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Thread: Is changing of exercises good or bad?

  1. #1
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    Is changing of exercises good or bad?

    For instance my chest workout is Flat Bench, Flys and Crossovers.

    So should I repeat the same kind of exercises for a few weeks w/o changing the routine, or is it an advisable thing to change the types of exercises every week?
    Hey there

  2. #2
    eating out millertime's Avatar
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    I would not change every week. You should change every 3 or 4 months.

  3. #3
    Gaglione Strength Chris Rodgers's Avatar
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    I wouldn't change every week under most circumstances. I don't think there is really any set time in which you should do the same thing for. Highly individual and dependant on your goals. If you keep the exercises the same, it is easier to see if you are progressing on them or not.
    Best Meet Lifts(Raw w/wraps):
    @165- 435 SQ 270 BE 560 DL.....1255 total
    @181- 535 SQ 300 BE 570 DL.....1400 total
    Best Meet Lifts(Multi-ply):
    @148- 575 SQ 315 BE 515 DL.....1400 total
    @165- 680 SQ 380 BE 540 DL.....1555 total
    @181- 700 SQ 375 BE 535 DL.....1605 total
    Best Gym Lifts(Raw w/wraps)
    545 SQ 305 BE 585 DL

  4. #4
    eating out millertime's Avatar
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    I thought if you did not change your routine every so often you would hit a platue, because your muscle start to remember your routine and it would not be as effective.

  5. #5
    Gaglione Strength Chris Rodgers's Avatar
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    Many say that, but there are many factors that come into play. Way too many to make a blanket statement of 4 weeks, 6 weeks, 3 moths, etc.
    Best Meet Lifts(Raw w/wraps):
    @165- 435 SQ 270 BE 560 DL.....1255 total
    @181- 535 SQ 300 BE 570 DL.....1400 total
    Best Meet Lifts(Multi-ply):
    @148- 575 SQ 315 BE 515 DL.....1400 total
    @165- 680 SQ 380 BE 540 DL.....1555 total
    @181- 700 SQ 375 BE 535 DL.....1605 total
    Best Gym Lifts(Raw w/wraps)
    545 SQ 305 BE 585 DL

  6. #6
    Equal Opportunity Offender Budiak's Avatar
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    It depends on how adaptive your muscles are. My muscles are extremely adaptive, and I have to change workout order, and sometimes whole routines every month in some cases. My chest routine changes sometimes bi-monthly, and my bicep routine has just run its course after three weeks.

  7. #7
    Push powerlifting heathj's Avatar
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    *Been doing the same workout for the last 2 months and am still increasing 5 lbs. per week on the main three lifts...

  8. #8
    Geordie The_Chicken_Daddy's Avatar
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    Originally posted by millertime
    I thought if you did not change your routine every so often you would hit a platue, because your muscle start to remember your routine and it would not be as effective.
    Muscles don't know the difference between a bench press and a cable crossover. All they know is how much work you require from them. [Dorian Yates TM]


    Oh and Budiak, muscles adapt by growing so what exactly are you smoking?
    "Geordie/'d3c:di/n. & adj. Brit colloq. n. 1 a native of Tyneside. 2 the dialect spoken on Tyneside. adj. of or relating to Tyneside, its people, or its dialect. [the name George + -IE]

  9. #9
    Porn Star YatesNightBlade's Avatar
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    Every session is different for me.
    * * * * * * * * *
    Yates

    hard core n. 1 irreducible nucleus. 2 colloq. a the most committed members of a society


    'Over thinking, over analyzing separates the body from the mind'

  10. #10
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    I think that it depends on your training age. If you are a relative beginner...say under 3 years of training, you can stick to one routine for several weeks at a time before changing...but I WOULD change. The longer you have been training, the more often I would change. If you are very advanced, like 10 years or more, I would change exercises at every workout...not necessarily every exercise, but a couple, or at least vary the order. I haven't done the same workout twice in years.

  11. #11
    MA's Bionic Creation syntekz's Avatar
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    I really don't understand this theory, whatever you want to call it.

    Why does it matter how long you've been training? I personally have only been training for around a year.

    I'd rather go to the gym everyday and do whatever I felt like on that particular day.

    Why do you say beginners should keep the same routine for x amount of time. Just to keep track of progress or what?

    Don't understand how it makes a difference.

  12. #12
    Porn Star YatesNightBlade's Avatar
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    I squat most week and deadlift and bench every other week ... everything else is varid although the basics are still there.
    * * * * * * * * *
    Yates

    hard core n. 1 irreducible nucleus. 2 colloq. a the most committed members of a society


    'Over thinking, over analyzing separates the body from the mind'

  13. #13
    As I Am Paul Stagg's Avatar
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    I think it's time for me to try to write an article about this.

    Here is a hint.

    SAID.

    Specific
    Adaptation
    to
    Imposed
    Demand

    Think about what each of those words means, and how it applies to muscular growth.

    The answer to your question:

    Change your routine when:

    You stop progressing
    Your goals change
    You get bored

    I, for example, will keep the exact same routine until a lift stops progressing for 2 weeks. (Assuming I'm not traiing for something specific, like a PLing meet) I then replace that lift. So, as you continue to train, depending on how many lifts you do, you will be changing something in your routine fairly frequently, as progression on different lifts will occur at different rates.

    For example:

    Joe Lifter takes a month off trainig because he stubbed his toe.

    He decides he wants to adjust his routine, thinks about it, and comes up with this for his legs:

    Squat
    Leg press
    Leg ext
    SLDL
    Lying Leg curl
    Standing calf raise.

    So he goes to the gym, and progresses on all of them for 6 weeks.

    Week 7, he can't progress on the leg press. Everything else is still going.

    Week 8, he puts in a front squat in place of the leg press. But his leg curls stop progressing

    Week 9, he drops the leg curls for standing leg curls, and he gets stuck on leg extensions

    Week 10, he adds in lunges, and his squats quit progressing.

    Week 11, he puts leg presses back in, and SLDL stops progressing.

    Week 12, he puts lying leg curls back in, and his calves get stuck.

    Week 13, his routine looks like this

    Leg press
    Front squat
    Lunge
    Lying leg curl
    Standing leg curl
    Donkey calf raise.

    On week 14, he decides to take a week off. During his week off, he talks to a friend who tell shim about a PLing contest in 8 weeks.

    So, week 15. he completely changes his routine to focus on his new goal of competing in a PLing contest.

    See?

    Now, some people go MONTHS without having to change anything about their routine. They just keep adding weight to the bar in smaller and smaller increments, or they let themselves go more than a week between progressing. As long as the poundage (Imposed Demand) keeps increasing, they will get bigger and stronger.

    IMO, changing for the sake of changing is a mistake. Of course, if you track everything, and train lifts at regular intervals (you decide you like to constantly change your routine, but you DO squat using the same rep scheme every 3rd week), you can still see how your are progressing... and as long as you progress, you'll be OK. Most people, though, who change for the sake of changing do not track progress, and won't repeat a lift with the same rep scheme for months, and it is virtually impossible to progress doing that.
    Squats work better than supplements.
    "You know, if I thought like that, I'd never put more than one plate on the bar for anything, I'd never use bands or chains, I'd never squat to parallel or below, and I'd never let out the slightest grunt when I lift. At some point in your lifting career (assuming you're planning on getting reasonably strong and big), you're going to have to accept that most people think you are some kind of freak." -Sensei
    "You're wrong, and I have a completely irrelevant pubmed abstract that may or may not say so." - Belial
    I has a blog.
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  14. #14
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    Simply put...the longer you have been training, the more resistant your muscles will be to adding size and strength. You will need to keep them sorta "off guard' as you have been training longer.

    Its kind of someone that drink alcohol for the first time. A newbie to alcohol may get drunk on 1 or 2 beers. After a while it may take 4-5, then 6-8, etc. Then he may need more potent drinks to get drunk. Same case with drugs. Steroids too.

    I know many on here will disagree with me or say my argument does not hold true...but in my experience...IT DOES!

    By the way...I am referring to muscle growth here...not necessarily strength on particular lifts. This is another matter.

  15. #15
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    Paul...I think we have been down this road before. I do not believe as you do that as long as a lift keeps "progressing" in terms of weight lifted, that this is translating into growth. If your goal is to simply get stronger, like in Plifting, than yes, do the lift until it stops progressing. However, if your goal is bodybuilding, I do not agree. I have an article about to be put up here on fiber types which delves into this a little...maybe I'll needa part 2. Perhaps you should do one from your perspective too, like you mentioned.

  16. #16
    MA's Bionic Creation syntekz's Avatar
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    So if you're going for strength, train to progress in weight.

    But if you're training for growth, it doesn't matter that much as long you train with intensity?

  17. #17
    As I Am Paul Stagg's Avatar
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    In order for a muscle to grow, it must get stronger.

    And I agree, as you become more advanced, it is more difficult to make progress. I have no idea what you mean by 'off guard.'

    There is no 'off guard' in SAID.

    Some think that increasing the amount of time between training sessions would be a good idea at that point (not quite Mentzeresque, but perhaps going to a 8 to 10 day rest).

    I would suggest that *longer* cycles with smaller units of progression might be one way to go.

    Or, you could work harder. (McCallum would have stuck with this one). Kinda goes along with the adding beer to get drunk analogy... have to work harder to get that pound of progression.

    Of course, that may not apply to an advanced competitive bodybuilder, who may be simply trying to maintain size and correct very minor flaws that are only noticeable at very low bodyfat, and only matter in the eyes of a BBing judge.

    Take someone like Shawn Ray, who has a physique I greatly admire. Look at how he trains.

    He was actually a couple of pounds lighter this year in the O than last, but may have made some slight improvement in, say, his rear delts and calves. (and when I say 'slight' I mean something that I certainly wouldn't notice). Perhaps he did some things to bring up his vastus medialis, and held the rest of his leg the same. Regardless, the only thing that really happened is that muscles grew (or didn't as the case may be).

    If that's your goal, then that's how you should train.

    But if you are not a competitive BBer, and are not highly advanced, I would vehemantly suggest making progression your 'workout variation', and increasing that specific imposed demand (resulting in adaptation).

    Adaptation here is the GOAL, not something to try to avoid.
    Squats work better than supplements.
    "You know, if I thought like that, I'd never put more than one plate on the bar for anything, I'd never use bands or chains, I'd never squat to parallel or below, and I'd never let out the slightest grunt when I lift. At some point in your lifting career (assuming you're planning on getting reasonably strong and big), you're going to have to accept that most people think you are some kind of freak." -Sensei
    "You're wrong, and I have a completely irrelevant pubmed abstract that may or may not say so." - Belial
    I has a blog.
    I has a facebook.

  18. #18
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    Neural adaption for a bodybuilder...not necessarily a good thing...

    You CAN get bigger without getting stronger...

    You CAN get stronger without getting bigger...

    Off Guard..muscle confusion...yes, in a way "confusing the muscle and/or nervous system is a good thing...

  19. #19
    As I Am Paul Stagg's Avatar
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    What happens AFTER neural adaptation is very much a good thing for a bodybuilder.

    Bigger without getting stronger? Nope.

    Might have more volume due to increased fluids, but not a bigger muscle.

    Again, too, a lot of this isn't material, depending on your goals.

    Most of the people here are:

    Not advanced
    Not competitive bodybuilders

    My muscles are not capable of getting confused. They just contract. Yet another bodybuilding myth.

    Get back to what makes muscles grow.

    Specific
    Adaptation
    to
    Imposed
    Demand.
    Squats work better than supplements.
    "You know, if I thought like that, I'd never put more than one plate on the bar for anything, I'd never use bands or chains, I'd never squat to parallel or below, and I'd never let out the slightest grunt when I lift. At some point in your lifting career (assuming you're planning on getting reasonably strong and big), you're going to have to accept that most people think you are some kind of freak." -Sensei
    "You're wrong, and I have a completely irrelevant pubmed abstract that may or may not say so." - Belial
    I has a blog.
    I has a facebook.

  20. #20
    Geordie The_Chicken_Daddy's Avatar
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    *spanks himself over the quality of information being exchanged*
    "Geordie/'d3c:di/n. & adj. Brit colloq. n. 1 a native of Tyneside. 2 the dialect spoken on Tyneside. adj. of or relating to Tyneside, its people, or its dialect. [the name George + -IE]

  21. #21
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    Again...neural adaption, not good for a bodybuilder that wants to grow.

    Bigger without getting stronger...been doing it for years. Oh, not incresed volume bull...REAL muscle.

    Only an idiot(not calling you one)would read the term "muscle confusion" literally, so don't treat it that way unless you want to score points for sarcasm. MC simply means to vary your routine regularly. Not a myth, not gospel, but a legitimate tool to help make gains.

  22. #22
    Banned Reinier's Avatar
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    *Been doing the same workout for the last 2 months and am still increasing 5 lbs. per week on the main three lifts..."

    been doing the same stuff for 2.5 months and still increasing 10 lbs per session on all major lifts

  23. #23
    Geordie The_Chicken_Daddy's Avatar
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    I changed my back routine a few weeks ago after over one year.
    "Geordie/'d3c:di/n. & adj. Brit colloq. n. 1 a native of Tyneside. 2 the dialect spoken on Tyneside. adj. of or relating to Tyneside, its people, or its dialect. [the name George + -IE]

  24. #24
    Banned Reinier's Avatar
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    im not changing any exercise unless it hit a platue. no matter what anybody says about MC or some Shiat

  25. #25
    Geordie The_Chicken_Daddy's Avatar
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    i kept them even if they plateaued - i just either took a week off or ate more.
    "Geordie/'d3c:di/n. & adj. Brit colloq. n. 1 a native of Tyneside. 2 the dialect spoken on Tyneside. adj. of or relating to Tyneside, its people, or its dialect. [the name George + -IE]

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