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Digital Subscriptions > Men's Fitness > June 2019 > BE A GYM GIANT

BE A GYM GIANT

Use giant sets to make your muscles bigger than ever

“If you want big muscles and a massive reduction in body fat, this giant set training programme is what prescribe,” says David Arnot, co-founder of London’s Evolve 353 gym (evolve353.com). “Giant sets are rounds of four or more compound moves that work the same muscle groups with rest periods of no more than ten seconds between sets.”

The four workouts focus on one body part at a time to make sure it is worked as hard as possible from every angle. “This optimises muscle growth and density, so you come away bigger and stronger,” says Arnot. “Rests are minimal to keep your metabolism working hard, so after a month you’ll be leaner too. And because your heart rate remains high throughout, you also get a good cardio workout. In fact, your muscles get pushed so hard that your metabolism keeps firing for hours afterwards. Body fat is used to fuel this, so your spare tyre will keep shrinking even when you’re chilling on the couch after your workout.”

HOW TO DO THIS WORKOUT

Perform each giant set with as little rest as possible, then move on to the next, sticking to the rest periods prescribed. Beginners should do the first four workouts every week, increasing the weight or reps each week so they can only just complete each set. Those coming back from a fitness hiatus should add the fifth workout at the weekend.

WORKOUT 1 LEGS

GIANT SET Do six rounds of exercises 1A to 1E with as little rest as possible between moves. Rest for 1min between rounds.

1A BARBELL SQUAT Reps 8

Rest a barbell on your traps, with your hands twice shoulder-width apart and your body in a straight line from head to heels. Your feet should be shoulder-width apart and slightly turned out. Squat until your thighs are at least parallel to the floor, then drive through your feet to return to the start. Don’t let your back round at any point during the move.

1B ROMANIAN DEADLIFT Reps 8

Stand with your body straight from head to heels and your feet shoulder-width apart, holding a barbell in front of your thighs. Start to lower it down your legs, hinging at the hips. Bend your legs slightly to let it travel down your shins until you feel a good stretch in your hamstrings. Push through your heels to stand.

1C BARBELL LUNGE Reps 8 each side

Rest a barbell on your traps, with your hands twice shoulder-width apart, your body straight and feet shoulder-width apart. Take a big step forwards and lower until your back knee brushes the floor. Don’t let your front knee get ahead of your knee. Push down through your front foot to return to the start position.

2 ROWER SPRINT Reps 8 Time 40sec Rest 20sec

Initiate the row by pushing your feet hard against the platforms, and pull the T-handle with your hands as your legs begin to straighten. Pull it to your sternum and lean back slightly at the end of each stroke.

1D BODYWEIGHT SQUAT Reps 16

Stand with your body straight and your hands by your temples. Squat until your thighs are at least parallel to the floor. Drive through your feet to stand and don’t let your back round.

3A REVERSE CRUNCH RAISE Reps 12

Lie flat on the floor, arms at your sides. Bend your legs and raise your knees, keeping them together, then straighten them so they point straight up.

1E ISOMETRIC SQUAT Time 30sec

Stand with your body in a straight line from head to heels and your hands by your sides. Lower into a squat until your thighs are parallel to the floor, and hold the position. Bring your arms out in front of you for balance during each hold.

FINISHER

Do four rounds of 3A and 3B as a finisher

3B KNEE RAISE Reps 12

Hang from a bar with hands wider than shoulder-width apart and arms straight. Raise your knees to pec height, keeping them together. Take 3sec to lift and to lower.

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