Sunday, January 10, 2016

Try This Routine - Stanley Lampert (1984)






Are You a Hard Gainer?
Try This Routine
by Stanley Lampert (1984)


To paraphrase a well known quote, "God must love hard gainers. He made so many of them." Most of the routines you read about in the magazines "ain't necessarily so." In every branch of athletics or business when a champion describes his routine or methods, he is more likely to describe an idealized version of what they would like it to be, rather than what they actually do. Nowhere is this more likely to occur than in bodybuilding except perhaps in tales of sexual prowess or fishing.

If we start with the fact that most champions exaggerate, and add to this most of us are not champions, you get to the core of the hard gainer's problem.

I have stated in other articles that 99% of all strength athletes overtrain. If this is so, and 39 years of training, competition and observation convince that it is so, then the most foolish thing a so-called hard gainer can do is to follow a routine advocated by a champion (who probably doesn't do it either). If among the many readers of Iron Man I can recruit only a few volunteers to perform a 6 to 10 week experiment and if you bold scientists will keep careful records and write me at the end of this period, together we can perform a great act of charity and kindness to the vast majority of bodybuilders.

My system is built on two principles:

1) Do as little as necessary to continue gaining,
not as much as you can do.

2) Only the last rep counts.

Sounds radical? Contradicts the Judeo-Christian ethic of hard work? Sorry, but it will take as much willpower for you gym and exercise addicts to follow this routine as will as back-breaking routine; besides, it IS hard work.

I discovered this system in the last five years, after I was already 50 years old. I would like to emphasize that I don't call myself a 'hard gainer'. I never was but also never really over trained. My early weight training was performed in connection with my shot-putting activities and although gains in muscular size were incidental to my gains in strength, I threw out a lot of clothes as I went from 6'4" and 180 pounds up to 267 pounds in six years. During this period of time I did either:

Example Routine A -
Pyramids of 5-4-3-2-1 in 4 exercises -

Overhead Press
Power Clean
Bench Press
Squat

I usually did 1 set of 5-8 curls, 1 set of 15 calf raises, and 1 set of weighted ab work as well.


Example Routine B -
1 set of 10 reps in -

Curl
Overhead Press
Bentover Row
Bench Press
Deadlift
Squat
Calf Raise
Weighted Ab Work

I did routines similar to these three times a week, usually off-season.

Routine A took 45 minutes, B took 30 minutes. However, as aforementioned, at age 50 I began experimenting with a strength routine, but while my strength improve dramatically (more on that in a later article), I was not prepared to throw out clothing again as I made changes in my physique even though I was working 40-50 hours a week at my profession, and restricting my food intake. I gained no weight, but put 2 inches on my chest, 1.5 on my arms, 1.5 on my thighs, and 1 on my calves.

This routine is done 5 days a week as follows:

Seven Day Cycle

Day 1 - Warm up set or two for each movement, then 3 reps with 85% maximum in:

Overhead Press
Bentover Row
Bench Press
Squat
Power Clean
1 set of 6-8, Curl
1 set of 6-8, Calf Raise
Optional: 1 set of weighted ab work

When the third rep is easy, add weight (an amount small enough to still allow 3 reps the next session).

Day 2 - Isometrics, 1 rep, 6 seconds, in:

Overhead Press
Calf Raise
Squat (2 positions)
Bentover Row
Deadlift
Bench Press

Day 3 - Same as Day 1, however, you may substitute other movements for the same muscle group, such as Press Behind Neck instead of Overhead Press; Front Squat instead of Squat, etc.

Day 4 - Same as day 2. Vary pin positions to work from a slightly different angle.

Day 5 - Rest

Day 6 - 1 set of 8-10 reps in:

Overhead Press
Curl
Bench
Bentover Row
Squat
Deadlift
Calf Raise
Weighted Abs

Pullups may be substituted for rows, and dips for bench presses.
When you can do 10 reps, increase the weight slightly.

Day 7 - Rest

 
    



















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