Am I understanding HST?

Discussion in 'Basic Training Principles and Methods' started by Neil, Jun 11, 2003.

  1. Neil

    Neil New Member

    I am new here and have been soaking up everything over the last few days. I have been more a cardio lean gym person over the last 3 years with 45 mins cardio 5 days a week and weights to keep tone. I am 6 feet 150, and would like to build bulk/muscles now since I am all tone and lost the execess fat.

    Here is what I am understanding about HST, please add or advise to my current understanding of HST. Regarding the training schedule:

    2 weeks @ 15 reps, then rest for 7-9 days. Now each excercise should I increase the weight while maintaining the 15 reps?

    I also understand its 3 days a week (mon-wed.fri) with tues-thur as off. Can I do cardio for 45 mins on tues-thur?

    After resting, 2 weeks @ 10 reps, then 7-9 days of rest.

    Then 2 weeks @ 5 reps, then rest. What next? After the 15/10/5 cycles are complete what next? Start again?

    One last question (at least for now) I like to work my forearm, could I work my forearm on tues-thur which are my rest days?

    For the past 4 weeks I have been working Shoulder/Arms/Chest/Traps once per week with good form and heavy weights. I am about to switch to HST, but would like to get correct approach before switching.

    Thanks again,
  2. restless

    restless New Member

    I'm afraid you're not getting it.

    No, no rest afterwards. You take 9-12 days off anfd then start a load progression untill at workout six you hit your 15 RM, which is the maximum weight you can lift for 15 reps. You do the same for other rep ranges and at the endyou take another 9-12 days off.


    I see no problem with that.
  3. Neil

    Neil New Member

    Thanks, I am seeing the light here now, how would I know what is my RM @15? So to know that I will work up to that weight? Or I just keep adding weight untill I cant do 15 reps anymore and what if it takes 4 or 5 sessions to accomplish and not 6?

    Thanks again,
  4. restless

    restless New Member

    No, you take a whole week and find, in three separate days, the amount of weight you can lift for each rep range and for each exercise individually and preferably in the order you're planning to perform them.

    Have you read the HST articles?
  5. Neil

    Neil New Member


    I read the article and I seems to get the more technical and scientific facts more than actaully how to perform the test.

    So there is actually a one week (an initial setup if you may) that I have to perform the 15, 10 and 5 and see my maximum for each and then go on a two week (6 sessions) workout to accomplish the max weight for each 15/10/5?

    Thanks for your help,
  6. jsraaf

    jsraaf New Member

    Neil, try this:

    Test your rep maxes (RMs): you will take 1 week to do this, once you have decided on all the lifts you will use in your HST workout.

    On Monday, for each lift find the weight that you can do 15 reps for, but not quite hit failure. If you don't have a good idea already (from past training logs, etc.) it might take you a few tries, but that's OK. Start at a reasonable weight & go; if you need to, add more weight & do it again, until you can only do 15-17 reps. Repeat this for each lift & you will have your 15RM weights. Eat a nice protein + carb meal after you're done. Rest for 2 days, until...

    On Wednesday, do the same thing as above, but find the weight that you can do about 10 times. Eat a nice protein + carb meal after you're done & then rest until...

    Friday, where you will once again do the same thing but for the 5 rep max. Eat a nice protein + carb meal after you're done.

    You will now take 12-14 days off for Strategic Deconditioning (SD). I would suggest this amount of time since you've been lifting heavy recently.

    After your SD, you will start your routine (cycle). At that point, you will begin the "load progression" described below. You will take 6 workouts to work up to that 15 rep max (RM) weight in each lift. You'll then continue your progression up to your 10 rep max (RM) and ultimately up to your 5 RM weights.

    For example:
    I'll only use 1 exercise, squats, but you will have several others for your full-body workout you'll be doing. Let's say you have determined your RMs for squat are:

    15RM: 200 lbs
    10RM: 250
    5RM: 300

    For something like this, you will use an increment of 15lbs. Your 6-week HST cycle will look something like:

    In your 1st 6 workouts (the 2 weeks of 15s) you'll squat these weights:
    125-140-155-170-185-200 (in workout #1 you'll squat 125lbs, in #2 you'll use 140, and so on.)

    Your 10s workouts will look something like:

    And your 5s might go like:

    Again, this is only showing squats. The same idea hold for all the other lifts you will do in each workout of each 2-week
    block for the 15s, 10s and 5s.

    At this point, you've been lifting for 6 weeks, 3x/week with the weekends off. At this point, many will continue for another 2 weeks at their 5RM weight in each lift & do dropsets, or do a couple weeks of negatives. You can choose to do these or not, but regardless, when you decide to end your cycle you will take another 12-14 days of SD.

    You have probably already read the FAQ on the concept of zig-zagging weights & things like that - right? [​IMG]

    I hope this makes sense, but if it doesn't, keep asking ?s!
  7. Neil

    Neil New Member


    Thanks!!! [​IMG]

    Thanks to you both I get the drift now. I can say I know my 10RM from my current log. Will find my 15 and 5. 12-14 days off huh? That is new for me to initally accept :confused:

    Once I establish my RM @ 15/10/5 I will use the calulator here on the web, based on my increment to backup what you illustrated with the squats.

    I have been performing some decent weights with excellent form, however I was taken up with cardio and consequently no muscle mass was gained. I have now reduced my cardio down to twice a week, and am trying to fully understand and apporach the HST method with a solid undertsanding.

    Thanks again guys,
  8. restless

    restless New Member

    I was wondering for a while who the hell was George till I noticed that the name of the author of the quote in my signature is George....It's not my name. :)

    yes, but after that week you take the decondicioning period, the 9-12 days off.
  9. jsraaf

    jsraaf New Member

    Good luck Neil. Sorry if I oversimplified, etc., but wanted to make sure you understood clearly.

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