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Thread: muscle mass and tonnage

  1. #1
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    Default muscle mass and tonnage

    • starting strength seminar august 2022
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    A person does 3 x 5 with 180kg (sets across)

    Same person does 15 singles with 200kg instead of the above.

    Question:

    Which gives him bigger (therefore stronger) muscles?

    Rip says “When you program for strength, you are programming for size”. Santana says “Strength Training IS Hypertrophy Training”.

    Question:

    Why do many coaches, including Andy Baker, sometimes prescribe for strength and hypertrophy separately?

    Andy Baker on Top Set / Back Off Set programming:

    “This is mainly a hypertrophy based programming method. While you can certainly get stronger with this method (and even massively stronger) the way that I use this tends to be in the context of someone training for more muscle mass.”

  2. #2
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    Well, you got me, Henry. I don't know.

  3. #3
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    It wasn’t a gotcha question Rip, I really like your work. I was re-reading the grey book section “Training induced muscle adaptations” and can’t get my head around the industry-wide conflictions. If strength IS hypertrophy, “a stronger muscle is a bigger muscle” et al, why do separate categories and programs for power / strength and hypertrophy abound?

  4. #4
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    Because complexity is just so fucking cool.

  5. #5
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    Indiana, why don't you ask Andy?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rippetoe View Post
    Because complexity is just so fucking cool.
    So where does that leave table 4.2 in the above chapter of the grey book which you say has been backed up by 100 years worth of data and Baker’s separate programming of top sets and back offs for hypertrophy specificity?

    If “a bigger muscle is a stronger muscle” and “strength IS hypertrophy”, why bother making distinctions re. rep ranges and separate hypertrophy focused programming?

  7. #7
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    It leaves Table 4.2 squarely at the bottom of page 55. "Hormones of specific interest to training."

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rippetoe View Post
    It leaves Table 4.2 squarely at the bottom of page 55. "Hormones of specific interest to training."
    So…

    If “a bigger muscle is a stronger muscle”, “strength IS hypertrophy” and “when you program for strength you are programming for size”, why bother citing distinctions re. strength and hypertrophy rep ranges?

  9. #9
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    Dec 2021
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    Quote Originally Posted by henryjones View Post
    A person does 3 x 5 with 180kg (sets across)

    Same person does 15 singles with 200kg instead of the above.

    Question:

    Which gives him bigger (therefore stronger) muscles?

    Rip says “When you program for strength, you are programming for size”. Santana says “Strength Training IS Hypertrophy Training”.

    Question:

    Why do many coaches, including Andy Baker, sometimes prescribe for strength and hypertrophy separately?

    Andy Baker on Top Set / Back Off Set programming:

    “This is mainly a hypertrophy based programming method. While you can certainly get stronger with this method (and even massively stronger) the way that I use this tends to be in the context of someone training for more muscle mass.”
    These are excellent questions.

    Question 1

    Due to confounding variables, very difficult to test. If all else is equal, I think singles across would more optimal for muscle mass but they take a lot more time (for practical purposes most people would not have the time, hence 5’s across is better on that metric).

    Question 2 (Rip and Santana v Baker)

    Rip - does the sarcasm of your “complexity is so fucking cool!” response mean you don’t like the fact that Baker and many other coaches often program differently for strength and hypertrophy?

    Santana - One of the main premises of your argument is flawed. Ever since the 90s, most elite bodybuilders don’t train the way you say.

    (side note: your article on the deadlift being the most congruent to increasing the size of the archetypical male physique is the second best article on the SS website, and I’ve read nearly all of them since the beginning of SS).

  10. #10
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    starting strength coach development program
    The answer, I think, is "yes."

    Is this hypothetical person a novice or intermediate? That may make a huge difference, I think. Also, is this person eating at a caloric & protein surplus or deficit? That may make a huge difference, I think. Also, is this person hormonally enhanced or natty? That may make a huge difference, I think.

    After exhausting the novice LP and after exhausting some smart intermediate programming the OP should test out his theories and let us know. Send video, too.

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