3 Proven Methods to Develop Strength and Power
Before you begin, you should understand that this book is designed to give a guideline on how to work out. This guideline does not discredit any other workout system you are using at the moment but serves as an alternative to the great work you are already doing in the gym. This book is for all fitness levels. It doesn't matter if you have never worked out before in your life or are an advanced athlete looking to shake up your routine. This is a guide to add variety to your existing routines to get better results from them.
These methods will make your job ten times easier. For new trainers, you can apply these methods to all your clients; if you are a seasoned veteran, you can use these techniques to shake up your client's already effective routines.
I've been a certified personal trainer, Spartan S.G.X. Coach, and Group Exercise Instructor for eight years. In these eight years, I have tried hundreds of training methods to get my clients in shape. A lot of these methods produced acceptable results, and over the last five years, I stumbled across four proven exercise rep systems that made everyone I trained;
*Gain strength fast
*Maintain that strength
*Build more power on top of that strength
Before I go into The Hectic Hundreds Rep Systems, let's go over the fitness definition of a rep and a set. A rep or repetition is the number of times you perform an exercise in a set.
A set is a group of reps that are completed in a sequence during a workout.
The Hectic Hundreds Rep System blends timed sets with a preset group of sets and reps to help you build workout programs that will help you develop strength and power fast. All workouts contain 100 reps except for the first rep system. The first rep system has the goal of reaching 100 reps. I will go deeper into that later.
What's the difference between strength and power? Strength, in fitness terms, is the ability to lift a certain amount of weight for a high number of repetitions. In fitness terms, power is the ability to lift a large amount of weight for a small number of reps. Most of my clients had strength gain goals, and the goals were vague. The goals would range from I want more muscular legs to the popular "I want a strong core." To help my clients see their progress, I created three 100 rep systems called "The Hectic Hundreds."
The Hectic Hundreds' meaning was obviously to complete 100 reps of any exercise to gain strength and power. The process of completing 100 reps also helped my clients see their progress. It gave me a reliable indicator of when I could safely increase an exercise's weight or progress an exercise to a more advanced version. The results I saw in my clients prompted me to write this book.
The Hectic Hundreds Breakdown
The Hectic Hundreds Rep System helps you achieve both strength and power to develop a superhero type body. This occurs not based on science, but a concept that every athlete has used since the beginning of sports competition. Practice. Now in fitness, we don't see working out as a practice. We only see it as an exercise that is necessary to get stronger. When we switch our minds to treat our workouts as practice, we can take an athlete's mindset and apply it to any exercise routine.
For example, a great shooter in basketball takes thousands of shots daily to master the art of shooting a basketball. The same goes for a boxer who practices his punches daily to stay sharp for his fights; if you were to treat exercise like you were practicing for a sport, you would develop a mastery of your body that will make you stronger and more powerful than you ever thought you could be. This is the essence of The Hectic Hundreds Rep System. The Hectic Hundreds Rep System operates in three phases. Each phase flows from one to the next. The phases' flow is designed to help you build strength in phase 1, develop power in phase 2, and maintain strength and power in phase 3.
The Hectic Hundreds Rules
*Move up weight after 100 reps
*Move up slow
In the next three chapters, I will explain how all three rep systems work and how they can help you achieve strength levels you never thought you could reach. Each rep system is progressive, and they are designed to ensure you do not plateau in your workout. A workout plateau is where you stop seeing results in your routine, although you give it the same intensity.
These rep systems are primarily designed to be used with weight, but they can also be applied to bodyweight exercises to complete more advanced versions of the exercise, such as a push up progressed to a clap push up. I will again go over how to track your progress and when you should re-adjust your goals to ensure you get stronger.
The last chapter will go over best practices for using the rep systems and apply them to clients as a personal trainer.
Congratulations on starting your journey to new strength. Enjoy.
The Hectic Hundreds 4 Quarters is precisely what the title of the rep system says it is. It's four quarters of work, which is 25 reps for four sets. This rep system is a maintenance system because of the high reps involved. This system is used when you have met your goal weight from The Hectic Hundreds Mountain, or you have mastered your body weight and want to maintain your strength.
The Hectic Hundreds 4 Quarters Breakdown:
This is easy;
Four sets of 25 reps
Simple, but the key to this rep system is to complete the 25 reps without stopping. This rep system will let you know where your strength is; if you cannot complete 25 reps, you should drop the weight. Now I know you're wondering why this rep system is so strict. It's because this is the phase where you develop strength. It's not about ego lifting. As you transition through this phase, you will gain enough power to move on to the next training phase.
I know you're wondering why so many reps? Well, the short answer is that these rep systems are all about mastery, and the more you do something, the faster you become a master at it.
This rep system is the second pyramid of the series, but it allows you to combine high repetitions and low repetitions to create a workout that will build strength and power without spending hours in the gym. This was one of my go-to systems to use in 30-minute sessions because we got to push through 4 to 5 exercises fast while using a decent amount of weight.
The Hectic Hundreds Double Trouble Breakdown
Set 1: 20 Reps
Set 2: 20 Reps
Set 3: 15 Reps
Set 4: 15 Reps
Set 5: 10 Reps
Critical Factors to using this rep system
Don't set your weight too heavy, but also don't cheat yourself.
Aim for speed. This is a descending pyramid. The faster you get through the reps, the quicker you get done. Don't sacrifice your form for speed but adjust your rest time.
Ensure you are monitoring the weight of your clients and keep the count. These sets can get away from you if you do not pay attention. Your client will notice if they did three sets of 15, and they will argue with you, so stay focused.
For those who go hiking, you know that climbing a mountain starts extremely easy; then it gets increasingly challenging as you begin to get to the top. Once you reach the top, the climb down gets easy. The mindset of climbing the mountain is that you are excited to start the journey; as you get into the thick of the mountain, you are just focused on getting to the top. The climb is tough, and you even contemplate going back down the mountain. Once you get to the top of the mountain, you have pushed yourself through the most challenging part of the journey. Now it's time to head back down to the starting point. As you head down, you are tired, but you can complete the trip because it's much more comfortable than the trip up. This pretty much sums up the Hectic Hundreds Mountain Rep System.
The Hectic Hundreds Mountain
This rep system uses the pyramid style rep system. For those who are not gym rats yet, a pyramid style rep system is where you increase the number of reps every set, then drop the number of reps per set after a certain point. I don't call the Hectic Hundreds Mountain a pyramid because the journey through this process resembles more of the trip up a mountain. Before you start using this rep system, you want to ensure that you are at a weight that is a little more difficult to lift than the weight you started within chapter one.
As a rule of thumb, I wouldn't use this rep system unless you have mastered the first rep system. This is because you will be doing fewer reps in each set, which will allow you to lift more weight. I wouldn't lead with this rep system because it wouldn't produce great results to start. Once you have reached a certain fitness level, you will get a lot more out of this rep system.
The Hectic Hundreds Mountain Breakdown:
This rep system consists of 19 sets with 100 reps. Here is the breakdown.
Set 1: 1 rep
Set 2: 2 reps
Set 3: 3 reps
Set 4: 4 reps
Set 5: 5 reps
Set 6: 6 reps
Set 7: 7 reps
Set 8: 8 reps
Set 9: 9 reps
Set 10: 10 reps
Set 11: 9 reps
Set 12: 8 reps
Set 13: 7 reps
Set 14: 6 reps
Set 15: 5 reps
Set 16: 4 reps
Set 17: 3 reps
Set 18: 2 reps
Set 19: 1 rep
Completing all of these sets in this order will ensure you can achieve a full workout with relatively heavyweight. This will also allow you to develop a significant amount of power because of the small number of reps in each set.
Key Factors to using this rep system
Key Factor #1: Start with heavier weight.
This rep system warrants using heavier weights. The fun part is you get to set a new weight goal. I recommend only setting a goal 50lbs heavier than your original weight goal to give you more time to reach it; if you are confused by what weight to start with, a great selection would be to use your goal weight from chapter 1. For example, if your goal weight in the Timed Targets rep system were 50lbs on a bicep curl, your next phase of strength training would be to start the Hectic Hundreds Mountain using 50lbs. The goal weight of this rep system would be 100lbs.
Key Factor #2: Move up in weight after completing all reps.
After completing the full set, move up in weight. You must move up in weight in your next workout using this rep system. This is because this rep system has 100 reps automatically calculated into the workout. You have no choice but to get stronger.
How to use this rep system for bodyweight exercises.
Since this rep system is based on increasing the weight for heavier work, load using it for bodyweight workouts would only benefit circuits such as push-up, squats, burpees, or lunges. Using this in circuits only is due to the small number of reps in each set.
This rep system is excellent for helping clients gain power and strength. This rep system is slow, and it will take a lot of time to get your clients to their goals, but it does give them more time to assist them. A rule of thumb when using this system is to monitor safety. This rep system is designed for heavier weights, so you cannot fall asleep on the job. You MUST spot your clients. You MUST ensure they are using the correct form. They are going to need this extra help to get the most results from this rep system.
Here are the best practices for using The Hectic Hundreds Rep System to create great workout programs for yourself and your clients if you are a personal trainer.
Best Practice #1: Create a 5 Day Full Body Transformation Format
When designing a workout program, people struggle with organizing what body part to work on and what order to train their body parts to get maximal results. Personal trainers struggle with the same problem when they create routines for their clients. In my 4th year as a trainer, I stumbled upon a 5-day format that helps me develop strength and power without losing flexibility, mobility, or speed. The structure goes like this;
Day 1: Chest
Day 2: Back
Day 3: Arms (Biceps, Triceps, Shoulders)
Day 4: Legs
Day 5: Abs
Within this format, you can create thousands of programs that will allow you to develop a great body. Using this format also allows you to take nontraditional rest days. By this, I mean that as you rest one body part, you can work the other in this format. This allows you to keep working out even though you are sore from previous workout days. This process also makes working out a habit and allows fitness to be introduced as a lifestyle instead of a hobby.
If you want to use this format with your clients, be careful. The 5-day design must be developed over time, and it should be introduced using light weights to ensure that their bodies do not break down too fast. If this process is done right, you will help your clients develop a lifestyle of fitness.
Best Practice #2: Follow the Phases.
The Hectic Hundreds Rep System is broken down into four phases.
Phase 1: 4 Quarters (4 sets of 25 reps)
This is the starter phase. It's used to develop your technique and build muscular endurance. This rep system is designed for 50% of your max.
Phase 2: Double Trouble
(2 sets of 20 reps, two sets of 15 reps, two sets of 10 reps, two sets of 5 reps)
The reps are shortened, but the sets are extended. This rep system is designed to be using 60% of your max
Phase 3: Mountain
(Start at one rep and move up to 10 reps, then transition back down to 1 rep.)
More sets, fewer reps. This rep system is designed for 90% of your max.
Best Practice #3: Master each phase.
Take your time. Set your goals high so you can have something to work towards. Using these rep systems will have you flying through weights, so don't be afraid to set high numbers.
For example, if you are using these rep systems to increase your bench press strength, you should set your goal 100lbs more than your work weight (this is the weight you use during the whole workout, not your max). This would mean if your work weight is 225lbs, you should set your goal weight to 325lbs. Next, start 50lbs lower than your work weight and then go through every phase until you use 325 as your work weight. To recap this process.
You would start in phase one: 50lbs lower than your work weight. Next, you would transition to phase two, building up to your goal weight. Last you would go into phase three, turning your goal weight into your work weight.
If you are a personal trainer or on your way to becoming a personal trainer, here are some tips on applying these rep systems to your client's workout programs.
Tip #1: Set the Weight
For your clients to get the most out of their sessions using these rep systems, you have to set the correct weight for them to start with. The rule of thumb with setting a client's starting weight is to start with a consequence they can comfortably perform ten reps with. Finding this out is a judgment call, but your clients will let you know how the weight feels, and if they don't, you ask them. The best way to determine if the weight is too light or too heavy is to observe your client's form as they perform their reps. If they start breaking their form at rep seven or below, the weight is too heavy; if they start breaking their form on rep eight and after, then the weight is too light. After finding out the starting weight that your client can perform comfortably for ten reps, lower that weight by 20lbs, and that's your client's start weight.
Once you have found their starting weight, set their goal weight 50lbs from their start weight. Only move up the weight in 2.5-pound increments to ensure your client progresses through every phase injury-free.
Tip #2: Body Weight Application
If you will use these rep systems with bodyweight exercises, start your clients with the regressed version of the exercise and move them up to a more progressed version as you move them through the rep systems.
Tip #3: Track Everything
Write down every rep and set. These numbers are how you show progress to your client. Writing down these numbers also ensures you have a strict timeline on when to increase weight. Tracking everything will help you become a more efficient trainer, and it will give your client a physical product to warrant the money they are paying you to train them.
Thank you again for reading this section. I hope these rep systems can help you change your workouts for the better and allow you to build more strength and power faster.
This last message goes out to all the personal trainers reading this section. Thank you for being a life-changers in the fitness industry. Keep helping people reach their goals and keep building real-life superheroes. I hope these rep systems can be an excellent tool for you to help your clients get to their goals faster.