Building muscle mass is the main objective when bodybuilding, so, Dorian Yates, who is a six-time Mr. Olympia champion is a professional when it comes to developing a training plan for adding mass. The 59-year-old retired competitor, recently got on YouTube for a quick segment about how people should exercise to build more muscle.
Yate’s suggestions come in the form of feedback to common questions. The first asks if working out with heavy weights is required for building muscle mass. The correct answer, according to Yates, is a lot more complex than this simple question.
“It is true to a certain point, but heavy is just a relative term,” he explains. “What is heavy for some may not be heavy to the others.” Simply put, you may not have results like your gym partner has when both of you put 225 pounds on the bar for bench pressing. One of you may have a hard time putting up more than a few repetitions, while the other treats two plates like it isn’t a problem.
But weight is not the only factor for workouts. The amount of repetitions you do also affects the outcome of your training. “Lifting a lower amount of repetitions—that is okay for building power or strength, but it isn’t effective for building muscle.” To train for building muscle mass, many professionals advise sets with 6 to 12 reps using moderately heavy weights, especially for those new in the gym. Yates agrees. “Over the years, we have worked out that maintaining correct pace and correct form, somewhere between 6 and 12 repetitions are the ideal range for building the muscle.”
If your form breaks down before you have finished your repetitions, that is probably a sign that you are using weight that is too heavy. Instead, you should only level up to heavier weight when you can easily handle a working set while keeping good form. That is the principle that is behind progressive overload, which Yates suggests as a method for more muscle mass.
Author: Scott Dowdy