Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Today's Workout: Chest, Shoulders, and Back, Using GVT Method

Today's workout was done using the German Volume Training technique, as I have frequently done over the last couple of months. German Volume Training consists of doing 10 sets x 10 reps of one movement, and the goal is to aim for a load that is about 60% of your estimated one rep max for that movement. If done correctly, you should be able to use the same weight for all ten sets most of the time. There may be times where you have to decrease the load around say, sets 5 and 6, but you may actually be able to increase the load back to the starting weight in the later sets. This can be attributed to a neurological phenomenon that really does not have a concrete explanation. The other component I adhere to with GVT is specific rest periods that are timed, and I try to keep the rest period (usually 40 seconds) the same through the entire 10 sets.
Some of the benefits of GVT are being able to complete a workout in a shorter amount of time, overload one specific exercise/muscle group with a lot of volume, and only needing one machine/bench and specific weight for the entire workout for that muscle group. A drawback of GVT is that since you are only doing one exercise for a particular muscle group, you will inherently limit that muscle group from being fully stimulated from a variety of angles, hand positions, etc. So, with GVT, you are going to want to pick a compound exercise over an isolation exercise.
Here are a few examples of what I mean by this: If you want to use the GVT method for legs, you will need to pick a compound movement that utilizes the quads, hamstrings, and glutes. Exercises such as squats, leg presses, deadlifts, and lunges are a few good examples. On the other hand, if you pick leg extensions, you would only be hitting the quads. If you pick leg curls, you will only be hitting the hamstrings.
Another example would be GVT for shoulders; you are going to want to pick a pressing (compound) movement over a raise (isolation) movement. Whether it is a dumbbell shoulder press, barbell military press, or a machine press, you will better stimulate all three heads (anterior, medial, posterior) of the deltoid (shoulder) than an (isolation) raise movement. If you chose a lateral raise, you would certainly overload the medial (middle) head of the deltoid, but the anterior (front) and posterior (rear) heads would not get as much work. If you choose a front raise, the anterior head would be overloaded, but the medial and posterior heads would get almost no work.
So it is important to remember that exercise selection is crucial when doing German Volume Training.
Here is my workout from this morning:

GVT- Smith Machine low (about 35 degree) incline chest press
1 warm up set x 20 reps
10 sets x 10 reps with 40 second rest periods (weight was increased 10 pounds after 4 sets)
GVT- Hammer Strength shoulder press
10 sets x 10 reps with 40 second rest periods
GVT- Lat Flexor (wide pull downs for back) machine
10 sets x 10 reps with 40 second rest periods 

Train hard and enjoy the journey!

Lee Dremel

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