Heavy Duty Workout Routine


Heavy Duty training was not started by Mike Mentzer but he certainly put it on the map. Mike used his knowledge that he got from his mentor Arthur Jones of Nautilus who suggested one set per body-part doing 20 reps. Mike changed everything by saying split routines are better than full body workouts and doing only 6 to 9 reps per set.

Mike said you got to pick a weight where you reach the point of failure between 6 to 9 reps. But the objective is actually to go beyond the point of failure because using his brother Ray (1979 Mr. America) as his spotter, he would remove just enough stress to complete 2 or 3 more forced reps.

Often these two would end a high intensity training (HIT) workout doing singles and doubles with a full stack. Mike went on to win his division, heavyweight in the 1979 Mr. Olympia. He had taught himself that progressive overload, strengthening your core, will always put on more muscle mass.

To sum up the basics on any heavy duty workout is to reach a point of full-rep failure within the first 6 to 9 reps. Form is everything when using a heavy load but if you reach 6 reps and you have a training partner you need to do 2 or 3 reps using negatives and forced reps.

One could use other techniques to go beyond failure like rest-pause or drop sets. The heavy duty workout listed below is divided into three different workouts for the three days you train in the week. You'll be getting a full 48 hours of recovery time before you go to the point of failure on another body-part.

Divide your body parts into three workouts and you are giving yourself at least 48 hours between each workout because of the severe CNS and muscle damage done when going heavy with low reps.

Workout 1: Chest and Back
Peck Dec or Dumbbell Fly super set with Incline Bench Press
Pullover super set with Lat Pulldown
Barbell Shrugs
Deadlift or Hyperextention

Workout 2: Legs
Leg Extension super set with Squat or Leg Press
Leg Curls
Standing Calf Raise
Seated Calf Raise

Workout 2: Shoulders and Arms
Dumbell Lateral Raise
Rear Dumbell Lateral Raise
Barbell Curl
Triceps Pushdown super set with Dips


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