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Started By NeuroMass (Philippines)

Started on: 3/26/2004 3:10:20 AM, viewed 5017 times

We HITers often argue which HD/HIT routine is the BEST for OPTIMUM Bodybuilding gains. Is it the IDEAL or CONSOLIDATED routine. In my PERSONAL view about this issue I beleive the IDEAL routine is still the BEST! Reason is that the IDEAL routine involves all the FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLES of HD/HIT namely 1.) training to failure. 2.) pre-exhaustion supersets supposedly to solve the WEAK LINK dilemna, to maximally stimulate the major muscles of the body to ABSOLUTE FAILURE. 3.) MORE REST and RECOVERY per bodypart. and lastly 4.) TRAINING smaller muscles with ISOLATION type exercises while avoiding OVERLAP. As we see the IDEAL routine is THEROETICALLY sound and FUNDAMENTALLY complete. The CONSOLIDATED routine on the otherhand looks like a poor alternative because it COMPROMISES too much fundamental principles of HD/HIT! It does promote training to failure but doesn′t address the problem of the WEAK-LINK therefore doesn′t train the major muscles like the chest, back and quads to ABSOLUTE FAILURE only the primary movers (weak-links) such as the triceps and biceps like in pushing and pulling exercises. Also it relies MORE on the INDIRECT effect of major exercises to hit the smaller ancilliary muscles. It somehow SHORTCHANGE ones OVERALL PROGRESS! Anyway I think their was a GOOD REASON why Mike Mentzer called the ideal routine "IDEAL" because it is PRECISELY that. PEACE.

This Topic has 48 Replies: Displaying out of 48 Replies:

hitormiss (Tikipunga, Whangarei, N.Z) on 4/6/2004 6:24:38 AM

Nueuromass: I am starting to think about going to the ideal routine. I have been doing the athletes routine for about 8 months or so and like others here have found that i am getting stronger but don′t seem to be getting bigger well not muscle wise anyway but i think i have gained some fat which i find too easy because of having endomorhic tendencies. I have sprained my ankle just recently(not training related) and so am forced to have a layoff and am probably going to follow the ideal routine after that. What do you think?, how often should i train?, on the athletes routine i was squating 175kgs, deadlifting 180kgs, dipping bodyweight(100kgs) + 35kgs and chinning with bodyweight(100kgs) +5 kgs all for 4 to 6 reps. I too feel that the quads,lats and pecs don′t recieve enough stimulation on the athletes routine as it feels like my arms and lower back always give out first. I was training once every 7 to 9 days and still progressing on the athletes routine. Sorry about the speel it′s just that i think that your knowledgeable and wanted to give you as much info about my training so that you could give me your best answer after looking at all the facts, thanks.

Ferrari (Gatineau, QC, Canada) on 4/6/2004 2:15:01 PM


If I were to guess I believe that Mike would have called it an ideal routine because at the time he felt that it was the ideal routine. He was entitled to change his mind on the routine but once a name is out, it′s out.

For the most part I find your post reasonable but lately I have been questioning the weakest link principle.

I do the Nautilus Decline press. I used to perform it after the Nautilus chest. The idea was that in the compound exercise, the chest would be hit with stronger triceps muscles fully exhausting the chest. But what about the triceps? Unless you perform a direct set for triceps then they never work very hard.

After the chest set I was doing around 140-150 lbs on the decline. Now I do 192.5 lbs and I really feel my chest more than my triceps. This could be that my chest is working the hardest and still is the weakest link not necessarily my triceps. My triceps now see a much higher load and it is therefore a stronger triceps exercise too.

This could explain why so many don′t like isolation exercises. If you do pre-exhaust exercises and the only exercises you do for your arms is part of that set then when are your arms working intensely?

I think that the problem may have started because of free weights. By this I mean that the arms probably are the weak link in a bench press. But in the Nautilus machines the decline press exercise follows the function of the pecs very well. Also as there is a strength curve to the machine this means that there may not be as much of a weak link problem as there was before.

Pre-exhaust also explains why so many believe that they get much stronger in consolidation and are so dead against direct exercise. I easily added weight to the press since performing it on its own. This doesn′t mean that I am full value for the increase in strength. It just means that the chest muscles are rested. Am I stronger in the press by 40 to 50 lbs, I seriously doubt it! Again I always come back to how you measure improvement.

For myself I appear to be somewhere inbetween the ideal and consolidated routines. I personally see several steps in going from one to the other.


Golgo13 (San Francisco, CA, U.S.A.) on 4/6/2004 8:02:27 PM

I couldn′t stand to read NM′s butchered Caps puke post, but I read the subject line:

Consolidated is the only way to go… Anyone tells you different either has an unreal natural recovery ability or is stupid and can′t accept Mentzer′s words.

Duke Togo

Golgo13 (San Francisco, CA, U.S.A.) on 4/6/2004 8:04:47 PM

… and to add to my above post, chances are they are stupid.


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