What is the Best Rep Range for Building Muscle

What is the Best Rep Range for Building Muscle

What is the Best Rep Range for Building Muscle

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you have to train between the six rep range and the 12 rep range or you’ll never build muscle come on okay that’s not the case at all we know now there’s a lot more factors than just the repetition range that comes into play but I do want to do a little bit of a deep dive to get a further understanding of what that ideal repetition range truly is the reality is we have so many different factors when it comes down to how we stress our muscles that it can’t just be banked on a specific rep range see we have mechanical stress metabolic stress muscle damage stress and all these different things that are looked at now at a cellular level so we’re going to find where your perfect spot is for training you have to do a little bit of due diligence on your own body and I’ll help you figure out how you were tuned into the Internet’s leading performance nutrition and fat loss channel new videos every single Tuesday Friday and Sunday at 7 a.m. Pacific time a bunch of other videos peppered in 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things and making it so it goes hypoxic it doesn’t get a lot of oxygen that actually allows cells to get stronger because they adapt to less oxygen they become more efficient and have more endurance then we have mechanical stress which is just like it implies we’re under heavy load so the muscle just gets adapted and gets stronger to heavy load then we have the muscle damage adaptation which is actually the recovery where we actually break down the little fibers of collagen that are in between the muscle cells and muscle fibers themselves ok that’s a whole different story and really doesn’t have a whole lot to do with our muscle growth contrary to popular belief so the first thing that I want to look at is a study that was done by Brad Sean field so has been known in the exercise physiology world for a long time specifically in the world of hypertrophy and muscle building and he did the study in 2015 that took a look at 24 resistance trained males so these are guys are already been training so we’re not going to deal with any kind of newbie gains or anything like that again what he did is he divided them into two groups one group trained in like an 8 to 12 repetitions range like just a lower rep range and another group trained in a very high repetition range like 25 to 35 reps okay they did this three times per week for a total of eight weeks nutrition was the same protein intake was the same they had all these things control what they found at the end of the eight weeks was that there was not a huge change between overall muscle thickness with each group now the low rep group did have a little bit more in the way of muscle thickness develop but not as much as we would have thought we were talking like within a couple percent so that’s pretty wild so once you already have a baseline foundation of training high reps really work pretty darn well too and I guess it all depends on how much of a hypoxic environment you’re creating how hard are you straining with those high reps what’s interesting is that they did find that the high rep group developed much more muscle endurance well that’s kind of a given you’re working at a higher rep more endurance based okay so what we have to look at is how we find the balance but we also have to really define balance and I’ll get to that in just a second okay it’s a little bit abstract way of looking at this but okay the reality is that if you were to train with heavy heavy weight all the time two reps three reps four reps it’s mentally draining and physically draining you cannot physically do that much you cannot mentally do it that much you just get exhausted okay now obviously when you’re lifting heavy you have more tension on the muscles so you have a lot more mechanical stress but you don’t really have enough metabolic stress now on the contrary if you go just high reps all the time then you have a lot of metabolic stress but you don’t have the nervous system adaptation of going heavy you don’t have the mechanical stress you don’t put the muscle under the load that it requires to adapt to a heavier weight so what ends up happening is people come up with a balance theory and they say okay well the happy medium is going to be like six eight reps because it’s halfway between lifting super heavy and fatiguing and lifting way to light and not getting enough load so they’re like let’s just find the happy medium to find the balance guys i’ve talked about in videos before there’s no such thing as balance okay so this is like flipping everything on its head like nothing good in life ever came from just a happy balanced medium out of anything we always have to push it to extremes in one way or the other to find balance in the aggregate and what i mean by that is what does our balance look like long terms so by making our rep range 6 to 8 6 to 10 reps in the now we’re trying to find a happy medium right then and there when in reality we could find our happy medium by having days where we lift really heavy and days where we lift really light or weeks where we go heavy and weeks where we go light then when you back up and you look back to scale you realize you’re still achieving that same balance you’re just not trying to achieve it in the moment so we’re training in that 6 to 8 repetition range the theory was that we’d still be lifting heavy enough to elicit a sort of a mechanical response but we’d be lifting light enough to trigger a metabolic response that allows us to still train with a higher volume so it’s a little bit interesting and I’ll dive into it a little bit more so what I really would recommend you do is take your workouts and organize them in such a way where you have small intervals of lifting heavy ok and that is your focus and compartmentalize that focus so you go into the gym and you lift in that 2 3 4 5 repetition range and you have plenty of rest and you focus on that and you go through a phase of that for a week or so maybe two weeks ok you still keep your cardio in the mix but you keep it separate ok you separate your cardio from your weight training this way you’re purely weight training purely for the mechanical and central nervous system response ok so you’re trying to get that strength you’re trying to acquire that strength so that when you do go to your lighter reps the next week or the you know next month you’re able to do said higher reps with heavier weight because you’ve adapted ok so to put it into a simple equation if you walk into the gym and you have a bench press of 315 pounds and you go ahead and that’s your two repetition max and you keep working at that then when you go to your higher repetition workouts you might be able to do you know 185 pounds for 15 reps ok but if you allow yourself to get stronger with your heavy phases you might be able to push that up to 325 or maybe 350 for two reps which consequently allows you to do that same 15 25 35 reps but with that let’s slightly heavier weight so maybe with 200 pounds instead of 185 so then and only then can you kind of have a leapfrog approach you go heavy high rep heavy high rep head and you’re balancing it all out over time in the aggregate not just trying to find a happy medium all the time it’s a difference of kind of like a stagnant kind of slow growth like this versus sort of a stepladder that’s just gonna get you there higher okay so you’re still want to focus on intensity and having the same intensity you’re just focusing on intensity in different areas right so 80 to 90 percent max intensity when you’re going heavy 80 to 90 percent maximum intensity when you’re going light okay intensity is just relative to whatever you’re doing at that point in time and this really makes a big difference I would actually argue that the lighter rep side of things is actually a more powerful way to go you see by going with the lighter reps you actually develop mitochondrial efficiency in mitochondrial strength okay if we can increase the mitochondrial strength and we can increase the number of mitochondria we are actually increasing the number of sites at which ATP is created so this goes along with my theory that cardio is never your enemy cardio always helps you develop more ATP and more mitochondria which therefore fuels your workouts okay so if you’re going higher reps you’re actually developing more cellular strength and metabolic stress so heavy weight training just to give yourself the stimulus and then go light so there’s no delicate balance i’m not saying that i’m anti 6 10 12 rep range i mean it has its place but the reality is that if you go to each extreme you naturally find balance so there’s a study that was actually published in the journal of physiology that took a look at time under tension yeah i wanted to take a look at how long a muscle was under load and the effect that would have on overall recovery and protein synthesis so they took a look at an eccentric contraction that took 6 seconds so basically 6 seconds on the way down versus 1 second so kind of a standard rep so standard rep versus slow eccentric contraction right okay here’s what they found they found that both mitochondrial and sarcoplasmic protein synthesis elevated significantly more in a six-second group okay so they weren’t even lifting as heavy they were focusing on that negative eccentric rep which goes to show that protein synthesis when it comes down to building muscle and actually getting them also we want protein synthesis is regulated more so by the metabolic stress than the actual mechanical stress so the mechanical stress is just a catalyst to allow you to do more weight to real isset a stronger metabolic resolve so it’s short stepladder of mechanical stress longer stepladder of just the lighter metabolic stress the metabolic stress is what’s going to trigger the protein synthesis that’s gonna allow you to build muscle flip a switch that’s all you’re doing you’re turning the body’s protein synthesis system on and you’re gonna get more of that system turning on by putting your body on your metabolic load versus a mechanical load not to mention you’re gonna be able to go for a longer period of time without burning out your joints so I can go into more detail in this if you want but I wanted to save it and make it just kind of a simple concrete video so you had a new way of looking at your training rather than just trying to go balls to the wall at the 6 to 8 rep range every single day day in and day out as always make sure you’re keeping it locked in here on my videos if you have idea for the future one just put it down in the conversation see you soon

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What is the Best Rep Range for Building Muscle

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What is the Best Rep Range for Building Muscle – Thomas DeLauer

Study – The Journal of Physiology

Aimed to determine if the time that muscle is under loaded tension during low intensity resistance exercise affects the synthesis of specific muscle protein fractions or phosphorylation of anabolic signalling proteins

Subjects were 8 men (average age of 24) that were habitually active and engaged in lower body resistance exercise at least 2 times per week for more than 2 years at the time of the study

Subjects performed 3 sets of unilateral knee extension exercise at 30% of one-repetition maximum strength involving concentric and eccentric actions that were 6 seconds in duration to failure (SLOW) or a work-matched bout that consisted of concentric and eccentric actions that were 1 second in duration (CTL)

Participants ingested 20 g of whey protein immediately after exercise and again at 24 h recovery


Myofibrillar protein synthetic rate was higher in the SLOW condition versus CTL after 24–30 hours recovery and correlated to p70S6K phosphorylation

Exercise-induced rates of mitochondrial and sarcoplasmic protein synthesis were elevated by 114% and 77%, respectively, above rest at 0–6 h post-exercise only in the SLOW condition However, mitochondrial protein synthesis rates were elevated above rest during 24–30 h recovery in the SLOW (175%) and CTL (126%) conditions – SLOW was still higher

Researchers concluded that greater muscle time under tension increases the acute amplitude of mitochondrial and sarcoplasmic protein synthesis and also results in a robust, but delayed stimulation of myofibrillar protein synthesis 24–30 h after resistance exercise


Muscles don’t know weight–they only know tension – TUT concept works may be a result of creating a hypoxic environment in the muscles being worked:

When you lift weights the body produces a buildup of metabolites and as this occurs muscular contractions cause blood vessels to condense

This leads to a restriction of blood flow to the muscles that are working and without proper blood flow oxygen is not present, which creates a hypoxic environment

Hypoxic muscle environments actually enhance muscle strength and hypertrophy – blood flow must be obstructed while time under tension is stressed to create a more anabolic response

Increased Muscle Fiber Recruitment

In addition to the benefits of the hypoxic environment, there is something else at work when you use TUT to achieve hypertrophy:

A muscle under stress for a longer period of time, stressed to total fatigue, will have greater muscle fiber recruitment

The motor units in the muscle being worked are recruited from smallest to largest – the more time you keep a muscle under tension, the greater chance you have of recruiting fast twitch muscle fibers

Fast twitch muscle fibers produce more force and are larger than slow twitch muscle fibers, so more hypertrophy


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