Q: I’m thinking about taking my workouts from five a week to six. I’ve read that Ronnie [Coleman] and Jay [Cutler] train six days a week, and they are Mr. Olympia winners. I’ve been working out for three years, so I’m hoping that adding more workouts will help me get bigger. What do you think?
A: Well, if you’re drug-free, increasing your training frequency is usually a bad thing. It can work as a shock tactic for a week or two, but you’ll need to back off after that to reap the mass-building benefits.
Whenever you read about the top pros, always remember that they have: 1) superhuman genetics geared to pack on muscle size and 2) “special supplements” that further enhance their amazing recovery abilities.
On the other hand, drug-free IFBB pro Dave Goodin trains only three days a week in the off-season—with a power-bodybuilding style—and then four days a week when he’s precontest. Here’s a quote from his e-book, The Texas Shredder Mass Workout, that explains:
“I cut my off-season workouts from five days per week to three [years ago]. I started gaining size and strength so fast that people were asking my training partner if I was using steroids. In nine months I gained more muscle than I had in the previous four years.”
Here’s his current off-season split:
Wednesday: Chest, delts, triceps
Friday: Back, biceps
With his program you also get the First-T-Burst mass-training benefits I’ve talked about on two of the three days. Doing squats or deadlifts first in a workout increases testosterone in the blood and can have significant anabolic effects on the muscles you train after that. You get that big T burst on Monday with squats and Friday with deadlifts.
If you’re drug-free, you may want to try Dave’s strategy. Keep in mind that he trains heavy. All of his workouts—including his three-days-per-week off-season program, his three-days-per-week championship powerlifting schedule and his four-days-per-week precontest, pro-card-winning program—are outlined in The Texas Shredder Mass Workout (available at X-Workouts.com).
Another way to go with more direct and indirect hits for every muscle, is the Phase 1 Size Surge program, as outlined in Jonathan Lawson’s e-book The X-traodinary Size Workout (available at www
.SizeSurgeWorkout.com). It’s three days per week as well:
Monday: Legs, chest, back, delts
Wednesday: Deadlifts, calves, arms, abs
Friday: Legs, chest, back, delts
For those who can’t or don’t like to train as heavy as is suggested in the Size Surge e-book, use the 4X mass method on every exercise instead. Take a weight with which you can get 15 reps, but do only 10; rest 40 seconds, then do it again. Continue for four sets. If you get 10 on the last one, add weight to that exercise at your next workout. You can do 3X or 4X sequences. It’s a supersaturation supersize-building method that will get you growing.
Editor’s note: Steve Holman is the author of many bodybuilding best-sellers and the creator of Positions-of-Flexion muscle training. For information on the POF DVD and Size Surge programs, see the ad sections in this issue. Also visit www.X-Rep.com and X-Workouts.com for info on X-Rep, 4X and 3D POF methods and e-books. IM