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

Itís 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
    Senior Member hemants's Avatar
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    When does stimulation stop and cutting into recovery begin?

    Ok, we can all agree that there are many ways to achieve muscle growth and that the most important factor is progression right?

    To truly determine which method is BEST one would have to do a comparative study under controlled conditions which is not feasible (and there seems to be "studies" supporting numerous claims).

    So let's go back to basics.

    We lift, we signal the muscles to rebuild, we eat and rest and we grow.

    I think the magic question is this:

    [b]At what point do we stop stimulating growth and start cutting into recouperation?[\b]

    Consider the following scenarios (for the time being, assume you are resting enough days to recouperate b4 repeating)

    (1) One all out set to failure.

    (2) Multiple sets with at least the last one to failure.

    (3) Multiple sets but all stopped b4 failure.

    (4) Drop (descending) sets to failure (ie. failure, immediately drop weight and repeat, etc.)

    If we can analyse each of the above with respect to two criteria:

    (a) adequate stimulation
    (b) minimal damage to recovery time (and minimum chance of overtraining)

    then we might get somewhere.

    Ok, maybe this is just intellectual masturbation but it's a topic that I think about a lot so I'll give it a shot:

    (1) One all out set to failure

    (a) disadv : requires extreme mental toughness to really maximize stimulation
    (b) adv : little chance of cutting into failure (ie. overtraining)

    (2) Multiple sets with at least the last one to failure

    (a) adv : easier and maybe more effective than (1) to achieve maximum stimulation
    (b) very marginal increase in chance of overtraining, not necessarily the most effective use of time if taken to extreme (ie. too many sets)

    (3) Multiple sets but none to failure

    (a) disadv : risk of stopping short of maximum stimulation unless you truly know what 1 rep short of failure is
    (b) adv : may allow for faster recovery and decrease chance of overtraining

    (4) Drop sets

    (a/b) this is where it gets interesting. when you are lifting lower weights following failure on heavier ones, are you stimulating more growth or cutting into recovery???

    Thoughts?
    If the only thing you are holding is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

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  3. #2
    Senior Member
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    My advice? Go read all of Bryan Haycock's articles, then read all the studies he references.

    He answers all these questions and more.

  4. #3
    Senior Member Accipiter's Avatar
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    layin up against a dumpster in a 100 dollar jumper, smothered in southern comfort.
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    I would imagine that on (4) you aren't actually stimulating the muscle as much as doing several sets at a higher weight, as you're not letting the phospho-creatine levels recover in the muslce, which can take up to 2 minutes. (forgive me if I just butchered that). Would it not take more muscle fibers into recruitment if one waits, say, 1 minute between sets, and keeps the weight higher, than if they drop the weights on failure, pick up lower weights and immediately bang out another set with similar weights?

  5. #4
    aspiring psycho MaFi0s0's Avatar
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    i cant comment on the drop sets cause im a newbie to bodybuilding, if i hadto go with one school of thought it would be that your muscles can only grow so much each week, and doing that is only prolonging recovery time not growth time.

    ive read that your grow for 2 days after training then your muscles recover after that.

  6. #5
    Senior Member
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    Originally posted by MarshallPenn
    My advice? Go read all of Bryan Haycock's articles, then read all the studies he references.

    He answers all these questions and more.
    where are these articles.. lol im dumb

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