Arnold Schwarzenegger offers some sage advice to those in a bodybuilding rut.
Legendary bodybuilder Arnold Schwarzenegger recently gave some tips on how to break through a training plateau. The seven time Olympia champion shared the valuable information in his daily newsletter The Pump Daily and it did not disappoint.
Hitting a plateau in bodybuilding, could be a frustrating occurrence. When you first begin your bodybuilding journey, it’s easy to make impressive gains in a short period of time but once you’ve been training for a long while your progress begins to slow down and you begin to hit plateaus more and more frequently. It can be deflating to see that you pack on so much muscle in the beginning of your journey only to find that you struggle to put even an ounce of muscle on once you’re more experienced. But they are always work arounds to every frustrating situation. The legend Arnold Schwarzenegger understands as well.
Having struggle through many of bodybuilding prep, Arnold Schwarzenegger has garnered the kind of valuable experiences that only in Olympia champion understands. Well-versed in hitting plateaus and getting stuck in a rut, Schwarzenegger has had to think outside the box in order to get back on track. His method wasn’t simply being defeated and complaining about the situation. Rather Schwarzenegger took steps to overcome the plateau hurdle.
His solution? Wave training.
Arnold’s Wave Training
In a recent installment of The Pump Daily, Arnold Schwarzenegger provided some well thought out details on how to push past a plateau. Schwarzenegger recommended wave training as a means to make new games when you hit a wall.
“The next time you hit a wall with your workouts, this technique can help bust you out of your rut.
“As we’ve discussed before, transforming your body is a relatively simple equation, but it’s not easy. To see the best results, you need to train with intensity (relative to your own strength) and progressively challenge your muscles with more weight, sets, reps, or challenging exercises (or all of the above) — and do it consistently.”
Arnold Schwarzenegger went on to explain what wave training is and how it can change your bodybuilding journey.
“Wave training is a technique that helps trick your body into building strength and muscle. The method alternates sets of low-rep training with higher reps.
“The low-rep set activates more of your motor units (what causes your muscle fibers to fire), and when you shift to the higher-rep set, it can help you lift more than usual.”
Not one to be cryptic, Arnold gave some examples of wave training.
Wave Training Examples
Set 1: Perform 3-5 reps at 225 pounds.
Rest for 2 to 3 minutes.
Set 2: Perform 6-10 reps at 185 pounds
Rest another 2 to 3 minutes and repeat 2-3 more times.
“The 185 pounds should feel lighter than usual (thanks to priming your nervous system with the heavy set), which can help you do more reps than you normally would at that weight.
“You can also apply this to bodyweight training by alternating harder and easier variations of the same exercise.”
Arnold Schwarzenegger also gave another example, this time with a lower body workout.
Set 1: 5 reps (per leg) of Bulgarian split squats
Set 2: 10 reps of bodyweight squats
“These are also called mechanical drop sets because you’re moving from a harder exercise to an easier one.
“You can use this method on one main exercise per workout (like a squat, deadlift, row, or press). Give it a try, and let us know how it works!”
There’s nothing like getting tips from the GOAT. Arnold Schwarzenegger has seen and done it all in competitive bodybuilding. Take his tips to heart and you’ll know doubt find yourself leveling up.
News and Editorial Writer at Generation Iron, Jonathan Salmon is a writer, martial arts instructor, and geek culture enthusiast. Check out his YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and Sound Cloud for in-depth MMA analysis.