HST training


Of course, many of us have heard about training plans, some have explored the topic, using literature and industry portals, and others have tried them on themselves. Some training plans turn out to be more effective than others, but the goal of each of them remains the same – to achieve satisfactory results. Each training plan has its own charm and assumptions that must be pursued to achieve success. Today, I am going to familiarize myself with the HST training, which involves overloading muscles. According to many experts, this is the best method of building muscle.


  1. The origin of the HST training

The creator of HST training, Hypertrophy Specific Training, is Bryan Haycock. In 1978, he became interested in strength training and more or less since then he has been promoting the most effective method of building his body according to him. To build their training system, Bryan mistakenly found European strength trainers – their plans were not focused on building muscle mass, but on increasing strength and improving motor skills.

In short, the trainers focused on athletes’ performance, not on their appearance. However, most gym goers go there to change their figure. Building muscle mass is a long-lasting process, also if it is the main goal of the trainer, he should maximize the effects by following the appropriate rules.

Bryan Haycock created his own rules based on the conclusions drawn from the review of scientific research. That is why the HST program is based on the most important pillars of muscle hypertrophy, and aside, it pushes away other strengths of strength training.

This, of course, does not mean that thanks to HST you will get rid of muscular strength or there will be a lot of stagnation in its area. Sarkoplasmic hypertrophy will always go hand-in-hand with myofibrillar and it works the other way round. It’s about priorities, in this case we’re talking about focusing on building circuits.


  1. HST training conditions

Each training has its own rules, without which there can be no development. It is easy to guess that the HST assumptions will be based on the principles of physiology in line with current science. So what is absolutely necessary to increase muscle mass?


Mechanical load

Well, there is no question of muscle hypertrophy without charging the movement apparatus. The muscle must have something to move to force the body to build it.


High frequency

What is the end of training one party once a week? Limited growth in muscle mass, and certainly not fully exploiting the potential of this process. Protein synthesis and muscle recovery usually last a maximum of two days. Not to mention other benefits resulting from higher frequency, such as working on a motor pattern, and ideal technique always translates into an economic aspect of overcoming external resistance. Effect? Greater motor control and strength!


Progressive load

Mechanical load or muscular sensation is one thing. The second important aspect is adaptation. Muscle fibers become resistant to these factors, if they are the only methods to increase muscle mass, nothing in training will not change. Here comes the game of increasing kilograms. Muscles are sensitive not only to very high loads, above all they react well just to change it.

You can get the effect of hypertrophy by increasing your weight over the previous week, even if you still do not use your ability one hundred percent (and that’s the point, not to use it).

Slow, but regularly increasing kilograms from week to week, then from month to month and from year to year will drastically increase the total tonnage raised both on one trneingu and on the scale of a larger training cycle.


Strategic de-training

Unfortunately, you will not be able to add as little as 0.5 kg every week, and the increasing level of training with appropriate conditions increases adaptation rather than decreases it. This is where de-training comes into play, which re-sensing muscles for growth.

Another benefit of such a course is rest of the nervous system. You can not be on a high percentage of maximum weight all the time and feel rested. Therefore, HST has well thought-out periodisation – with increasing kilograms, but also reducing, the similar situation is after the number of repetitions.


  1. HST training macrocycle

Macrocycle, a full cycle based on HST training, should consist of 4 training microcycles, each of them should last two weeks. Training units are held three times a week – on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. HST is based on the FBW system, so during one training unit you train the whole body.

Microcycle 1 (first and second week) – 15 repetitions,

Microcycle 2 (third and fourth week) – 10 repetitions,

Microcycle 3 (fifth and sixth week) – 5 repetitions,

Negative microcycle (seventh and eighth week).


What is a negative macrocycle? The hardest period of this macrocycle, however, gives us some freedom in how it can be done. We can choose from the variants below.


  1. Performing two reps with the maximum weight in a given series, and then the third repetition with the help of a training partner.
  1. Dropset. Performing 5 repetitions, then removing a part of the weight and making extra reps. Rather, you should not go beyond 15 repetitions in one series. We want to stay in the hypertrophic range and not enter the strength zone.
  1. The least electrifying variant, namely the continuation of training with the maximum load in 5 repetitions.


  1. HST training and maximum weight

Each strength program should start with determining the number of kilograms in each exercise. This allows you to plan the entire mesocycle. As HST consists of training blocks divided into 15, 10 and 5 reps, you should check each exercise on such ranges. This will be the starting point for determining the next training weeks. Therefore, find the maximum weight with which you are able to perform such repetitions. And let it be a real number, for example, if you do a bench press with a weight of 70 kg for 13 reps, do not write a maximum of fifteen reps, but lower that number to 65 kg. Otherwise you can disturb the whole cycle.

And what about adding kilos? 65 kg you enter the last training of the two-week block. The first workout is done with a barbell weighing 52.5 kg. With each training you should add these 2.5 kg in accordance with the previously established rules. If it’s too light, do not worry. Remember that at the beginning of the training cycle you did 65 kg for 15 repetitions and you probably would not repeat the second such series. At HST, after two weeks, you can do two such series.


  1. Training volume

Repetitions will drop every two weeks in this order, 15 repetitions for 2 weeks, then 10 repetitions for 2 weeks and finally 5 reps for 2 weeks. The falling volume is dictated by the increasing training intensity. The changing volume and intensity have many benefits – they positively affect both types of myofibrillar and sarcoplasmic hypertrophy, working with fast-twitch and slow-twitch muscle fibers, which maximizes the growth of muscle mass.

However, the series should be in 1-2 for the exercise. However, there is nothing to fear, if the frequency is high and the kilogram progression is preserved, it will still not be too light training for building muscle mass.

Posted on: November 15, 2018

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