15-10-5 reduce weight on extra sets?

Discussion in 'Hypertrophy-Specific Training (HST)' started by xarfox, Mar 2, 2006.

  1. xarfox

    xarfox New Member

    i read from a bunch of different people that you are all increasing the amount of sets as reps get lower i.e.
    15 x 1
    10 x 2
    5 x 3

    during the 5s i find it hard to do the same weight 3 times in a row. for example if my max bench was 200lbs, is it ok to do the first set at 200, the second at 190, and the third at 180?

    or do you guys just lower your max so you can hit it all 3 times
  2. noobie

    noobie New Member

    I would stay with the same weights and hith the target reps for the first set. and then do however many you think is appropriate for the sets afterwards. So in this case, you would be able to do 200 for 5 reps. then 200 for 3. then 200 for 1 maybe. I just don't like lowering the load during the 5's becuase i like to see myself putting up massive weights =). But, if you feel like the extra volume will do you good, then go ahead and drop the weights, it wouldn't hurt. but the most hypertrophy will come from the first reps with the correct weights.
  3. dkm1987

    dkm1987 New Member

    Me personally I don't see it as noobie does. In order to maintain the amount of work (something I feel is important) througout the entire cycle it may be necessary to drop the load on sucessive sets.

    I also can not see how the first reps are more advantageous for inducing hypertrophy. It's a balancing act between all signaling mechanisms metabolic, mechanical and hormonal. If the entire hypertrophic stimulus only hinges on mechanical then just do a single 1RM and be done. It's not that simple.
  4. xarfox

    xarfox New Member

    well i used to do 2 sets for the 5s, and even then it was hard to hit my max weight twice in a row, now trying to do 3 is even more fatiguing

    back in the day when i did conventional splits (and i was doing like 9 sets of chest in one day) i tired out fast, i think its just the way my body is
  5. Totentanz

    Totentanz Super Moderator Staff Member

    You could just cluster the last set instead of trying to do 5 straight reps. However, in the 5s, I believe it is important to introduce metabolic work, which would involve dropping the weight significantly and doing a high rep set to get a burn after you've done all your work sets.
  6. liegelord

    liegelord New Member

    I agree with Totentanz. I would never lower the weight on a work set. I just cluster the reps.
  7. Fausto

    Fausto HST Expert


    Here's the thing, the most important set is your first work set (most of us warm up....he...he..he [​IMG] )

    Then the 2nd and 3rd sets, just do as many reps as you can, or as the guys say cluster your reps to hit the required rep number, a more effective way of doing it, I'd say!

    The reason we increase the reps is simple, to try and maintain some consistency:

    15 x 1 = 15 / 10 x 2 = 20 / 5 x 3 = 15


    15 x 2 = 30 / 10 x 3 = 30 / 5 x 6 = 30

    (this however is very high volume and I doubt many of us would even consider it).
  8. faz

    faz Active Member

    15 x 2 = 30 / 10 x 3 = 30 / 5 x 6 = 30
    thats exactly what i am doing at the moment fausto but only 2x a week..
  9. Fausto

    Fausto HST Expert


    Makes perfect sense to have higher volume as you have lower frequency. [​IMG]

    What I am trying to show is how the volume is kept fairly level throughout a HST macrocycle. [​IMG]
  10. Hammer-Man

    Hammer-Man New Member

    I just started my first HST cycle a few days ago.
    I follow Charles Ridgley's advice on keeping a "constant workload" throughout the cycle.
    He doesn't actually advise everybody to do so, but he outlines how it should be done if one wishes to keep a constant workload rather then progressive workload.

    The reason I chose to keep constant workloads throughout the cycle, is that doing only one set of each exercise in the 15's mesocycle, would take me 30 minutes to complete (as opposed to more that an hour in the 5's mesocycle, doing 3 sets of each exercise with all the rests in between), and it would not "feel" good enough a workout (and I am really enjoying my workouts most of the time. That's important to me).

    So what I do is this:
    I start with one set of 15 reps and another set of 10 reps for most of the exercises (for some exercises I am just fine with one set of 15 reps).
    As I increase the weight I would take off one or two reps of the second set (If I repeat weights for two consecutive workouts, as I do with some of the Hammer MTS machines, I wouldn't take off reps, but then when I increase the weights the next workout I would take off two reps).

    By the end of the first mesocycle I would do one set of 15 reps, and another set of 6 or 5 reps.
    On the first workout of the 10's, I would do one set of 10 reps and another set of 9 reps, and again I will take off reps of the second set whenever I increase the weight.

    On the first workout of the 5's, I would do two sets of 5 reps and another set of 4 reps.
    On the last workout of the 5's, I would do one set of 5 reps, one set of 4 reps and one set of 3 reps.

    As for the last mesocycle… well, I haven't really decided yet what I'm going to do, but I still have a few weeks to decide.
  11. Rakki

    Rakki New Member

    (Totentanz @ Mar. 02 2006,20:58)</div><div id="QUOTEHEAD">QUOTE</div><div id="QUOTE">You could just cluster the last set instead of trying to do 5 straight reps. However, in the 5s, I believe it is important to introduce metabolic work, which would involve dropping the weight significantly and doing a high rep set to get a burn after you've done all your work sets.</div>
    Boo-Yaa [​IMG]

    Makes perfect sense to me and it's really a simple alternative - no need to keep adjusting weight on the bar while clustering and then when metabolic stress is lower b/c volume decreases - burn set [​IMG]
  12. noobie

    noobie New Member

    Dan, sorry this reply has taken a while.

    I thought the word around was that it was alright not being able to hit the target reps on the second or third sets because the weight is high enough that the first set causes most of the microtrauma. I think i have hypertrophy mixed up with just microtrauma. Do you encourage dropping the weights to be able to squeeze out more metabolic fatigue? How important is work(f*d) compared to just being able to hit as many reps as possible with high load, ie: 5 first set, 3 2nd set, 1 last set. Would it be more beneficial of we did a sort of a pyramid, 5 first set with alloted weight. then keep dropping the weight, upping the reps so we can have more total work than we do with 3x5?

    thanks for the clear up

  13. dkm1987

    dkm1987 New Member

    Work is a factor, this isn't even disputable. What is disputable is how much work is needed. Now naturally if you increase the load and do the same number of reps you increase work but in this case you increase the load and do not do the same # reps overall. What can be done, well ...... add a set? Cluster until you hit the same number of reps? or drop the load and do another set? Any or all three work.

    Here's an example I've used several times and some are probably getting sick of it ;)

    Say you are using 100 Lbs and you are doing your 5's

    1st set you hit 5 or a work total of 500
    2nd set you hit 3 or 300
    3rd set you hit 3 again or 300

    Total of 1100

    With dropping the load you get
    1st set 5 @ 100 or 500
    2nd set 5 @ 90 for 450
    3rd set [email protected] 80 for 400

    Total = 1350(Note: granted this is a simplistic view on a complicated mathematical process but without knowing the actual displacement of each myosin head and how many are attached at any given time or the actual force they are generating for every muscle that is active during the movement, it's good enough)

    Now since in either case you are still working to the same relative failure point (assumed) I.E. 1 or 2 reps from absolute MMF the recruitment and rate coding should be about equal but TUT would be actually higher with the drop system since your are increasing the total time that max tension is applied.

    Anecdotally, reverse pyramids have been used for years and years, IE running the rack. Something old schoolers did by using the heaviest DB on the rack then each set step down to the next DB in weight.

    Emperically, a vast percentage of the studies that denote sizable hypertrophic gains use this same concept. IE matching or maintaining work via reduction in load for subsequant sets while still perfroming the same number of overall reps. (See the article on work at my site).
  14. noobie

    noobie New Member

    awesome thanks for the info.

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