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Thread: Doing low reps with heavy weights makes you ripped..?

  1. #1
    nit3crawl3r is offline In Orientation
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    Doing low reps with heavy weights makes you ripped..?

    hello, i've been weight training for nearly 2 years and gained for about 25 lbs of muscle mass. But the point is that they are soft and puffy, and i also start to resemble a wrestler, you know with big thighs. I want to look ripped, so i started lifting with low reps( 2-5 reps) with heavy weights from the advice of my local gym trainer, is this approach correct? i only thought that doing high reps with less weight makes you ripped. im so confused. and also please tell me your opinion on 5X5 training that is 5reps and 5sets training. thanks in advance

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  3. #2
    Ilovemilk is offline In Orientation
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    I am no personal trainer but I've spoke to quiet a few. Low reps, heavy weight is good for gaining mass or strength. High reps, medium weight are good for cutting and endurance.

    Honestly from my own experience you should always be mixing it up. Go a few weeks with low reps, go a few weeks with high rep. Even better if you try and finish your sets with a drop set (on your last set do as many as you can, then half the weight, and then repeat).
    CrazyOldMan likes this.

  4. #3
    Goldfish is offline Request Title Change from Admin
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    There is no rep range for cutting. The same training that builds muscle in the presence of calories will preserve muscle in the absence of calories. There are pros and cons to high vs low reps for cutting, but I know from experience that I've built muscle with anything from 1RMs to 50-rep sets, and that same stimulus that tells the body that it's important to get more muscle if possible will also tell the body not to get rid of that same muscle if it can avoid it.

    Higher reps burn more calories in the moment. If (pulling hypothetic numbers out of my posterior) a 1RM squat burns 5kcal, then a single squat at 50% 1RM should theoretically burn 2.5kcal, but can be repeated 20+ times, for a total of 50kcal or more.

    Lower reps are a better insurance policy for getting all muscle fibres recruited. On a high rep set, the mind will likely fail before the body does. There are guys out there whom I can only assume are one half crazy and the other half insane, who use rest-pause methods to do 20 rep squats with their 10RMs. I think it's safe to say that they're getting a good dose of muscle fibre recruitment going on. Most people cannot push themselves to do that, however, so to rack up enough reps per set to really plough through their energy stores means the intensity may be so low that they don't actually push their muscles -- it's their heart and lungs and determination that burns out first.

    A safe bet for the best of both worlds would be to work up to a heavy weight, and then strip the weight back and do some higher rep work. Incidentally, in my Simple and Badass Fatloss Program from the stickies here, that's exactly what you do.

    Of course, OP, the reason that your muscles are "soft and puffy" is because of the fat on top of them, not the muscles themselves, and the number 1 thing you need to do to get rid of this soft-and-puffiness is to get yourself into a calorie deficit.
    CrazyOldMan likes this.
    Ryan - D.Fitness. SQ 2x150kg - BP 95kg - DL 190kg - OHP 60kg

  5. #4
    CrazyOldMan is offline Needs to Deload
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    A good way of getting a mix of both high weight and reps is the old fashioned drop sets. I love 'em but as the name says I am crazy.
    Basicaly decide if you are going for sheer functional agony or the only slightly less insane build and shred. The will set the starting point only, the rest is the same regardless. Functional is starting with the max you can guarantee lifting for 1 rep, tehn aiming to lift it once or twice, aesthetic is starting with confident 2RM and aiming for 2 or 3.
    The bar should be low weights on the outside getting larger toward the inside. Take off a weight from either side when you have done as many as you can, better if someone else can do this to mean less rest, then push out as many reps as you can again, there will not be many.
    Repeat until you have run out of disks and energy, or thrown up. I am not joking here, I have known many doing this to throw up, one used to carry a bucket it happened so often, and I have come close many times, but managed to stop it.

    This is not for beginners, the light-hearted or the truly sane among us. It is absolute hell on earth and you will ache like nothing on earth from doing it.
    The up side is it's great fun if you aren't fully sane, and activates every muscle you have and a few your may not be sure actually exist.
    Goldfish likes this.
    If you think you can, or if you think you can't, you're probably right - Henry Ford

  6. #5
    Goldfish is offline Request Title Change from Admin
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    ^ I like your crazy thinking.
    Ryan - D.Fitness. SQ 2x150kg - BP 95kg - DL 190kg - OHP 60kg

  7. #6
    FAMAS is offline First Set
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    Yes, doing Low reps with heavy weights rips your muscle tissue intensely, increases Strenght and Muscle Mass.

    But you need good recovery for this type of workout, in food and sleep and rest days.

    Only thing you won't get is endurance.

  8. #7
    CrazyOldMan is offline Needs to Deload
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    Quote Originally Posted by FAMAS View Post
    But you need good recovery for this type of workout, in food and sleep and rest days.
    That would be why I don't grow anymore. What's a rest day? I have a son and have lost track of the definition.
    If you think you can, or if you think you can't, you're probably right - Henry Ford

  9. #8
    GettingCrazyFit is offline In Orientation
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    Looking ripped has to do with your fat percentage, not your reps! The size of the muscle is dependent on the weight/reps you choose. But to see the definition, you gotta trim the fat layer.

  10. #9
    jakejoh10 is offline In Orientation
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    The above post hit the nail on the head.

    Getting that "ripped" look has nothing to do with the amount of reps/weight you do, it's about your body fat percentage.

    The reasons your muscles look "puffy" is because you've accumulated body fat.

    In your situation, focusing on the diet portion of your life instead of looking to make adjustments in your training would be the best option.

    Cutting calories is a great way to get started.
    Goldfish2.0 likes this.

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