A well-structured muscle-building programme should look as follows:
1. Do joint mobility and a dynamic warm-up for 5-8 minutes before you start lifting heavy. A dynamic warm-up means including some athletic mobility drills – such as jumps in place, body weight jump-squats, leg swings, one-legged hops, lunges (forwards, backwards and sideways), and various other activation drills for the core, hips, knees, elbows and shoulders.
2. Don’t cause excessive fatigue on your warm-up sets, but don’t rush or neglect them either – your spine/hips/knees will thank you.
Programme: Include the following – but obviously not all on the same day!
1) Power Exercise (aka high speed strength) – Multi-joint, axial loading such as the clean, hang clean, push press, push jerk and snatch. (Axial loading = Application of weight/ force along the course of the long axis of the body). To be done ~once a week, when your body (and head) are at their freshest.
2) Strength Exercise (aka slow speed strength) – Multi-joint, axial loading such as the squat, deadlift and bench press. Choose one major muscle group per day (or every 2nd day): Eg Legs or chest
3) Assistance Exercises – Single Joint – Such as biceps, triceps or calf raise etc. These can be split up and done several days of the week.
4) Core work – Recommended – do some every day.
5) Anaerobic (wind/hill) /Tabata sprints. One-two times a week. And not too many sprints: Don’t make it an aerobic workout). Short. Intense.
6) Stretch/ foam rolling etc Especially important after the power, strength and sprint work.
Recommended loads, reps, sets and rest:
1) For Power Exercises: Clean, hang clean, push press, push jerk and snatch.
LOADS: Use 75% – 90% of your 1RM (one rep max) on all your structural, high speed power exercises: In physics, power is defined as the rate (time) of doing work. Power output increases as the maximum weight lifted decreases from 100%1RM to 90%1RM and so the most effective application is to assign loads for power exercises that are 80% of what you’d use for slow speed strength exercises (see below)– which is translates roughly into 75%-90% of your 1RM.
REST: 2-5 minutes
2) For Strength Exercises: Back squat, deadlift, front squat, bench press.
LOADS: Use 85% or more of your 1RM (one rep max) on all your structural, slow speed strength exercises.
REPS: Less than 6
REST: 2-5 minutes
3) For Increases in Muscle Size (Hypertrophy)
LOADS: Use 67-85% of your 1RM
REST: 30 seconds to 1.5 minutes
1) Don’t train every day! The body needs a few days complete rest especially with power, heavy strength and plyometic training. Listen to your biokineticist or coach.
2) Follow periodisation principles: De-load after about 3-8 weeks of intense training. Going flat-out all the time, month-in and month-out, usually results in decreased performance and injury. Again, your coach/ biokineticist will help you with this.
3) Stretch – Flexibility: Focus on the muscles that you have worked in that particular session. Place emphasis around major joints such as the hips, lower back, knees and shoulders.
2) Use the foam roller or get regular massages. Both are great for recovery.
3) Supplement with our Whey Power, our Pace & Power Glutamine, Collagen Peptides or EnduraShake – Fantastic for maximising recovery.