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Thread: Working Down or Up???

  1. #1
    bench, deadlift & eat!!!!! Mic Soloist's Avatar
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    Working Down or Up???

    I usually work down

    I start with the heaviest I can handle and decrease with each set. I was told this works the muscle better. However when I'm at the gym I notice some guys starting light and adding plates or increasing DB weight.

    Which is better??

    What are the benefits/setbacks of both??



    Thanks



    -peace-
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  2. #2
    bench, deadlift & eat!!!!! Mic Soloist's Avatar
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    Current Stats

    24 years old

    5'10 220 pounds



    Waist: 38 Shoulders 56 Chest: 47 Arms (cold): 17.5 Forearms: 13.5 Quads: 26.5 Calves: 16.5 Neck: 17.5

    PR's

    BB Bench: 315 @ 215
    Squats: 410 @ 205 (last winter)
    Deads 515 @ 214
    Total: 1240


    My Journal:

    http://www.wannabebigforums.com/show...&page=16&pp=25

    My AIM: MSOLOIST


    Intensity: Lunch comes up! And breakfast! MET- Rx! Egg whites! Hot Stuff! Designer Whey! Yohimbe! Coenzyme Q! L-Carnatine. MTCs. OKG. All immersed in a mixture of stomach acids that peels the ivory off your teeth.

  3. #3
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    it depends.

    i believe that, on average, the 'heavy' weights you're lifting dictate your overall hypertrophy, with 'lighter' weights at best facilitating something you either did or did not achieve with heavy weights.

    i perfer to just use one load and increase that over time. the first set of an exercise is the only time i ever attempt to reach a certain # of reps, subsequent sets i cease when the speed of movement significantly slows down to help spare my CNS. it has worked beautifully for adding volume without burning myself out.

  4. #4
    bench, deadlift & eat!!!!! Mic Soloist's Avatar
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    first define hypertrophy


    I see that used a lot




    Second


    So for instance if your curling you grap a DB and stick with the same weight throughout your sets gradually decreasing reps and going till failure each time???

    Did I get your correct. What I do is grab the heaviest I can and do 2-3 sets with that and then do 2-3 more sets gradually decreasing weight. I stick with 8-10 reps on most exercises.

    -peace-
    Current Stats

    24 years old

    5'10 220 pounds



    Waist: 38 Shoulders 56 Chest: 47 Arms (cold): 17.5 Forearms: 13.5 Quads: 26.5 Calves: 16.5 Neck: 17.5

    PR's

    BB Bench: 315 @ 215
    Squats: 410 @ 205 (last winter)
    Deads 515 @ 214
    Total: 1240


    My Journal:

    http://www.wannabebigforums.com/show...&page=16&pp=25

    My AIM: MSOLOIST


    Intensity: Lunch comes up! And breakfast! MET- Rx! Egg whites! Hot Stuff! Designer Whey! Yohimbe! Coenzyme Q! L-Carnatine. MTCs. OKG. All immersed in a mixture of stomach acids that peels the ivory off your teeth.

  5. #5
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    'first define hypertrophy'

    to state this in layman's terms, hypertrophy is growth of muscle. when people say hypertrophy, they're USUALLY referring to what people call sarcomere/myofibrillar hypertrophy, which means growth of the stuff that produces force in muscle. for example, your muscle can 'grow' from swelling and increased retention of water and glycogen. but it's not 'real' hypertrophy, it's transient-goes away quickly upon cessation of training.

    'Second

    So for instance if your curling you grap a DB and stick with the same weight throughout your sets gradually decreasing reps and going till failure each time???

    Did I get your correct. What I do is grab the heaviest I can and do 2-3 sets with that and then do 2-3 more sets gradually decreasing weight. I stick with 8-10 reps on most exercises.


    well, you almost got it right. in your example, i would grab a DB and attempt a certain # of reps. if i reached failure on that last rep, that'd be okay. however, on subsequent sets with the same weight, i stop when i feel the movement starts to get too hard. i do this because i'm interested more in hypertrophy than strength. thus i can increase tension-time and metabolic byproducts of lifting a weight, both of which 'facilitate' (amplify) hypertrophy WITHOUT ****ing up my CNS, which allows me to train frequently. i don't push 'too hard' on subsequent sets, leaving a rep or two in the hole on all of them with the same weight.

    so if i did 3 sets of dumbbell incline bench with 80 pound dumbbells, my reps might look like this:

    1st set - 12 reps (failure)
    2nd set - 8 reps (another rep or two in me)
    3rd set - 6 reps (another rep or two in me)
    Last edited by blowdpanis; 06-03-2003 at 08:53 PM.

  6. #6
    bench, deadlift & eat!!!!! Mic Soloist's Avatar
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    ok I'm understanding....



    Today I did DB curls

    I started with 40 pounds

    I did 2 set of 10 reps

    Then I moved down to 35 pounds and did the same


    If I were doing it your way I would have stuck with 40 pounds and did 10 reps(which was maybe 1-2 short of complete failure)

    Stay with 40 on the rest of my sets and do

    x8
    x6
    x6

    or something along those lines....

    correct?




    -peace-
    Current Stats

    24 years old

    5'10 220 pounds



    Waist: 38 Shoulders 56 Chest: 47 Arms (cold): 17.5 Forearms: 13.5 Quads: 26.5 Calves: 16.5 Neck: 17.5

    PR's

    BB Bench: 315 @ 215
    Squats: 410 @ 205 (last winter)
    Deads 515 @ 214
    Total: 1240


    My Journal:

    http://www.wannabebigforums.com/show...&page=16&pp=25

    My AIM: MSOLOIST


    Intensity: Lunch comes up! And breakfast! MET- Rx! Egg whites! Hot Stuff! Designer Whey! Yohimbe! Coenzyme Q! L-Carnatine. MTCs. OKG. All immersed in a mixture of stomach acids that peels the ivory off your teeth.

  7. #7
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    Originally posted by Mic Soloist
    ok I'm understanding....



    Today I did DB curls

    I started with 40 pounds

    I did 2 set of 10 reps

    Then I moved down to 35 pounds and did the same


    If I were doing it your way I would have stuck with 40 pounds and did 10 reps(which was maybe 1-2 short of complete failure)

    Stay with 40 on the rest of my sets and do

    x8
    x6
    x6

    or something along those lines....

    correct?




    -peace-
    yep, that'd be correct. it is my belief that cutting sets short of failure like this allows you to maintain a reasonable degree of volume without frying your central nervous system. my most successful bulking cycle to date incorporated this logic, and resulted in very good (for me) muscle gain and even strength gain.

    if you're not aiming for a specific # of reps on that first set, my honest suggestion as a NEWBIE would be to push that first set to failure. if you've been training for quite a while, i think consistently going to failure will lead to stagnation of strength unless you give yourself a lot of recovery in between sessions. if you want to have a fair amount of volume plus work out with reasonable frequency, you might try taking ALL sets with this logic, though it's just one idea. using this format, you would still occasionally lift to failure whenever you deemed it necessary to attempt a PR, but you could still gain strength while never really training to failure, which i'm largely in favor of.

  8. #8
    bench, deadlift & eat!!!!! Mic Soloist's Avatar
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    Thanks


    I've been lifting since early January and I've made some nice gains I suppose



    I started curling 25 pounds and I can max at 45x8 now

    I started benching 110 and I can max at 170x2 now

    I've gained an inch on my arm and over an inch on my chest while only gaining less than 1/2 inch on my waist.

    I've also went from 154 up to 161, which isn't crazy but pretty dencent I suppose.


    I want to make gains as fast as possible.




    -peace-
    Current Stats

    24 years old

    5'10 220 pounds



    Waist: 38 Shoulders 56 Chest: 47 Arms (cold): 17.5 Forearms: 13.5 Quads: 26.5 Calves: 16.5 Neck: 17.5

    PR's

    BB Bench: 315 @ 215
    Squats: 410 @ 205 (last winter)
    Deads 515 @ 214
    Total: 1240


    My Journal:

    http://www.wannabebigforums.com/show...&page=16&pp=25

    My AIM: MSOLOIST


    Intensity: Lunch comes up! And breakfast! MET- Rx! Egg whites! Hot Stuff! Designer Whey! Yohimbe! Coenzyme Q! L-Carnatine. MTCs. OKG. All immersed in a mixture of stomach acids that peels the ivory off your teeth.

  9. #9
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    I want to make gains as fast as possible.

    Firstly, very impressive gains.

    Secondly, be PATIENT, but persistent. If you're eeking out good gains, keep focusing on the basics, but don't try adding more to get even 'more' out of the deal. Relax, feel priveleged to be able to challenge your own body, and try to get down the 'basics' the best that you can. Always try to lift safely and avoid injury, too. Learning and practicing good form now will allow you to have safe success for years to come.

  10. #10
    bench, deadlift & eat!!!!! Mic Soloist's Avatar
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    what do some of you others suggest?


    To me it makes more sense to start heavy and end light because you gradually get weaker, but I see some people doing the pyramid....


    so what is best?
    Current Stats

    24 years old

    5'10 220 pounds



    Waist: 38 Shoulders 56 Chest: 47 Arms (cold): 17.5 Forearms: 13.5 Quads: 26.5 Calves: 16.5 Neck: 17.5

    PR's

    BB Bench: 315 @ 215
    Squats: 410 @ 205 (last winter)
    Deads 515 @ 214
    Total: 1240


    My Journal:

    http://www.wannabebigforums.com/show...&page=16&pp=25

    My AIM: MSOLOIST


    Intensity: Lunch comes up! And breakfast! MET- Rx! Egg whites! Hot Stuff! Designer Whey! Yohimbe! Coenzyme Q! L-Carnatine. MTCs. OKG. All immersed in a mixture of stomach acids that peels the ivory off your teeth.

  11. #11
    bench, deadlift & eat!!!!! Mic Soloist's Avatar
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    Current Stats

    24 years old

    5'10 220 pounds



    Waist: 38 Shoulders 56 Chest: 47 Arms (cold): 17.5 Forearms: 13.5 Quads: 26.5 Calves: 16.5 Neck: 17.5

    PR's

    BB Bench: 315 @ 215
    Squats: 410 @ 205 (last winter)
    Deads 515 @ 214
    Total: 1240


    My Journal:

    http://www.wannabebigforums.com/show...&page=16&pp=25

    My AIM: MSOLOIST


    Intensity: Lunch comes up! And breakfast! MET- Rx! Egg whites! Hot Stuff! Designer Whey! Yohimbe! Coenzyme Q! L-Carnatine. MTCs. OKG. All immersed in a mixture of stomach acids that peels the ivory off your teeth.

  12. #12
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    I'm surprised at the lack of discussion. Call that confusion.
    "And if that doesnt work, bend her over, tear off the stretchpants, and go wild on the little slut. When you're done, drop her like a missed rep. When she's regained her senses, complain that she was making too much noise. She will then realize the error of her ways, and give you her number." - Budiak

    "I have a girl that i have ride around with me everywhere, just cuz she's a ditz and amuses me. its great." - Ace Dogg

  13. #13
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    I do a light warm up to make sure the muscle is feeling ok. this also helps you discover if your'e feeling strong or not on the day. Then I go real heavy and do 6. Then I go 80% of my heaviest and do 8....then I go 80% of my last set and keep going til I can't go no longer. then I drop it back to my warm up weight for that extra slow stretching afterwards. Has worked wonders for me. At 5'4", am weighing 160 lbs, have 15 inch arms, 43 inch chest, about a 32 inch waist. Not sure on my legs as I haven't measured before and can't find a tape measure anywhere.
    Adios

  14. #14
    "Tuna Boy" NateDogg's Avatar
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    I did heavy sets first for a bit and really liked it.
    "damn...can't beat logic like that.
    NAte is exactly right." - Tryska

  15. #15
    On Auto Pilot:******* Huge Alke's Avatar
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    For most of my sessions I try to go up in weight with my sets. I use descending or strip sets (starting heavy then decreasing the weight each set) once in a while for something different. I am always changing things up and rarely stick to one form or the other for my time in the gym........I am not sure if one is better than the other hence I mix it up.
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  16. #16
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    so are you guys saying that perhaps going up or down in the amount of weight is more effective than leaving the weight but as a result decreasing the amount of reps?

  17. #17
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    I do heavy set 1st. but i want to be strong. so getting my body used to ehavy weight.
    my exprience - joined gym 10 years ago, 6 1/2 years hard weight training exprience.

  18. #18
    bench, deadlift & eat!!!!! Mic Soloist's Avatar
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    Sometimes when I bench I put the heaviest I can do first and only get 4 or 5 reps. I gradually decrease with each set and usually get in some 8-10 rep sets after decreasing a bit.


    But would it be better to start light and get in my 8-10 sets and work up to the heavy 4-5 rep sets??




    -peace-
    Current Stats

    24 years old

    5'10 220 pounds



    Waist: 38 Shoulders 56 Chest: 47 Arms (cold): 17.5 Forearms: 13.5 Quads: 26.5 Calves: 16.5 Neck: 17.5

    PR's

    BB Bench: 315 @ 215
    Squats: 410 @ 205 (last winter)
    Deads 515 @ 214
    Total: 1240


    My Journal:

    http://www.wannabebigforums.com/show...&page=16&pp=25

    My AIM: MSOLOIST


    Intensity: Lunch comes up! And breakfast! MET- Rx! Egg whites! Hot Stuff! Designer Whey! Yohimbe! Coenzyme Q! L-Carnatine. MTCs. OKG. All immersed in a mixture of stomach acids that peels the ivory off your teeth.

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