The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness
Latest Article

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
More Recent Articles
Contrast Training for Size
By: Lee Boyce
An Interview with Marianne Kane of Girls Gone Strong
By: Jordan Syatt
What Supplements Should I be Taking? By: Jay Wainwright
Bench Like a Girl By: Julia Ladewski
Some Thoughts on Building a Big Pull By: Christopher Mason

Facebook Join Facebook Group       Twitter Follow on Twitter       rss Subscribe via RSS
Results 1 to 16 of 16

Hybrid View

  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    200

    HCT-12. Ramping sets?

    Hey all,

    I have a question regarding HCT. The way I'm reading it is you should ramp up to your 6 rep max. I did that today for bench like this:

    95x6
    110x6
    125x6
    135x6
    145x6 (max)
    145 +2+2+2

    My question is, wouldn't it make more sense to just do a few warm up sets than do your max set? I ask this because my previous 6 rep max for bench was 150 lbs. The way I did it was:

    95x6 (warm up)
    120x4 (warm up)
    135x2 (warm up)
    150x6 (work set)

    So I didn't tire myself out with warm up sets. The way I did it in the context of HCT, the first 3 sets felt like true warm up sets but when I did 135 it more or less just burnt be out with submaximal weight and I couldn't make it to the 150. The same thing happened with bent over rows. My old 6 rep max was 110 lbs and today I could barly make it to 100 lbs. Again the only difference being I used to use light warm up sets prior.

    I guess my question is- is it necesary to do ramping sets? Wouldn't it just make more sense to do a few actual warm up sets than just try to blast PR?

  2.    Support Wannabebig and use AtLarge Nutrition Supplements!


  3. #2
    Moderator Off Road's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    U.S.A.
    Posts
    13,905
    There are varying opinions on that. I have a particular opinion, but it's not very popular, so just do what feels right.
    _________
    ______
    ___

    Off Road Journal

    http://www.wannabebig.com/logo/alnlogo_white.gif

    AtLarge Nutrition Supplements – Get the best supplements and help support Wannabebig!

  4. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    200
    Quote Originally Posted by Off Road View Post
    There are varying opinions on that. I have a particular opinion, but it's not very popular, so just do what feels right.
    I don't care much for popularity contests. Whats your opinion?

  5. #4
    Moderator Off Road's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    U.S.A.
    Posts
    13,905
    I think the ramping works best because it adds volume and lets you feel your way to your top set. You only lost 5 lbs on your top set, but you added more volume. Also, you will be better able to tell in the future when to add weight to your top set by the way you feel working up, which may not be as apparent if you are doing lower reps on your warmups.
    _________
    ______
    ___

    Off Road Journal

    http://www.wannabebig.com/logo/alnlogo_white.gif

    AtLarge Nutrition Supplements – Get the best supplements and help support Wannabebig!

  6. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    200
    Quote Originally Posted by Off Road View Post
    I think the ramping works best because it adds volume and lets you feel your way to your top set. You only lost 5 lbs on your top set, but you added more volume. Also, you will be better able to tell in the future when to add weight to your top set by the way you feel working up, which may not be as apparent if you are doing lower reps on your warmups.
    I don't see why that's not popular advice, it makes sense. I was kind of thinking along those lines. I mean failure is failure, right? If I was slightly tired from a few sub-max sets it shouldn't matter as long as I hit my 6 rep max.

    I'm thinking about doing a set slighly under my previous PR and than trying for a PR set. Maybe it's just bench. I suck at that lift.

  7. #6
    LuNa
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Tilburg, The Netherlands
    Posts
    3,721
    As long as you keep adding weight to the bar for your work set (6,2,2,2) then i dont see the problem. Ramping up, warm up etc is what it says, to get you ready for that all out set.

  8. #7
    Wannabebig Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    69
    Quote Originally Posted by Off Road View Post
    I think the ramping works best because it adds volume and lets you feel your way to your top set. You only lost 5 lbs on your top set, but you added more volume. Also, you will be better able to tell in the future when to add weight to your top set by the way you feel working up, which may not be as apparent if you are doing lower reps on your warmups.
    Got my vote! As Daniel says in the articles, you need a certain amount of volume and fatigue per muscle group per workout for optimal gains. Doing the ramping sets of 6 gives you at least 24 'effective' reps per muscle (reps that are within 70-80% of 1RM).

  9. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    200
    Quote Originally Posted by Dazza View Post
    Got my vote! As Daniel says in the articles, you need a certain amount of volume and fatigue per muscle group per workout for optimal gains. Doing the ramping sets of 6 gives you at least 24 'effective' reps per muscle (reps that are within 70-80% of 1RM).
    This is where HCT differs from my previous routine (Lyle's Generic Bulk). With Lyle's you do a few WU sets, than your heaviest set and remp down. So you still 3-4 total work sets only with more weight because you started out higher, and lessed only as you fatigue. Lyle sasy "ramping sets suck" but doesn't give a reason, so I take that with a grain of salt.

  10. #9
    Wannabebig Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    69
    Quote Originally Posted by Yamar View Post
    . Lyle sasy "ramping sets suck" but doesn't give a reason, so I take that with a grain of salt.
    I think the context he is talking about was with 'pyramid' sets that were popular back in the day. Example being 1x15, 1x12, 1x10, 1x8 etc all done close to failure which really does take alot away from your top weight. Could be wrong, you would have to ask him on his forum.

    Something I have experimented with a few times, with very painful results( DOMS), and might even try a whole cycle with is more a myo reps approach where the volume is added in the clusters rather than the ramping sets. Example, warm up with ~50%x5-6, 70%x3-4, 90%x 1-2, then hit the top end set and do more clusters until you hit RPE of 9 or so. Some days you'll get more clusters, some less. So your auto regulating on the clusters. But because you are no longer ramping in sets of 6 trying to feel for your 6RM that day, you end up working in a more traditional 'rep range' of say 6-8RM (when you get to 8 reps add weight to the bar and drop back down to 6RM). Of course, this is no longer HCT-12 so can't complain if it doesn't work or I die...which ever comes first!
    Last edited by Dazza; 02-07-2011 at 06:55 PM.

  11. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    200
    Quote Originally Posted by Dazza View Post
    I think the context he is talking about was with 'pyramid' sets that were popular back in the day. Example being 1x15, 1x12, 1x10, 1x8 etc all done close to failure which really does take alot away from your top weight. Could be wrong, you would have to ask him on his forum.

    Something I have experimented with a few times, with very painful results( DOMS), and might even try a whole cycle with is more a myo reps approach where the volume is added in the clusters rather than the ramping sets. Example, warm up with ~50%x5-6, 70%x3-4, 90%x 1-2, then hit the top end set and do more clusters until you hit RPE of 9 or so. Some days you'll get more clusters, some less. So your auto regulating on the clusters. But because you are no longer ramping in sets of 6 trying to feel for your 6RM that day, you end up working in a more traditional 'rep range' of say 6-8RM (when you get to 8 reps add weight to the bar and drop back down to 6RM). Of course, this is no longer HCT-12 so can't complain if it doesn't work or I die...which ever comes first!
    I don't post much on Lyle's board. Even though I admire the dude and have read all his books, his people skills are terrible. The guy would be a millionair if he only wasn't so negative. If I asked him what he meant by that he would either 1) Insult me or 2) Ignore me. Obviously anyone who hasn't devoted their entire life to nutrition and exercise is an idiot.

    Anyways your idea sounds awsome!! What I decided to do it sort of split the difference. It worked out well today on leg day. Sets 1,2 and 3 I consider warm ups, than instead of building up to my previous weeks PR I went like 5% under than made the next set a new PR set(5-10 lbs over last workout). So I'm still getting 2-3 solid sets @ 10-15% under my max, than the max set + clusters. I figure if the 10-15% under set sucks I'll autoregulate from there, maybe even just cluster that or whatever.

    At any rate I'm going to start a log so I remain consistent with this as written. I have this strange urge to put my own spin on everything and honestly IDK WTF I'm doing.

  12. #11
    House Lannister
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Posts
    5,294
    The way you outlined how you do it is similar to how I do it. I'll usually hit 2-3 ramping sets and then do my all-out max set.

    However, I'm basically using the 4-day template of HCT-12, and that's it. I don't deload every four weeks and I don't autoregulate. So, take what I say as my personal opinion ONLY.

  13. #12
    Wannabebig Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    52
    This question comes up all the time. Perhaps a comment about it could be added to the article to make it more clear?

  14. #13
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    200
    Quote Originally Posted by NoMoreFatChix View Post
    This question comes up all the time. Perhaps a comment about it could be added to the article to make it more clear?
    Yes. I agree.

  15. #14
    Moderator Off Road's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    U.S.A.
    Posts
    13,905
    I think as you get more comfortable with your maxes and how you feel from day to day (autoregulation), then you can take a shorter route to you max set and be fresher for the efforts. But until then I think that ramping gets you more "in-tune" with your body.

    Daniel Roberts, Chris Mason, and others disagreed with me on this in another thread, but it goes to show there are many different ways of reaching the same goals. Just experiment and do what works best for you.
    _________
    ______
    ___

    Off Road Journal

    http://www.wannabebig.com/logo/alnlogo_white.gif

    AtLarge Nutrition Supplements – Get the best supplements and help support Wannabebig!

  16. #15
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    200
    Quote Originally Posted by Off Road View Post
    I think as you get more comfortable with your maxes and how you feel from day to day (autoregulation), then you can take a shorter route to you max set and be fresher for the efforts. But until then I think that ramping gets you more "in-tune" with your body.

    Daniel Roberts, Chris Mason, and others disagreed with me on this in another thread, but it goes to show there are many different ways of reaching the same goals. Just experiment and do what works best for you.
    You wouldn't know the title of that thread would you? I have been searching the forums for a relavent topic but there is so much info regarding HCT it's like finding a needle in a hay stack.

    I really wish they maintained the HCT spceific section of this forum. Not much info anywhere else on the web except for WWB.com

  17. #16
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    324
    Yamar, I agree with OR (I can't actually remember disagreeing with you!).

    Warming up/ramping up (the lines blur as the weight gets closer to your max) is to prepare you for lifting the heaviest final set you can for that day.

    It's up to you how many sets you take to get there. If you're particularly strong then the load is proportionally higher and therefore the volume can be reduced i.e. fewer sets.
    If you're benching 400lbs plus then is it really necessary or optimal to hammer a load of sets prior to hitting your top set? No. Unless you're amazingly gifted.

    Now you're example is a 150lbs bench. The load is proportionally low and therefore the volume component then becomes a more significant requirement.

    You need the volume, because the load is low. You will get better at this as your work capacity increases.

    As for changing the article, best ask Chris or Daniel Clough. Explaining auto-regulation is tricky and there is no set template - you have to figure it out for yourself.

    Listen to Steve Colescott's podcast and his interview with Mike Tuscherer, who's RTS is all about autoregulation. Well worth it.

Similar Threads

  1. Question on the HCT-12 cluster sets
    By Partyfoul in forum Bodybuilding & Weight Training
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 01-12-2011, 03:12 AM
  2. Question about ramping
    By Mercuryblade in forum Bodybuilding & Weight Training
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 05-26-2010, 11:22 AM
  3. Roughly how many ramping sets (Volume benefit)?
    By J.C. in forum Bodybuilding & Weight Training
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 05-26-2010, 04:17 AM
  4. HCT-12 Ramping versus Working
    By mikej in forum Bodybuilding & Weight Training
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 05-18-2010, 03:40 PM
  5. So what if you fail on your ramping sets?
    By Trepkos01 in forum Bodybuilding & Weight Training
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 05-18-2010, 01:13 AM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •