Shock Your Muscles to Grow Past Plateaus

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Question: I need a way to shock my legs to get more growth. I typically do pyramid sets starting with a light weight for 12 reps and do 4 to 5 sets increasing the weight and decreasing the reps until I do only 6 reps for the last set. What’s a good way to shock the muscles?
Answer: Variety is the spice of training and it simply seems that you need a little change. Don’t abandon your core training pyramid principle, just vary it, and then return to your basic system. One sure fire combination of volume training and density training is to begin your leg workout with squats. Get your knees warmed up with a couple of light sets, then, do a set of 20 reps using 40% of the weight you would for a heavy set of 6 reps. After that first set, add enough weight that you can only finish 8 to 10 reps for the second set. On the third set, decrease the weight to 60% of the weight you would use for a set of 6 reps. For the fourth and final set, increase the weight over the amount you used on the second set by at least 10% and try to finish with 6 to 8 reps.
The following workouts get more intense. You will do 100 reps with a minimum rest period. Though the weight is lighter than what you have been using and may feel light on the first couple of sets by the last set you should feel like you’re barely able to complete the set. Decrease the weight to an amount which is only 40 to 50% of the greatest weight you can use for 6 to 8 reps. These 100 rep workouts are designed to flood muscles with an extremely high amount of blood due to the repetitions and short rest periods.
The first type of workout is 10/10’s, which is 10 sets of 10 reps using only a 30 second rest period between each set. As soon as you rack the bar and step back, start the clock. As soon as it reaches 25 seconds get back under the bar and start again. Keep this up until you complete 10 sets. Another more painful workout is the Ladder System which is a variation of the buddy curl workout. With buddy curls you and a partner pass a bar between the two of you for a rapid paced set. The first one does a rep, passes the bar to his partner who then does a rep and passes the bar back. Then partner one does 2 curls, passes the bar and the partner does 2 curls and returns the bar. This pattern goes on adding a rep to each set until each guy does 10 reps. At that point, they then subtract a rep from each set until both have returned to one rep. With no partner, you need to have a timer, a stopwatch or a highly disciplined internal clock. The pattern is the same. Do one rep and rest only for the time it took you to complete the previous rep before you begin the next set with an additional rep added to it. The first five are deceptively easy. The final five are incredibly difficult. This is the change that you need to experience new stimulation and growth. A word of warning: it’s painful both in the training and in the recovery for about 3 to 4 days.
God bless and keep training,
Daryl

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