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Old 10-06-2011, 12:14 PM   #11
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10-12 reps is a good scheme to start with if your goal is just muscle size, however, you might have trouble building any usable strength in that range.

If your just starting out I'd suggest going lower on the reps. Lower reps help you focus on form while also building a great foundation of strength that you can use for whatever specific goals you have later on. It's much easier to get out 3 squats without letting your form slip than 10. I'd recomend staying in the 3-6 rep range for the big compound lifts, then throwing in a few other lifts in the 10-12 range to build size. Wenlder's 5/3/1 is a perfect example of this type of program.
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Old 10-06-2011, 02:37 PM   #12
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Warning, personal opinion to follow...

3-5 reps for building strength
6-8 reps for building muscle tissue
10-20 reps for flushing and bulking

Hit a heavy compound for strength, then hit an assistance lift for muscle building, then hit accessory lift with higher reps for flushing and pumping. In other words, don't limit yourself to one rep range, they all have their place.
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Old 10-06-2011, 05:43 PM   #13
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3-5 reps for building strength
6-8 reps for building muscle tissue
10-20 reps for flushing and bulking
Isn't this all just variations of building muscle tissue? You can't increase strength without increasing muscle, and you can't bulk without adding muscle. It all comes down to adding muscle. If you're not lifting heavy enough, you're not building muscle. And if you're not building muscle, you might as well just go have a coffee because you're accomplishing nothing.
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Old 10-06-2011, 06:21 PM   #14
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Isn't this all just variations of building muscle tissue? You can't increase strength without increasing muscle, and you can't bulk without adding muscle. It all comes down to adding muscle. If you're not lifting heavy enough, you're not building muscle. And if you're not building muscle, you might as well just go have a coffee because you're accomplishing nothing.
Yes, I agree with you (sorta). A person can build muscle with low reps and a person can get stronger with higher reps. But it is entirely possible to build strength through efficiency and not gain muscle. I tend to seperate rep ranges according to what I think they favor; ie. low reps and high percentage of 1RM are great for building strength. But the lower reps do not have the same flushing effect as the higher reps. Therefore I think a variety should be used. If you want a one-size-fits-all rep range, I would go with reps in the 6-8 range. The weight would be heavy enough to use a high percentage of your 1RM that is needed for muscle fiber recruitment and allow for enough TUT for effective muscle growth stimulus.

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Old 10-06-2011, 08:25 PM   #15
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Well, I agree with you (sorta) as well. I don't believe there is a one-size-fits-all anything when it comes to training. We're all different and we all may require a different approach.

BUT...one thing remains constant - if you don't challenge your muscles, you will not have any results. Unfortunately a lot of women have no idea what weight they should be using because there's this archaic stereotype that we should be lifting light but more reps. Not true. If you're using a 2-lb Barbie weight and lifting it 20 times, IMO you're not really accomplishing anything because that's not really a challenge. Sure, you're probably "building strength through efficiency", but who wants their muscles to become efficient? Efficiency in weight training is useless because then the muscles aren't being challenged. Making something more efficient generally means that you're making something easier. If working out was easy, it would be called an "easy out".

Bottom line (and getting back to the topic)...women's muscles are no different than men's. The only difference between us is the amount of testosterone coursing through our veins. Therefore, a woman should follow the same lifting rules as a man with the same goals.
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Old 10-07-2011, 08:30 AM   #16
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We know that getting stronger anywhere between 1RM and 15RM will make you bigger, and spending time in the lower and higher rep ranges will provide major benefits. For example, a focus on strength in 1RM to 4RM range will carry-over to the higher rep ranges, a focus on the higher rep ranges will improve energy supply and waste removal for the muscles. This means that every program is a compromise. You canít focus on all the rep ranges all the time and expect to progress - Daniel Roberts
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Old 10-07-2011, 09:37 AM   #17
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You canít focus on all the rep ranges all the time and expect to progress - Daniel Roberts
Really? Personally, I've been progressing just fine this way.
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Old 10-07-2011, 09:44 AM   #18
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Really? Personally, I've been progressing just fine this way.
Maybe you can give us an idea of what type of programming you follow.
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Old 10-07-2011, 09:58 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Off Road View Post
Warning, personal opinion to follow...

3-5 reps for building strength
6-8 reps for building muscle tissue
10-20 reps for flushing and bulking

Hit a heavy compound for strength, then hit an assistance lift for muscle building, then hit accessory lift with higher reps for flushing and pumping. In other words, don't limit yourself to one rep range, they all have their place.
This is the scheme I used for nearly 20 years. It's the one my mentor taught me and I stuck with it. He taught me:

2 sets @ 4-6
2 sets @ 6-10
2 sets @ 12-16

The first 2 lifts were compound, the last whatever made sense.

I can't say it's magic, but it worked. I got big and strong. Fast.
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Old 10-07-2011, 10:04 AM   #20
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This is the scheme I used for nearly 20 years. It's the one my mentor taught me and I stuck with it.
Obviously I've presented several different methods for the sake of arguement (I like to explore all sides), but that is what I would recommend to most lifters.
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