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Plan of the Month: 4 Weeks to More Mass, Week 1

Follow along with MensFitness.com's 'Plan of the Month'. This month is dedicated to packing on mass. Here's week 1 of 4.

Note from the Editor: Mike Simone

Each month, MensFitness.com will select one trainer and a four week training program of their choice. Each week you'll receive the training protocol for that week. This month, Dan Trink, C.S.C.S, owner of TrinkFitness.com and Director of Personal Training Operations at Peak Performance NYC provides a 4 week program for packing on mass.


You’re a guy who gets it. You understand why it’s important to get stronger. You value improving your mobility and movement patterns.

There's no shame in wanting to add slabs of body armor to your frame. And even in today’s functional-crazed fitness world, there's plenty of justification for adding a nice thick layer of muscle onto your skeleton (try telling an offensive lineman that carrying extra mass isn’t ‘functional’ for his sport). Luckily, my like-minded friend, we are here to help.

Over the next four weeks we are going to lay out a mass-building training program that will set you on the path to bigger pecs, massive quads and mountainous traps so high they’ll be covered in snow year-round. We’re going to use every trick in the mass building playbook, including undulating the sets and reps from week to week, the use of specialty techniques such as drop sets, rest-pause and slow negatives and brutal finishers that will have you wincing and cursing the name of Schwarenegger every time you walk down a flight of stairs.

Special Program Notes

> We're are going to utilize a body-part split, training 4 times per week. This will allow us to get in the volume that we are looking for while still allowing enough time for recovery.

> We are going to start the week with a leg day followed by a chest and back day.

> After a day of rest we will hit another leg day (utilizing different exercises) and cap the week off with an arms and shoulders day (so you can get your pre-weekend pump going!).

> The weekend days are off days. In the excitement to reach your goals, please do not add extra work on your off days - recovery is very important.

> Why two leg-sessions per week? Easy, legs are usually get short-changed when it comes to most guy’s training. We are going to make sure that doesn’t happen here. Plus, leg training causes a significant anabolic hormonal response which will help you get the overall gains you are looking for.

Understanding Rest and Tempo

When training for hypertrophy paying attention to both tempo and rest periods is critical. You will notice that tempo is written as a 4 digit prescription such as 4-1-1-0.

> The first number describes the eccentric or lowering phase of the lift. So, it should take 4 seconds to lower a bar or weight. 

> The second number is any pause at the bottom position.

> The third number is how long it should take you to lift the weight.

> The fourth number is any pause that you would use at the top.

It is very easy to rush through your lifts but accurately following the tempo prescriptions will ensure that you are achieving the proper time under tension required to get the mass building results you are looking for.

Keep an eye on your watch or download a good rest period timer on your phone to ensure you are resting the proper amount.

On to Page 2 for the Training Program: Week 1 of 4 >>>

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