Wednesday, January 26, 2011

THT HIT Mass day rework results

After realizing that some of my most important exercises were being "cheated" on by running continuous split sets, I opted to revamp my workout in anticipation of my intent to follow THT 2.0 in a "textbook" format. No cheats, no modifications other than exercises that replace barbell work that I can't do alone (bench press, incline bench, squats, etc.).

I have to admit, yesterday afternoon was a shocking scenario. The end result in a nutshell? I have indeed been making real gains not only in size but in strength. I'm also terminally addicted to hack squats.

Remember, the numbers don't matter. They're just a metric that allows you to gauge and further your own progress. Being wowed because someone can lift xxx lbs of weight is nice and all, but the only stats that should matter to you are your own. In that case, feel free to be stoked on your own progress. :)

Examples: Seated pulldowns - previous to rework: 250 lbs x 12 (split set, 2 x 6 reps). Last night -  240 lbs x 8..

Ovehead machine press: before - 130 x 6 inside grip, 110 x 6 outside grip. After - 110 x 9 outside grip. Inside also works upper pecs, decided to isolate a bit more and not do inside grip.

Standing "lean-back" cable curls: Before - 190 x 10 (split, 3 sets - 6,2,2). After - 170 x 8 (clean), then 2 more for the hell of it.

Bent-over Tricep Extensions: Before - 205 x 8 (split last 1-2). After - 180 x 10 (clean), then another 6. Really trying to "blow up" my triceps.

Pec deck (inside): 260 x 9. No change here, except that I was doing 8 x 2 for the outside (wide) pec deck at 310 cause I've literally run out of weight. My hybrid chest workout for the next two weeks will be inside pec deck and then as much as I can bench for at least 8 reps after a 2 min rest from pec deck.

Seated calf raises: Before - 160 x 16 (2 split sets of 8). After - 160 x 10. LOTS of muttered swearing here. :P

You'll notice that I missed my abs (normally incline situps with 50lb dumbell, followed by captain's chair leg raises and then 90 degree bent arm hanging leg raises), delt raises and trap shrugs. I simply ran out of time yesterday. I'll be hitting those today and for the remainder of the week on "off" days so that they get the same rest as usual.

Oh, hack squats (plate machine): Before - 410 x 10. Yesterday - 410 x 11. No change in method. That gets my thighs to just below 90 degrees with my lower leg / calves. Then, I drop 90lbs (2 plates of 45s) and go for deep hack squats. Yesterday was 320 x 9, previous day was 320 x 8.

I hope this post was informative about the dangers of getting too caught-up in the numbers. Thankfully I didn't injure myself (although I'd never lift to the point of injury) and I didn't slow my progression much (if at all). Stick to what's in the exercise guides and you'll do fine, or otherwise you might stray from the path.

Happy Wednesday lifting folks!



  1. Hey Adam, Andreas here(from the Musclehack fan page on Facebook). Great to see you're spreading Mark's work to others. I'm completely new to the HIT way of training and therefore looking very much forward to it. Was it hard finding the right weight to fail you completely after only one set?

  2. Hey Andreas!

    No matter which cycle people start, I always tell them to take the first day at the very least as a "primer" day. Get used to the weights, experiment with things. It may take you two full workouts to see what you can lift for the right rep range.

    Even then, as you've seen above, it's possible to lose your way and then have to find your way back!

    I'd say if you're already doing volume, for the common exercises the weights transfer across equally - bicep curls, squats, calf raises, etc. For the new stuff, start with what you figure is about 80% of the proper weight and feel it out from there. Always start lighter than you might expect, don't try to go too heavy.

    Good luck! Ask away if you have any other questions!

  3. thanks for the answer Adam. I'm super excited about the coming 10 weeks. I may put up some before and after pics on the facebook page. Just don't want all of my friends to see me all flexing in photos tho lol.