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Author Topic: 1 Work set to Failure VS. 2 or 3 sets with moderate weights?  (Read 1336 times)
Beach Muscles
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« on: December 14, 2012, 06:35:46 PM »

One work set to failure vs. 2/3 moderate work sets?

In your experience, is it more optimal to do 1 all out work set, with the heaviest weight you can manage to failure?

Or is it better to use a more moderate weight for multiple works, pacing your intensity, so as to get more total work done without frying your CNS?
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Yev33
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« Reply #1 on: December 14, 2012, 11:43:31 PM »

Depends on the movement. I would say that when it comes to something like a deadlifts, it's better to WORK UP to one max set.

Something like a barbell curl, I believe it's better t stick with the same weight for 3-4 sets in a given rep range, really focus on form and hitting the muscle you are targeting.

Then there are excercises like chin ups where you can use either approach depending on what you are trying to accomplish.
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dj181
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« Reply #2 on: December 15, 2012, 01:15:57 AM »

whichever method that allows you to increase training poundages is the one that works best

for me, it's one work set till failure or even taken a little past failure
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« Reply #3 on: December 15, 2012, 03:42:16 AM »

i trained like that for a few years... but i am back to high volume on everything now
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« Reply #4 on: December 15, 2012, 04:01:51 AM »

the least amount i would do is 2 working sets after 1 warm up set. I really think you need to do at least that if you will avoid injury and microtraumas which will gradually accumulate over time and cause chronic joint pain. There are enough Training techniques to make it harder without damaging your joints and connective tissue. .Preventing the injury from occurring in the first place is the best solution. I am not into Heavy Duty Burn -out.. but only my opinion. Negatives, Partial reps, Isometric stops...rest pause have a place too but used intelligently.
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« Reply #5 on: December 15, 2012, 04:16:15 AM »

the least amount i would do is 2 working sets after 1 warm up set. I really think you need to do at least that if you will avoid injury and microtraumas which will gradually accumulate over time and cause chronic joint pain. There are enough Training techniques to make it harder without damaging your joints and connective tissue. .Preventing the injury from occurring in the first place is the best solution. I am not into Heavy Duty Burn -out.. but only my opinion. Negatives, Partial reps, Isometric stops...rest pause have a place too but used intelligently.

i agree
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« Reply #6 on: December 15, 2012, 04:16:21 AM »

Depends on the movement. I would say that when it comes to something like a deadlifts, it's better to WORK UP to one max set.

Something like a barbell curl, I believe it's better t stick with the same weight for 3-4 sets in a given rep range, really focus on form and hitting the muscle you are targeting.

Then there are excercises like chin ups where you can use either approach depending on what you are trying to accomplish.
Beautiful answer (NO HOMO)
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Beach Muscles
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« Reply #7 on: December 15, 2012, 03:46:20 PM »

Beautiful answer (NO HOMO)

Oh, there was plenty of homo there.
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Beach Muscles
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« Reply #8 on: December 15, 2012, 03:53:25 PM »

Depends on the movement. I would say that when it comes to something like a deadlifts, it's better to WORK UP to one max set.

Something like a barbell curl, I believe it's better t stick with the same weight for 3-4 sets in a given rep range, really focus on form and hitting the muscle you are targeting.

Then there are excercises like chin ups where you can use either approach depending on what you are trying to accomplish.

Yeah it seems that some exercises require less sets to stimulate the muscle fully.
Probably because you can use a shit ton of weight on deadlifts. Whereas with movements like curls, laterals, flyes you need more total reps to acheive a decent workload, since the weights are less.
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« Reply #9 on: December 15, 2012, 04:52:48 PM »

Oh, there was plenty of homo there.
That's it  Angry

 Grin Grin
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a_ahmed
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« Reply #10 on: December 15, 2012, 06:25:28 PM »

less likely to get injured on higher rep moderate weight than lower rep higher weight.. thats the bottom line for me... eh.. i have a strength power mentality when i train.. i constantly try to correct myself and focus on hypertrophy training as that's the results and what I REALLY want... but it gets the better of me.

The only reason I ripped/tore my shoulder/pec when i got back on trt then hopped on cycle was because i got strong real fast... and kept pushing like an idiot and on the last sets going all out with the heaviest dumbells i could do for 1-3 reps literally... stupid.. and it cost me... not able to train chest... been over half a year now... also didn't train chest at all for three months now.. only recently started doing pushups (yay getting better).

Soooo keep that in mind just my two cents.
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« Reply #11 on: December 15, 2012, 07:32:10 PM »

less likely to get injured on higher rep moderate weight than lower rep higher weight.. thats the bottom line for me... eh.. i have a strength power mentality when i train.. i constantly try to correct myself and focus on hypertrophy training as that's the results and what I REALLY want... but it gets the better of me.

The only reason I ripped/tore my shoulder/pec when i got back on trt then hopped on cycle was because i got strong real fast... and kept pushing like an idiot and on the last sets going all out with the heaviest dumbells i could do for 1-3 reps literally... stupid.. and it cost me... not able to train chest... been over half a year now... also didn't train chest at all for three months now.. only recently started doing pushups (yay getting better).

Soooo keep that in mind just my two cents.


i agree...

i've never injured myself lifting something more than 8 times... ever
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Beach Muscles
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« Reply #12 on: December 15, 2012, 11:15:23 PM »


i agree...

i've never injured myself lifting something more than 8 times... ever

Dorian yates has.
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Beach Muscles
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« Reply #13 on: December 15, 2012, 11:21:23 PM »

I rarely go below 10 reps.

But I find that pushing any compound for even 10 to 20 reps to failure can destroy your CNS.

High reps to failure with moderate weight = high workload = cns overload
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« Reply #14 on: December 16, 2012, 03:59:34 AM »

Generally speaking doing all your sets in the 20+ rep range for the purpose of building muscle is a horrible idea. Will it build muscles? possibly, But the problem with high reps is you can not take your muscle to failure.

If you use heavy weights in 8-15 rep range your muscle can go right to failure and 1 working set per exercise will yield great results.

What the misconception is while doing higher reps (20+) is that you are taking your muscles to failure, while it may be true that you can not perform another rep, but this does not mean that the muscle involved has gone to failure.

During high rep sets lactic acid is the culprit that enables you to move on beyond a certain barrier and it is more likely that your muscle has not reached failure when lactic acid kicks in, furthermore during a high rep set your tendons, ligaments and joints will get sore quicker then the muscle will, so failling in a set of 20-30 reps does not mean you put a lot of stress on the muscle for growth.
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« Reply #15 on: December 16, 2012, 04:25:58 AM »

I personally prefer 5 sets of 5 with the same weight with a twice a week frequency for each excercise works better for me than the one set to failure aproach which I used for years before making the switch, I still like to occoasionally use the one set to failure approach as it is a more fun way to train but itburns me out in around 3 weeks or so
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jon cole
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« Reply #16 on: December 16, 2012, 06:56:03 AM »

for squat and deadlift one set to failure is perfect for me.
i give eferything in one set of 5.

try it for bench but it sucks.
volume without failure works better in bench for me.


for other coumpound 3 or 4 set with 8/12 range reps work well.

frequency of training is also important.
chins twice a week, bench and squat once a week, dead every other week.
i do another training at the end of week with floor press and front squat, 3 set of 5.
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« Reply #17 on: December 16, 2012, 05:33:05 PM »

Imo, even 12 to 15 reps runs into the same problem, "lactic lockup".

Or maybe Im somewhat fast twitch dominant.

I do enjoy pushups for sets of 20 though. But I loathe doing any concentric slowly.

I agree with the guy about chest requiring more volume, I believe that FT dominant pecs are non existant. Fuck you if Im wrong. Lol

Generally speaking doing all your sets in the 20+ rep range for the purpose of building muscle is a horrible idea. Will it build muscles? possibly, But the problem with high reps is you can not take your muscle to failure.

If you use heavy weights in 8-15 rep range your muscle can go right to failure and 1 working set per exercise will yield great results.

What the misconception is while doing higher reps (20+) is that you are taking your muscles to failure, while it may be true that you can not perform another rep, but this does not mean that the muscle involved has gone to failure.




During high rep sets lactic acid is the culprit that enables you to move on beyond a certain barrier and it is more likely that your muscle has not reached failure when lactic acid kicks in, furthermore during a high rep set your tendons, ligaments and  :)joints will get sore quicker then the muscle will, so failling in a set of 20-30 reps does not mean you put a lot of stress on the muscle for growth.
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« Reply #18 on: December 18, 2012, 11:06:41 AM »

I did onetimehard's leg routine on sunday for the first time, I got raped by the high volume, sets, reps, etc... Cheesy High rep squats, etc... but I loved it. Man knows what he's doing. I didn't work legs independently since before Ramadan so lets just say my legs are lovingly on fire Cheesy Hamstrings hurt the most to today still from sunday. I just did some morning cardio for 30 minutes and lol.
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« Reply #19 on: December 18, 2012, 03:42:18 PM »

I personally prefer 5 sets of 5 with the same weight with a twice a week frequency for each excercise works better for me than the one set to failure aproach which I used for years before making the switch, I still like to occoasionally use the one set to failure approach as it is a more fun way to train but itburns me out in around 3 weeks or so
I agree with you .. 1 set to failure is for me nonsense. To fully stimulate a muscle a minumum of 2 hard sets are needed...better 3 working sets. I canīt beleive you can fully stimulate a muscle group with 1 set. The only way would be to extend a set by drop sets or other methods but for me 3 sets minimum
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« Reply #20 on: December 18, 2012, 04:29:20 PM »

i dont see why you have to use moderate weight if you not going to failure.

i like to lift heavy while staying away from failure.

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« Reply #21 on: December 18, 2012, 04:38:08 PM »

i dont see why you have to use moderate weight if you not going to failure.

i like to lift heavy while staying away from failure.


If i train for mass and strength then the rest period between sets is important...not just the weight.
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dj181
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« Reply #22 on: December 20, 2012, 02:01:16 AM »

If i train for mass and strength then the rest period between sets is important...not just the weight.

is it possible to train for mass and strength while not increasing training loads?
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« Reply #23 on: December 20, 2012, 08:29:09 AM »

is it possible to train for mass and strength while not increasing training loads?
a very good question...i think if you cut down your rest between sets then it will increase intensity.. will it yield results? i think so. However progressive resistance is still key but what when you can't put more on the Bar? you are at a sticking point. then you have to make the weight you are using effective and fatigue the muscles.. then lowering rest times between sets will make you work harder. Just my radical opinion... Grin
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« Reply #24 on: December 20, 2012, 11:48:32 AM »

http://www.fitnessandpower.com/training/bodybuilding-misc/128-reduce-your-rest-periods-to-gain-muscle
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