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Old 05-24-2011, 10:35 AM   #1
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Default how important are rep ranges ?

I am interested in how important rep ranges are for getting results ?

whats got me thinking about this is that I have read a few comments on this site from posters saying a beginner should stick to reps below 8 as this builds hard muscle the fastest.

As general rule is this statement correct ?

5 reps are best for strength gains
12 reps are best for muscle gains
8 reps for the best middle ground between muscle and strength gains
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Old 05-24-2011, 12:30 PM   #2
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Some of us were just talking about this earlier.

You have to get stronger in order to get bigger muscles. Consistency in the gym, with heavier weights and a solid eating plan are most important.

On this site, you'll find lifters using different rep ranges and all getting results. Why? Because they consistently train hard, they push for progression (heavier weights and/or more reps) and they eat and rest well.

If you are new to training, I would suggest you pick an established routine and do the sets and reps as outlined. Don't be paralyzed by thinking so strictly about having to do 12 reps on a row or 8 reps on a DB press in order to grow.

Put that energy into being under the iron and eating and everything else will fall into place.
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Old 05-24-2011, 12:37 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abett07 View Post

As general rule is this statement correct ?

5 reps are best for strength gains
12 reps are best for muscle gains
8 reps for the best middle ground between muscle and strength gains
That's a myth.

Progression is king. Muscle can be built at 5 reps and strength at 12 reps. It doesn't matter. There is no magic rep range. The key is to find a program that you like, and to focus every set on progression.

Strength is needed for muscle gains, and strength can be built in most reasonable rep ranges - 5 to 12. It's best to stay in these ranges until you are an intermediate and know your body a bit more. There is really no reason to train under 5 reps, or with near maximal weight, until you have built a substantial amount of strength.
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Old 05-24-2011, 12:45 PM   #4
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As a beginner, you'll be better served with picking an established routine and running it as written. The reps aren't as important as performing the exercises correctly and striving to progress each workout. If, for example, the routine calls for 2 sets of 12 on exercise X, it's fine to do 12 reps at a weight one week, and then next week do 10 reps at a heavier weight. The key to getting bigger and stronger is to aim for progress.
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Old 05-24-2011, 01:36 PM   #5
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Just as it has been said above. Progress is found in dedication and hard work, not in any special rep range.
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Old 05-24-2011, 05:13 PM   #6
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This image just reiterates what everyone has said, but it's a decent gauge to learn what fibers are affected by what rep ranges.


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Old 05-24-2011, 09:12 PM   #7
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There are some variables--dependent the personal goal and equipment. I know the OP had a certain list, but it did not include using weight training for fat tissue loss, where fat loss (and muscle maintenance as an example) are the focus, rather than "primarily" muscle building.

For example: Losing fat tissue through weight training where one is trying to lose the last few pounds, and using certain rep protocols for glucose depletion.

If the dieter is restricting carbohydrates outside the gym (say 50 to 70 grams) per day for example, and the person wants to additionally deplete glucose storage in the liver, and other areas of the body, low reps (say something like 3 to 6) are not optimal for "this type of goal path" for reducing fat storage (say the last small bit that is being a pain in the ass to come off).

A large percentage of the calorie energy burned during weight training are carbohydrates (keeping things equal), and a higher rep range is more optimal for this type of goal: Something like 12 to 15 per body part. This is not withstanding some variances in frequency of the training/depleting sessions, where one could tweak the rep ranges based on frequency and volume, or the possibility where one is adding in heavy weight sessions (to keep muscle maintenance).
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Old 05-24-2011, 09:23 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by *MC* View Post
Some of us were just talking about this earlier.

You have to get stronger in order to get bigger muscles. Consistency in the gym, with heavier weights and a solid eating plan are most important.

On this site, you'll find lifters using different rep ranges and all getting results. Why? Because they consistently train hard, they push for progression (heavier weights and/or more reps) and they eat and rest well.

If you are new to training, I would suggest you pick an established routine and do the sets and reps as outlined. Don't be paralyzed by thinking so strictly about having to do 12 reps on a row or 8 reps on a DB press in order to grow.

Put that energy into being under the iron and eating and everything else will fall into place.
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Old 05-30-2011, 09:01 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BendtheBar View Post
There is really no reason to train under 5 reps, or with near maximal weight, until you have built a substantial amount of strength.
does that mean that 5x5 workouts are not for beginners ?
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