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Thread: Article on HST Training

11142003, 06:26 AM #1
Article on HST Training
Setting up a HypertrophySpecific Training Cycle
by Charles T. Ridgely
Introduction to HypertrophySpecific Training (HST)
To be certain, there are a mindboggling number of lifting programs available,
all claiming to be universal in their ability to produce bigger and stronger
lifters. Some programs rely on muscle fatigue, or working to muscular failure,
to produce results. With these programs, a weight is lifted until it cannot be
lifted even one more time. Other programs rely on increasing volume. These
programs may call for adding more sets or repetitions of each exercise over
time. Still other programs call for a combination of working to failure and
increasing volume to produce results.
Unfortunately, a large percentage of these programs are based not on scientific
evidence, or research, but rather on the basis of observations of a few elite
lifters. One program that is based on scientific research is
HypertrophySpecific Training (HST), developed by Brian Haycock. HST is
helping many ordinary people make wonderful gains on an everyday basis, and
many exceptional lifters are experiencing renewed, plateaufree growth, as well.
It should be noted that the objective here is not to provide the scientific
evidence behind HST, but rather to briefly explain the principles of HST and
demonstrate how to set up your own HST cycle. A more detailed account of the
science behind HST can be found at the HypertrophySpecific Training website,
located at www.hypertrophyspecific.com.
Key Principles of HST
An important thing to understand about HST is that it is not a rigid program
which is applied to all lifters in the same way. Rather, HST is a group of
principles, which, when understood intuitively, can direct your lifting efforts
toward new growth without hitting the plateaus that inevitably plague lifters
using other, generalized programs. In the simplest of terms, the primary
principles of HST are frequency, mechanical load, progression, and strategic
deconditioning. Each of these principles is briefly discussed below.
Frequency: In the HST protocol, muscles are loaded three times a week rather
than the usual once per week suggested by other programs. The greater frequency
of workouts provides the muscles with an environment of chronic loading. This
contrasts the acute loading (i.e., high intensity once a week) of other
programs.
Letâ€™s consider an example that illustrates the difference between acute and
chronic loading. Say you get a new job that occasionally requires you to lift
and move several boxes, each weighing 50 lbs. Naturally, the first time you do
this, the next day you will be sore. The soreness occurs because your muscles
are not conditioned to this particular form of exercise. Suppose that you only
have to lift the boxes once every two weeks. Think youâ€™ll be sore after the
next time? Probably, even if a bit less than the first time. This occurs
because your muscles adapt to the load provided by the boxes during the first
lifting session, but then decondition during the several days before the next
boxlifting session. As a consequence of this acute loading, your
musclebuilding efforts are slowed at best.
On the other hand, suppose that you have to lift the boxes every day. Think you
will continue to get sore as the days go by? Yes, but not for long. Lifting
the boxes every day will quickly condition your muscles to the load provided by
the boxes. Likely, by the end of the first week of lifting, you will no longer
get sore. Your muscles will have become conditioned to a new environment
wherein lifting 50 lbsboxes occurs very frequently, or chronically. Once this
conditioning has occurred to a sufficient level, you will plateau and no further
adaptation will take place. That is, unless there is some sort of progression
to your boxlifting efforts.
The take home point is: we want to keep the muscles in a state of adaptation
with as little deconditioning as possible taking place between workout sessions.
Mechanical loading: Traditionally, muscle fatigue has been relied upon as a
gauge for the effectiveness of a particular program to produce growth.
According to this reasoning, one must work the muscles to momentary muscular
failure so as to cause as many muscle fibers as possible to receive a growth
stimulus. Often it is suggested that the fast twitch, or white, muscle fibers
are not even called into action until the last few repetitions of a set. As
pointed out in support of HST, however, a great deal of research suggests that
all types of muscle fibers are called into action when the muscles are exposed
to heavy enough loads. Because of this, HST emphasizes heavy mechanical loading
of the muscles. In other words, we want to spend some time using heavy weights,
and not just stay with the lighter weights suggested by many other programs.
Progression: As pointed out above in the 50 lbsbox example, your muscles will
eventually become conditioned to lifting the 50 lbsboxes. Certainly, the level
of conditioning depends on several factors, including how frequently you engage
in box lifting, how many boxes you lift in each bout of box lifting, and how
fast you lift and move the boxes in each bout. Assuming that all of these
factors remain constant, your muscles will become conditioned and no further
conditioning will take place unless there is some sort of progression. In our
box example, progression can take the form of lifting the boxes more often,
lifting the boxes more quickly during each bout, or lifting more boxes in each
bout, or even a combination of these. Of course, another type of progression
can be achieved simply by lifting heavier boxes. This is the preferred method
of progression in HST; namely, the mechanical loading on the muscles is
progressively increased in a steady manner.
Strategic Deconditioning (SD): As you steadily increase the mechanical load on
your muscles, you will eventually reach a point where you cannot add any more
weight. At this point, you will have reached your maximum lifts. Because of
this, there is a natural limit to the length of time during which you can
increase the mechanical loading on your muscles. And to confound things even
more, you will eventually become conditioned to these maximal weights meaning,
they will lose their effect on your muscle growth mechanisms. When that
happens, any further progress will be phenomenally difficult at best. So, we
can either beat ourselves to a pulp lifting heavy weights dayin and dayout,
hoping for some sort of progress, or we can find a way to make renewed
progression possible. With HST this is where Strategic Deconditioning (SD)
comes into play.
Strategic Deconditioning comprises between 9 to 16 days of no lifting to allow
the muscles to become deconditioned to the heavy weights you've been
lifting for the previous 6 to 8 weeks. After about 7 days of SD, your muscles
will be essentially completely repaired from the damage you've inflicted on
them up until your final workout. From about the 7th day onward, your muscles
will then become unaccustomed to these weights. Therefore, if you do a good job
of not doing anything at all, when you return to the weights between 9 to 16
days later, progression of those submaximal weights will produce further growth
all over again. Hence, by â€œSDingâ€ you'll avoid the plateau that would
have otherwise been inevitable.
Basic Layout of a HST Cycle
A HST cycle is typically an eightweek, massbuilding macrocycle which is
comprised of at least three mesocycles. Each mesocycle provides a repetition
range which specifies a number of repetitions you will perform with each
exercise. The recommended repetition ranges are a 15rep range, a 10rep range,
and a 5rep range, although other repranges are certainly acceptable. These
repranges are generally referred to as the 15s, 10s, and 5s, respectively. It
should be stated up front that the secret of HST's ability to produce renewed
muscle growth is not to be found in the repranges. Rather, the principles of
HST discussed above hold the secret to renewed growth. The purpose of the
repranges is to guide you in choosing effective weights that progress
throughout the HST cycle. It is straightforward to see that during the 15s, the
weights will be much lighter than the weights used during the 5s.
A fourth mesocycle may include negatives (i.e., eccentric repetitions) and/or a
continuation of the 5s or even the addition of drop sets. SD can be considered
to be a fifth, or final mesocycle. The following table summarizes the primary
mesocycles in a HST cycle.
One HST Cycle
Weeks 12 15s
Weeks 34 10s
Weeks 56 5s
Weeks 78 Negatives, More 5s, or Drops
Weeks 910 SD
Each mesocycle comprises at least six individual workouts. The weights you use
should progress from workout to workout as you work through each mesocycle. The
lighter weights you use for the 15s develop tendon strength, prepare the body
for future heavy loads, and encourage the body to heal any old injuries. The
weights used for the 10s are great for hypertrophy, but also serve as a
transition from the light weights of the 15s to the heavier weights used in the
5s. The weights used for the 5s are great for developing strength and
hypertrophy. Negatives enable you to use even heavier weights than in the 5s,
and develop hypertrophy via loaded stretching of the muscles. SD allows time
for your muscles to forget their conditioning, so that the submaximal weights
used in your next HST cycle will be effective for producing further growth.
Selecting Exercises
As discussed above, a key principle of HST is working the muscles with a high
frequency each week. While most modernday programs suggest hitting each muscle
group once each week, in HST we want to hit the whole body two or three times
each week. Of course, working each muscle group three times per week is more
preferable if you can handle that level of frequency. One example of a
fullbody routine that can be used three times each week is:
Squat
StiffLeg Deadlift
Inclined Bench Press
Chins (Wide Grip, Narrow Grip)
Rows (Wide Grip, Narrow Grip)
Shrugs
Shoulder Press
Lateral Raise
Rear Delts
Dumbbell Curls
Lying Triceps Extensions
Calf Raise
Abdominal Crunches
Another example of a fullbody routine that can be used three times each week
is:
Squat
Leg Curl
Inclined Bench Press
Wide Grip Pulldowns
Dips
OneArm Rows
Inclined Hammer Curls
Lying Triceps Extensions
Shrugs
Abdominal Crunches
Alternatively, an abbreviated version of this routine might be:
Squat
Leg Curl
Inclined Bench Press
Chins
Dips
Seated Rows
Shrugs
Another popular approach is to select alternating exercises that are performed
every other workout day. For example, one might choose the following
alternatives for working the legs.
A.
Squat
Leg Curl
B.
Deadlift
StiffLeg Deadlift
With these exercises, A is performed on Monday, B is performed on Wednesday, and
A is performed on Friday. On the following Monday B is performed, A is
performed on Wednesday, and B is performed on Friday. This is shown more
clearly in the following table.
M W F M W F
A B A B A B
One example of a fullbody routine that includes alternating exercises is:
A.
Squat
Leg Curl
Inc. Bench Press
Chins
Rear Delts
Shrugs
Curls
Triceps Extensions
Calf Raise
B.
Leg Press
Leg Curl
Dips
Rows
Rear Delts
Shrugs
Curls
Triceps Extensions
Calf Raise
In this routine, Squats are alternated with Leg Presses while Inclined Bench
Presses are alternated with Dips, and Chins are alternated with Rows.
Exercises can be performed with an Upper/Lower body split two or three times
each week. Using the fullbody routine given above, one might split the upper
and lowerbody exercises as follows:
Upper Body:
Inc. Bench Press
Wide Grip Pulls
Dips
OneArm Rows
Inc. Hammer Curls
Lying Triceps Ext.
Lower Body:
Squat
Leg Curl
Leg Extensions
Shrugs
Calves
Ab Crunches
The Upper routine is performed every other day, and the Lower routine is
performed on the intervening days, as shown in the following table.
M T W TH F S
U L U L U L
Another very popular technique is the AM/PM routine. With the AM/PM routine,
you workout both in the morning and in the evening. This enables you to either
split up your upper and lowerbody work or double your volume by doing
fullbody work twice. The following table illustrates a typical Upper/Lower
body split performed on an AM/PM routine.
M T W TH F
AM Upper OFF Upper OFF Upper
PM Lower Lower Lower
Of course, other types of routines and splits are entirely possible. For
instance, some may prefer to use a four day split routine, while others may
prefer using a six day split routine. These more traditional split routines are
certainly an option so long as one keeps in mind that higher frequency is a
fundamental principle of HST. Optimally, the whole body is worked 23 times each
week.
When you choose your exercises, remember to keep things simple. There's no
need to go crazy and then burn out. Try to avoid choosing so many isolation
exercises that you're in the gym for two hours every workout. The objective
is to hit the entire body with a reasonable volume without taking much longer
than about 4560 minutes per workout.
Finding Your RepMaxes
Once you have chosen your exercises, you'll need to find your 15, 10, and 5
repmax (RM) weights for those exercises. For those readers that are new to the
iron game, a RM specifies the maximum number of times you can lift a weight
before hitting muscular failure. With HST, the RMs guide us in determining how
much weight to use for our exercises. For instance, what is the maximum weight
that you can squat 15 reps with? Once you know this weight, it becomes your
15RM weight.
One way to determine your RMs is to perform the exercises to find your 15RM,
10RM, and 5RM. You can test your 15RM on Monday, your 10RM on Wednesday, and
your 5RM on Friday. A good thing about this method is that it's very accurate
on an individual basis. One drawback is that it takes an extra week to test all
of your RMs, and the amounts of weight may vary depending on a variety of
factors, such as sleep, nutrition, stress, recent illness, overtraining, and the
like. It should be understood that after you test your RMs, you need to take a
916 day SD in order to prepare your muscles for the upcoming HST cycle.
Estimation is a far less time consuming way of finding your RMs. With the
estimation method, you use online calculators or some other similar device to
estimate your 15RM, 10RM, and 5RM based on other RMs that you already know, such
as, for instance, your 12RM or 8RM. A good thing about estimating your RMs is
that it's easy and takes very little time. A drawback is that it's
generalized and thus may not be very accurate on an individual basis.
A more accurate approach is to use a theoretical method to determine your
current RMs. For example, you can use linear regression to determine your
theoretical 15RM, 10RM, and 5RM based on your latest RMs from your other workout
programs. A great thing about this approach is that it's very accurate on an
individual basis. Of course, the main drawback is that it's mathematically
intensive, and not everyone has the math skills to use this method.
Setting up a Workout Log
Setting up and maintaining a workout log or journal is essential. Not only does
a workout log enable you to carefully plan your HST cycles, but it also gives
you a direct means by which to monitor your progress, as well as any problems
that might arise in your training over time.
Once you know your 15RM, 10RM, and 5RM weights for all of the exercises you have
chosen, you can enter them into your workout log. Your 15RM weights are the
weights you will use on the last workout day of the 15RM mesocycle (i.e., the
15s). Your 10RM weights are the weights you will use on the last workout day of
the 10s, and your 5RM weights are the weights you will use on the last workout
day of the 5s.
Next, you must subtract weight from your 15RM, 10RM, and 5RM to determine the
weights youâ€™ll use as you work up to your RMs. Before you can do this,
however, you must determine a decrement value for each exercise. The decrement
value is the amount of weight you subtract from your RM weights for each workout
day preceding the workout on which you use your RM weights. This is explained
more clearly below. The decrement value typically is about 5% of your 5RM
weight. For example, if your 5RM weight for a particular exercise is 160 lbs
(kg), then your decrement value for this exercise is 0.05 x 160 lbs (kg), or 8
lbs (kg).
Once you know the decrement value for each of your exercises, you are ready to
determine the weights you'll use throughout the cycle. To do this, you work
backwards from the RM weight, subtracting the decrement value from the weight
for each workout day to determine the weight for the preceding workout day. For
example, suppose your 15RM for a particular exercise is 120 lbs (kg) and that
your decrement value is 8 lbs (kg). The weight you will use on the 6th workout
day of the 15s is 120 lbs (kg). On the 5th workout day, you will use 120 lbs
(kg) 8 lbs (kg), which equals 112 lbs (kg). On the 4th workout day, you
will use 112 lbs (kg) 8 lbs (kg), which is equal to 104 lbs (kg).
Continuing along, on the 3rd workout day, your weight will be 104 lbs (kg) 8
lbs (kg), or 96 lbs (kg). On the 2nd workout day; 96 lbs (kg) 8 lbs (kg)
gives a weight of 88 lbs (kg). And, for the 1st workout day of the 15s, 88 lbs
(kg) 8 lbs (kg) gives a weight of 80 lbs (kg). For this exercise,
therefore, the weights you will use during the 15s are 80, 88, 96, 104, 112, and
120 lbs (kg). The following table summarizes the weights used in the 15s of
this particular example.
15s 1 2 3 4 5 6
Weight 80 88 96 104 112 120
With the weights for the 15s determined, you're ready to move on to the 10s.
The procedure for determining the weights for the 10s is identical to that
discussed above for the 15s. Starting with your 10RM weight, you work backwards
through the 10s subtracting the decrement value from the weight for each workout
day to determine the weight for the preceding workout day. Continuing with the
example above, if your 10RM weight for a particular exercise is 140 lbs (kg) and
your decrement value is 8 lbs (kg), then the weights you will use for this
exercise during the 10s are:
10s 1 2 3 4 5 6
Weight 100 108 116 124 132 140
Finally comes the 5s. As with the 10s and the 15s, during the 5s you work
backwards, subtracting the decrement value from the weight for each workout day
to determine the weight for the preceding workout day. Thus, if your 5RM weight
is 160 lbs (kg) and your decrement value is 8 lbs (kg), then the weights you
will use for the 5s are:
5s 1 2 3 4 5 6
Weight 120 128 136 144 152 160
After having performed this procedure, you will have all the weights you will
need for this particular exercise throughout your HST cycle.
One other point worthy of mentioning is that each of the exercises you choose
for your HST cycle will have distinct 15RM, 10RM, and 5RM weights. Because of
this, the decrement value for each exercise will be different. Accordingly, you
must perform the procedure discussed above for each exercise you intend to use
during your cycle.
Dealing With ZigZagging Weights
Zigzag is a term typically used to describe weights in one mesocycle being less
than the RM weight used in the preceding mesocycle. For example, suppose your
weights for the 15s are 50, 60, 70, 80, 90, and 100 lbs (kg), and the weights
for your 10s are 70, 80, 90, 100, 110, and 120 lbs (kg). Putting these weights
in a simple table gives:
15s 50 60 70 80 90 100
10s 70 80 90 100 110 120
Looking at the weights used for the 10s, it's easy to see that the first four
values (which are shaded for clarity) are weights with which you can easily
crank out 15 or more reps. Because of this overlapping, or zigzagging,
phenomenon, your 10s may not be as productive as they could be.
A popular way to reduce zigzag is by repeating some weights. For example, you
could drop the first and second weights in the 10s and then repeat the remaining
four weights. This is shown in the following table.
15s 50 60 70 80 90 100
10s 100 100 110 110 120 120
Now, the zigzag is reduced to only the first two weights in the 10s. Another
way to reduce zigzag is shown in the following table.
15s 50 60 70 80 90 100
10s 90 100 100 110 110 120
As can be seen, this approach confines the zigzag to three days of the 10s.
Many lifters find this level of zigzag beneficial for Central Nervous System
(CNS) recovery and prevention of burnout later on in the cycle.
Still another approach to reducing zigzag is as follows:
15s 50 60 70 80 90 100
10s 90 100 110 110 120 120
This approach confines the zigzag to just two days, while the heavier, more
productive weights are repeated on the remaining days of the 10s.
It should be noted that a little zigzag can be a good thing; it allows for a
little CNS recovery and can stave off burn out and overtraining which might
otherwise occur later on in the cycle. But if the zigzag is too severe, the
productivity of the cycle may be compromised. You will have to experiment a
little to find the level of zigzag that works best for you.
How Much Volume Should be Used?
This is probably the most puzzling question in the realm of bodybuilding. The
question of volume is complex, being intimately hinged on a variety of factors
which go far beyond the scope of this writing. Of course, in order to set up a
HST cycle (or any other cycle, for that matter), one must have some idea of how
much volume is required to stimulate muscle growth.
In the simplest of terms, volume may be viewed as the number of repetitions
performed multiplied by the number of sets performed. In other words, the total
volume of an exercise is equal to the total number of repetitions, or the number
times you actually move the weight. Accordingly, the total volume of the
exercise is directly proportional to the total amount of work performed during
the exercise.
Let's consider some examples using HST mesocycles. Suppose you perform one
set of an exercise during the 15s, 10s, and 5s. Your total volume is then 15
reps, 10 reps, and 5 reps, respectively, as summarized in the following table.
Mesocycle Sets Reps/Set Volume
15s 1 15 15 Reps
10s 1 10 10 Reps
5s 1 5 5 Reps
This immediately tells us that your total volume is dropping over the course of
the cycle. Of course, volume is not the only thing that is dropping. In fact,
several important factors are dropping, one of which being the total amount of
work that you are performing with the exercise.
Now suppose that you perform one set during the 15s, two sets during the 10s,
and three sets during the 5s. Your total volume is then 15 reps, 20 reps, and
15 reps, respectively.
Mesocycle Sets Reps/Set Volume
15s 1 15 15 Reps
10s 2 10, 10 20 Reps
5s 3 5, 5, 5 15 Reps
As can be seem in the table above, your volume increases from the 15s to the
10s, but then drops when you get to the 5s. This may be a beneficial amount of
volume, depending on the level of weight you are using, as well as your physical
conditioning at the time you perform the cycle.
Another, somewhat counterintuitive, example is performing one set during the
15s, one set of 10 reps followed by two sets of 5 reps during the 10s, and then
four sets during the 5s. In this case, your total volume is 15 reps, 20 reps,
and 20 reps, respectively.
Mesocycle Sets Reps/Set Volume
15s 1 15 15 Reps
10s 3 10, 5, 5 20 Reps
5s 4 5, 5, 5, 5 20 Reps
With this approach, your volume increases from the 15s to the 10s, and then
stays constant through the 5s.
Some may argue that mixing setrep schemes during the 10s is not productive.
But it must be remembered that we are not gauging muscle growth on the level of
fatigue induced during sets. Rather, mechanical load is the primary stimulus
for muscle growth, as well as the total number of times you are capable of
lifting that load. Some lifters may not be able to perform two whole sets of
the 10s when they reach their 10RM weight. Based on this reasoning, the only
way to achieve the desired volume with the mechanical load on the bar may be to
perform smaller sets following the first, primary set of 10s.
The same reasoning can be leveled at the 5s, as well. Suppose you cannot
achieve 5 reps with the last two sets of the 5s. You can either give up or you
can do more, smaller sets until you reach the desired level of volume. The
following table shows one example wherein the 5s are performed with smaller
sets.
Mesocycle Sets Reps/Set Volume
15s 1 15 15 Reps
10s 3 10, 5, 5 20 Reps
5s 4 5, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 20 Reps
Clearly, in the 5s, this lifter was forced to stop short of 5 reps on the third
set in order to avoid muscular failure due to fatigue. To make up for this, the
lifter performed three more sets having three reps, two reps, and finally one
rep. Doing this enabled this lifter to achieve the desired level of volume, and
thus the desired level of work, while avoiding muscular failure arising due to
fatigue.
The bottom line on volume is: you should use as much volume as you can while
still remaining healthy and without injuring yourself. Because this is a very
individual criterion, the amount of volume you should use is also going to be
very individualistic. You will have to find out for yourself what is best for
you. The HST FAQ offers loads of advice to assist you in finding the volume
which is best for you. Barrowing from the HST FAQ, the general consensus is as
follows.
Increase your volume if:
Â· you're never sore;
Â· you're never tired; or
Â· you're not growing.
Maintain your volume if:
Â· you're slightly sore most of the time;
Â· you're tired enough to sleep well, but not so tired that you lose
motivation to train; or
Â· you're noticeably fuller.
Decrease your volume if:
Â· you're experiencing over use pain, and strain symptoms in your joints
and/or muscles;
Â· you're tired and irritable all the time, yet don't sleep well; or
Â· your strength levels are significantly decreasing.
Please feel free to consult the HST FAQ for a far more thorough explanation of
the factors affecting volume, as well as many other factors affecting your
training.

11142003, 06:26 AM #2
What Comes After the 5s?
Once you finish the 5s, you have choices on what to do during the two final
weeks of your HST cycle. Certainly, if at this point you are feeling
overtrained or are injured, you may wisely choose to terminate the cycle and go
into a nice, rehabilitative SD. On the other hand, if you're still raring to
go, then you can do one of the following.
By far the most popular, and likely most beneficial, approach is to use your 2RM
for negative, or eccentric, repetition training. With negatives, you generally
have a partner help you lift the weight and then you lower the weight under
control. You may choose to perform five of these negative reps or you may
choose to perform two concentric, or positive, reps on your own followed by
three negative reps where your partner helps you lift the weight. The choice is
really yours so long as you can perform the negatives without injuring yourself.
Another popular approach is to perform drop sets in place of negatives. With
drop sets, you generally use a much lighter weight than your 5RM, such as your
15RM weight, and you do the drop set as quickly after your 5RM set as you can.
You can continue working out with your 5RM weights at the same volume you've
been using and then do additional drop sets; or, you can use less volume with
your 5RM weight and add drop sets.
Alternatively, you can continue to increment your weights on up to your 4RM or
your 3RM. You can also add drop sets to these workouts. The only caveat is to
watch out for failure. With such few reps, failure can come on rather quickly.
Of course, if you don't want to use any of abovediscussed methods, you can
always continue working with your 5RM weights. Choosing this approach is
beneficial because the 5RM weights are heavy enough to remain productive for two
more weeks.
Sample Workout Log
The following pages provide a sample workout log for an entire HST cycle.
Although the log is rather generic, it should be enough to get you started with
your own HST cycle. Please feel free to print and use it for your own HST
cycles.
The first page is dedicated to finding your 15RM, 10RM, and 5RM weights. As you
can see, the first page is organized into a rowcolumn arrangement. There are
spaces for you to write in your exercises, the dates on which you train, the
amount of weight you use, and the number of repetitions you perform. There are
also spaces for you to write in the weights and repetitions you use for your
warmups (WU). The information you record on the first page will help, and
indeed enable, you to set up the rest of your HST cycle.
The mesocycles are identified by 15RM, 10RM, 5RM, and 5RM. The last mesocycle implies that you will go beyond your 5RM by performing
negatives, drop sets, or working toward your 4RM or 3RM. Of course, you can
continue working with your 5RM if you want.
Each mesocycle spans two pages. For instance, the first three workouts of the
15s are on the page labeled 15RM, and the following three workouts of the
15s are on the second page labeled 15RM.
Exercises are bundled together in pairs. It is hoped that this will help you
superset pairs of exercises that work antagonistic muscle groups. This will
greatly speed up your workouts.
Estimated rest times are specified for each mesocycle. The rest times are
loosely related to the amount of weight used in each mesocycle. Certainly, you
can choose your own rest times, if you wish.
As mentioned above, after you set up your HST cycle, you need to take a 916 day
SD to reset the muscles level of conditioning, and prepare them for the
upcoming heavy loads.
References:
[1] Haycock, Bryan, HypertrophySpecific Training: Official HST Method,
http://www.hypertrophyspecific.com/hst_index.html
[2] Haycock, Bryan, Strategic Deconditioning: Priming the Muscle for
Growth, http://www.hypertrophyspecific.com/...tratdecon.html
[3] Haycock, Bryan, Training Frequency Plan: Timing is everything,
http://www.hypertrophyspecific.com/...iningfreq.html
[4] HST FAQ,
http://www.hypertrophyspecific.com/...i?;act=SF;f=13
[5] Discussions on the HST Forum,
http://www.hypertrophyspecific.com/.../ikonboard.cgi
Charles T. Ridgely may be contacted via email at: [email protected] or at:
www.ridgely.ws

11142003, 12:20 PM #3
I've come across HST before, so I just kinda skimmed through the article, I'll probably read through it all later again. Don't if you've been there before but haycock has his own site at thinkmuscle. Lots of good articles there, but its no longer updated with new material.
There are a couple things I don't like about HST, the first thing is training the whole body in one workout which can be very exhausting even if you don't go to failure. He has a couple other interesting alternatives but I'd rather go the dual factor hypertrophy route if i were to attempt this type of training.
The other factor is progressive loading can be very tough to make a call on, because you want to make an increase in weight but you don't want to go to failure and sometimes its just down right hard to judge that from workout to workout, especially if you're changing exercises and shooting for a different rep range. This would be especially hard for legs, because mental fortitude is really the X factor.
I think there are many other potential problems with progressive overloading, but I'm not sure how much of a factor some would be because I have not tried this system before so I'm afraid to shoot it down so quickly, but I do beleive there could be many more potential problems because of the conflicts between progressive overloading, recovery, and attempting to work each body part as frequently as possible.

11152003, 12:02 PM #4
Oh one more thing I would like to add, even if you don't try the system, i think there is one thing that you can take from it.
The matchup of volume vs. frequency, you see this concept in many training systems. Its an inverse relationship, if you have alot of one you won't have much of the other. Most people underestimate the importance of frequency, but there is a certain value in stimulating a muscle as often as possible and this something that should be given more consideration when choosing a training system.
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Test / Deca Cycle recommendations
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