Would 12, 10, 8 Work?

Discussion in 'Hypertrophy-Specific Training (HST)' started by torube1138, Apr 18, 2015.

  1. torube1138

    torube1138 New Member

    I know there is a lot more overlap this way but going below 8 in reps (such as the 5s and negs in the vanilla routine) tends to cause a lot of joint pain for me and everyone in my family. I figured spreading it out further in the other direction wouldn't be very beneficial either. I am posting a link to the spreadsheet I use so you can get a look at the numbers. The 12s are based off 75% of a calculated 1rm, the 10s are 80% and the 8s are 85% for the final day of each 2 week cycle and working backwards its a jump of about 5%. The final day in the cycle is a single amrap set and I use the numbers from that to calculate the new rms.


    I've done this for one cycle so far and it doesn't seem to be all that great my diet has also been crap lately too, thanks for any input.
  2. mickc1965

    mickc1965 Well-Known Member

    In answer to your question there is no reason why 12, 10, 8 will not work, I would prefer to see 15, 12 (or 10), 8

    I believe that the %s of the 1rm max are set slightly too high, 12s would be circa 70%, 10s around 75% and 8s around 80% but could be up to 2.5% higher than my figures. Have you tested your proposed figures?
  3. torube1138

    torube1138 New Member

    Yes, having them set higher pushes me a little more and makes me feel like I'm making strength progress throughout the cycle too but I still busted out 10 to 15 reps on everything on my amrap day. Plus idk if you all noticed how I set the sets for each week too, 3 then 2 and then finally 1 for the last day. Also on the deadlift I always only ever do 1 whether on this or previous version of hst I have ran because if I do more than one I'm too gassed for everything else, plus my thighs always grow way quicker than everything else so this way tends to keep things in balance. I just wasn't sure if how tightly grouped everything was would keep me from missing out on gains I could get through some other creative way without taking the reps down. So you think 15, 12, 8 or 15, 10, 8 would work better? Which of those do you think would be better? Thanks
  4. mickc1965

    mickc1965 Well-Known Member

    Probably 15, 12, 8 would be my preferred but really I don't think there would be much difference between the 2.
  5. Totentanz

    Totentanz Super Moderator Staff Member

    In reality, this doesn't matter. The rep schemes are just a way to help you organize your cycle. There is no benefit to changing it to 12, 10 and 8. There is definitely a drawback in what you are hoping to do in that you won't be working with heavy enough loads to get optimal gains, so you're missing out on a huge amount of growth. Before avoiding the 5s entirely, I would look into exercise selection. Some lifts are going to have potential for joint pain when you go heavy and typically those are single joint exercises (curls, etc) so eliminating the heavy portion of the cycle would fix that. If I were working with you personally, I would need to know what specific exercises cause you pain and then work on arranging a cycle around those problem lifts, obviously avoiding negatives entirely but still working up to heavier loads on the multi-joint exercises that don't cause you pain.
    I would also have questions about whether this is due to an underlying issue that needs to be resolved or that might need medical attention. After that, I would have questions about your diet and what vitamins, etc you are taking in as all this can have an impact on joint pain during a cycle.

    But either way, to address my first point: what rep schemes you use doesn't matter. Just progress from a certain % of your 1 RM to another certain % of your 1 RM for each lift over the course of the cycle, with volume tapering down as load tapers up. That's all you really have to do. You don't even need to use sets and can just cluster or whatever it takes to get to the specific rep total you want for your volume target. I.e. if you are using a load close to your 10 RM and you might have figured you'd do 2 sets of 10, you can instead just do 20 total reps taking short breaks when you get close to failure rather than just arbitrarily deciding to stop at 10 reps to rest before continuing.
  6. torube1138

    torube1138 New Member

    The pain is always in my elbows (tingly sort of feeling like the tendon might snap or something) and always when I am doing weights close to 5rm on one of the following: rows, lat pulldowns, overhead press, or chest press. The doctor couldn't find anything and his only suggestion was not to lift as heavy which was also my only

    Even though I have been slacking on my diet lately this pain was still present back when I was doing the traditional 15, 10, 5 even though at that time I had what most would consider a pretty good diet, I had chicken breasts, whole milk, spinach, kale, carrots, almonds, macadamia nuts, some type of legume for carbs and caviar for the omega 3s in a 2:1 om6:3 ratio, all of this was in the right amounts to get 100% of the daily value of my vitamins from real food and most of it was organic to avoid pesticides, I had about~190g of protein and everything else fell in line with my calories carbs and fat recommendations from the leangains site and this calculator http://1percentedge.com/ifcalc/ but I wasn't intermittent fasting at the time just cycling calories and carbs.

    Everything I do at this point is circuit style, sometimes halfway through one of the second or third sets I won't have enough gas to get through the whole set so I'll take a few breaths til I think I can finish then finish it before moving on.

    I know the 5's would give me more growth, I never once thought this rep scheme would somehow give me more, I was just hoping to get some feedback about what percentage of the results I would probably expect ie about 80% of the growth from traditional way over the same period of time? or to see if anyone could give me any other suggestions on how to tweak it to make it better, but if you can tell me how to fix my elbow so I could lift heavier that would be even better and I would be incredibly grateful!
  7. Totentanz

    Totentanz Super Moderator Staff Member

    I don't think anyone can tell you what percentage of growth you would get compared to keeping the 5s in. There are too many variables and in the end, it doesn't matter. As long as you keep increasing your 8 RM from cycle to cycle, you're going to grow anyway. Yeah, you could most likely get more strength gains and more growth from doing the 5s as well, but progression is progression. Is your plan optimal? Depends on your goals. If you want to get huge and strong, maybe not. If you want to build muscle and strength while avoiding worsening your elbow problems, then skipping the 5s would be the better plan. The moral is that you will grow either way as long as you are consistent, keep progressing and eat enough.

    As for the diet, what people consider a "good" diet doesn't really matter that much in the end as long as you are getting enough calories, enough protein and enough fats. And carbs are hugely important for muscle growth and strength gains as well. In my personal experience, people tend to get more joint pains and etc when they don't get enough fat in their diet. Taking fish oil seems to help.

    You might try googling "elbow rehab" if you haven't done the research yet, as there is quite a lot of information out there. I have read that eccentric exercise can help with elbow rehab. You would have to pretty much avoid all exercises that use your arms while you do the rehab though. Keep in mind that it would be an investment in your future if you do this to fix your elbow. And obviously there are no guarantees about whether it will fix all your problems or not.

    And if possible, you should find a doctor who knows enough to do more than just say "avoid heavy lifting" who can guide you through the rehab process. People place too much trust in doctors believing that they know everything when many general practitioners just have general knowledge about several things but not in depth knowledge. Which is why they refer you to a specialist when you have a specific problem that needs a specific solution. I'm admittedly not an expert on the subject and can only tell you that I've read a fair amount that tells me that most things people will suggest for rehabbing an elbow can safely be called bullshit, but the eccentric training thing shows some real promise. You'll have to do your own research along those lines and decide what you want to do, but that's what I would do if I were in your situation and couldn't find a doctor who knows what he's doing when it comes to these sorts of things. Maybe start with sports medicine or something like that, those people must see your sort of issue all the time.
    adpowah likes this.
  8. torube1138

    torube1138 New Member

    I really appreciate the feedback man, I'm gonna work on my diet and do a few cycles like this and see how well it does. I'll take a look at the rehab options too and see about getting a referral for a specialist in sports meds, seriously thanks again!
  9. Vexxum

    Vexxum New Member


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