20 Rep Sets To Gain Muscle and Burn Fat
Training hard leads to all kinds of benefits – and every rose has it’s thorns. 2 years ago I went all in on the 5x5x5 workout. I saw some really nice results, but after a good run at it my joints and ligaments started to wear a little bit. 5 months ago I was forced to take some time off with a pinched nerve in my upper back. It was humiliating, rehabilitating and I felt like I’d lost everything I’d worked so hard to gain in strength and size. I had to find something that would suit my needs, provide an intense workout without the strain on joints, ligaments and my nerves. That’s when I decided to throw my ego aside and train a new way.
20 rep sets have changed the way I workout, the way I look in the mirror and ultimately 20 rep sets have led to me feeling like I’m getting the best workouts I’ve ever had in nearly 20 years of training using 20x5x4 workouts. Thats 20 repetitions per set – 5 set’s per exercise and 4 different exercises for the target muscle group for the day.
3 Major Advantages of 20x5x4 workouts
Build Muscle, Burn Fat, Low Stress
Build Muscle with 20 rep sets with 4 major advantages.
- Time under tension: Not all muscle fibers respond the same way to the same stimuli. Longer time under tension or Time Under Load (TUT or TUL) means more opportunity for all of your target muscle fibers to respond to the exercise. One of the biggest secrets professional body builders use is a high rep routine. Time under tension takes a 20 second set of 8 reps, and makes it into a 45 second time of tension. More Blood releases the PUMP they are looking for to encourage muscle growth. It works too.
- Higher Volume: More volume means more muscular conditioning, strength gains, more calories burnt, and more productive workouts. Comparing my 5×5 workouts to my 20×5 for bench press. 5×5 @ 225 pounds is a decent 5×5. total work is 1,125 pounds per set multiplied by 5 sets is 5,625 pounds of work. However at the same strength level I can manage 5×20 @ 145 pounds. Work per set is 2,900 pounds per set; multiplied by the 5 sets is 14,500 pounds of work. Even though the weight is much lighter, the amount of work my muscles do in about the same amount of time is almost tripled. More volume tells your muscles to build mass in preparation for next time. There’s a whole bunch of other scientific mojo about amino acids and hypertrophy and all of that, but I thought I’d just let logic, numbers and a little bit of bro-science speak for itself.
- Power Development: Power is measured by Force X Velocity. But more appropriately Power = Force multiplied by (Work/Time) Power development means being able to move the mass quickly, accelerating fast through every movement. Heavy weights tend to move slowly because the focus is to control the weight and avoid a dangerous situation. The lighter weights can be quickly accelerated over and over again. This leads to a more athletic and powerful – not just stronger, there is a difference – version of yourself.
- Injury rehab and prevention: 20 rep sets provide you with more work while dealing less stress to connective tissues, nerves, and such. There is a much lower risk of injury. If you are injured hi rep sets will help to insure that you do not lose the gains you worked so hard for. Higher rep sets helps to insure that you can stay consistent for many years to come and that all adds up to an amazing body. In a game when Consistency is the key Injury prevention and rehabilitation is a must.
Every person I’ve helped switch over to 20×5 workouts has complained about how sore they were because the workouts did their job, they have also been happy with their results. Maybe it’s time for you to consider going higher volume to break through them plateaus. Happy lifting!!!