Volume Training – 10 is a Great Number!

German Volume Training at 10 sets of 10

Volume training using 10 sets of 10 repsI am currently coming off of a self-imposed week sabbatical from lifting weights.

I will have a blog on that subject in a future post entitled “Listen to Your Body or You’re Going to Hurt Yourself, You Idiot.” In short, the rest was necessary because consistent lifting was taking its toll, my joints were hurting, and progress was stagnant.

When I had my first session back, I wanted to return with something to shock the body. This week I’m not necessarily focus on moving massive weight as much as doing something different, because guess what?

The human body adapts. Quickly.

(This will also be covered in a future article entitled “Do Something Different, You Idiot, Because What You’re Doing Obviously Isn’t Working.”)

When thinking of a different approach for the week, I thought back to a workout a man, whom is one of the smartest and naturally pound for pound strongest guys I know, had me do for legs.

10 sets of 10

He had a contingent of muscular gentleman doing 10 sets of 10 squats. A workout that left us looking and feeling like we were Willem Dafoe in “Platoon,” crawling with our last reserves of energy, only to find ourselves face down in a Vietnamese jungle (which was actually a gym floor, but you get it.)

It sucked, but finishing it felt GREAT.

The “10 sets of 10” concept is based on the German Volume Training. If the German’s know one thing besides sausage, it’s muscles. So what do you say we take this idea, put a twist on it, and give it a try for the week? Cool!

Monday – (Back/Traps)

  • 10 Sets of 10 Pull-Ups

Focus on your form. Get full extension at the bottom and top of the movement. This is IMPERATIVE!

If you aren’t quite at a level for Pull-ups or 10×10 of them adjust accordingly. Assisted pull-up could work. Inverted Rows are great. Even Lat Pulldowns could work. Whatever gets you in shape to eventually do a pull-up, and then a lot more of them after that.

I have a shoulder issue that makes pull-ups difficult so I often vary the grip. Mixed grip. Chin-up grip. Wide grip.

What I did on this workout is:

  • 10×10 Pull-up (grip varied)
  • 3×12 Deadlift
  • 3×12 DB Row
  • 3×12 Lat Pulldown
  • 2×20 Shrugs
  • 2×20 Straight arm Front Pulldown

Tuesday – (Chest/Shoulder/Abs)

  • 10×10 Flat Bench
  • 3×12 Incline DB Press
  • 3×12 Pec Deck Fly
  • 3×12 Side Lateral Raise
  • 2×20 Push-Ups
 Abs (figure it out, I’m not your mother)

You are doing 10 sets of 10 on bench so this gives you a great excuse to not worry about weight, and really focus on your form. Lower it to your chest, press it fully. If you are doing that half-ass not coming close to your chest on bench, stop now. Please.

Thursday – (Legs)

  • 10×10 Squats (ofcourse. Duh)
  • 3×12 Single Leg Press
  • 3×20 Leg Curl
  • 3×20 Leg Ext
. 2×30,50,100 I don’t know.
  • Calf raises (I don’t train calves with any strategy.)

Friday – (Shoulders/Arms)

  • 10×10 Standing Overhead BB Press Superset
  • 10×10 DB Tricep Ext
  • 10×10 Standing DB Curls Superset
  • 3×12 Rope Pushdown
  • 3×12 Cable Curls
(if you feel you that need it)
  • 2×20 Front Raise/Bench Dip/Hammer Curl

There. You get a sweet pump. Now you can put your tightest t-shirt on and go find girls with loose morals!

10 sets of 10 should be done focusing on your form, shocking your body, but still leaving some in the tank at the end of the session. Going to failure isn’t necessary. Try to keep rest between sets at 90-120 seconds. Give it a try. Follow me on Twitter @EthanCarterTNA and tweet me how it goes!

Like anything I write, this is all speculative. My credentials are trial, error and being fortunate enough to learn from one guy who knows A LOT about training.

If you want to know more about German Volume Training, or any things of this nature focusing on building real power and getting real results, look up Charles Poliquin. This guy knows more about working out than every single guy at your gym wearing a tank top combined.

But, you’ll never get results without DIET! So if you need help with your diet (you do) invest in a nutrition plan here. Seriously. It makes EVERY BIT of difference. In fact, we offer an amazing one here one the Body Spartan website (see below)!

Good talk. See ya out there!

– EC3


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