The Perfect Rep Range For Building Muscle

The Perfect Rep Range For Building Muscle



No matter what you read or​ who you talk to, everyone has their own opinion of​ what the "perfect" rep range should be to​ allow for maximum muscle stimulation and growth. in​ this article I’m going to​ clear up the confusion once and for all and teach you the truth about choosing the most effective rep range for optimal muscle-building results.

Sets that utilize heavy weight and low reps are without a​ doubt the most effective means of​ stimulating muscle growth. For every set you perform in​ the gym, you should utilize a​ rep range of​ 5 to​ 7. This means that for every set you perform, the weight should be light enough that you can complete 5 reps in​ good form, but heavy enough that you cannot complete more than 7. What's so special about 5 to​ 7, you ask? Well…

1) Each set will only last between 20-30 seconds.

Maximizing your muscle gains is​ all about intensity and efficiency. By utilizing a​ lower rep range, your sets will only last a​ short period of​ time, allowing you to​ generate 100% mental focus and effort. Training with 100% intensity is​ critical to​ stimulating muscle growth and it​ is​ much easier to​ maintain this level of​ effort for shorter periods of​ time. You will not have to​ psyche yourself up for marathon sets lasting minutes on end, but rather for a​ short burst of​ all-out effort lasting only several seconds.

2) Muscle stimulation will be maximized.

Our bodies are made up of​ 2 main types of​ muscle fiber: slow twitch and fast twitch. Slow twitch fibers cannot generate large bursts of​ power and are utilized during prolonged activity. They have a​ high tolerance for endurance exercise but do not have a​ very high potential for increased growth. Fast twitch fibers on the other hand produce large bursts of​ power and are utilized during short, explosive movements. They contain a​ large amount of​ mitochondria (an area in​ the muscle cell where energy is​ produced) and have the highest potential for increases in​ both size and strength. By utilizing a​ rep range of​ 5 to​ 7 you will tap into these extremely responsive fibers and this will result in​ the greatest amount of​ muscle growth and strength gain possible.

3) Maximum resistance can be used.

By performing only 5 to​ 7 reps per set, you will enable your muscles to​ handle heavier amounts of​ weight than you could with a​ higher rep range. Building muscle is​ a​ byproduct of​ building strength, and training in​ a​ lower rep range is​ the most effective way to​ accomplish this. Since your strength will shoot up much faster using 5 to​ 7 reps per set, so will your muscle size.

4) Lactic Acid production will be kept to​ a​ minimum.

Training in​ the range of​ 5 to​ 7 will also decrease the amount of​ lactic acid that is​ secreted within the muscles. Lactic acid is​ a​ metabolic waste product that is​ produced as​ the body burns carbohydrates for fuel. Lactic acid accumulates in​ the muscle tissue at​ increased rates the longer you exercise. By limiting the amount of​ lactic acid production you will decrease muscle catabolism and create an​ environment in​ the body where greater amounts of​ energy can be generated. This will translate into greater power output and maximum strength potential.

Okay, so we've established that a​ rep range of​ 5-7 is​ the absolute most effective means of​ stimulating muscle growth. However, this does not apply all the time or​ on every single lift. There are a​ few select muscle groups that should be stimulated using a​ slightly higher rep range. These are the calves, abs, forearms and upper traps. These muscle groups are predominantly made up of​ slow-twitch fibers, and therefore will respond better to​ higher reps. For this reason, a​ rep range of​ 10-12 should be utilized for these muscle groups. Again, this means that the weight should be light enough for you to​ complete at​ least 10 reps, but heavy enough that you cannot complete more than 12.

Summary:

Perform 5-7 reps for the chest, lats, biceps, triceps, shoulders and thighs.

Perform 10-12 reps for the calves, abs, forearms and upper traps.




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