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Legendary Lifting Partners You Need to Know



             Almost everybody has, or should have, a lifting partner. If you are still lifting weights alone, it is time you consider finding yourself a friend to help you make your experience at the gym a breeze. Lifting becomes more comfortable with a gym friend, iron brother or iron sister, swolemate, or metal comprade, whichever term you use at your sport to refer to a lifting partner. However, finding a lifting partner is not as easy as you think. Not anyone you meet at the gym can make the right workout partner. It goes beyond physical compatibility, and there has to be some chemistry between the two of you. But how will you know that you’ve found the perfect lifting partner?

Well, the following are clues you may have found the ultimate lifting partner.

Similar Workouts

         The perfect gym partner likes most of the things you want. That includes specific exercises and particular kinds of weights. If you find out that you and your new partner do more incline presses than decline presses, you found him/her! The same applies to the number of deadlift sets and preps, and the right partner will go just as far as you can go with deadlifts. If you feel overworked or underworked after a lifting round with your new partner, the chances are that they may not be the right partner for you.

Bond Outside the Gym

           The relationship with your partner must not be confined to the gym. The perfect lifting partner will maintain contact with you outside the workout spot. More often, the two of you would be seen grabbing a meal together or just strolling around town. Real lifting partners will often text, joking about weights, meals, and other things not necessarily associated with the gym.

            A lifting partner where you live knows some of your family members. They will come to check on you when you don’t respond to your phone. Your partner knows a couple of your friends as well. Once in a while, your families share a meal or a drink at a high-end restaurant. Similarly, they are your first comforters when facing sad moments like grief. That is the right lifting partner for you.

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You Have Similar Goals

             The truth is; it is easier to work with someone trying to achieve the same thing as you or similar. The ideal lifting partner shares your aspirations regarding what they want to accomplish in the short-term and long term. If you are working for a lean muscle, find yourself someone who shares that dream with you. Similarly, the perfect gym partner should aim for the same career goal as you. There is no point in training with someone whose primary goal is to win a local title while you are aiming for a significant IFFB title.

Similar Bodybuilding Thoughts and Philosophies

             What does your lifting partner think about bodybuilding in general? Are they doing it for fun, or are they doing it to achieve short-term goals? Your partner’s thoughts about the exercises you do will tell you whether you have found the right lifting partner. You should consider finding another partner if they are mostly pessimistic about certain things. Reason? They will derail you and prevent you from achieving your bodybuilding goals.

They Are Your Solid Rock

             A good match will be your biggest motivation in every bodybuilding aspect. Does your partner push you to achieve your set goals? Even when your will to go on is at its lowest? If yes, then you have just found yourself an ideal partner. The wrong partner would probably discourage you from doing certain things or don’t push you. Also, they should be by your side when facing a bodybuilding contest at any level. They should be among the first people to comfort you when you don’t perform as expected in a competition.

              Most importantly, a lifting partner doesn’t see you as a rival but a comrade. That means sharing your successes and defeats in equal measure. That is the person you ought to keep as a lifting partner.

Tries to Fix Your Flaws

              You don’t have to tell your lifting partner things about you. They should know you inside out as far as bodybuilding is concerned. That includes your strengths and weaknesses. The most significant role in their life is to help them become a better version of themselves. Your lifting partner should help you overcome bodybuilding challenges, such as successfully performing strenuous exercises. Most importantly, they should be completely honest with you. If you were losing focus and headed in the wrong direction, they should be able to point it out.

           Now that you know what your ideal lifting partner should or should not do, let us see what legendary lifting partners' bodybuilding partners should emulate. You don’t have to copy everything they did, but let it serve as a guide to help grow your bodybuilding career.

Arnold Schwarzenegger and Franco Columbu

            Arnold Schwarzenegger is undoubtedly one of the best bodybuilders in history. His rigorous acting career meant he had to do a lot of weightlifting to take on giant monsters in his fictional world. However, he could not have been as successful without a supportive lifting partner. Arnold was struck by the tragic death of his long-time friend and lifting partner, Franco Columbu. The two first met in Germany in the 60s. Their friendship would move to the gym, where they broke and set new records in weightlifting. The duo would do as much as bench press 500 lbs. each and top it up with squats 545 lbs. Additionally, the lifting partners made the deadlift of 710 lbs. look like a piece of cake.


              Arnold Schwarzenegger was not your ordinary movie star. Most of the things Arnold did in his action moves he could do in real life, thanks to his prowess in weightlifting. With Columbu, they would do some weight lifting an average person would consider impossible. For instance, they used 100-pound dumbbells for eight preps. And not only that, they did it for flat bench flies.  Additionally, the partners would barbell row 315 for ten without a sweat.

Mike Tyson and Zab Judah

               Modern boxers such as the likes of Mike Tyson lift weights like regular bodybuilders. Most of them also use performance-enhancement drugs and steroids. There is a thin line between bodybuilding and boxing. Although the two are separate careers, they have a common factor, which is the gym. Before hitting the ring, Tyson spent hundreds of at the gym working out and lifting weights like every other bodybuilder. Zab Judah is not just a normal weight-lifting partner, he is also a reputable boxing champion and is considered the best welterweight boxer.


              However, if you were to face either of them in a training session, your life would flash before your eyes. The speed, furiousness, aggressiveness, and intensity of their training is out of this world. If you walked into the gym and didn’t know them well, which is quite unlikely, you can’t say one of them is the trainer. Zab Judah stated that Tyson worked as much in training as he works in the ring. That is perhaps why the legendary boxer has seen more success in the ring than any other fighter in history.

           Typical exercise for Tyson and Zab involves 2000 squats and a 66-pound barbell accompanied by 500 shrugs. They also do a lot of neck exercises using various weights. Their partnership in weightlifting has seen them become undisputed boxers in their respective fields.

Flex Wheeler and Ronnie Coleman

             Most people only know Kenneth ‘Flex’ Wheeler and Ronnie Coleman as rivals. Many people don’t know that the two trained together as well. Their connection goes beyond the ring to other aspects of bodybuilding.


              For instance, Ronnie once stated that Flex introduced him to steroid use. But that is not the juice here. The two bodybuilding icons did a lot together to achieve mutual dreams, except when competing against each other. Flex Wheeler has won 4 Arnold Classics and many other titles. Ronnie Coleman, on the other hand, commonly referred to as the real-life ‘Hulk,’ won Mr. Olympia eight years in a row. The combined achievement of the two bodybuilders is a feat many bodybuilders can only dream of.

            The two bodybuilders are known to have intense back, shoulder, and chest workouts. The workouts included barbell deadlift, T-bar row, assisted and non-assisted pull-up machine, inclined barbell raise, and seated calf raise, among others.

Dexter Jackson and Kai Greene

            Dexter Jackson and Kai Greene had a unique training style that involved body part split. The overall objective was to develop maximum muscular mass hypertrophy. The exercises typically involved 3 to 4 sets. Additionally, each training had approximately six activities. If you are still wondering why you need a lifting partner, try digging deeper into the kinds of exercises these two did together. The discipline and commitment to do these exercises successfully come with the collaboration of two like-minded bodybuilders.


             Their vigorous exercises saw them succeed in their respective fields, sometimes in the same competition, beyond expectation. Dexter is an Olympia bodybuilding champion and a 2015 Arnold Classic winner. Kai Greene may not be fortunate, having come second in the Mr. Olympia competition three consecutive times in 2012, 2013, and 2014. However, his bodybuilding has contributed to his successes in other areas such as acting, as a trainer, and artist.

Frank Zane and Dave Draper

            The duo is lucky to train alongside Arnold and Columbu. Zane and Draper may not have achieved much in their bodybuilding career, but they are among the best lifting partners. Their training followed a weekly routine with each exercise to achieve a particular goal.


           On Mondays, Zane and his partner would do quadriceps and calves. They would do forearms and Abs in the evening of the same day. Every other day of the week had two sets of exercises, one in the morning and the other in the evening. On Thursdays, for instance, they would do back exercises in the morning then shoulders, forearms, biceps, and abs in the evening. Their training involved three days of rest every week.

            Frank Zane is a 2-time Mr. Olympia winner, while Dave Draper is considered a legend from the golden era. The latter won Mr. New Jersey when he was only 21.


            Bodybuilding is a sport of pride, but one can achieve a lot more if they have a lifting partner to help them gain some lifting milestones. The best bodybuilders in history have had a lifting partner at some point in their fitness careers. A lifting partner does not necessarily make the weights lighter but will motivate you to lift even heavier weights. As highlighted earlier in this article, the perfect lifting partner will push your fitness limits and inspire you to bring out the best in you.

               If you have never thought about getting yourself a lifting partner, it is about time you found one. A lifting partner doesn’t have to be a fellow bodybuilder, but it would be better if they are one. Finding a lifting partner could be as easy as approaching anyone at your gym. It will take you a couple of days to know whether they make a perfect partner. If not, feel free to move to the next person.


         All in all, find yourself a lifting partner disciplined enough to help you realize your bodybuilding dreams. Bodybuilding comes with many freedoms. Consequently, many people do not get to the top because of a lack of discipline. Additionally, you may have heard of prolific bodybuilders who came down crashing after finding themselves bad company.

              In conclusion, a lifting partner is like your third eye. They see what you don’t see and know what works for you and what does not. Listen to what they say; you don’t have to agree with everything they suggest, but consider their opinion when making critical bodybuilding decisions.



Here Is How To know Your MRV (Maximum Recoverable Volume)




MRV (Maximum Recoverable Volume) refers to the highest training volume an individual can handle while still making progress. It’s a personalized threshold that considers sets, reps, and intensity within a given period (usually a week).

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Exceeding MRV can lead to overtraining, causing fatigue, performance decline, and injury risk. Progressive overload is key, but staying below MRV ensures sustainable gains.

The optimal rep range for Maximum Recoverable Volume (MRV) depends on individual factors, but generally, a moderate rep range of 6 to 12 repetitions per set is effective. This range balances muscle tension, metabolic stress, and mechanical tension, promoting both strength and hypertrophy. Remember to listen to your body and adjust based on your recovery capacity.

Factors That Determine MRV

Here’s a concise breakdown of the factors influencing an individual’s Maximum Recoverable Volume (MRV):

Hormonal Environment

Hormone levels (endogenous or exogenous) impact recovery speed and MRV.

Higher hormone levels correlate with better recovery and a higher MRV.


Adequate macronutrient intake (especially protein) affects recovery and MRV.

Proper nutrition supports muscle repair and capacity for higher training volumes.

Training Experience

Beginners have a lower MRV due to unfamiliarity with high training volumes.

Advanced athletes, with more training years, usually have a higher MRV.


Younger athletes tend to have a higher MRV due to better recovery abilities.

As athletes age, recovery slows down, reducing MRV.


Adequate sleep is essential for recovery. Lack of sleep can negatively impact your MRV.


Genetic factors also contribute. Some individuals naturally have a higher MRV than others.

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Better Ways to Improve Your MRV

Let’s explore ways to enhance a bodybuilder’s Maximum Recoverable Volume (MRV) for optimal muscle growth.

Gradual Volume Progression: Increase training volume gradually over time. Monitor recovery and adjust accordingly.

Personal Volume Landmarks: Understand your individual MRV. Experiment with weekly sets and track recovery.

Balanced Stimulus-Fatigue Ratio: Optimize exercise-specific stimulus while managing fatigue.

Quality Over Quantity: Focus on effective reps and quality sets rather than excessive volume.

Periodization: Vary training volume across mesocycles (e.g., high, moderate, low volume phases).

Frequency: Spread volume across multiple sessions per week for better recovery.

Compound Movements: Prioritize compound exercises for efficient volume utilization.

Rest Intervals: Adjust rest times to balance fatigue and performance.

Nutrition and Sleep: Support recovery with proper nutrition and adequate sleep.

Deload Weeks: Regularly incorporate lighter training weeks to manage fatigue.

Auto-Regulation: Listen to your body and adjust volume based on daily readiness.

Supplement Timing: Use supplements (e.g., creatine, BCAAs) strategically to aid recovery.

Active Recovery: Include light activities (e.g., walking, swimming) on rest days.

Mind-Muscle Connection: Focus on muscle contraction during each set.

Intra-Workout Nutrition: Consider BCAAs or carb-based drinks during training.

Variety: Rotate exercises to prevent staleness and optimize volume.

Warm-Up Sets: Gradually ramp up intensity to avoid sudden volume spikes.

Individual Recovery Factors: Consider stress levels, age, and lifestyle.

Volume Cycling: Periodically reduce volume to enhance recovery capacity.

Systemic MRV: Prioritize muscle groups based on overall recovery capacity.

Note that individual responses vary, so adjust these strategies based on your unique needs.

Deloading Phases to Increase Your Chances of Success

Deloading phases, also known as deload weeks, are strategically planned periods of reduced training intensity and volume. They serve several purposes in a well-structured training program.

Recovery and Adaptation

Deloading allows your body to recover from accumulated fatigue caused by intense training.

During deloads, you reduce the stress on muscles, joints, and the nervous system.

This recovery time helps prevent overtraining and promotes adaptation.

Performance Enhancement

After a deload, you often experience improved performance due to better recovery.

Strength, power, and endurance may increase as your body adapts to the previous workload.

Mental Refreshment

Deloads provide a mental break from heavy training.

They prevent burnout and maintain motivation by preventing staleness.

How to Implement Deloads

Frequency: Deloads typically occur every 4-8 weeks, depending on your training intensity and individual needs.

Volume Reduction: Decrease training volume (sets, reps, or both) by about 40-60% during the deload week.

Intensity: Maintain intensity (weight lifted) but reduce overall workload.

Focus on Form and Technique: Use the deload week to fine-tune your lifting technique.

Cardio and Mobility: Include light cardio and mobility work to promote blood flow and flexibility.

For instance, if you’ve been lifting heavy weights, reduce the weight and perform fewer sets and reps.

For endurance athletes, decrease mileage or intensity during deload weeks.

Deloading is individualized. Listen to your body, assess your recovery needs, and adjust the deload parameters accordingly.

Is It Possible to Measure MRV?

We have seen that MRV is a critical concept for optimizing muscle growth. But can you measure it accurately? Here are some methods to determine your MRV:

Trial and Error Approach: Gradually increase your weekly training volume (sets and reps) over several weeks. Monitor your recovery and performance. When you notice a decline in performance or recovery, you’ve likely reached your MRV.

Incremental Volume Increase: Start with a relatively low work volume (fewer sets per muscle group) at the beginning of a training cycle. Add 1-2 sets per muscle group each week. Observe when performance starts to dip, as that indicates your MRV.


In summary, the concept of Maximum Recoverable Volume (MRV) holds immense significance for those aiming to optimize their training routines for muscle growth and overall performance.

By delving into the intricacies of MRV and respecting its boundaries, you can safely push their limits, ensuring consistent progress while minimizing the risk of overtraining. The dynamic nature of MRV, influenced by multifaceted factors such as training experience, age, hormonal balance, nutrition, quality of sleep, and genetic predisposition, underscores the value of personalized training programs.

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Regularly assessing and fine-tuning training volume allows bodybuilders to unlock their full potential in their fitness endeavors. While other variables certainly matter, training volume remains a pivotal factor in achieving fitness goals efficiently and effectively.

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Anabolic Steroids

Peptides Vs. Steroids:Real Talk/Guide




Many bodybuilders are unable to distinguish peptides from regular steroids. In this article we're going to explore Peptides vs. Steroids from various perspectives.

Let’s delve into the differences between peptides and steroids.

Mechanism of Action

    • Peptides: These are short chains of amino acids. Peptides work by binding to specific receptors on the cell surface. They initiate signal transduction pathways, which activate various cellular processes. Peptides do not directly affect DNA or gene expression.
    • Steroids: Steroids, on the other hand, penetrate the cell membrane and bind directly to DNA within the cell nucleus. They act as transcription participants, modifying gene expression.

Natural vs. Unnatural Effects

    • Peptides: Peptides enhance natural processes in the body. For example, some peptides stimulate growth hormone release, improve recovery, and promote anti-aging effects.
    • Steroids: Anabolic steroids artificially increase testosterone levels. They can be used for hormone replacement therapy but may have side effects due to their unnatural impact on the body.

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Binding Sites

    • Peptides: Bind to cell surface receptors.
    • Steroids: Bind to receptors inside the cell cytoplasm and modify transcription.


    • Peptides:
      • Weight Loss: Certain peptides can aid weight management.
      • Recovery & Repair: Peptides like BPC-157 support tissue healing.
      • Anti-Aging: Some peptides have skin-rejuvenating properties.
      • Reproductive Health: Peptides like kisspeptin-10 may impact reproductive health.
      • Cognitive Enhancement: Selank and semax are nootropic peptides.
    • Steroids:
      • Hormone Replacement: Used for male hypogonadism (low testosterone).
      • Muscle Building: Anabolic steroids promote muscle growth.
      • Performance Enhancement: Athletes sometimes misuse steroids for performance gains.

Peptides Vs. Steroids Risk Profile

    • Peptides: Generally considered safer with fewer side effects.
    • Steroids: Higher risk of adverse effects, including liver damage, cardiovascular issues, and hormonal imbalances.

Peptides Vs. Steroids Dosages


Dosages vary based on the specific peptide and desired effect.

Let’s explore the dosages for various peptides commonly used in bodybuilding. Remember that individual responses may vary, so always consult with a healthcare professional before starting any peptide regimen.

CJC-1295 and Ipamorelin Stack


Typical Dosage: 1000 mcg to 2000 mcg per week.

Cycle Duration: 8 to 12 weeks (60 to 90 days).


Typical Dosage: 200 mcg to 300 mcg per day.

Cycle Duration: Similar to CJC-1295 (8 to 12 weeks).

Average Cost: Approximately $49 (Prices may vary depending on the supplier and product concentration).


Typical Dosage: 4-10 mg per week, divided into two doses per week.

Cycle Duration: 4-6 weeks, followed by a maintenance dose.

Benefits: GHRP-6 stimulates growth hormone release, aiding muscle growth and recovery.


Typical Dosage: Varies based on the specific purpose (e.g., injury recovery or muscle healing).

Cycle Duration: Often used for 4-6 weeks.

Application: BPC-157 accelerates tissue repair and supports muscle healing.

IGF-1 (Insulin-like Growth Factor)

Dosage: Typically administered subcutaneously.

Cycle Duration: Varies; consult with your personal trainer or healthcare professional.

Benefits: IGF-1 promotes local muscle growth and repair.


Dosages depend on the steroid type and purpose (e.g., medical or athletic use).

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Let’s dive into a comprehensive guide on steroid dosages for bodybuilding. Keep in mind that individual responses can vary, and it’s crucial to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any steroid regimen. Here are some common dosages for various steroids

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Beginner Steroid Cycles

Testosterone Cycle

Dosage: Typically ranges from 300 mg to 500 mg per week.

Cycle Length: Usually 8 to 12 weeks.

Rest Period: Allow at least 4 to 6 weeks between cycles.

Anavar (Oxandrolone) Cycle

Dosage: Around 20 mg to 50 mg per day.

Cycle Length: 6 to 8 weeks.

Purpose: Anavar is mild and suitable for beginners, promoting lean muscle gains and fat loss2.

Bulking Steroid Cycles

Dianabol (Methandrostenolone) Cycle

Dosage: Typically 20 mg to 50 mg per day.

Cycle Length: 4 to 6 weeks.

Benefits: Dianabol is known for rapid muscle growth and strength gains.

Anadrol (Oxymetholone) Cycle

Dosage: 50 mg to 100 mg per day.

Cycle Length: 4 to 6 weeks.

Purpose: Anadrol is potent for bulking and increasing red blood cell production.

Trenbolone Cycle

Dosage: Varies (typically 200 mg to 400 mg per week).

Cycle Length: 8 to 10 weeks.

Benefits: Trenbolone promotes muscle growth, strength, and fat loss.

Deca Durabolin (Nandrolone Decanoate) Cycle

Dosage: 200 mg to 400 mg per week.

Cycle Length: 8 to 12 weeks.

Stacking: Often combined with testosterone for synergistic effects.

Cutting Steroid Cycles

Winstrol (Stanozolol) Cycle

Dosage: 20 mg to 50 mg per day (oral) or 50 mg to 100 mg every other day (injectable).

Cycle Length: 6 to 8 weeks.

Purpose: Winstrol helps preserve lean muscle during cutting phases.

Primobolan (Methenolone) Cycle

Dosage: 400 mg to 600 mg per week.

Cycle Length: 8 to 10 weeks.

Benefits: Primobolan is mild, promotes quality muscle, and has minimal side effects.

Clenbuterol Cycle

Dosage: Varies (typically 20 mcg to 120 mcg per day).

Cycle Length: 2 weeks on, 2 weeks off.

Purpose: Clenbuterol aids fat loss and enhances metabolism.

Advanced Steroid Cycles

Anadrol / Testosterone / Trenbolone Cycle

Dosages: Varies based on individual tolerance and goals.

Stacking: Combining Anadrol, testosterone, and trenbolone for maximum effects.

Winstrol / Proviron / Trenbolone Cycle

Dosages: Tailored to advanced users and pro bodybuilders.

Stacking: Winstrol, Proviron, and trenbolone synergize for cutting and hardening.

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Natural Alternatives

    • Peptides: Consider natural alternatives like collagen peptides for skin health or melatonin for sleep.
    • Steroids: Natural alternatives include resistance training, proper nutrition, and rest.

Peptides Vs. Steroids Impact on Muscle Growth


Lean Muscle Gain: Peptides promote lean muscle mass by stimulating protein synthesis.

Recovery: Faster recovery from intense workouts and injuries.

Anti-Catabolic Effects: Peptides prevent muscle breakdown.

Example: Imagine an athlete recovering from a muscle strain. BPC-157 administration accelerates tissue repair, aiding muscle growth.


Rapid Muscle Hypertrophy: Steroids lead to significant muscle growth due to increased protein synthesis.

Increased Strength: Athletes using steroids experience enhanced performance in strength-based activities.

Improved Recovery: Steroids reduce muscle damage and inflammation.

Example: A bodybuilder using testosterone sees substantial gains in muscle size and strength during a bulking phase.

FDA Stance on Peptides Vs. Steroids

The FDA has closely examined the commercialization and utilization of specific peptides and steroids, expressing apprehensions about their safety and the absence of approval for numerous substances.

As a result, the FDA has prohibited the sale of several peptides formerly favored by bodybuilders and fitness enthusiasts due to their purported muscle-building and performance-enhancing attributes.

This regulatory measure emphasizes the significance of following lawful and secure protocols when contemplating peptides for enhancing muscle growth.

It is crucial for individuals to remain well-informed regarding the peptides that adhere to FDA guidelines, enabling them to make prudent and lawful decisions concerning their health and fitness routines.

Importantly,  the legality of steroids and peptides varies among countries and jurisdictions. We recommend checking legality in your country before commencing your routine.

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As observed, steroids and peptide therapies share certain similarities in their effects, including enhanced strength, improved endurance, and increased fat burning, which are often sought after by individuals aiming to enhance their physical performance and appearance.

However, while both can achieve these outcomes, the risks associated with steroids are considerably higher compared to peptides.

Fred Kyle, a Certified Peptide Specialist at the Etalaze, advises individuals to carefully consider the potential consequences of using steroids on their health before opting for them as a means to enhance performance.

For those seeking an extra boost to overcome performance plateaus or slumps, it's recommended to consult with a professional, preferably your personal trainer or physician.

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Demystifying Hypertrophy Training




Hypertrophy training, often referred to as bodybuilding training, is a method focused on increasing muscle size and definition through targeted exercises and specific training techniques. Professional bodybuilders have mastered the art of hypertrophy training to sculpt their bodies into peak physical condition.

At its core, hypertrophy training involves lifting weights at a moderate to high intensity for a moderate number of repetitions. The goal is to create micro-tears in the muscle fibers, which then repair and grow stronger and larger during the recovery process. This leads to muscle hypertrophy or an increase in muscle size.

Understanding the basics of hypertrophy training involves knowing how to manipulate variables such as sets, reps, rest periods, tempo, and intensity. By adjusting these factors, individuals can tailor their workouts to target specific muscle groups and achieve optimal results.

Proper nutrition and adequate rest are also crucial components of hypertrophy training as muscles need sufficient fuel and time to recover and grow. Consistency in training and adherence to a well-rounded program are key pillars in unlocking the full potential of hypertrophy training.

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By demystifying hypertrophy training and embracing its principles with dedication and focus, individuals can effectively work towards achieving their desired physique goals while enhancing overall strength and endurance.

Principles of Hypertrophy Training

When you engage in strength training, you put strain on your muscles. This stress prompts the body to repair and adapt, resulting in an increase in muscle fibers. Here are the basics about this form of training you need to familiarise with:

Training Frequency

For new bodybuilders, a frequency of 3-4 times per week is often recommended to allow for sufficient recovery between sessions. Professional bodybuilders may train more frequently, sometimes up to 5-6 times per week, as their bodies have adapted to higher training volumes over time.

Intensity and Volume: New bodybuilders typically start with moderate intensity (around 65-75% of their one-rep max) and moderate volume (3-4 sets of 8-12 reps per exercise). Professional bodybuilders often incorporate higher intensities (75-85% of one-rep max) and higher volumes (4-6 sets of 8-15 reps per exercise) to continue stimulating muscle growth.

Exercise Selection

Both new and professional bodybuilders focus on compound exercises (e.g., squats, deadlifts, bench press) that target multiple muscle groups simultaneously to maximize muscle recruitment and overall hypertrophy. However, professionals may incorporate more isolation exercises to target specific muscles or muscle groups that need extra attention.

Progressive Overload

Both groups prioritize progressive overload, which involves gradually increasing the weight, reps, or sets over time to continue challenging the muscles and promoting growth. This can be achieved through methods such as increasing resistance, shortening rest periods, or varying exercise techniques.


Both new and professional bodybuilders emphasize the importance of nutrition for muscle growth and recovery. This includes consuming an adequate amount of protein to support muscle repair and synthesis, as well as sufficient carbohydrates and fats for energy and overall health.

Rest and Recovery

Adequate rest and recovery are crucial for hypertrophy training. Both new and professional bodybuilders prioritize getting enough sleep (7-9 hours per night) and incorporating rest days into their training schedules to allow muscles to repair and grow.


While both new and professional bodybuilders may use supplements to support their training and nutrition goals, professionals may have more sophisticated supplementation protocols tailored to their specific needs and goals. We recommend supplements such as protein powders, creatine, branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs), and pre-workout formulas.

Monitoring and Adjustments

Professional bodybuilders often closely monitor their progress through measurements such as body weight, body composition, and strength levels. Based on these assessments, they make adjustments to their training, nutrition, and supplementation protocols to continually progress towards their goals.

Arnold Schwarzenegger's Hypertrophy Workout Routine

Arnold Schwarzenegger's volume workout is a legendary approach to hypertrophy training that he popularized during his bodybuilding career. Here's an explanation of how his workout relates to hypertrophy training:

High Volume

Schwarzenegger's training program was characterized by high volume, involving a large number of sets and reps per workout. This high volume stimulates muscle growth by subjecting the muscles to prolonged tension and metabolic stress, both of which are key factors in hypertrophy.

Multiple Sets and Reps

Each exercise in Schwarzenegger's workout typically included multiple sets (often 4-5 sets) with a moderate to high number of reps (8-12 reps). This approach allows for ample time under tension, which is essential for stimulating muscle growth and hypertrophy.

Compound and Isolation Exercises

Schwarzenegger's workout included a combination of compound exercises (e.g., squats, bench press, deadlifts) and isolation exercises (e.g., bicep curls, tricep extensions) to target various muscle groups from different angles. Compound exercises help to maximize muscle recruitment, while isolation exercises allow for targeted muscle stimulation and hypertrophy.


Schwarzenegger typically trained each muscle group 2-3 times per week, allowing for sufficient frequency to stimulate muscle growth while also providing adequate recovery time between sessions. This frequency helps to maximize hypertrophy by consistently exposing the muscles to growth-inducing stimuli.

Intensity Techniques

Schwarzenegger often incorporated intensity techniques such as drop sets, supersets, and forced reps into his workouts to further increase the intensity and stimulate muscle growth. These techniques help to push the muscles beyond their normal limits, triggering adaptations that lead to hypertrophy.


Schwarzenegger employed periodization principles in his training, alternating between phases of higher volume and lower volume to prevent plateaus and continue making progress. This periodization strategy helps to optimize muscle growth by varying training stimuli over time.

Mind-Muscle Connection

Schwarzenegger emphasized the importance of the mind-muscle connection, focusing on contracting and feeling the target muscles working during each repetition. This approach helps to maximize muscle fiber recruitment and engagement, enhancing the effectiveness of each exercise for hypertrophy.

Nutrition and Recovery

In addition to his training program, Schwarzenegger paid close attention to his nutrition and recovery strategies to support muscle growth and hypertrophy. Adequate protein intake, proper hydration, and sufficient rest are essential components of any hypertrophy-focused training program.

Overall, Schwarzenegger's volume workout is a comprehensive approach to hypertrophy training that incorporates high volume, frequency, intensity techniques, and periodization to maximize muscle growth and achieve an impressive physique.

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10 Groups of Athletes That Can Benefit from Hypertrophy Workouts

We have prepared for you 10 groups of athletes that should consider hypertrophy training

1. Combat Sports Athletes

Martial artists, boxers, and other combat sports athletes can enhance their power and endurance through hypertrophy training.

2. Track and Field Athletes

Sprinters, jumpers, and throwers can improve their explosive strength by including hypertrophy training in their regimen.

3. Football/Soccer Players

Both American football players and soccer players can benefit from hypertrophy training to increase muscle mass and strength.

4. Gymnasts

Building lean muscle mass through hypertrophy training can help gymnasts improve their strength-to-weight ratio for better performance.

5. Swimmers

Swimmers can enhance their power in the water by incorporating hypertrophy exercises to strengthen key muscle groups.

6. Cyclists

While endurance is crucial for cyclists, adding hypertrophy training can boost leg strength and overall performance on the bike.

7. Basketball Players

Building muscle through hypertrophy training can improve basketball players' agility, jumping ability, and overall athleticism on the court.

8. CrossFit Athletes

CrossFit enthusiasts looking to excel in competitions can benefit from hypertrophy training to increase overall strength and muscular endurance.

9. Triathletes

Incorporating hypertrophy exercises into triathletes' routines helps prevent injuries by strengthening muscles that support joints during long-distance races.

10. Powerlifters

While powerlifting focuses on maximal strength lifts, including some hypertrophy work can aid in building a solid muscular foundation for lifting heavy weights more efficiently.

By tailoring a specific hypertrophy program to suit each group's athletic needs and goals, these athletes have the opportunity to optimize their performance levels while reducing the risk of injury associated with repetitive movements in sports-specific activities.

Final Thoughts

By understanding the underlying principles of progressive overload, volume, intensity, and frequency, individuals can tailor their training programs to effectively stimulate muscle growth. Whether you're a novice or a seasoned athlete, hypertrophy training offers a structured framework for optimizing muscle hypertrophy and sculpting a physique that reflects dedication, consistency, and strategic planning.

Embracing the science behind hypertrophy training empowers you as an individual to surpass limitations, break plateaus, and unlock their full potential in pursuit of their fitness aspirations. With proper guidance, commitment, and perseverance, anyone can harness the transformative power of hypertrophy training to sculpt a stronger, more resilient, and aesthetically pleasing physique.

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