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IRON MAN E-Zine: Issue #281: The Simple Mass-Building Solution

IRON MAN E-Zine: Issue #281:
The Simple Mass-Building Solution


The Simple Mass-Building Solution

Q: I’ve read a little on your Point-of-Flexion training, and it seems complicated. I was thinking about getting the 3D Muscle Building e-book, but I’m not sure I will understand it. I guess I really want to know two things: if it works and if I will “get it” once I read the e-book.

A: It’s actually “Positions” of Flexion, but “Point” of Flexion works too—same meaning. POF is far from complicated; in fact, it streamlines mass-building bodypart routines. POF gets to the “point”—you don’t waste time or effort so you have more recovery ability for maximum growth.

Basically, with POF you train each muscle with three distinct exercises in order to train the target muscle’s full range of motion and stimulate muscle growth along a number of different pathways quickly and efficiently. The best POF bodypart workout to explain the concept is one for triceps…

If you raise your hand, like you want to ask a question in class, that’s the top point along the triceps’ arc of flexion (overhead extensions, stretch position when elbow is bent). Now lower your straight arm till it’s perpendicular to your body, like you just completed a bench press. That’s the midpoint along the triceps’ arc of flexion (close-grip bench presses, midrange position). Now lower your straight arm down next to your torso. That’s a third key flexion point (pushdowns, contracted, or fully flexed, position).

By training those three exercises, you attack the critical points along the triceps arc of flexion and work the bulk of the muscle through its full range of motion. That provides more complete development quickly due to unique fiber activation at each point. You actually achieve the most fiber activation in the midrange position because you use a number of muscles to overload the triceps with heavy weight and achieve max-force generation. That’s the key mass-building exercise for triceps, but the other two add significantly to the size-building effect…

Overhead extensions, the middle photo above, stretch the triceps against resistance. That stretch overload has been linked to hyperplasia, or fiber splitting, as well as anabolic hormone release in the target muscle. In fact, one animal study produced a 300 percent muscle-mass increase after only one month of progressive stretch overload workouts (yes, a triple-size increase).

Pushdowns train the triceps in the contracted, or fully flexed, position. That’s one of the best exercises to block blood flow (occlusion) with continuous tension. Note that on pushdowns you get a good squeeze on the triceps and, if you do the exercise correctly, tension remains on the triceps throughout the set. Occlusion and tension have been shown in research studies to produce significant muscle-size increases, even with light weights, which is partially due to the influx of blood when you finish the exercise.

You can see how those three positions, or points, of flexion all contribute different components to the muscle-growth process making it very efficient (fewer sets for more mass gains). Jonathan showed that with his dramatic results back in the ’90s during the 10-week Size Surge experiment. He used a basic anabolic-primer routine the first five weeks, then moved to a full Positions-of-Flexion workout the last five weeks, when most of his gains happened (the program he used is outlined in 3D Muscle Building). Here are his results…

To give POF a test drive, try this triceps program: Start with close-grip bench presses, 2 x 8-10; then move to overhead extensions (stretch), 2 x 10-12; end with pushdowns, 2 x 12-15. Train all work sets to exhaustion—till another full rep is impossible.

Note the rep-range variance on each exercise, which enhances the size-building characteristic of each. After that quick, efficient workout you’ll have a full skin-stretching pump and feel a deep ache in your triceps. You’ll know that you’ve achieved unique stimulation that will result in new impressive muscle size.

Q: I have a few questions: 1) After the beginner’s guide [Quick-Start Muscle Building] what e-book do I go to next? 2) Is it unusual to “feel” bigger as you go [through the Quick-Start programs]? It’s like an awareness of my muscles that I’ve never had—strange but nice. 3) I’m unclear on what to do if I’m sore and it’s time to work that muscle again—like my chest is still really sore, it’s chest day again, so do I work it or skip?

A: Great questions. We suggest you follow up with the 3D Muscle Building e-book after the beginner’s guide (Quick Start). There is a 10-week program in it that Jonathan used to add a lot of muscle quickly (see his before and after photos above). You can try it as it’s listed, the exact way he used it, or the retooled version with X Reps. If you just started lifting, however, we recommend his first non-X-Rep version in Chapter 1 until you have about six months of training under your belt.

No it’s not unusual to feel bigger using the Quick Start Guide. The program is designed with that in mind—using force-generation exercises plus the neuromuscular stimulation of slow contracted-position exercises. That provides the perfect growth stimulus for the beginner, as the research studies we discuss in that e-book indicate. Most beginning programs don’t build muscle from the get-go; the Quick Start workouts do, as you’re finding out.

As for soreness, if it’s only mild, you can hit the muscle hard when it’s time. If soreness is more severe, you should train the muscle again, but use lighter poundages and don’t go to exhaustion on your exercises. In other words, make it an easy, pump workout to bathe the muscle in nutrient-rich blood. Keep the reps fairly high (around 12) on each exercise, with the 12th rep being be fairly easy. You should strive for full engorgement to facilitate recovery and growth.

Till next time, train hard.

—Steve Holman and Jonathan Lawson

Latest e-book release:
The Ultimate Power-Density Mass Workout includes the latest eye-opening data on the key muscle fibers that have the most potential for growth (it’s rewriting physiology textbooks) and the best mass-building rep tempo. See how one legendary Austrian bodybuilder used Power-Density to build dominant, dramatic muscle mass, his combo-to-grow methods included. You also get four complete, printable workouts–one that takes only about 30 minutes per session–plus X Reps, POF and more. More details.
•Eric Broser’s Power/Rep Range/Shock Workout gives you everything you need to apply his max-mass system for incredible new gains–including all 12 printable workouts and a big Q&A section. More details.
The Ultimate 10×10 Mass Workout contains a four-days-per-week, one-ultimate-exercise-per-bodypart program and also a heavy/light version, with heavy POF alternated with a one-exercise 10×10 routine. More details.
The Ultimate Fat-to-Muscle Workout
is based on the latest metabolic research so you can get bigger and leaner fast without long, mind-numbing cardio–you’ll burn fat and build muscle 24/7 with customized mass-building weight workouts. More details.

Click on the e-books for more information:

Newbies: If you’re a beginning bodybuilder, coming back from a layoff or a trainer who trains beginners, our new e-book, Quick-Start Muscle-Building Guide, is for you.

For any questions or comments regarding the IRON MAN Magazine Online Newsletter, please email [email protected]. To unsubscribe, please see the instructions at the bottom of this email.

To follow the ITRC training program in “Train, Eat, Grow,” get a copy of the latest issue of IRON MAN.

This Special Report was submitted by Jonathan Lawson and Steve Holman.
The IRON MAN Training & Research Team

The ITRC Training Newsletter is not intended as training advice for everyone. You must consult your physician before beginning any diet or training program. You may forward this email to as many friends as you want, but do not photocopy or reprint this report in any format without the written permission of the copyright holder.

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