Sunday, August 30, 2015


If you train with weights on a regular basis or you are a self-confessed bodybuilder then you will know all about the famous quote by Arnold ‘No pain no gain.’ There is difference between a workout specifically designed to get maximum return compared to a workout designed to elicit pain.

All you need to do is take a look at the complex workout written for Dwayne (Rock) Johnson by Dave Rienzi. What makes this workout a pain workout is the time it takes to do the routine. Completing 2 sets of 12 reps adding weight and the last set is followed by a 90 second rest is very sensible.

Unlike the rather simple pain workout of Mark Wahlberg who was the lead the “Pain And Gain” movie he made. This is not the routine he used in the movie but rather the routine Mark used to help get him into shape for the movie. It is short and intense and should be completed with as little rest between sets as possible.

·        Box-Jumps (24” box)                       X 6 reps
·        Barbell Thrusters (with 95 lbs.)     X 8 reps
·        Walking Lunge with 45lbs D/B      X 10 reps
·        Toes To Bar                                       X 12 reps

This kind of pain routine has the secondary effect of increasing core strength which in the long term will certainly increase the poundage’s that you push or lift. It is an intense workout that needs the correct psyche before you start, it will push the envelope which is what it is designed for.

When Arnold said no pain no gain he did not know that after 50 years of research science would tell us that without reaching high intensity the return from any workout is extremely limited. Arnold could see into the future and intrinsically felt that intensity was the key to muscle gain.

Research tells us that training to and past the point of failure is counter-productive if done on every workout. The body is simply not capable of withstanding and repairing that kind of damage on a permanent basis, unless you are taking steroids.

Science tells us that just doing pain and intensity in every workout will lead to over-training if done permanently. All training, no matter how or when it is done needs to be complemented with correct nutrition and recuperation. Without that you are just going backwards and will never see the results of muscle hypertrophy.