How Tonnage Calculations Can Make You a Better Lifter: Volume Training vs Intensity Training
Volume Training vs Intensity Training – What’s the Difference?
Intense workouts are usually done with heavy weights and very short rest periods. They are performed to improve performance and increase strength. These types of workouts require more energy than lighter exercises because they involve higher levels of muscular contraction. However, these types of workouts are not recommended for beginners.
The term “volume” refers to the number of sets and repetitions performed during a workout. For example, if you perform 10 reps with 50 pounds on your bench press, then you have performed one set (10). If you perform 15 reps with 100 pounds on your bench press, then you have performed two sets (15) and so forth.
In contrast, intensity refers to the level of effort required to complete a given exercise. For example, if you want to do five reps with 90 percent of your 1RM on the barbell squat, then you need to exert greater effort than if you wanted to do three reps at 85 percent of your 1RM. So, intensity is measured by how hard it is for an individual to perform an exercise.
Some individuals believe that high intensity training (HIT) is better than volume training because it provides better results in less time. In other words, you can build muscle and strength faster with heavy weights and short rest periods than with lighter weights and longer rest periods. Others believe that volume training is better than high intensity training because it helps to prevent overtraining and injury.
In this guide, you’ll learn the pros and cons of each training method.
Which is best for building muscle and strength? Which is best for preventing overtraining and injury?
The answer to these questions and more can be found below.
High volume training refers to performing a large number of sets and reps with lighter weights. This method is more popular among bodybuilders because it’s believed to help maximize muscle hypertrophy (growth).
In fact, high-volume training is popular among all types of athletes. Some athletes use high-volume training during the off-season to help them build strength and muscle. They believe that it helps them prevent injuries during the competitive season when they are required to perform at their best each and every game.
High-volume training is also used extensively by coaches and personal trainers to help beginners build strength and muscle.
High-volume training reduces the risk of overtraining and injury because it allows athletes to slowly increase the intensity and weight, allowing them time to adapt.
When performed properly, high-volume training can help beginners rapidly build strength and muscle. This is especially true for individuals who spend months or years doing little or no physical activity. It is believed that constantly tearing down muscle tissue helps prevent the development of Adaptive Resistance.
In other words, high-volume training helps individuals avoid the dreaded “newbie plateau,” which occurs when the body adapts to the same exercises and stops growing.
However, this does not mean that all beginners should immediately jump into high-volume training. Beginners still need to master the fundamental basics before moving on to more complex techniques. Newbies should begin with strength training circuits that emphasize perfect technique and range of motion.
High-volume training is not recommended for experienced athletes who are trying to reach new heights of strength and performance. Their bodies are already accustomed to higher training volumes and intensities.
High-Volume Training: Program Examples
High-intensity training refers to performing a large number of works with heavy weight. This method is more popular among strength athletes and weightlifters because it helps them increase strength and power.
High-volume training is also used extensively by bodybuilders and fitness models to “bring up a lagging muscle group” or create the illusion of muscular definition.
There are two types of high-intensity training: general and specialized. General high-intensity training involves performing a large number of sets with the same exercise(s), but using different exercises. For example, a general high-intensity chest workout might include flat bench presses, incline presses, decline presses, and dumbbell flyes.
In other words, you would perform 5-sets of 10-reps (5×10) of each exercise.
On the other hand, specialized high-intensity training involves performing a large number of works with the same exercise using heavy weight. For example, a specialized high-intensity chest workout might include 500 pounds of flat bench presses, 510 pounds of flat bench presses, 525 pounds of flat bench presses, and 550 pounds of flat bench presses (10 reps x 5 sets).
Performing 500 pounds five times would be difficult for most people. Specialized high-intensity training may also involve performing the same exercise using a wide variety of different grips or stances.
High-intensity training is more effective for building strength and power, but it also puts a great deal of stress on the central nervous system. It’s best to perform high-intensity training only 2-3 times per week.
High-intensity training is more effective for experienced athletes who wish to maximize their strength and power. Novices should avoid this type of training because it’s too demanding on the body and could lead to injury.
High-Volume Training: Program Examples
High-volume training programs are best for novice and intermediate athletes who want to increase muscle size and power without subjecting their bodies to the stress of high-intensity training.
The best high-volume programs combine several different training techniques. For example, the following program is designed to increase size and muscular endurance in the chest, shoulders, and triceps.
Perform this program 2-3 times per week with at least one day of rest between sessions.
If you’re a beginner, start by performing 2-3 sets of 12-15 reps. If you’re an intermediate, start with 3-4 sets of 8-10 reps. If you’re advanced, start with 4-5 sets of 5-8 reps. Increase the weight you lift as your endurance improves.
Always perform a full range of motion on each set. In other words, perform the lowering phase (eccentric) of each lift as slowly as the lifting phase (concentric). This will help increase muscular size as well as develop beneficial muscle memory that will help prevent injury in the long term.
Please note that this program is just an example of a high-volume program. You should adjust the number of sets and repetitions based on your own experience, recovery ability, and strength development.
Monday: Chest, Shoulders, and Triceps
Incline Bench Press: 3 sets of 8-12 reps
Flat Bench Press: 3 sets of 8-12 reps
Low to High Cable Flyes: 2 sets of 15-20 reps
Standing Dumbbell Press: 2 sets of 12-15 reps (each arm)
Lying Tricep Extension with Dumbbell: 2 sets of 12-15 reps (each arm)
Tuesday: Back and Biceps
Barbell Bent-Over Rows: 2 sets of 8-12 reps
Deadlifts: 2 sets of 8-12 reps
Wide Grip Pull-Ups: 2 sets of 10-15 reps
Seated Cable Rows: 2 sets of 12-15 reps
Barbell Curls: 2 sets of 10-12 reps
Incline Dumbbell Curls: 1 set of 12-15 reps
Preacher Bench Barbell Curls: 1 set of 12-15 reps
Wednesday: Legs and Abs
Barbell Squats: 3 sets of 8-12 reps
Lunges: 2 sets of 10-12 reps (each leg)
Leg Press: 2 sets of 15-20 reps
Stiff-Legged Deadlifts: 2 sets of 10-12 reps
Abdominal Crunches: 3 sets of 25-50 reps
Hanging Knee Raises: 2 sets of 10-25 reps
Thursday: Repeat Monday and Friday Workouts
Friday: Repeat Tuesday and Thursday Workouts
The 4×4 Muscle Building Program
This program is based on the classic system of splitting your routine into four different workouts and focusing on just one body part per session. Naturally, you’ll need to rest at least one day between each session. For example, you’ll do Workout #1 on Monday, rest Tuesday, Workout #2 on Wednesday, rest Thursday, Workout #3 on Friday, and so on.
This system is favored by many bodybuilders because it allows for maximum focus on each muscle group. It’s also easier to figure out nutrition for each workout as you can plan your meals ahead of time.
This system is also preferred by some bodybuilders who experience aches and pains when training a single muscle group every day.
Workout #1: Chest and Back
Warm-up: 5 minutes on treadmill at a low incline and 3% grade, rowing machine at a medium pace, and some light stretching.
Complete 2 sets of 10 reps of the following exercises before moving on to the first Workout #1.
Barbell Bench Press: 3 sets of 10, 8, and 6 reps (increasing weight each set) Incline Dumbbell Press: 2 sets of 10 reps Wide Grip Pull-Ups: 2 sets of 8 reps Medium Grip Chin-Ups: 2 sets of 6 reps
Workout #2: Thighs and Hams
Warm-up: 5 minutes on the treadmill at a slow pace and some light stretching.
Complete 2 sets of 10 reps of the following exercises before moving on to the Workout #2.
Barbell Squats: 3 sets of 8, 6, and 4 reps (increasing weight each set) Lying Leg Curls: 2 sets of 10 reps Stiff-Legged Barbell Deadlifts: 2 sets of 10 reps Walking Lunges: 1 set until failure
Workout #3: Shoulders and Abs
Warm-up: 5 minutes on the treadmill at a low incline and 3% grade, rowing machine at a medium pace, and
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