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Training Considerations for Hypertrophy


Variables not mentioned:


Rest periods:


Context dependent. Ideally we would aim to complete all of the programmed volume at the prescribed RPE/ RIR. Rest times will be longer for compounds than isolations. 2-4 minutes for commands perhaps, 1-3 for isolations. If there are time constraints on the session then opting for shorter rest times may be necessary in order to complete all of the volume. This can lead to RPE creeping up so weight may need to be removed from the bar. This is not ideal all of the time but as volume (in a rough intensity range) is the main focus of a hypertrophy block this takes priority over rest.


Tempo:


Contrary to bro lore, slow eccentrics are not hugely beneficial for a hypertrophic response. A controlled eccentric seems favourable but excessive focus on tempo work unnecessary. Explosive concentrics (where appropriate) seem favourable providing this does not compromise technique. For movements that are unfamiliar or perhaps don’t have great muscular awareness/ mind muscle connection with yet, slower, more controlled tempos may be useful.


Nutrition:

Post coming soon on this. Without adequate caloric intake and protein hypertrophy gains will be minimised. Nutrition and training are EQUALLY important when looking to increase muscle mass.


Sleep:

7+ hours where possible on average. This is as important as training and nutrition.


Stress:

Chronic stress, just like chronic sleep deprivation will kill your gains. Stress management or minimisation should be a consideration for everyone undertaking a muscle gain phase (and during other phases!).


There’s heaps of nuance I’ve missed in this post, it’s impossible to cover it all.


Please take all info given as a VERY general guide. Please do not jump into your hypertrophy block at 20 sets per muscle group per week if this is beyond your recovery capabilities right now.