The Mystery of High Intensity Training - Revealed!

Photos by Kevin Horton

TIP #1 | Push all working sets to full-rep failure and most beyond failure.

TIP #2 | Use rest-pause to extend sets.

TIP #3 | The right training partner(s) help motivate success.

TIP #4 | Forced reps are crucial.

TIP #5 | Make weights feel heavier by slowing their positive and negative progress.

TIP #6 | Limit volume to two working sets per exercise and four to six sets per bodypart.

TIP #7 | Go heavy, but train safely and slowly.

TIP #8 | Limit workout frequency and emphasize full recovery.


Dugdale hit training 1


  • Monday | Chest, Biceps, Forearms & Calves
  • Tuesday | Quads & Abs
  • Wednesday | Rest
  • Thursday | Back, Hamstrings & Calves
  • Friday | Shoulders, Triceps & Abs
  • Saturday | Rest
  • Sunday | Rest


  • Incline Dumbbell Presses | SETS: 2* | REPS: 10-12
  • Seated Machine Bench Presses SETS: 2 REPS: 10-12
  • Pec-Deck Flyes SETS: 2 REPS: 10-12

NOTES: Full-rep failure is generally reached at six to eight reps. Rep totals include forced reps or rest-pause reps. 

*Preceded by two light warm-up sets. 


Dugdale hit training 5


  • Cambered-Bar Curls | SETS: 2 | REPS: 6-10
  • One-Arm Preacher Curl SETS: 2 REPS: 6-8
  • Two-Arm High Cable Curls SETS: 2 REPS: 6-8
  • Standing Barbell Wrist Curls SETS: 2 REPS: 12-15
    • superset with
    • Barbell Reverse Curls SETS: 2 REPS: 8-10

NOTES: Full-rep failure is generally reached at four to six reps for biceps and eight to 15 reps for forearms. Rep totals for biceps include forced reps or negatives.


  • Seated Calf Raises | SETS: 2* | REPS: 10-12
  • Standing Calf Raises | SETS: 2 | REPS: 10-15

NOTES: Full-rep failure for calves is generally reached at six to eight reps. Rep totals include forced reps or rest-pause reps.

* Preceded by two light warm-up sets


Dugdale hit training 2


“I don’t do half reps,” Dugdale avers with a smile. “Some of those big guys do half reps — I won’t mention any names — and it works for them, but, for me, it’s always been full reps.”

“I use barbells, but I prefer dumbbells,” he replies. “It’s more natural to use dumbbells because the range of motion is freer. I switch it up almost every week, though. I rarely do the same things twice in a row.”

“When you’re only doing two sets per exercise, you’ve got to go to failure or beyond for every set,” Dugdale explains. “People think high-intensity workouts don’t have enough sets, but come train with me and go beyond failure, and you’ll see.”

“What I do a lot of the time is a rest-pause technique,” he explains. “I’ll do half my reps, hold for a few seconds in a resting position and then do the remainder. I don’t like to do more than 12 reps total, although I will if I have the strength. I don’t give up till I have to.”

“Training partners are very important,” Dugdale answers, “but only if you have the right partners. You have to have someone who motivates you. They don’t have to be big, but they have to be into it. They should have the same passion for bodybuilding that you do.”


Dugdale hit training 4

My biceps suck,” Dugdale says, mocking the Internet message board parlance. “That’s what I always hear. Everyone used to say I’d never turn pro because my back will never be good enough. Now that I’m a pro, people say I’ll never win again because my arms will never be good enough. But, you know, they’re real arms. I can at least take pride in that. They won’t be all swollen like I got stung by a bee.” He grins. “What I feel like I have going for me is my biceps have good shape; they peak pretty well. That’s my focus. If you notice, the exercises I do are kind of girly, like isolation stuff and cables, but that seems to bring out my peaks. When I’m in shape, the good peaks make my arms look bigger. I don’t think they’ll ever be my strong point, but I just want them to not be a negative.”

“If the goal is more than just going from point A to point B, you can actually make a light weight really heavy,” he states. “The movements are deliberate, and once I can’t contract anymore, I try to finish off by focusing on the negative.”

“I think it looks stupid when a guy hits a double bi and he has crazy biceps but toothpick forearms,” the HIT man says before his first forearm superset. “In my teens, I learned to not neglect a single bodypart, and that includes forearms. I like to get forearms over with quick,” he says with a smile. “That’s the main reason I superset them. In regards to standing barbell wrist curls, it might be better to put the bar behind you, but my ass is too big and my arms are too short to do that. I have to work around my big ass and short arms.”

“For me, the key is using heavy weights,” he says of calf training. “Some guys use really high reps for calves, but I don’t get that. Calves used to be my weakest bodypart — along with back and arms, anyway — and what made them grow was using a weight so heavy that I can’t get much more than 12 reps, and working really deliberate. Don’t just pump out reps; focus on going slow and getting a full stretch and contraction. Make every rep a good rep.”