By Nick Nilsson
Author of Mad Scientist Muscle
When you want fat loss and increased muscle definition, there ARE ways to train that can help you achieve those goals.
One of the key methods that I like to use is a tension-oriented superset done for medium to high reps, focusing on keeping strict form and squeezing the muscles HARD as you perform the reps.
This focus on tension and form really brings out the definition muscle, which can really set your physique apart when you start getting into lower bodyfat levels.
That being said, even if you DON'T currently have low bodyfat and are trying to get there, this style of training is VERY beneficial for you as well.
The abs of WBFF Figure Competitor (and user of
my Metabolic Surge program) Tani Correia
Introducing the In-Set Superset Superset...or Quadruple Supersets.
And yep, that double superset is NOT a typo...you're actually going to be doing an antagonistic superset of what I call "in-set supersets."
This is a training technique I just used in a recent workout from my Metabolic Surge - Rapid Fat Loss program.
I'll break it down a bit to explain it...once you get the concept, it's really not as confusing as the name implies.
First, an Antagonistic Superset is when you perform back-to-back sets for opposing muscle groups...in this case, the back and the chest. An example of this would be a pulldown and a bench press. This is a GREAT way to get more work done in a shorter period of time as these opposing muscle groups generally don't have much, if any, overlap and you can right into the other exercise without losing much strength.
So keep that structure in the back of your mind here while I explain the next part...
The In-Set Superset is a technique I've talked about before where you perform two exercises in one set, alternating reps of each. These two exercises share a common position. An example of this is the dumbbell bench press and the dumbbell flye.
Now put these two concepts together...
We're going to start with an In-Set Superset for the back (a combination exercise I call the Full-Range Pulldown), done for 12 to 15 reps. Then we're going to go straight into an In-Set Superset of Dumbbell Bench Press and Dumbbell Flyes for 12 to 15 reps.
And when I say 12 to 15 reps, I mean that many reps for EACH exercise...so pick light weights and get ready for the burn...
Exercise #1 - The Full-Range Pulldown
This exercise is done using a regular high pulley or pulldown machine. You can use a V bar handle or a regular straight bar, close or wide grip.
Start with a pulldown.
And remember, when doing pulldowns, you want to INHALE as you pull down so that you're expanding your chest during the pull. This expansion puts your lats in the optimal position to contract.
When you get to the bottom position, hold the handle there in space and lay back.
Then row the handle down to your chest again, inhaling again during this portion, puffing up your chest to meet the handle. Also, try to force your elbows behind your back - this will bring your shoulder blades together and get you maximum contraction.
This double movement puts MAJOR tension on the lats (and arms and other upper back muscles). Come up back in one smooth movement then repeat the sequence.
Perform 12 to 15 reps of this (one full rep consists of a pulldown and a row then back up).
And again, I want to emphasize use a LIGHT weight and STRICT form. The goal here is not to just bang out reps to reach a number...we truly don't care about the actual number you hit. That range is there as a guide for how much resistance to use.
The goal is to MAXIMUM tension on the lats for an extended period time and get a hard contraction at the bottom of each part of each movement.
You will feel this one and it will hurt. I won't sugarcoat it. When the lactic acid burn catches up to you, you'll know it.
When you're done, IMMEDIATELY go to the next exercise combo (no rest).
Exercise #2 - In-Set Superset of Dumbbell Press and Flye
For this pairing, you should have pre-set a pair of dumbbells that you could use for 15+ reps of flyes. In other words, something light. I'm using a pair of 50 lb dumbbells.
Lay down on the bench and do one set of the press. DO NOT bang the dumbbells together at the top. Besides being annoying, you're using light weight and nobody will be impressed. Also (and most importantly) it takes the tension off the muscles and puts it on the joints.
Do a STRICT press, focusing on squeezing the pecs hard all the way up to the top. When you hit the top, turn the dumbbells and do a flye.
Lower the dumbbells slowly down into the stretch, making sure you really feel the pecs getting that stretch under tension, then come back up. On the way up, imagine that you're wrapping your arms around a big tree...this helps activate the pecs properly.
Perform 12 to 15 reps (or as many as you can manage) of EACH exercise alternating in this fashion.
Once you've completed those two in-set superset combo movements in a superset fashion, you're all done...for now.
Take 60 to 90 seconds rest then do it again. I recommend doing at least 2 to 3 totals rounds of this antagonistic in-set superset superset combo. You won't need anything else for back or chest after this...doing more would be overkill so resist the urge.
Again, I just want to emphasize muscle tension and contraction...those are the key things we're going for here in this superset. Actually number of reps don't matter...it's the FEEL that we're really looking for because THAT is what's going to give you the muscle quality and definition that you want.
One Last Quick Thing...
Before I let you go, I just wanted to bring you one last thing here...
Now, I'm not one to brag about my programs or claim they're the "best in the world and everything else is garbage" type thing.
I KNOW they're effective but I also know it's the hard work that YOU put in when you do them that really makes the results so spectacular.
That being said, I've got some Metabolic Surge results here that I wanted to share with you. This email just came to me recently and I thought it was really cool.
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