German Volume Training

Since about 2002, I have eschewed body building training protocols. Functional strength and mobility were my main priority. Functional hypertrophy was a maybe. For some reason, I thought of it as the first-wave of physical training and only relevant as a movement toward vanity and too much self-adoration. Although, at one point around 2009, I became concerned that sarcopenia would be a problem as I age and did the GOMAD experiment to see how quickly I could gain muscle. In one month, I gained 22 lbs and increased my lifts to a level I had never achieved prior. I gained muscle and fat. That experiment left me irritated though since it took 3 full months to eliminate the extra fat I added.

Now that I’ve sampled many different kinds of training, I’m back to hypertrophy. There are so many benefits to ample muscle, and I can stay out of the injuries. I’ve normally been around 160 lbs and around 12% body fat. My aim is to add 10 more pounds of muscle and get my lifts back into strong for me zone (double body weight squat).

I’m halfway into my 6 weeks of German Volume Training (GVT). It’s a bit deceptive in its effect. First and foremost, it is a hypertrophy protocol over strength. It’s claimed that one can expect 5 to 10 lbs of muscle over a 6 week period. The protocol is 10 sets of 10 reps, resting 90 seconds between sets, and varying tempos dependent on the lifts. Example: 3 seconds eccentric, no pause, 1 second concentric, no pause. That’s written like 10×10, 3010, 90. You may use a 60% of your 1 rep max (1rm) in order to complete 100 reps or somewhere just a bit above or below that percent.

It’s deceptive in that it feels light in the beginning. When things feel light, one can doubt whether the training is intense enough. It gets hard in the later sets but you finish the workout wanting to train more. Normally, when  you feel like you want to train more, you feel like you didn’t train hard enough. This is where it’s deceptive. The next day a great soreness reveals itself. For me, it can last a couple of days. It’s taken a few of these sessions for me to learn how much they impact they have on the body. In the beginning, it was hard to not train more, but it’s not a problem now. I get it.

I started 8/4/15. Weight was 157 lbs and 13% body fat according to Withings. I seriously doubt this measurement given how defined my midsection is, but it is a measure from start to finish.

On 8/23/15, I’m 161 lbs and 15% body fat (again, according to my maligned scale). We’ll see where I end up at the end. 

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