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High Intensity Workout Techniques - Forced Reps, Pre-Exhaust, Giant Sets, Jettison, Rep Targeting

Updated on April 4, 2011

The techniques listed below are all ways to increase intensity a little more than you otherwise could with traditional reps and sets while working out.

:: Forced reps

:: Partials

:: Pre-Exhaust

:: Cheating

:: Drop Sets

:: Rest-Pause

:: Supersetting

:: Giant Sets:

: Jump Sets

:: 2-Up 1-Down Negatives

:: Burns

:: Jettison

:: Strip Sets

:: Rep Targeting

:: Negatives

:: Heavy Supports

It’s more important to understand what each of these do and how they do it rather than nit pick among which ones are better.

 :: Jump Sets

:: Partials

:: Cheating

:: Heavy Supports

These make the concentric or lifting part of the rep, more intense. Your ability to make muscles contract is greater with these.

Source

:: Pre-Exhaust

:: Forced Reps

:: Jettison

:: Drop Sets

:: Negatives

:: Strip Sets

:: 2-Up 1-Down Negatives

These make the eccentric or lowering portion of the rep, more intense. You are basically adding weight to what you can lower.

:: Rest-Pause

:: Rep Targeting

These tend to focus on both.

:: Supersetting

:: Giant Sets

These cause metabolic changes that are not ordinarily achieved with traditional sets.

A superset forces the antagonist to work while the prime movers relax, shifts blood flow in and out of opposing muscles, has a greater cardio benefit, saves time, and can increase levels of hGH if done right.

Supersets interfere with maximum effort training, or heavy strength training. You're also likely to get higher T levels from single set training.

Giant sets force blood to stay in one area, creating a pump which brings hGH and IGF factors into the muscle for a longer time, while causing maximum damage to all fiber types before the set is finished. It can take upwards of 2 weeks to fully repair and overcompensate from a giant set, which obviously means you can’t do this all the time.

:: Burns

These build up lactic acid in the area.

You can use these whenever you want, but their use is warranted more or less depending on where you are in a non-linear periodized cycle.

Consider the following:

In weeks 1 to 3 of your program, you lift normally. You see results. Further intensity beyond normal weight training is not required to see further gains, and using techniques to increase your intensity will be counter productive, as it will lead to overtraining sooner.

In weeks 4 to 6, you begin to stagnate. You are adding weights every workout because you are getting stronger, but somewhere at this time, you stop seeing the same strength gains you saw in the first 3 weeks. You now have to train harder, sometimes adding a set here or there, to see further gains.

In weeks 7 to 9, now you are not seeing gains at all. At this point, the only way to add intensity is to start using the training principles you listed. Strip sets, pause rest, jump sets, you name it. You have to find ways to add intensity beyond what normal sets would provide you with in order to continue seeing gains.

After week 9, no matter HOW much intensity you add, you will not see gains. In fact, your performance may start to go down. Instead of poundages increasing, now they are decreasing. At this point, you need to take 2 weeks off.

When you come back after 2 weeks, you will be freakishly strong, and be ready to set personal records. However, now that you have this strength, go right back through the same strategy as you did before. Start off weeks 1 to 3 just lifting normally - albeit with extremely heavier weights because you are now much stronger. Weeks 4 to 6, train harder. Weeks 7 to 9, start using those principles. Then rest 2 weeks. Repeat.

This is called non-linear periodization, and this is how and when you would use the above listed training principles.

Now don’t nit-pick.

It doesn't matter if you do stripping or drop sets or jettisons or negatives. Just pick your favorite out of these and go. This obeys the Law of Individual Differences.

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    • soni2006 profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajinder Soni 

      7 years ago from New Delhi, India

      Thanks a lot healthji for your review of these high intensity workout techniques.

    • profile image

      healthji 

      7 years ago

      Super setting is the most commonly used method, but I think the other methods mentioned are good way to increase intensity.Have tried few of them.

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