The Basic Muscle Gain Program
Mesocycle 3 – Hypertrophy Phase (3-split)
Written by Joachim Bartoll, 2013-2015
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The Basic Muscle Gain Program is a scientific sound and proven training program spanning over 5 mesocycles for a total of 20 weeks. The first two mesocycles (first 8 weeks) are strength specific and will prepare you for the three following mesocycles of hypertrophy specific training. The strength phase will increase the efficiency of your central nervous system, which will increase your capacity to recruit fast twitch muscle fibers. This will make the following hypertrophy specific phase even more efficient for building muscle mass.
This 20-week training program was developed after the success with my book The Maximum Muscle Guide. It was tested by more than 50 people and finalized as a blueprint for beginners and intermediates in 2013. That is, it was used as a base for certain clients and then individualized. This program is now being released to subscribers/members of The Classic Muscle Newsletter.
This is mesocycle 3 of the program, or if you prefer, training block 3. A mesocycle (or training block) consists of several microcycles. These microcycles are usually referred to as a “training week” and can be anything from 5 to 10 days. For the sake of convenience and guaranteed recovery, the microcycles in this program are 7 days long. The mesocycles are structured to progressively increase training volume over the course of the mesocycle while maintaining intensity levels. It’s important that you do your best to generate as much force as you can during every repetition. This means that you try to accelerate the load as much as possible through the full range of motion, no matter how much weight is on the bar. This goes beyond being just explosive, you need to treat every rep as a max-rep. This intention to always generate maximum force and power will further enhance the activation and development of your central nervous system (and let you recruit more muscle fibers). Never bounce at the bottom of a movement and always lower the weight slow and under full control. The eccentric part of the movement should take somewhere between 2 to 3 seconds. Don’t waste energy or mental focus on counting seconds or lowering the weight extremely slow. Simply lower it under control and make sure you feel your muscles working against the load.
This hypertrophy phase capitalizes on the strength gains you achieved in the previous two strength-based phases. This is partly because your increased strength will allow you to handle heavier weights, increasing the levels of muscle tension. And more importantly, some of the strength gains comes from increased central nervous system efficiency, allowing you to recruit more fast-twitch muscle fibers (which has the most growth potential). This will allow you to tap into more muscle fibers during each set, generating more muscle damage and growth without the need to add in extra recovery draining volume.
Since this program is tailored for beginners and intermediates, training volume will increase during the full length of the program, increasing your work capacity and preparing you for my more advanced and high frequency training programs.
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The Basic Muscle Gain Program – Mesocycle 3 – Hypertrophy Phase (3-split) (Adobe PDF, 68 kB)
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