push-downs, and bent over rows to one arm rows. Speaking of one arm rows, do any of you use this exercise, like, or dislike it?

    Does this sound like a more sensible plan?

    Once again thanks for the feedback fellas, even though sometimes you probably want to crack me in the head with a boat oar. lol
    I wouldn't abandon the bench all together. I would cycle bench and DB press/dips.

    So
    Monday
    Bench
    OHP

    Weds
    Legs

    Friday
    DB Bench
    OHP
    Last edited by mchicia1; 12-08-2010 at 08:03 PM.

  18. #17
    Skinny Feet Kiff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mchicia1 View Post
    I wouldn't abandon the bench all together. I would cycle bench and DB press/dips.

    So
    Monday
    Bench
    OHP

    Weds
    Legs

    Friday
    DB Bench
    OHP
    This is a good idea, whatever you do I would strongly suggest you stick with any movement for 5weeks and a deload at least before you change it to see the best progress mate.
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