High reps for building mass?

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SirTeabag
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High reps for building mass?

Post by SirTeabag » Thu Oct 03, 2013 5:17 am

So I've been reading a little about low rep vs high rep training and found some contradicting opinions on that. Appearently high reps (if performed until failure, can stimulate muscle as much as low reps (with more weight). Does that mean that higher reps could be as effective or at least close to the level of effectiveness of that middle rep range for hypertrophy, or is it just a non-contest?

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Re: High reps for building mass?

Post by stuward » Thu Oct 03, 2013 5:40 am

One protocol I've seen promoted by several people is to do your normal strength strength workouts and then follow with a few burnout sets. This way you get the best of both worlds. The actual number of reps doesn't seem to matter but there is a practical limit. 10-30 reps per set and about 50 reps total is likely a good target. The concentric should still be done with maximum speed regardless of the weight.
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Kenny Croxdale
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Re: High reps for building mass?

Post by Kenny Croxdale » Sat Oct 05, 2013 6:29 am

SirTeabag wrote:So I've been reading a little about low rep vs high rep training and found some contradicting opinions on that. Appearently high reps (if performed until failure, can stimulate muscle as much as low reps (with more weight).
Moderate To High Reps

These build mass. That providing you follow the right protocol to elicit hypertrophy.

"The Pump"

The bodybuilding "Pump" need occur in which the muscles are flooded with blood.

For this to happen, moderate to high reps need to be preformed non-stop (NO pause between reps).

Arterial Blood Flow

The exercise pushes more blood to the muscles via arterial blood flow.

Venous Blood Flow Restriction

Venous blood flow shuttle blood from the muscle back to the heart.

However, muscle contractions restrict venous blood flow back to the heart.

This traps blood in the muscles.

The trapped blood creates an anabolic environment.

Low Reps

These build very little mass.

The lower reps create NO pump.

Low rep strength training serve more as a platform for increasing strength so that you can perform moderate to high reps with greater load to build mass.

The following articles provide you with a better understanding of this.

Why Bodybuilders are More Jacked Than Powerlifters
http://www.t-nation.com/free_online_art ... werlifters" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

2 Mechanisms for Rapid Muscle Growth
https://www.t-nation.com/free_online_ar ... cle_growth" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

The Hypertrophy Specialist
http://www.t-nation.com/free_online_art ... specialist" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Does that mean that higher reps could be as effective or at least close to the level of effectiveness of that middle rep range for hypertrophy, or is it just a non-contest?
Higher reps can increase muscle mass.

Occlusion/Kaatsu Training

This unorthodox high rep training method is very effective at increasing muscle mass with load of 30 - 50% of your 1RM (max) load.

Synergist Effect

To maximize your hypertrophic potential...

Stu

"...Do your normal strength strength workouts and then follow with a few burnout sets."

Contreras
2 Mechanisms for Rapid Muscle Growth (article above)

"After the heavy work is done, it's time to have some fun. Choose some targeted movements and seek the pump and burn."

Kenny Croxdale
Thanks TimD.

SirTeabag
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Re: High reps for building mass?

Post by SirTeabag » Sat Oct 05, 2013 8:47 am

Nice =) thanks for the info to both.

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Re: High reps for building mass?

Post by tostig » Fri Nov 01, 2013 10:21 pm

When I bench press to failure at 12/10 and 8 reps, I don't feel as worn out as I do after squatting and deadlifting.

So I've added another 20reps at very low weight. The first 15 is really boring but the burn starts at rep #17. I'm hoping as my chest grows, it'll offset the look of my bulging belly.

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Re: High reps for building mass?

Post by Kenny Croxdale » Sat Nov 02, 2013 7:04 am

tostig wrote:When I bench press to failure at 12/10 and 8 reps, I don't feel as worn out as I do after squatting and deadlifting.
Training bigger muscle groups sucks the life out of you.

Smaller muscles groups don't.

Use common sense.

So I've added another 20reps at very low weight. The first 15 is really boring but the burn starts at rep #17. I'm hoping as my chest grows, it'll offset the look of my bulging belly.
You NOT using enough weight.

Again, use common sense.

Kenny Croxdale
Thanks TimD.

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Re: High reps for building mass?

Post by tostig » Sat Nov 02, 2013 9:21 am

I'm here to learn, not to be criticized. Can you advise or explain more clearly what you mean when you state to use common sense?

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Re: High reps for building mass?

Post by Jeannay » Sat Nov 02, 2013 11:54 am

SirTeabag wrote:So I've been reading a little about low rep vs high rep training and found some contradicting opinions on that. Appearently high reps (if performed until failure, can stimulate muscle as much as low reps (with more weight). Does that mean that higher reps could be as effective or at least close to the level of effectiveness of that middle rep range for hypertrophy, or is it just a non-contest?
Yes high reps CAN be effective for hypertrophy. You should try it out for AT LEAST 2 months(hypertrophy is a slow process!) and take pictures/videos before and after and see what happens. some muscles like quads, delts, calves are known to respond better to high reps for many people(doesnt apply to all people of course). one obvious drawback on high reps is , its harder to progress in weight. One advantage is, its easier on the joints and you have more awareness of the muscle/s being used.
You can also try to mix different rep ranges. for example you start with lower reps and finish off with higher repetitions(this is recommended by the most, because you can progress on the weight with the low rep stuff and then concentrate on the pump on the accessory).But you can also try to start out with high reps to get a pump and therefore have more blood in the muscles and then start doing exercises in the lower rep range(or any other scheme). since progressive overload is not the only tool in bodybuilding you can experiment a bit. Just remember to take pictures and compare them, because muscle gains come very slow!

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Re: High reps for building mass?

Post by Drake Van Steed » Mon Nov 25, 2013 5:32 pm

I've read that study too.

I can tell you my experience. With the exception of a few short periods of training here and there on machines like the leg press, I stopped doing heavier weight / lower reps for legs such as sets of 10 back in 2004. So, I've been training legs light for nine years. My reps are in the 20-30 range usually. I do a lot of light dumbell squats, lunges, deadlifts, and a lot of plyo and bodyweight exercises. The weight is light but the workouts are hard. I train until my legs are fatigued. My legs haven't lost any size or definition. They look the same. I reached my genetic size limit long before 2004, so I'm not disappointed in the results of no gains in size. My legs feel functional and strong from these workouts, plus the workouts constitute great cardio and fat burning. If I can walk where I need to go, do workouts to stay fit, strong, and lean, squat and lunge to do real world work, walk up hills and stairs, and jump and leap-all from here on into old age without injury and pain--then that's a good workout system by my measure.

I haven't given up sets of 10 for upper body but I'm moving that way with good results. For the last two, almost three years I've been doing a lot more upper body bodyweight exercises for higher reps. I can't really say how effective this is for upperbody yet because I still do sets of 10 with barbells and dumbbells, but I'd say about 50% of my upperbody workouts have been light and functional over the last 2.8 years--pushups, dips, pullups, bodyweight rows. I've also greatly cut out isolation exercises over the last two years. I haven't noticed any size loss and I feel in better functional shape.

I like lighter training because it's easier on my joints and connective tissue, doesn't tax my nervous system as bad (ie. more energy outside the gym), seems to keep me leaner, and is efficient in that my weight workouts are great cardio sessions too. I would imagine that if raw strength output is your goal, then this isn't going to be the best program. It will make you stronger and more fit in the higher rep range. It's like the difference between running a 100 or 200 meter sprint and a 400 or 800 meter sprint. They all draw on anaerobic fitness and performance--just in different ways. So, if you're into a different strength performance, or if conventional strength measures (e.g. whatdaya bench?) don't really appeal to you for whatever reason (e.g. you've been there and done that), and you think you'd benefit from the lower loads on yours systems, then this might be a good fit.

Hope this helps. Good luck.

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Re: High reps for building mass?

Post by Immortal2 » Wed Dec 11, 2013 12:32 pm

what if you do lots of sets of low reps?

Whats the difference between 10 sets of 5 vs 2 sets of 25?

I mean, wouldnt the 10 sets of 5 be better since your lifting heavy for many sets? in the end your doing 50 reps heavy vs 50 reps light. Can someone tell me anything about this? Ive really been thinking about doing lots of sets of low reps . I was thinking that you still get the benefits of lifting heavy but you are able to do lots of volume. Right now im doing 7 sets of 5 on some lifts and a set of 20 at the end of my workouts and they seem to be making me explode with gains but I was thinking that when I stall with this, Ill cut out the set of 20 and add 3 more sets of 5...

Anyone give me some info on this?

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Re: High reps for building mass?

Post by Kenny Croxdale » Wed Dec 11, 2013 8:15 pm

Immortal2 wrote:what if you do lots of sets of low reps?

Whats the difference between 10 sets of 5 vs 2 sets of 25?

I mean, wouldnt the 10 sets of 5 be better since your lifting heavy for many sets? in the end your doing 50 reps heavy vs 50 reps light. Can someone tell me anything about this? Ive really been thinking about doing lots of sets of low reps . I was thinking that you still get the benefits of lifting heavy but you are able to do lots of volume. Right now im doing 7 sets of 5 on some lifts and a set of 20 at the end of my workouts and they seem to be making me explode with gains but I was thinking that when I stall with this, Ill cut out the set of 20 and add 3 more sets of 5...

Anyone give me some info on this?
I posted three articles in my post above that explain this in depth.

Read all of them.

Kenny Croxdale
Thanks TimD.

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