Muscle Shape Program

Thighs-Sissy Squats, Leg Extensions Chest-Criss-Crosses w/Cables, Dumbbell Flyes Back-Bent-Over Barbell Rows, Lat Attachment Bar Chins Shoulders-Dumbbell Lateral or Rear Raises, Lateral Raise w/Cables Biceps-Dumbbell seated Concentration Curl, Scott Bench Curl Triceps-Dumbbell Triceps Kickback, Strict Lat Bar Pushdowns Calves-One-legged Calf Raise, Running up stairs on toes Abdominals-Twisting Sit-ups, Leg Raise (hanging from Chinning Bar), Barbell Twists

Shaping exercises and high reps of (12) prevailed; using light to moderate weights. The number of sets for these exercises remained the same as in the previous schedule mentioned. Rest between sets was 45 seconds to 1.5 minutes.

Impeccable Exercise Form and Extreme Metaphysical Concentration

Was a Priority Each and Every Work!

The Japanese Counter-Split Body Blast System as noted employ's the use of multiple exercises (muscle bulking and shaping) on each separate muscle group plus many of the prevalent bodybuilding principles (such as, flushing, peak contraction, heavy and light, super-sets and triple progression pyramids, etc.) and a unique 6/12 Rep System for MASS & SHAPE.

Richard said that for a while he was smashing through training barriers and making "phenomenal progress" with the Japanese Counter-Split Body Blast System. However as with any training program he said that he begin to experience low level time factored training results where it seemed like his body was on "strike" (over-trained) so he decided to take a "7" day layoff from training.

Refreshed after the "7" layoff he decided to create a Stand-Out Training Strategy (my 21st century wording) where he would train less frequently, but still boost his muscle gains in ratio to the amount of time he was going to be investing in his training. Thus the revolutionary 21 Day (Mass Up Cycle) program was created.

21 Day (Mass Up Cycle) Program

Richard told me that he developed a dual 21 Day (Mass Up Cycle) Program which consisted of a 3 x 3 x 3 Exercise System and an aggressive stealth mega-calorie diet. I asked him to tell me more about the 3 x 3 x 3 Exercise System. He said that it consisted of 3 separate and distinct workouts, performed 3 times within in a 3 week period.

The purpose of the 3 x 3 x 3 Exercise System is two-fold in that it builds strength and muscle by becoming proficient in the performance of specific exercise movements.

I took notes while Richard was talking and I'm glad I did not leave it to memory alone (it's been 36+ years since that conversation). As the saying goes; "The palest of ink is better than the best memory.

Richard said he performed an average of only four exercises each workout on a rotational schedule, Monday, Wednesday and Friday. He went on to say that the key to his method of training was to work the involved muscle by performing the greatest number of sets he could recuperate from prior to his next workout. Each set was done with maximum poundage's that corresponded to a particular multiple-rep scheme.

He went on to say that his workout tempo (rep speed) was of a MEDIUM or MODERATE SPEED, which was neither SLO-MO INTENSITY nor RAPID-FIRE

(two opposite extremes in workout tempo). Richard would achieve a rhythm of performance in which there were no pauses at any point in the reps, nor between the reps (unless otherwise noted on certain exercises). It is this rhythm of performance that actually allows the muscles to re-engage themselves at every point in the rep. It might be said that the muscles coax themselves to work. Each rep was performed deliberately and 'rhythmically'...never 'haphazard' or 'jerky' nor with the assistance of any other muscles of the body.

With regard to rest periods between sets he said this would vary from five minutes, when using low reps and heavy weight, to a minimum of 45 to 75 seconds when using higher reps.

His workout ethic was to maintain a maximum concentration of mind on his training effort. For instance when he would begin a Close-grip standing wall curl he didn't think of just getting the weight from the thighs to the shoulders. He would see a mental picture of each ascending muscle fiber in his biceps engaging (or 'meshing' like gears in a race car) the next fiber, and so on until he visualized the entire biceps as one big muscular effort in operation. It is when all the muscle fibers work together, sharing the movement, the more perfectly the muscle will grow.and get stronger.

To avoid frustrating his training efforts he allowed for proper physical and mental recovery by resting & relaxing on Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday. This kept his body and mind from becoming over-trained and allowed for exceptional Muscle Growth.

He felt that his workouts were highly adaptable to experimentation. If, for example, he came into Monday's workout in a negative frame of mind - perhaps through lack of rest or extreme muscle soreness from lactic acid accumulation -and felt that it would take away from his maximum concentration on a particular exercise (or the total workout as a whole) he would move the exercise or workout ahead to Tuesday.

This he said is known as the 24-hour float method. If only one exercise was affected the Wednesday and Friday workouts remain the same. However, if the total workout on Monday would be moved up to Tuesday, and the Wednesday and Friday workouts moved to Thursday and Saturday respectively.

After briefly explaining his workout concepts to me, Richard then handed me a copy of his 3 x 3 x 3 Exercise System.

Here is that exact training schedule (exercises, sets, reps etc.) he used, plus an encapsulated commentary on the Exercise Mastery Techniques he used on most (not all) exercises.

3 x 3 x 3 Exercise System


1, Supine (flat) barbell bench press - It is not necessary to fully describe the action of this universally popular and often illustrated pectoral and strength building exercise. Suffice it to say Richard realized that anatomical differences can influence the effect that this exercise or any exercise for that matter, will have on a person's musculature.

Experiences in the hard-core trenches of bodybuilding taught him personally that the best method of performing the Supine (flat) barbell bench press is to do it with a wide hand spacing (36-inches and out) and elbows back (towards the ears). He would lower the bar s-l-o-w-l-y to his neck, pause for two seconds at the neck and then quickly press the bar locking the elbows out hard at the top. (Sometimes he would only press the bar to 2/3's lockout).

In the Supine (flat) barbell bench press (sometimes he used dumbbells) he would do one set each of 15, 10, 8, 4 and 1 rep(s), then rests for 5 minutes. Next were 10 power sets of 5 to 6 reps each. When these were completed he would take another short rest and would finish up with one set each of 10, 15 and 20 post-fatigue reps.

A change in training intensity was always necessary to create a new muscle response (and up his bench press power base). So, he would use what he called the shock/rebound technique (SRt) on the last couple of power sets.

(SRT) This technique required the use of two or three one-inch thick high-density sponge rubber pads.

The rubber pads were custom cut 19-inches long to (cover) his 51.5-inch chest from the collar bone (clavicle) to the sternum, and 12-inches wide in order to add protection to the extreme outer pectoral region.

Richard would then get into his favorite stone cold flat fighting position on the bench. A training partner would then position the rubber pads on his chest. Lying there, with a bench press bar that had 300 reasons to make (render and splatter) him into a piece of road won't say hello.

Richard introduces himself by lowering the bar a little more quickly than usual to the highest point on his chest and immediately gets a slight (note, only slight) rebound off the pads. This is not a travesty of the previously mentioned, bench press to the neck, and here is the reason why.

The rebounding of the bar off the pads allows the pectoral muscles to momentarily reset themselves for another effort on the upward stroke and therefore bypass the sticking point (such an action leads to an improvement in power in the working pectoral muscles) he continues pressing the weight to a lockout position. This completes one rep.

He would do this for 5 more reps (then) re-rack the bar (proclaiming it's fate as a lonely and stupid beaten piece of iron). This completed one power set using the shock/rebound technique. After a short rest-pause Richard did one more power set as just described. It is important to note that Richard's buttocks remained in contact with the bench surface at all times during the set.

The shock/rebound technique is excellent when a person has to lift alone. (This spectacular effective power leverage enhancement method) allows for a slight increase in poundage than would normally be used.

The shock/rebound technique mimics the assistance a spotter (training partner) gives during a controlled forced reps protocol.

Yet, another way to use rubber pads as a shock/rebound technique in the Supine (flat) bench press is to place two or three custom cut pads each on top of two stacks of 2" x 12" by 3' long wooden planks.

The (stack(s) are arranged, one on each side of the bench to accommodate for a particular range of measured movement in the bench press stroke).

Now it's just now a matter of lowering the bar down (in a controlled decent) so that the bottom edge of the barbell plate(s) touch the rubber surfaces in (causing a counter reverse velocity of energetic momentum) rebound effect just before the bar normally makes contact high on the chest. (You could also refer to this as... a power bump up...or force assistance 'positive blast').

The shock/rebound technique (SRT) has an unlimited potential for other exercises as well. The Straight arm barbell pull-over is one such exercise and is illustrated here.

2. Leg press - Richard was prejudiced toward this leg exercise because he felt that when it was performed for high repetitions on a vertical Leg Press machine, it was superior to bodybuilding purposes, to say squatting with a barbell. Richard said in his personal opinion that there are five immediate and obvious advantages that the Leg Press has over other thigh-bombing exercises, such as squatting with a barbell.

First, there was no oppressive weight on the shoulders causing a spine compression. This will allow for maximum freedom of breathing and oxygen saturation which is necessary for increased rib cage circumference and respiratory and cardiovascular benefits.

Second, with no effect of spine compression, there is a corresponding marked decrease in the anatomical strain on the lumbo-sacral region.

Third, little concern is needed regarding balance, because the weight is within the center of gravity and this gives the option or freedom to explore the outer limits of physical strength safely.

Fourth, the Leg Press is a mechanically controlled movement that allows for stress where it needs to be such as the adductors of the inner thighs or the vastus lateralis of the outer thigh. Richard, for example, would space his feet 18 to 24 inches apart on the footplate and angle them out at about 45 degrees or slightly more. From this extended position he would take in two or three big gulps of air and slowly lower the weight, bringing the knees wide and outward to the sides of the body. This was impacting on the inner thighs to say the least.

Initially I agreed with Richard up to this point and thoroughly understood what he was saying. However in defense of the Barbell back squat I mentioned to him that my bodybuilding mentors Donne Hale, Chuck Sipes and Peary Rader had collectively taught me a couple of important things.

"Barbell back squats are the key to freedom from a thin man's body."

"Barbell back squat when done with plenty of deep breathing and high reps is the ULTRA-ANABOLIC "TRIGGER" (my 21st century "buzz words") for stepping over the boundaries of muscle growth."

(I invite you to read about my experiences with the Barbell back squat on the home page of my website: www.dennisbweis).

I then asked Richard what he thought the fifth advantage of the Leg Press was...Richard was candidly honest with me and said,

Fifth, "I just prefer the Leg Press, because it's easy!"

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