Build More Muscle In Less Time with Supersets!"by Tom Venuto
Wouldn't it be great if there was a safe and natural way to build more muscle in a shorter period of time? In this day and age of exercise gimmicks and quick fix solutions, most smart bodybuilders and fitness enthusiasts would be skeptical if they heard such a claim.
But guess what? Such an "animal" really does exist to build more muscle in less time. No, it's not a drug. It's not some miracle supplement, either. Nor is it a newfangled piece of workout machinery.
If you've been training seriously for any length of time, it's something you're probably already familiar with but haven't fully exploited to the maximum degree. What is this method used to build more muscle in less time? Surprise, surprise; it's called supersetting!
Even if you've used supersets before, you may not be familiar with all the different types of supersets or the many ways you can incorporate them into your workouts. Just in case you're not familiar with supersets, let me start from the beginning and explain the difference between a conventional set and a superset.
Conventional weight training is done with "straight sets." A straight set is performed by doing a series of repetitions; 8-12 in a row for example, then stopping to rest for a minute or so before doing another set. A superset is an advanced training technique where you perform two exercises in a row with virtually no rest in between.
Supersets are an excellent technique to build more muscle, especially if you are short on time. Supersets are not, however, the most effective technique for building strength or power. Let me explain why...
When you perform two exercises in a row with no rest in between, this will reduce the amount of weight you can handle, particularly in the second movement. Your strength will also decrease from fatigue with each subsequent superset. Because supersets don't allow you to use maximal weights, they are not well-suited to building strength.
Supersets are definitely a body building and "shaping" technique. You seldom see powerlifters or strength athletes doing supersets. In fact, they usually do the opposite; they take longer rest intervals between sets so that they can recuperate as much as possible. After a 3-5 minute recovery period, they can attack each set with maximum strength. If you are still fatigued from the previous set, and you start another set too soon, you won't be able to lift as much weight.
Ok, now you know what a superset is. The question is; why should you bother using them? There are three primary advantages of superset training over conventional straight set training:
1. Supersets save time. The most obvious advantage of supersetting is to save time. Even if you truly enjoy training, it's probably safe to assume that you wouldn't mind getting equal or better results in a shorter period of time.
2. Supersets increase intensity. Usually when you think of high intensity, you think of forced reps, descending sets, negatives, etc. Supersets are simply another method of increasing intensity. Shortening the rest between sets is hard work – especially if you're used to a long rest interval. The principle is: more work performed in less time equals more intensity and more intensity means you can build more muscle.
3. Supersets prevent injury or allow you to work around an injury. I stumbled on the value of supersets as a way to train around injuries at the age of 20 when I ruptured a disc in my lower back. I was a strong squatter at a very young age, doing 405 lbs for 6 reps before I was 20 years old. After the injury, I wanted to maintain my leg size without putting so much stress on the lower back.
Because I could no longer squat more than 315lbs without re-injuring my back, I sought a way to maintain my leg size without super heavy squats. Out of necessity, I started doing high reps and supersets. After a relatively brief period training in this fashion, my quads quickly grew to become my best body part. With the exception of brief strength phases when I do straight sets with as much weight as I can, I utilize supersets extensively for quads to this day.
Supersets allow you to overload a muscle and generate high intensity without requiring heavy weights. This decreases your chances of injury.
As you can see, many benefits can be gained from including supersets in your training program. They are a proven technique for increasing intensity and bringing up lagging body parts. They allow you to build more muscle while working around injuries that might be aggravated with heavy weights. If your training program is getting stale, supersets can also help relieve your boredom. Best of all, supersetting is a legitimate way to get more results in less time. If you need to squeeze a result-producing workout into a short period of time, then supersets could be the answer to your muscle-building prayers.
Article written by Personal Trainer and Lifetime Natural Bodybuilder Tom Venuto. Tom has also written
Burn The Fat, Feed The Muscle, a fat burning manual jam-packed cover to cover with all the fat destroying methods and muscle building tips previously known by only a small handful of the best fitness models and bodybuilders.
This program contains all the muscle building tips and information you'll ever need to help you melt away body fat permanently without muscle loss and without using drugs or unnecessary supplements. Check out
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