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Thread: Heavier weights & less reps vs lighter weights & more reps

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    Question Heavier weights & less reps vs lighter weights & more reps

    Just wondering what your thoughts are on the type of training to give the best results. Heavier weights with less reps or more reps with lighter weights? I had friends who were given gym programs where there were about 20 reps per set yet when I used to train years ago we did heavier weights with much less reps, I can't remember exactly but I know some of them were only about 5 reps? I am aiming to loose body fat and get some pretty nicely sculptured muscles, I want shape and strength. I am just recovering from a knee operation in November and have just today started walking without the help of crutches. I have a home gym which hasn't had much use over the last couple of years but has been loved in the past. I have used it on and off but don't think I've ever really known what I was doing or I was just slacking off! Any help or advice would be appreciated





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    8 reps is a good number i reckon.. i think most would do around 8 - 10 in warm up sets then work sets around 5 reps.

    i generally do 5 x 5. first 3 sets are easyish, last 2 sets are pretty hard or do 4 x 8

    you need to give the muscle a reason to grow, hence the heavy stuff. to little and it wont grow, it will just get strong. to much it wont grow as it thinks you need endurance. needs to be heavy to have a reason to grow, but just enough reps to allow it to grow without endurance part kicking in.
    Current BW 98kg ,height 5ft 11 : Bench: 130kg x1, Squat: 200kg x1 Deadlift: 240kg x1 Clean: 125kg Overhead: 110kg
    All lifts 100% raw


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    best to get all reps. few sets of 5, most sets 6-10. few sets of 10-15.
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    Thanks heaps guys, when I get home from my physio session today I will be doing my first workout in a long time, looking forward to it


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    Quote Originally Posted by LMD1234 View Post
    best to get all reps. few sets of 5, most sets 6-10. few sets of 10-15.
    That makes sense, what's your reasoning behind that?


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    Quote Originally Posted by Smoothie View Post
    Just wondering what your thoughts are on the type of training to give the best results. Heavier weights with less reps or more reps with lighter weights? I had friends who were given gym programs where there were about 20 reps per set yet when I used to train years ago we did heavier weights with much less reps, I can't remember exactly but I know some of them were only about 5 reps? I am aiming to loose body fat and get some pretty nicely sculptured muscles, I want shape and strength. I am just recovering from a knee operation in November and have just today started walking without the help of crutches. I have a home gym which hasn't had much use over the last couple of years but has been loved in the past. I have used it on and off but don't think I've ever really known what I was doing or I was just slacking off! Any help or advice would be appreciated
    This all depends on where you are at and how much you like heavy lifting. I will give some women basic movements (Pushups, goblet squats etc) up to 20 reps as a progression (starting at 8ish reps usually). The reason for this is it doesn't scare them off, provides lots of technique work and progresses them easily. Later on then we move to heavier lower rep work as well as some higher rep work.


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    Thanks for the reply Dave. I don't mind a bit of pain, when I first got into the gym over 10 years ago I was sore every day for months, in fact after ever workout there was some level of soreness. My training partner and I would be do back & bis one day, legs the next and then chest and tris the day after that followed by a day of rest and then do it all over again. Every session started out with a cardio warm up and we would so some abs too every session. This worked well and I saw results pretty quickly. I know the weight I was lifting were pretty heavy (for me) I remember lifting 10kg dumbbells for biceps curls at one stage but that was at my peak! I haven't lifted heavy weights for years though so wasn't sure if heavier and less reps was the way to go or if lighter weights and more reps gave better results. I am out of shape that's for sure! I have a 16 month old toddler and I injured my knee last year when he was 6 months old so still have about 13kg's to loose. I'm determined to get there though! 10 months of not being able to move properly has driven me insane!


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    Quote Originally Posted by Smoothie View Post
    Thanks for the reply Dave. I don't mind a bit of pain, when I first got into the gym over 10 years ago I was sore every day for months, in fact after ever workout there was some level of soreness. My training partner and I would be do back & bis one day, legs the next and then chest and tris the day after that followed by a day of rest and then do it all over again. Every session started out with a cardio warm up and we would so some abs too every session. This worked well and I saw results pretty quickly. I know the weight I was lifting were pretty heavy (for me) I remember lifting 10kg dumbbells for biceps curls at one stage but that was at my peak! I haven't lifted heavy weights for years though so wasn't sure if heavier and less reps was the way to go or if lighter weights and more reps gave better results. I am out of shape that's for sure! I have a 16 month old toddler and I injured my knee last year when he was 6 months old so still have about 13kg's to loose. I'm determined to get there though! 10 months of not being able to move properly has driven me insane!
    You should also begin by training more frequently than the bodypart split you were doing. Get a good progressive full body program to get you moving again and.work your ass off (literally) and you will easily be back in shape with some discipline in the kitchen. There are a few good nutrition threads on here or better yet go read some of Alan Aragon or Lyle McDonalds work.


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    I remember starting with basic body weight squats, push ups on knees, heavily assisted pull ups, 8kg kettlebell deadlifts and tiny box jumps. Always in a circuit that included light walking jogging or gentle rowing. This eventually turned into heavier weights and lower reps.
    Point is when youre starting from scratch, easy does it!
    Now I go heaviest weight and aim for 8 - 10 reps, and 10 is a struggle! Only way to progress!


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    What did you do to knee?
    Curb weight: 78 kg
    DL 84 x 8; SQ 67 x 10 49 x 20; BR 67 x 8; PC 45 x 10; MP 39 x 7; BP 57 x 10
    1RM. DL - 139 PC-FS - 67 BP - 57 (not tested)


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