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Drop sets produce better gains! Are you doing them? Read this and get better results faster. Simple.
I’ll explain exactly what to do and how they factor into my free THT training. First, let me define what a “drop set” actually is:
WHAT IS A DROP SET?
A drop set is when you take a set to the last rep, then grab a lighter load and keep going with little-to-no break (10 seconds at most). You can do this over and over again, going lighter each time. It’s painful…but damn it’s effective!
AN EXAMPLE OF A DROP SET
It’s a simple concept to understand:
- Let’s say you’re barbell curling 100lbs. You reach failure on the 10th rep i.e. an 11th rep is impossible.
- As soon as the set finishes, you grab a lighter weight (or strip plates off the end of the bar) – this might be 75% of the original weight (75lbs)
- Perhaps you get 5 full reps at this weight.
- Again, as soon as this 2nd set finishes, use another lighter load and go again to failure.
- Repeat over and over…as many times as you can take it. You’ll be surprised at how heavy 10lbs feels at the end lol.
WHY DO DROP SETS WORK?
Understanding why this advanced technique is effective is similar to understanding why training to failure works better than not going to failure. On a single set, each successive rep is a little harder than the last. The 5th rep is harder to complete than the first rep. And the 10th rep is harder than the 5th, right?
In order to cope with this increasing demand, the body recruits more and more muscle fibers as the set progresses from start to finish – and it recruits more of the kind of muscle fibers that are responsible for size gains – type 2b fibers. Stopping anywhere short of the last rep cannot possibly recruit 100% of the fibers in the intended muscle. Last rep = maximum muscle fiber recruitment.
It will also maximize metabolic stress levels and muscle damage.
These 3 factors: fiber recruitment, maximize metabolic stress and muscle damage all increase protein synthesis levels (the rate at which is building muscle tissue).
So going beyond normal positive failure with drop sets (or any advanced technique) will increase everything here. Even if 100% fiber recruitment was reached at positive failure, all those same fibers will be subjected to yet more damage, and metabolic stress levels will shoot through the roof – you’ll feel it! Trust me.
A phrase I started using recently when explaining the value of high-intensity sets to people in my real life is this: If you want a muscle to grow, you better punish it!If you want a muscle to grow, you better punish it! ~ Mark McManus Click To Tweet
By the way, drop sets are just 1 of the advanced techniques I have factored into my “Blast” workouts. That’s why these routines can be relied upon to produce new gains quickly. If drop sets work, imagine what drop sets coupled with many other super-intense techniques will do. Here are the programs with before and after testimonials from people who have actually used them:
DROP SETS ARE BUILT INTO THT TRAINING
Drop sets are (kinda) already a feature of free THT training – one of many reasons why THT is so effective at stimulating new gains.
THT is based on the idea that you should begin a workout with the heaviest weight you can use (after warming up), and gradually reduce the load as you get weaker and weaker as the workout progresses. This is the opposite of the pyramid-style workout. THT is Reverse-Pyramid.
Those who recommend pyramid training think it is best to “work up to” your heaviest lift. So you start with a light load and add weight as the workout progresses.
The problem with this is that if you do a number sets before your max lift, it WON’T actually be your max lift.
With each successive set you make further INROADS into your strength. By the time you get to that last set, the weight you lift won’t be the heaviest weight you can handle for that exercise.
Perhaps by this stage you’ll only have 88% of your max strength left.
So you’ll be fooled into thinking that this is your top weight when it isn’t, and by quite a large margin. It should be obvious then that this is a very ineffective way to train. And that’s regardless of whether your goal is strength or hypertrophy/size.
REVERSE PYRAMID TRAINING
If what I’ve just said is how you’re currently approaching your workouts, you need to FLIP it on its head i.e. from pyramid-style training, to a REVERSE-pyramid – THT-style.
So how do we train on THT?
- You get in the gym
- You warm up
- You then hit a particular body part with the heaviest weight you can handle to positive failure (in a given rep range – usually 8-12 for size gains).
- Take a 2-3 minute break, reduce the weight a little, and do the same again.
Each successive set of the same exercise will be a little lighter.
How much lighter? Well it depends on the amount of load used. If you’re bicep curling 20kg, you’ll only need to drop by 1-2 Kg’s between sets. If you’re benching 100kg, you’ll need to knock off anywhere from 5 to 15 kgs between sets. A 10% reduction is usually about right.
There’ll be a little trial and error when you first start THT training. But it won’t be long until you intuitively know how much weight to drop to keep reaching positive failure in your given rep range.
So you start with 100% of your strength intact and make progressively bigger inroads into your strength as the workout progresses.
And this is for good reason. Creating these inroads triggers the body to adapt and bring your strength not just back to 100%, but > 100%. This is OVERcompensating.
So by the time you perform this same workout again, you’ll notice that your max strength has now increased i.e. you’ve gotten stronger and can handle more weight and/or reps.
Now all you have to do, my friends, is keep doing it! Keep progressing. Adding more weight to the bar and/or performing more reps in successive workouts is the 1 fundamental that guarantees muscle growth.
Combine progressive overload with reverse pyramid training and succeed once and for all!
P.S. If you want to do drop sets as described at the beginning of this article in your THT workouts, go for it! But only drop-set with no rest between sets after the LAST set of a body part. So if you’re on the 5-day split THT routine, and you want to do this for your biceps, do it as a continuation of the very last set. On the full-body 3-day routine, drop-set on the last set of each body part.
Should be easy to understand and implement. If not, ask me below and I’ll clear it up for you.
You can also hire me personally for all your muscle and/or fat loss needs.
So get your butt to the gym and test this today! And remember…
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