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Mass vs. Strength Routines Question....


I have performed the same routine in my past, both at 3 months at a time. I noticed in one routine that there was rapid growth, in the other much more rapid strength gain but no apparent growth.

Within the first 3 months, doing this routine of 1 set 8-12 repetitions, 2 seconds positive and 4 seconds negative, i noticed substantial muscle growth within 3 months with approximately a 30-40 percent strength gain, while when doing this same routine with Superslow (10 seconds positive and 10 seconds negative, until 80-90 seconds into the workout by which point i fail)I found that my strength gains improved while my size did not.

Any explanations?



Here was my workout:

Day 1

Leg Curl
Leg Extension
Calf Raises
Bicep Curl
Tricep Extension
Wrist Curls

Day 2

Lateral Raises
Chest Press
Bench Press
Ab Crunches
Rotary Torso
Back Extension
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Dustin Jordan

Florida, USA

If I understand you correctly, your faster reps are giving you a TUT of 48-72 seconds. Your doing your slower reps with a 80-90 sec. TUT. Maybe the shorter time is more effective in giving you more mass. Try increasing your poundage during the superslow and reducing your reps to 3-4. This should give you a TUT between 60-80 sec.
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Brian Johnston

Ontario, CAN

Do note a few things:

1. You adapted to the exercises and their order (as well as the volume and frequency), thus limiting how much any further progress could have been made.

2. The closer you are to your genetic peak, the harder it is to produce any further progress, particularly in muscle.

In regard to the above two noted points, consider if you would have performed that routine with SS first, and then 2/4 thereafter. It is likely that you would have produced the same observation in reverse (although it is impossible to say whether the same, worse or better gains would have been made, depending on your response to exercise and the associated TUTs involved). In fact, if you were to have maintained a 2/4 cadence without resorting to SS, your progress would have slowed considerably in any case, and while using that exact same routine.
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Dustin Jordan

Florida, USA

Valid points, Brian. There are also many other variables to consider, such as changes in the out-of-gym factors (nutrition, recovery, stress).
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New York, USA

The routine looks good, especially if you are doing it three days a week. I don't understand why you would do a "chest press" and a "bench press" in the same workout. Maybe replace the "bench press" with a "leg press" to involve some of the larger muscles.

I would keep at it, if your strength increases size is sure to follow. Sometimes the strength increases can be due to sloppy form or increases in intensity from workout to workout.
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"while when doing this same routine with Superslow (10 seconds positive and 10 seconds negative, until 80-90 seconds into the workout by which point i fail)I found that my strength gains improved while my size did not."

When you did SS you used much lighter loads so you cannot except any growth before you use the same or heavier loads you used before with a 2/4 cadence.
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this is a question i've seen a lot..i've noticed just the opposite; with 2/4 my strength increases far outpaced my size, whereas with superslow my size has increased with barely any increase in weight/reps, although my focus has improved quite a bit
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