Where Did 7,9,11,13 Go?

Have you ever wondered why most exercise programs are written for even counts of 6,8,10,12.  Odd numbers get ignored.  I find this very interesting. So I decided to experiment with my programs to see if there would be any change in the effect of the exercise.  Low and behold I saw a difference.

Here is the difference among different rep counts.

1-2 Reps to develop Power.

4-6 Reps to develop Strength

8-12 Reps to develop Hypertrophy

12-15 Reps to develop Muscular Endurance / Increase in capillary beds

The human brain is often times based on predictability. It likes to figure out certain patterns and stick with them. We often times follow a certain program performing the exact amount of exercises, intensity, reps and sets.  We don’t deviate too often.  Getting to an even number seems to be the goal. We tend to stop on an even number of reps rather than an odd number.  Perhaps the reason for this is that most people like things balanced. Even numbers are balanced.

So, I decided to change things up in training today. Rather than doing my regular rep count of 8 reps I performed 9 reps instead.  It was amazing. I got a tremendous pump in the muscle.  I also noticed that my brain was already designated to stop at 8 reps.  But when I went for one more rep my brain was stunned. This form of confusion set off the central nervous system to go into a frenzy. It had to recall a new neuronal synapse to the muscle. This new surge also set off a boost in the anterior pituitary gland, sending a secretion of growth hormone into the blood. These events caused more blood flow to enter into the muscle providing a great pump.  By just increasing the rep count by 1 I felt a whole new experience in the muscle. For many years I have, like everyone, neglected the odd numbers. Little did I know that these odd numbers are my friend. From now on I will never neglect the odd numbers. Next week I will be cheating on the number 12 and going for 13. Sorry 12 but I think you understand it is time for a new number.  

This little experiment has prompted me to develop new programs that will incorporate the use of odd numbers for the rep count.  In fact, I am in the process of writing “The Elite Bodybuilding Series” that will have cutting edge programs that will promote phenomenal increases in muscle size and strength.  I consider this program to be a continuation of Vince Gironda’s Master and Pro Series. I will keep you all posted on this program.

Also, for all Buff Daddy’s out there.  I am happy to say that all the writing is done and I am now in the final edit and publishing phase.  I am very, very proud of this publication. It is by far the best work I have done to date.  It is over 325 pages and filled with many secrets of becoming a Buff Daddy.

Daryl Conant, M.Ed

tags: Vince Gironda, Charlie Sheen, Ron Kosloff, Daryl Conant, Boston Red Sox, Libya, Egypt, Iran, Muscle confusion, reps, sets, fitness, bodybuilding,