View Full Version : Bodybuilder or Athlete?

Mark Ginther
07-14-2003, 01:40 PM
Just posted a new article, please have a look.

Bodybuilder or Athlete? (http://www.veloforce.net/bodybuilder.html)

07-14-2003, 03:23 PM
Good read, it explained a few things I didn't know very well.


The Jake
07-17-2003, 01:22 AM
Interesting work Mark - a good read.

I only have a very general knowledge but I do have a few questions:

1) Sarcoplasm - I have never heard this term before but I understand what you mean by the increase in fluids. Won't the increase in water in the cells mean more ATP in the body, therefore more energy? (My understanding on this is very vague so I wouldn't be suprised if I'm mistaken, but I'd just like to know more about how it all works).

2) Why 10 sets and why 5 reps (and at what speed?)? Hell, I mean, why not 5 sets like Arnie or one set like Mike Metzner and every other HIT advocate out there?

I mean I don't know which school I believe more, but from personal experience, if I haven't achieved what I wanted to by the third set, I don't think it's going to be happening....

3) I don't think bodybuilders rely on machines a lot. Most rely on compound movements for the core of their lifts. Every bodybuilder will agree on that. They just tend to round things out with them. Granted I think focusing a lot on isolation exercises is not required for athletes but I do believe it's worth pointing out.

- The Jake

Mark Ginther
07-18-2003, 11:35 AM

In response to your questions:

1. True, while the sarcoplasm doesnít contract, it does support anaerobic endurance, and many of the adaptations to higher-rep training, including increased mitochondrial density, increases capillarisation, and increased volume of sarcoplasm, are actually beneficial to performance on the mat. However, this doesnít mean that the sarcoplasm should be developed at the expense of the contractile proteins (as in many typical bodybuilding routines). Itís no use having a huge fuel tank if your engine isnít powerful enough to carry it.

2. 10 sets of 5 reps was just an example, but the reasoning is that the high number of sets will cause fatigue (important for muscle growth), but with the lower reps a greater amount of tension (and therefore strength) can be generated than with 3 sets of 10-15. Even so, rep range is the variable that the body adapts to most quickly, so a variety of rep/set ranges need to be employed. One of my favorite for building size and strength is 10 sets of 3 reps with 2-minute rest intervals. As for the speed, this will depend on the training goal. Slower tempos are good for balance and stability, and sometimes for hypertrophy, but for maximal strength, and explosive power, the concentric range of the movement should be as fast as possible.

3. Though youíre probably correct that most bodybuilders use compound movements for the brunt of their training, they still often do them with machines. I see a lot of bodybuilders that do virtually every exercise in the Smith machine. Strength gained on machines (whether compound movements or isolation exercises) doesnít have near the transfer to the ring as free-weight exercises.