Across the fitness landscape a new movement is gaining traction....Volume Training.
Commonly referred to as high-rep training or hypertrophy, volume training is fast becoming the most affective and widely used form of training to lose weight.
Not only is this method of training proven to lose weight, in the same instance it also has the double affect of gaining lean muscle.
So what is volume training?
Imagine your next leg day. You may have planned to carry out something like this.....
- 5 x 8 squats
- 5 x 12 leg press
- 5 x 15 leg curls
- 5 x 12 leg extensions
- 5 x 15 calf raises
This is only an example but does cover all common leg exercises. Obviously everyone who does train legs uses different weight depending on strength and ability. However with volume training, you scale the weights back to approx. 60% of what you would normally lift. By doing this you are affectively allowing yourself to increase your rep output. So now we increase the reps and your new program would look something like this......
- 6 x 20 squats
- 6 x 25 leg press
- 6 x 20 leg curls
- 6 x 25 leg extensions
- 6 x 30 calf raises
The reps have dramatically increased but what you are now achieving is an increase in cardio output. The key to this style of training being affective is the rest periods between sets. Be sure to rest no longer than 60 seconds before you start again.
Why is it called volume training?
Here is another example now using weights. If I used to squat 5 sets of 8 reps at 100kg (round figures), this is a total volume of 4000kg. Now using the new volume training method of 6 sets of 20 reps at 60kg is a total of 7200kg. That's an increase of 3.2 tonne. If you trained legs twice a week that's an extra 6.4 tonne per week, 25.6 tonne per month and so on. 6.4 tonne is affectively the same weight as three cars.
These numbers are subjective as everyone doesn't lift this amount or could get through the same volume as this example however next time you are in the gym doing a regular session, try adding an extra set to each exercise or increase your target reps by an extra 2 or 3 three and note the difference. Make sure you keep an eye on the clock to not exceed that 60 second rest period between sets. You will notice your heart rate will increase, your breathing will be heavier and you will walk away from your session really feeling like you achieved a lot.
Plenty of us out there, myself included, are not fans of lengthy periods of cardio on the exercise bike, treadmill or cross trainer to burn those calories. High volume training is a proven affective method that will burn the required calories and also increase your lean muscle mass and strength over time.