4 week cycle

Discussion in 'Hypertrophy-Specific Training (HST)' started by capitolcitykid, Feb 16, 2005.

  1. capitolcitykid

    capitolcitykid New Member

    Feels good to finally post a question and I wanted to give praise to those who answer all these q's. I'm spreading the word as fast as I can at school about hst and tons of people are interested!

    Im on my second cycle of hst and im going to try out a 4 week cycle...1 week of 10s, 1 of 5's, 2 of 5/negs and I wanted to know if I should try to get the largest increments possible? Are larger increments more beneficial in such a short period like a week?
  2. vicious

    vicious New Member

    In an abbreviated cycle like this, it's safer to go with larger increments. Ideally in a 4-week cycle, a person should change their increments twice as frequently as they do in a 8-week cycle; RBE is a time-based phenomena, thus more frequent changeups will help you stay way ahead of RBE.

    But that may not be practical if you stick to 3x-a-week training. And staying far ahead of RBE can be double-edged sword, since it also drops strength levels quicker (due to E-C decoupling.) In the beginning, try changing your increments frequently. As you go into 5s, change to larger increments.

    If you do abbreviated training, consider going into a 5-6x-a-week setup. And amp up your diet accordingly.

  3. steini

    steini New Member

    I'm in the last week of my 4 week cycle, works great!

    I did: (6x a week)

    deconditioning 9 days
    Week 1: 80% 1RM
    Week 2: 85% 1RM
    Week 3: 90% 1RM
    Week 4: 95% 1RM

    DB Flys 30 Reps
    BB Row 30 Reps
    Overhead move 20 Reps
    Rack Chins 30 Reps
    Scott Curls 20 Reps
    French press 20-25 Reps
    Deadlifts started with 30 Reps, went down to 10 Reps
    Legpress 30 Reps

    At week 4 we were moving about 81 tons a week. Maybe that was a bit much - I'm a little burned out now and some joints are hurting. Happy to go into SD again ;-).

    I really look fuller, my arms really got bigger, chest got a better shape. Only abs don't really grew, have to do some ab work, urgs [​IMG].

    Any idea how I could improve my next cycle, vicious?

    Thanks in advance, Simon
  4. Lance

    Lance New Member

    Wow, week 4 must have been a bitch. [​IMG]

    30 reps using 95% of your 1RM! I'm assuming you were using cluster reps. You must have been in the gym for a couple hours. I'm thinking like 30 sets of 1 per bodypart.
  5. steini

    steini New Member

    Righty right.

    Week 4 is hell, at LEAST 2.5h in the gym. Well .. call me Gymrat :D.

    The biggest mistake I did, was not including stretches. My tendons around my ellbow are hurting like I dunno what.

  6. vicious

    vicious New Member

    Definitely throw in at least one week of 15s before your proper cycle. The only thing I strongly disagree with Komplement's Cluster setup is a lack of a proper phase (or mini-phase) that'll condition the joints for the future heavy lifting. Do that and you'll be fine going into the 95% 1RM level. If you don't want to do that, then throw in some burn sets during your first week of cluster training.

    General recs:

    1) DB Flies: do them as deep as you possibly can. LS after cluster set at lowest position for 10-15 seconds

    2) BB Row: switch to strong-range partials and use 20% more load than you would normally use for each week. You may want to throw in a very short (5-ish) normal set at the original load afterwards to keep functional strength.

    3) Overhead move: not sure what exercise you mean by this

    4) Rack chins: see 2)

    5) Scott Curl: Replace Scott curl with incline bench DB curl, palms-up grip. LS

    6) French press: Use with dumbbells, palms up, elbows pressing "outward" and toward the ceiling. LS for 10-15 seconds

    7) Deadlifts: none

    8) Leg press: as low as you can safely go

    9) Add in one week of 15s in order to condition joints

    Generally, use only 10-20 reps for the single-joint movements. When you add in LS, you really don't need that much.

    Experimental rec:

    If you've been doing clusters at 30 reps for awhile, you may want to try a "tweak" with it.

    1) Decrease the total rep quota to 20 reps or so
    2) Use a "declining density" setup. Below are portions from PMs I wrote Hannesburk:

    Of course, as you do a lot of reps and very heavy reps, you'll need to significantly increase rest periods. Below are the rough guidelines:

    I'm not sure how well this works going beyond 85% 1RM. The theory is to manipulate the fatigue management in order to use fatigue to increase initial MU recruitment, then keep levelling that fatigue off, so that you reach an optimal zone of net MU recruitment, and keep it in an "optimal" zone for as many reps as possible. The physiological explanation is that it keeps the net effect of each rep's mechanical strain from tailing off, as it tends to when you do many "sets." This is similar to Gironda's rep schemes. I confess that I had this technique more in line with 10s and the first week of 5s, but it would be interesting if you could use something like this with even very heavy loads. For 90% and 95%, you would use one-rep clusters, but you would delibereately start with very short rest periods, and then increase as you go.

  7. Bob Evans

    Bob Evans Member

    Great post above,

    I have been staying away from squats due to some sacorilliac (sp) issues.

    So I have been doing leg press and going low --what is the "safety" issue with low leg presses - especially if you are really old.

    Bob [​IMG]
  8. vicious

    vicious New Member

    Mostly problems with the lower back. When you do very low leg press, you have to consciously keep the "abdominal belt" in to protect the lower back, especially during the "turn-around." Basically, you want to flex in your belly button. Those of you who do Pilates know what I'm talking about. :)

    Now, thing is, when you switch to unilateral negatives, the lower back issue disappears. Thus, going even @$$-on-the-ground deep (which will bring up quad development and turn a Jennifer Lopez fanny into a J-Lo butt) is not that dangerous. Same thing with the rotator cuff and bench presses.

  9. capitolcitykid

    capitolcitykid New Member

    would u recommend using 2 weeks of 5s then go 2 weeks of 5/negs, im going to a AM/PM split and my diet is going to be enormous with 2g/lb protein intake...Im not too concerned with putting on fat cause I know one usually doesn't come without the other when bulking ;)
    Im 18 and am used to heavy weights so I can take anything you can throw at me :)
  10. Bob Evans

    Bob Evans Member

    Wow - so one leg leg press is safe "heavy and deep"

    But you are also saying heavy and deep one arm bench press is easy on the rotator cuff? Never tried that. Seems like it would be hard to keep one's ballance on the bench.

    Did I get it right?
  11. Jester

    Jester Well-Known Member

    steini, how do you perform the clusters? i.e. break up your 'sets' to reach the 30 rep quota.

    Also, what' is a Scott Curl?

    Finally, is that a 6x full body program or 6x a week upper-lower split? Thanks :)
  12. steini

    steini New Member

    Hey Jester,

    6x full body workout.

    I just stop before I can't move one more, maybe first set 8, then 7, then 5, ect. Just keep it simple. But I like to go balls to the wall, so I don't stop before I feel a burn or anything in this way :D.

  13. Jester

    Jester Well-Known Member

    How do the joints take to the 4 weeks of heavy work?
  14. steini

    steini New Member

    How should I say?

    My joints are happy to go straight into SD now ;).
  15. steini

    steini New Member

    Hey vicious,

    That sounds like an interesting theorie.
    But I felt good when I did as much reps as possible, i.e. with 95% I hammered 10 reps out of my deadlifts, it really was pain but I think that's also a good way to go. Maybe I could handle much more volume if I wouldn't go that much balls to the wall!? It's just that funny and I really love to kick my @$$ :D.

  16. capitolcitykid

    capitolcitykid New Member

    Just wanted to thank vicious for all the help.  Half way done with my 4 week cycle, I've started doing loaded stretches along with partials, static holds, pulses, and negatives (I love this kind of working out) and I've gained 8-10 lbs with awesome strength gains!!!  :)

    I was wondering if I could still do loaded stretches with exercises other than stretch point movements?

    I'll post my final gains at the end of this cycle thanks again  [​IMG]

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