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ak1951
04-11-2013, 03:49 AM
4 2 4 HIGH INTENSITY TRAINING (HIT)

Sorry for the beginner jargon but it does get better!
A normal body building lift is centered on volume reps and lifting heavy weights determined by what your maximum one rep weight limit is. Let’s use bench press as an example. If you can MW (Max Weight) bench press 200 lbs. for one rep that is your 1MR (Max Rep) limit. MW is not to be confused with PR (Personal Record) lifts that happen every now and then on really strong days and are freak 110% or more lifts. We all have occasional “Super Man” days, normally when we least expect it!

Typical traditional Body Building: We attempt to increase size and strength by lifting heavier weights and or more reps. When you can bench 225lbs. for 1 you know you have made progress over your 200lb bench…Duh! Not a rocket science approach. And in the beginning this and almost anything will create improvement that is seen, felt and even complemented on. But then one day…the deadly PLATEAU hits! The party is over.

No matter what you do to increase your lifting volume and MW MR lifts it just is not happening and a PR is a distant dream…in fact you begin to feel sick and weak and lose size and strength. Yep…over training has struck again. WE ALL HAVE DONE IT!!! Your body says NO but your mind says GO so you persevere with true grit and increase cardio and force more reps, slam more food, vitamins and protein powder to try and get over the sticking point. Nope…it does not work and you become very depressed, sick at heart and your body responds negatively to it all with pain and flu like symptoms (body builder flu). You did your very best and it was not good enough. You are defeated by your own good intentions. Striped of your ranking and lost to the greatness you aspired to. You go back to the worm pile from which you came.

Soon you find yourself saying… “Ya…I use to work out and looked a lot like you do” (talking to a currently active Body Builder.) We all talk to guys that will say this… “I use to work out” and many if not most of us have gone through this more than once! IDIOTS! Ya, that includes me! Sadly the people with the greatest will and heart to succeed will fall to chronic over training and fail completely at the sport of Body Building. If only they had known what this paper is about! This information literally saved my life (another story.)

MY INTERPRETATION AND UNDERSTANDING OF HIT

In conventional normally accepted Body Building standards…the idea is to exhaust the muscle to failure. So in normal accepted tradition let’s say we do bench @ 150lbs for 6 reps (we are still the 200lb MW guy). We know the last rep is the one we need to concentrate on. The last forced rep is the rep that will create enough strain on the muscle to force growth and strength. “Normally” we work to achieve as close to our max weight MW as possible in this example hoping to get 200lbs for one or more reps. The point is that in normal body building we are working as close as possible to our MR range in all lifts for all body parts and this normally involves ballistic momentum, jerking and bouncing or spotter help to get that last rep. This puts a tremendous strain on everything including your nervous system which includes your recovery system. How much is really going to the growth machinery? Let’s say you do 6 sets with various weight to get to the last rep. That is 6 “working” reps you got out of your work out for growth and the rest simply exhausted and fatigued our entire body and nervous system.

HIT involves lighter weight lifts and sets for reps ranging from 3 to 12 (not including high rep warm up warm down sets should you desire which I think are a waste of time with HIT.)

The point here is that we “normally” throw away the first reps seeking that last rep for growth. And what happens on that last lift? It becomes tremendously slow and tedious to the point of not making the lift or needing a spotter to help you lift it. Some will go on to negative lifts with help on the positive side of the lift then you control the negative side so you got half a lift not a whole lift. Or you may do a drop set where weight is stripped off and the reps continue to failure and intensive fatigue (see the over training coming?) So in the “normal” lift the reps become progressively slower until they come to a complete failure and stop. Did you run out of muscle strength or did you completely exhaust every part of your body? Extreme exhaustion compounded with muscle damage damages everything to the point of nervous system brake down. You don’t need rest and recovery any more…you need a hospital!

So damaged beyond repair is our goal to create more strength and size? We believe damaging our body to be the answer to a bigger stronger body? The more damage done the bigger we will get. Right? We wanted to turn on the growth machinery but instead we have turned on emergency over load recovery and the body reacts with negative chemicals to make you stop doing what you are doing to it. It can’t tell if you worked out or got hit by a bus. It is reacting to injury not stimulus. Attempting to grow is a joke because everything is going to recovery and mending your “in shock” nervous system.

In Truth: We not only want to isolate muscle in our work outs but we want to isolate our nervous system also and do as little damage as possible to it so it can think about building stronger muscle in reaction to stimulus instead of working to get over the shock of being hit by a bus.

How about more body growth stimulation with much less nervous system damage using half your MR MW weight with less than half your normal sets but accumulating 2 or 3 times the “Time Under Load” (TUL)? Better read that again. AND…you feel good all the time…not totally drained and fatigued! Impossible…Right!

HIT STARTS WHERE NORMAL SETS STOP

In 4 2 4 High Intensity Training (HIT) every rep is performed as a “failed” rep. You start your set as you would end a normally practiced body building set. In other words HIT starts where normally accepted training finishes. You preform each and every rep of ever set in an exact copy of each other to simulate a failed rep. That slow almost failed last rep in normal lifts is how you preform your first and every rep in HIT. A slow 4 second down (negative) a 2 second pause with intense contraction and a slow controlled 4 second positive.

Let’s do the math. You do a 10 rep set at the normal speed of about one second up, one second down. 2sec. x 10rp = 20 TUL. In 4 2 4 that is 10sec x 10rp = 100 TUL. Let’s say you do 10 sets: 10sets x 20sec = 200 TUL. 4 2 4: 10 x 100 = 1000 TUL. Get the picture. You ain’t gonna do 10 HIT 4 2 4 sets! You will be lucky to do 3 or 4 if done to perfect HIT standards. 2 HIT sets gives you 10 normal TUL seconds. So 4 HIT sets doubles your normal workout.

The advantages?…to many to list in this short paper. I think you are getting the message or I hope so. All the bad is cut in half and all the good is doubled.
The greatest single advantage in HIT lifting is that you use about half as much weight as you normally would (less chance of injury) and exhaust yourself about half as much as normal training demands. So what does this mean? Your nervous system and recovery time are greatly improved allowing for optimum growth with minimal effort. Now who does not want more for less?