Maximize your strength training routine by cutting out these time wasters.Read article
If you’re searching for the ultimate workout program to achieve massive muscular growth, look no further—German Volume Training (GVT) is a time-tested system that’s as torturous as it is effective. Rather than overcomplicating your routine, the philosophy of GVT is simple: subject your body with enough volume to force it to grow.
Ten sets of 10 repetitions. Big multi-joint exercises. Slow, four-second eccentrics. Limited rest. Rinse and repeat.
By blasting that much volume and time-under-tension onto your muscles, you’ll create an unmatched stimulus for muscle growth and repair. You’ll flood your fibers with blood to generate a superhuman pump. You’ll create massive hypertrophy in your slow-twitch muscle fibers. On a biological level, you’ll also increase the mitochondrial and capillary density within your slow-twitch muscles to recover better between sets and become fatigue-resistant.
Each workout is divided between your upper and lower body, both done twice per week. All you need are two exercises per workout: one that pulls and one that pushes—that way, you’re strengthening non-competing muscle groups while pounding your fibers with multi-joint movements that target a lot of mass simultaneously.
The only exception to the 10×10 is your legs. When you do squats, for example, all of your leg muscles are working to varying degrees. And subjecting your leg muscles to 200 total repetitions would be overkill. Thus, split your workout into 60 reps with one exercise (knee-dominant) and 60 with another (hip-dominant).
One last warning: GVT is brutal. You use every morsel of rest to suck wind and you feel a horrible burn with every second under the bar. (4-second eccentrics for 10 reps add up to almost minute-long sets.) After your set, you’ll throw the weights off, slump by a corner in a daze, stalk the clock until 60 or 90 seconds elapse, and do it again.
THEREFORE, YOU MUST START LIGHT. Starting too heavy will destroy your progress. The rule is to use 60 percent of your one-rep max, but I’d start even lower than that. Also, do GVT for only six to eight weeks at most to avoid overtraining.
Finally, eat like a horse. GVT is NOT a fat-loss program or even a maintenance routine—it’s for growth. You need to give your body enough calories and nutrients to repair and build. For extra fuel to burn, sip BCAAs or a protein shake before and during your workout.