Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Beyond Failure Training, Part Three - Trevor Smith

Part One is here:

Part Two:

More from Trevor Smith here: 

Let's hop right into a Beyond Failure workout for the chest and the calves. 

It is important that you first understand the problems that can occur while training certain muscle groups. In this case we well be talking about the pecs, so let's get right into it. 

How many times have you noticed that people rarely have great arms and shoulders AND a superb chest? Conversely, how many times have you noticed someone with a great chest that had great shoulders and arms? There are lots of pros out there that come to mind with this strange phenomenon. Dorian Yates and Lee Haney both had superb upper torsos (back and chest), but left a little to be desired in the arms and even the shoulders department to some extent. Gary Strydom had a great pair of delts and a great set of pecs, but subpar arms. Guys like Dennis Newman have very poor pecs and overpowering delts. 

Genetics play a large part in this to a certain extent, but the thing I have discovered about beyond failure training is that it cuts through all the genetic predispositions because it completely annihilates the muscle group worked and does not allow for any one group to overcompensate for the other.

If you have overpowering shoulders, they are going to do the bulk of the work every time you do a pressing movement for chest. Likewise, if you have great triceps, they will get most of the work. The problem is when they give out during a set, you can no longer continue to give the stimulation necessary for the pecs to grow. This is where Arthur Jones comes in. One of the things Jones was a big believer in was pre-exhaustion, and it is also used extensively with beyond failure training. 

We shall then start our workout with a set of machine flyes. Now, I do not recommend using dumbbell flyes with this, as your wrist, elbow and shoulder JOINTS will tend to give out before the muscle is thoroughly trashed. 

Following the same principles as the leg workout, we start with a pre-exhausting set on the pec-dec machine with a partner right there to offer assistance. Use a weight that allows 10-12 reps and once you hit that point and cannot complete another rep (in other words when you have hit failure) the set is only beginning and it is time to go BEYOND failure. As with legs, have your partner assist you to get 8 more reps. Once the screaming has stopped, you will drop the weight by 30-40% and continue with the set (get as many as you can on your own, usually no more than 3-5 reps). Then your partner will again assist you to get between 6-8 reps. Even though you are numb, drop the weight another 30-40% and continue with the set having your partner assist you to go beyond failure once you can no longer get a full rep on your own. Then you are finished. After you are done crying, rest a few minutes and complete another set in the same manner.

Then you move on to a pressing movement. Let's say incline barbell presses. I like to use the Smith because it's a lot easier to work with when doing this type of training. We are going to do one hellacious set of incline presses in the same manner as above. When failure is achieved, the set just begins and your spotter will help you go past the pain barrier and into the torture zone. Now your chest should feel like you just had a set of 44-DDD implants put in. They should be hurting and pumped beyond belief. That is it, you are done with chest and it is time to move on to calves, another muscle group that people don't train properly, mostly because they are afraid to feel the pain.

The thing you have to remember about calves is that they are incredibly strong muscles. Think about it . . . if you weigh 250 or even 300 pounds, the calf muscles have to be able to support that weight by themselves. In fact each calf muscle must be able to support that weight and do so with great ease. Once you start running or jumping, the force that is exhibited on the calves is many times greater than just your bodyweight and still they manage to do their job. 

If you doubt this, just ask yourself how many fat, obese people you have seen with some awesome calves? My guess would be many. In fact, the biggest and best calves I have ever seen were on a fucking massively obese guy who was in line in front of me at the grocery store. The reason for that is because the calf muscles on that whale had to respond to his massive weight and growm, otherwise he would not be able to walk. He was putting them through a vicious workout each time he stepped towards the refrigerator to get another box of fudgesticks. 

If you want to have great calves you have to subject them to the same torture and doing 3 x 10 on some calf raises ain't going to cut it. You have to destroy them with beyond failure training. 

So, let's move on to 2 sets of, say, seated calf raises. Load the machine up with enough weight where you will fail on the 10th or 12th reps; then you will have your partner repeat the same procedure as with legs and chest. Go beyone failure and then drop the weight and go beyond failure again. THEN when you have had enough painm, drop the weight and go beyond failure again.

I call this DEMON TRAINING because during the course of each session you will invariably be faced with each of the four demons. It is up to you whether you face them with courage, or use the crutch of "overtraining" or some other excuse to convince yourself not to push so hard and enter into the torture zone with each training session. If you are one of those types, go type in the address of any one of the tons of other bodybuilding sites as 99.9% of them suck and are for wannabes.

Next time we look at shoulders and triceps. 

Enjoy Your Lifting! 

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