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How to get muscle growth using Hypertrophy Training

Categories: Exercise

What Is Hypertrophy Training?

Hypertrophy training, also referred to as Hypertrophy-Specific Training (HST) is a method of strength training designed to induce the fastest rate of muscle growth (hypertrophy) without the use of anabolic steroids or reducing the efficacy of your muscles over an extended time period. Believe it or not, methods of inducing hypertrophy were discovered and tested in a laboratory. Principles obtained from the tests were then organized into a weight training routine aimed at inducing hypertrophy.

Principles of Hypertrophy training

  1. Mechanical load – For muscle hypertrophy to occur, one needs to load their muscles through tension. For beginners, they may just start out with their own body weight before moving on to heavier external weights.
  2. Chronic Stimulation – Muscles need to be stimulated with sufficient frequency otherwise, it would be a waste of time. Muscles will generally recover within 48 hours, but this process can be sped along by using acute responses to training for example increased rates of protein growth, which can reduce the recovery time to 36 hours. Waiting more than 48 hours to load the muscles again will be pointless.
  3. Progressive load – For hypertrophy to occur, you cannot be lifting the same amount of weight over and over again expecting results. What happens is that the muscles get used to the mechanical load and you can even feel like it is much easier to lift a weight that you previously found heavy. The general rule is increasing the load in steps of about 10% increments. This pace needs to be higher than the rate of adaption. Meaning that if you suddenly feel like the load is too light, it is way passed time to increase it.
  4. Strategic Deconditioning – Hypertrophy training happens in cycles. If we could indefinitely increase the weight our muscles can handle, we would have a number of Hercules running around. This, however, is not the case. It gets to a point where your muscles cannot be loaded with a higher weight due to a high risk of injury. The load just becomes intolerable. However, since adaptation to the load has occurred, this effect needs to be reversed. This includes allowing for a deconditioning period before resuming hypertrophy. This lasts between 9-14 days after a 6-8 cycle of hypertrophy.

Here are a few other tips you may find useful for hypertrophy training:

To stimulate tendon repair, lactic acid can be used as a stimulus. This prepares the muscles to withstand heavier loads and is enhanced by using compound exercises.

When you increase the load over time, you should lower the reps you do.

Three workouts a week per muscle group is much more effective than one intense day, focusing on one muscle group. This goes in line with Chronic Stimulation. Instead of overworking one muscle group in one day, break down that session into three or four separate sessions that can be covered in the span of a week, allowing for exercise every couple of days.