Holistic Training Bodybuilding

Holistic training is simply mixing up sets and reps. The scientific proof showing the different muscle fiber activation when training like this is freely available online. The study of Holistic workouts started because of the paradox between training to ignite slow twitch and fast twitch muscle fibers.

When we train explosively using a heavy weight, we fire up the important (larger) fast twitch muscle fibers, but when we train like this we miss activating the smaller slow twitch muscle fibers and miss out on some potential muscle growth. When lifting a light weight for many reps you activate slow twitch muscles fibers.

Sports scientists decided to study this in order to find a training program that would recruit all three of the different muscle fiber types. They used the following three sets in the study mentioned which are explained below:

The first set is done as explosively as possible using low reps

The second set is a typical bodybuilding set doing moderate reps of 8 to 12 with a controlled rep speed

The last set is performed slowly increasing time under tension (TUT)

These three sets are selected for their muscle fiber type recruitment plus the time it takes to reach exhaustion. The first set fires up the fast twitch muscle fibers, the second set fires up the intermediary muscle fibers and the last set fires up the smaller slow twitch muscle fibers.

The result showed that time under tension (TUT) was the most important factor in activating all the muscle fibers. Reaching the point of failure doing multiple repetitions while using a sub maximal weight produced the best overall results. This muscle hypertrophy occurs from two different types called myofibril hypertrophy and sarcoplasmic hypertrophy.

Muscles grows either because of the extra myofibrils added within muscle fibers or because of the increased anaerobic demands that increase the cellular fluids in between the myofibrils. Training with heavy weights will develop more myofibrils while increasing the volume of increases sarcoplasmic hypertrophy.

Recently, studies show that holistic training would be more effective on fast twitch muscle fibers than having a lot more capacity to grow in size than slow twitch muscle fibers. It is with this new consideration in mind that the new holistic training routine would be doing 2 or 3 reps with 95% of 1RM.

Below is the newly revised holistic training program doing bench-press, bent-over rows and pull-ups for upper body and back-squats, front-squats and deadlifts for lower body:

Set	Load	    Reps   Tempo	          Pause 	        Rest (seconds)
1	120% 1RM    1 	   Slow (4-5 secs)	  Absent	        60
2	95% 3RM	    2	   Controlled (1-2 secs)  Explosive	        90
3	120% 1RM    1      Slow (4-5 secs)	  Absent	        60
4	95% 3RM	    2	   Controlled (1-2 secs)  Explosive	        90
5	120% 1RM    1	   Slow (4-5 seconds) 	  Absent	        60
6	95% 3RM	    2	   Controlled (1-2 secs)  Explosive	        60
7	80% 1RM	    8	   Controlled (2-3 secs)  Controlled (2 secs)   60
8	40-50% 1RM  20	   Slow (4 secs)	  Controlled (4 secs)  120 

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