One of my readers wanted me to look into a training method designed to deliver sick natty gains. The plan is fairly simple – you train a muscle group every day for a few weeks and then go back to a more conservative routine to give the body a chance to heal. During the downtime, the hit muscles are supposed to grow rapidly.
This type of training is becoming more and more popular thanks to a YouTube channel called Team 3D Alpha, although I have heard about similar techniques from other sources too.
Below are the major flaws of this training approach.
1.Overtraining hinders strength gains.
If you are going to overtrain a muscle group like crazy for a month, you will have to lift sub-maximal weights. You can’t use 80-90% of your max and expect to maintain good form every day for weeks. This can never happen unless you are a professional athlete on steroids who has built up his training capacity over the years.
Try this. Go to the gym and do a 5×5 workout with 80% of your max. Then try to repeat the same on the next day. R.I.P.
Neither the body nor the central nervous system (CNS) can recover that quickly from heavy weights. Therefore, you will have to lift weights that are 50-60% of your max.
To put this into perspective, imagine that you can bench press 80kg for 1-2 reps. 50% of that equals 40kg. Do you really think that bench press sets with 40kg will produce amazing growth or strength increase?
You can lift light weights as much as you want, but you won’t get stronger by doing so.
2.It’s pure bro-science.
Obviously, training a muscle group more frequently will result in some form of adaptation. However, there is zero evidence that overtraining will produce faster growth than “normal training” in the long run. Both approaches appear equal when it comes to long term progress.
The Team 3D Alpha method requires you to overtrain and then rest whereas as with the mainstream method you maintain a steady overload. Therefore, the overall work is often the same.
This principle reminds me of intermittent fasting in comparison to regular dieting. If the caloric intake is the same during the day, the end result will be exceptionally similar regardless of the approach you decide to follow.
3.The comments are just ridiculous and don’t prove anything.
Many say that they will try this approach, but very few report back. Also, you can never be certain of the context. Maybe most of the people who got “incredible muscle growth” were just beginners experiencing their initial gains that usually come easily. You can’t really know who is behind a YouTube comment anyway.
Some of the messages underneath the videos are just hilarious. Observe.
“i have been doing this aggressive overtraining for a month i clearly see my muscles grow bigger and bigger every day.
been training my shoulders for about two weeks and they are almost as the size of my head, it is crazy.”
My comment: Are you serious? Even with all the steroids in the world, you won’t get that big in a month. Sorry, but that’s a fact.
“this is how ex-cons say they got swole….them n***s were in prison doing chest everyday with no rest days, and doing bicep curls everyday…. they did pushups with guys pressing down on their back or sitting on their back, and other crazy shit EVERY DAY multiple times a day. and they got SWOLE.”
My comment: You have been watching way too many movies. Prisoners are not as massive as you think. This belief is the result of propaganda. The directors rely on muscular men to play the roles of criminals. Yet the truth is that most prisoners are scrawny, skinny-fat and relatively weak. Those as big as bodybuilders are doing things Kali Muscle style.
4.Overtraining can interfere with other activities outside of the gym
Unless your life revolves around lifting weights, you cannot allow yourself to overtrain especially if you have a physical job.
Focusing on a specific body part will definitely give you faster results, but the difference isn’t that big when it comes to long term results. You are still going to end up at the natty limits. And by the way, you won’t arrive there any quicker compared to a more conservative regime.
I know that people will never stop looking for the cure to being natural, but even overtraining cannot break the natural limits, for the fact that training does not alter the synthesis of protein in the body to the point where steroid-like results manifest.