Weight Training | Effective Training Methods to Build Muscle

Today I am training legs again. In a perfect world I normally have about 5-7 days off between training the same body part, however it has been only 4 days since I trained legs last. There are a few schools of thought when it comes to rest and recovery of body parts after an intense training session. If I had no other commitments in my life I would always prefer to have 7 days between training the same body part.

The reason for this is with weight training, more is not better. Remember the weight training is the stress on your body, muscle growth occurs as a response to this stress on your body, WHEN YOU ARE RESTING. Muscle growth does not occur in the gym! If you train a body part too often you will risk over-training, because the muscle has not had a chance to fully recover. Your muscle needs to fully recover from its previous stress, before it can handle additional stress.

In planning my training for the week I realised that due to work commitments, I would not be able to get to the gym to do weight training for another 5 days. So I had to make a decision, should I train legs again after only having 4 days rest or should leave it and wait for my next opportunity to weight train, which would have been 9 days between leg sessions. In the end I decided that I would train legs, my reasoning was that my legs felt like they had recovered fully from my previous session and further I feel that 9 days between training a body part is way too long. In my personal experience, anything over 7 days is too long.

So today I headed into work a bit early to train in my work gym for a session of Legs and Shoulders. As I have outlined on previous posts, I have set myself several strength goals, which I am aiming to achieve by the end of the 12 week program. I am placing these goals in brackets after the exercise that I am performing.

 

My Growth Hormone Releasing Leg Workout

 

Pre-Workout Nutrition:
• About an hour before training I downed a Pre-workout shake.

Warm-up:
• 5 minutes of skipping
• Dynamic Stretching
• Body Weight Squats x 20
• Single Leg Body Weight Calf Raises x 20 (on each leg)
• Leg Extensions: 2 sets x 10 reps (20kg)

Workout:

Squats(Goal Weight: 140kg)

Squats: ‘The King of Leg Exercise’

– Set 1: 10 reps x 50kg
– Set 2: 6 reps x 80kg
– Set 3: 6 reps x 115kg
– Set 4: 6 reps x 115kg

Stiff-Leg Deadlifts (Goal Weight: 120kg)
– Set 1: 10 reps x 60kg
– Set 2: 6 reps x 80kg
– Set 3: 6 reps x 100kg
– Set 4: 6 reps x 100kg

Seated Calf Raises (Goal Weight: 150kg)
– Set 1: 8 reps x 100kg
– Set 2: 8 reps x 125kg
– Set 3: 6 reps x 135kg
– Set 4: 6 reps x 135kg

Standing Dumbbell Shoulder Press (Goal Weight: 28kg Dumbbell)
– Set 1: 10 reps x 10kg
– Set 2: 8 reps x 18kg
– Set 3: 6 reps x 24kg
– Set 4: 6 reps x 24kg

Lateral Dumbbell Raises (Goal Weight: 15kg Dumbbell)
– Set 1: 8 reps x 8kg
– Set 2: 6 reps x 10kg
– Set 3: 6 reps x 12kg

Weight Cable Crunches (Goal Weight: 50kg)
– Set 1: 10 reps x 30kg
– Set 2: 15 reps x 45kg
– Set 3: 15 reps x 45kg

 

Finishers – My High Intensity Fat Burning Circuit

 

I am still incorporating finishers at the end of my weight training session. Today I alternated between Jump Squats and Explosive Push-ups. I started by doing 10 of each back to back, then 9 of each back to back and so on until I reach zero. The whole circuit is done without rest and took me only about 4mins to complete.

Warm Down:
• Static Stretching

The whole session including warm-up, the workout, finishers and warm down took me 49mins to complete burning about 515 kcals.

Post-Workout Nutrition:
• Straight after the session I downed a Post-workout shake.

Notes:
• All reps and sets are done with good form (no cheating or swinging the weight)
• Rest for exactly a minute between all sets except for the last 2 working sets where you rest for 2mins.
• During the workout sip on water.

 

Optimum Training Frequency Timings

 

My principle on training frequency dictates that a muscle group, such as legs, back, or chest, should only be trained once a week in order to allow the muscle enough time to fully recuperate and recover to handle the next workout. Since progressive overload is the key to muscle growth, you want your muscles to be well rested so that they may handle more weight or complete more reps with the same weight during your next training session.

With all that being said, I am still a firm believer in being flexible with your training. For busy time poor people, if faced with a choice such as completing another session, as I did today, before I had given my legs 7 days to recover, or not training for 9 days, I say train. Provided you are not still sore from the last session, I feel you need to be flexible enough to take advantage of opportunities to train when they arise. It would have been a different story if I had only trained legs 2 days prior, I would have definitely rested them. The point that I am trying to make is that whilst timings and training frequency are vital, don’t beat yourself up if you can’t adhere to them perfectly all the time. I still feel it is better to have flexibility and train when you have the opportunity, rather than not train at all.

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