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Started By HITpadawan (Coventry, CV6, U.K)

Started on: 10/11/2008 3:49:57 PM, viewed 722 times
What does ′failure′ mean to you?

Ive no doubt this question gets asked as frequently as any on this forum, but what I want to know is – what do you guys on here really class as failure? On Mikes DVD I know he basically says that when you have performed your last complete positive rep, you have reached failure, and that is sufficient to stimulate growth. But from what Ive read from so many other articles about HIT, it doesnt seem as though this is really enough for some people – you must keep going until no further movement, including partials, is possible

I′ll give you an example of how I go to failure on a chest press machine (I dont train with a partner):

1. After warming up, I will start to perform my work set at a controlled pace, raising the weight steadily, briefly pausing at the top and taking roughly twice as long to lower it. I dont count the seconds as Mike suggested because I find this breaks my concentration, I just take care and control the rep according to how it feels in my chest

2. Once I know I have performed my last full positive rep (weve all been there, you know the one which seems to rise in slow motion, and you have to grit your teeth and growl to finish it?), again I hold the weight in the fully contracted position for a few seconds, then start to perform a few partials, coming back not quite to halfway otherwise I wont be able to get the weight back up again.

3. Gradually the ROM of my partials gets smaller and smaller, right up until I literally cannot lift the weight another inch, and this is where I hold the static contraction for as long as I can before it starts to drop, and I lower it as slowly as possible, stopping and holding mid movement if I can. Finally the weight touches down, and I have reached the point I call failure

What Id like to hear from you guys is just how far you push yourselves into your sets, and what sort of results youve gotten from doing so?

This Topic has 10 Replies: Displaying out of 10 Replies:

NatureBoy (Gold Coast, QLD, Australia) on 11/2/2008 1:46:23 PM

HIT and how to train to failure by the "gurus" drives me crazy. Darden is probably the worst of all, with his, you can′t reach your genetic potential or train anywhere NEAR hard enough without,…what for it…a personal HIT trainer..like himself obviously and Drew Baye and Dr Ken and the rest of the peanut gallery.

Stuart McRobert probably puts the whole thing into reality and non theory crap. He states that training to failure, intensity, negatives and intensifiers are only tools and methods.

He states that you can do a workout that near kills you with intensity BUT, if you are not adding progressive weights to the bar etc then it is all wasted.

The main aim is progressive resistance and as Mike stated. Training to failure is a method of measuring that you have passed the threshold.

If you can′t get another rep (in good form) at the end of a set – that′s failure.

If you don′t think you′ve trained hard enough, then do two sets like Dorian did sometimes.

godan (F. Collins, CO, U.S.A.) on 11/2/2008 4:57:05 PM

HITpadawan: Good post on a pertinent and subtle topic. I′m with you as far as the last complete positive set – when you know you cannot complete another one. What I do then is try the next one anyway; push as far as I can go – however far that is – hold for a few seconds at the point of failure and then relax as slowly as I can. That is what I think of as actual failure. Stopping after the last possible complete rep is something else – which may indeed work for some lifters.

crazeeJZ (L.A., CA, U.S.A.) on 11/2/2008 4:59:07 PM

I think the definition of momentary muscle failure should universally be the point where the weight stops moving in the positive direction, not when you have performed your last complete positive rep. I don′t find it to be somewhat unclear like some do. The point where you fail to move the weight in the positive direction is failure. The point where you can′t move the weight in the positive, hold it in the static, and resist it in the negative is total muscle failure. I don′t think total muscle failure is necessary, or desirable, especially the more advanced you get. It′s a good way to overtrain your CNS. If I′ve already stimulated a strength increase with momentary muscle failure, I wouldn′t want to delay recovery by going further.

As far as the one set goes, I agree with NatureBoy. I think it′s ok to do a second set if you′re not noticing growth from one set. Although they overlap, optimal strength stimulus isn′t necessarily the same as optimal growth stimulus. The main thing in training is to do low volume training as opposed to high volume training.

sabotage_81 (Birmingham, B42, UK) on 11/2/2008 5:31:54 PM

"I don′t think total muscle failure is necessary, or desirable, especially the more advanced you get. It′s a good way to overtrain your CNS. If I′ve already stimulated a strength increase with momentary muscle failure, I wouldn′t want to delay recovery by going further."

I fully agree with you on this.

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