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X-traordinaryWorkouts.

com Presents

The Ultimate

10 x 10

MASS
WORKOUT

by Steve Holman and Jonathan Lawson

The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout was written to help you


achieve a muscular physique with sensible bodybuilding
strategies. Weight training and dieting can be demanding
activities, however, so it is highly recommended that you
consult your physician and have a physical examination prior to
beginning. Proceed with the suggested exercises and routines
at your own risk.
Photography by Michael Neveux
Cover model: Jonathan Lawson
Copyright 2009 by Homebody Productions
All rights reserved.
The material in this document may not be reproduced in whole
or in part in any manner or form without prior written consent
from the publisher.
Homebody Productions, P.O. Box 2800, Ventura, CA 93002

www.X-Rep.com
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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

Contents

Introduction...........................................................4

Chapter 18x8Fast Blast


for More Mass...................................6

Chapter 210x10Hitting
Hypertrophic Heights......................14

Chapter 3The Ultimate 10x10


Mass Workout..................................16

Chapter 4Heavy/Light
10x10 Mass Workout.......................24

Chapter 510x10 Q&A........................................34

The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

Introduction
If there's one thing we've learned over our 50 years of
cumulative in-the-trenches weight-training experience, it's
that things cannot stay the same if you want big gains. In
other words, to pack on loads of raw muscle, you must
make changes to your workout on a regular basis.
The change-to-gain method is especially effective once
a trainee has been working out for a few years. After all,
you can't keep adding weight or repetitions to exercises
forever. That's not how the body works. To continue
triggering adaptations like muscle-fiber enlargement and
capillary-bed expansion for size increases, you need new
training tacticsand sometimes a completely new mass
methodology.
Which brings us to the 10x10 method10 sets of 10
repetitions for each exercise. Whoa! 10 sets per exercise?
That sounds like a ticket to the overtraining merry-goround. As you'll see, that's not the case. The first half of
those sets act as a warmup, but we're getting ahead of
ourselves. Let's rewind...
The 10x10 method came from German Olympic lifting and
was adapted to bodybuilding by the late Vince Gironda.
In case you're not familiar with the Iron Guru, he owned
Vince's Gym in Hollywood, California, in the 50s through
the 90s, and he was renowned as one of the smartest
trainers aroundand quite an off-the-wall character.
We remember when he used to visit the IRON MAN offices
with IM scribe Gene Moze, and he always had something
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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

to teach us. He would jump down onto the floor to show


us the proper way to do crunches or go on a rant about
how steroids have ruined bodybuilding. By the way, he was
known as a straight-shooter, always seeking the truth, and
he didn't care who he offended, even Arnold...
When Arnold first came to America, he visited Vince's
Gym, walked up to Gironda and announced, in a heavy
Austrian accent, I am Arnold Schwarzenegger, Mr.
Universe. Vince looked up from the counter, checked him
out from head to toe and said, "Oh? You look like a fat
f@#k to me. Arnold, being the smart man he is, didn't take
offense, but embraced that brash comment, eventually
ripping up his mass to dominate bodybuilding.
Vince was all about resultsfast results, which is what
his 8x8 program produced: I call it the honest workout
because of the pure muscle fiber that can be attained. Keep
to 8x8 and your muscle fibers will plump out, giving you a
solid mass of muscle density as a result.
And the workouts are
quick toousually around
45 minutes. It's fast,
efficient muscle building
that can transform your
physique. Interested? We
thought so. Let's go!
Steve Holman and
Jonathan Lawson
www.X-Rep.com

Holman and Lawson.

The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

CHAPTER 1
8x8Fast Blast for
More Mass
No doubt about it: The Iron Guru Vince Gironda was
always well ahead of the curve when it came to building
muscles. He trained the very first Mr. Olympia, Larry Scott,
helping him overcome his genetic shortcomings, and he
was the go-to guy for movie stars in Hollywood when they
needed to transform their bodies quickly for a film role.
Often he prescribed his 8x8 routine.

Vince Gironda.

The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

I come
back to this
high-intensity
honest
workout
more often
than any
other for
maximizing
muscle-fiber
growth in
the quickest
possible
time.... But
working
within the 8x8
guidelines is
not suficient
to guarantee
gains....

You must exhaust each muscle with the right tempo


and weight resistance. I recommend that you reduce the
rest time between sets to 15 to 20 seconds.
Now you may be shaking your head and thinking, How
can you possibly do eight sets of eight reps with such
short rests? The key is weight selection...
For each exercise you pick a weight that you could
initially do for around 18 reps, and you stick with that
weight for all eight sets.
in other words, the first three sets will be fairly easy.
In fact, those initial sets act as an excellent warmup, as
the muscular stress is minimal. They primarily force more
blood through the target muscle to prime it for the latter
sets, which get brutally hard.
In fact, around set five, if you picked the right weight,
you will start struggling to get eight reps. At set seven,
you will have to grind to eke out an eighth repetition. And
on set eight, you should get only six or seven. If you get
eight, increase the poundage at your next workout.
While Vince often prescribed two or three exercises in
8x8 style for each muscle, we've found, as have many
other trainees, that big gains occur as fast or faster with
only one exercise, especially if you use the Ultimate
Exercise for each bodypart, as identified in our first
e-book, The Ultimate Mass Workout. Here are those
exercises:

The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

Squat (quads, or front


thighs). This is the most
ergonomically correct move
for engaging the front-thigh
muscles for most people. If
you have trouble squatting
with a free bar, try it on a
Smith machine. If those
aren't possible, leg presses
can work in a pinch. Also,
while Gironda suggested
20-second rests between
sets, we feel that about
one minute is best on bigmuscle exercises so that
cardiovascular fatigue doesn't stop you short of working
enough muscle fibers to trigger growth.
Feet-forward Smithmachine squats
(hamstrings, or back of
thighs). The upright torso
position in combination with
the feet in front of the hips
activates the hamstrings with
teamwork from surrounding
muscles. While MRI studies
show that the front-squat
version (pictured) is best,
bar in front of the neck, the
back squat version is more
comfortable and hammers
the hamstrings just as well.
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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

Knee-extension leg press calf raises


(gastrocnemius). In the UMW e-book we discussed legbased cardio, like treadmill work, as the only compound
exercise for calves. Since then we've found that leg press
calf raises, with some knee flexion and extension, provides
excellent midrange calf work. Here's a quick description:
Position yourself on a leg press with only the balls of
your feet on the foot plate, your knees locked. Lower the
weight by allowing your feet to come toward you as you
simultaneously unlock your knees somewhat. From that
slight bent-knee position, about a quarter of the way down,
and your feet back in the stretch position, simultaneously
push your knees to lockout and your feet to the top calfraise position (toes pointed, calves flexed). Then lower
your feet and bend your knees at the same time again to
power out another rep. It takes some practice, but once
you get a good rhythm, you'll feel your calves getting the
brunt of the work.
Decline bench presses (chest). The decline
position helps put more stress on your pecs and less on
your front deltoids. Your grip
should be just slightly wider
than shoulder width and you
should lower the bar to your
low-pec line before reversing
the bar movement. Doesn't
this primarily stress the lower
pecs? MRI studies show that
the exercise hits the lower
chest as well as the upper.
You can see that in the photo
of Jonathan performing this
ultimate chest exercise.
The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

Dumbbell upright rows


(delts). Overhead presses
tend to stress the front-delt
heads rather than the sides,
so we've found dumbbell
upright rows the best choice
for compound shoulder work
with medial-head emphasis.
Many of our programs include
an overhead pressing exercise
after; however, we consider
dumbbell upright rows as the
ultimate medial-head move. A
variation is the seated lateral
raise, which you do in a semiupright row form, a favorite of Mr. Olympia Jay Culter.
Chest-supported
dumbbell rows
(midback). These allow
you to get significant
stretch in the traps at
the bottom of the stroke
when the dumbbells are
together, and as you
row them up, you can
guide them out so you
squeeze your scapulae
together at the top for
full midback contraction.
Being facedown on a
chest support negates
cheating.
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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

V-handle chins (lats).


These put your biceps in an
advantageous position for power
output, but no so much that
the lats become a secondary
mover. You will be able to feel
your lats getting some stretch
at the bottom and then a full
contraction at the top as your
upper arms move to your sides
and slightly back. That's the
fully contracted position for the
lats. Most trainees will need to
substitute V-handle pulldowns to
get 10x10.

Dips (triceps). MRI


studies show that this
exercise brings in all three
triceps heads equally. The
reason is that your arms are
down at your sides, which is
the fully contracted position
for the triceps. Secondary
muscles like the pecs and
delts help force the triceps to
fire against heavy resistance,
making dips the ultimate
triceps exercise. A close
second is decline close-grip
bench presses.
The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

11

Undergrip chins (biceps).


We mentioned above that a
parallel grip on V-handle chins
allows biceps leverage, but not
so much that the lats become
secondary movers. By shifting to
an undergrip, you make the biceps
the prime mover, and undergrip
chins becomes the ultimate
exercise for biceps. A close
second is undergrip pulldownsif
you can keep from rocking your
torso back. Most trainees will need
to use undergrip pulldowns for
10x10. One caveat: In programs
that include biceps work after back
training, a standing curl may be a
better choice.
Incline kneeups (abdominals). With these you
get resistance all the way through the movement and
your abs get help from your hip flexors. Note that on a
hanging kneeup, there
is zero resistance at the
bottom of the stroke,
which makes the incline
version better. As you
increase strength, you
will have to secure
weight to your feet or
hook them to a lowcable setup for added
resistance.
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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

To review, the Ultimate Exercises are...


Squats for quads
Feet-forward Smith-machine squats for hamstrings
Knee-extension leg press calf raises for calves
Decline bench presses for chest
Dumbbell upright rows for deltoids
Chest-supported dumbbell rows for midback
V-bar chins or pulldowns for lats
Dips for triceps
Undergrip chins or pulldowns for biceps
Incline kneeups for abdominals
We'll work all of those into an efficient mass-building
10x10 workout in Chapter 3. First, let's discuss 8x8 vs.
10x10. Is one better than the other?

Eight sets of eight is so effective that, as a


20-year-old novice competitive bodybuilder, I
was able to gain 17 pounds of muscle drugfreecontest weight from one show to the
nextin less than nine months using the
system. To this day I still use it whenever I need
a shock program to bring up a lagging bodypart.
Tom Venuto
Drug-free bodybuilder
Author of The Body Fat Solution

The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

13

CHAPTER 2
10x10Hitting
Hypertrophic Heights
One reason Vince Gironda's 8x8 method is so effective
is that it condenses a lot of volume into a small time
frame. More work in less time is one of the keys to muscle
growth, but it's best if each and every set reaches the
hypertrophic time zone.
Researchers have found that about 30 to 40 seconds of
tension time is best for optimal muscle-growth stimulation.
That equates to about five seconds per rep. Most trainees
don't like moving that slowso edging up the rep total
can increase gains via more time under tension.

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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

If you do 10 reps, each one must last three to four


secondswhich is closer to the norm, if you're not
throwing the weight.
Also keep in mind that Vince usually suggested more
than one exercise per muscle group. In our Ultimate
Exercise 10x10 program you only do one exercise for
each target muscle, so a slight increase in volume will
increase gains for most traineesthe 10x10 system is the
perfect solution.
Does it work? Here's what Olympic coach Charles
Poliquin has to say about it...
The program works because it targets a group of motor
units, exposing them to an extensive volume of repeated
efforts, specifically, 10 sets of a single exercise. The body
adapts to the extraordinary stress by hypertrophying the
targeted fibers. To say this program adds muscle fast is an
understatement. Gains of 10 pounds or more in six weeks
are not uncommon, even in experienced lifters!
Impressiveand very exciting. Poliquin says that you
should begin with a weight that you can lift for 20 reps
to failure, or about 60 percent of your one-rep max. For
example, if you can bench press 300 pounds for one rep,
you would use 180 on the 10x10 program.
Okay, now that you're motivated, have all the exercises
and paramaters, let's get to the 10x10 program with the
Ultimate Exercise for each muscle group. It hurts, but it
works!
The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

15

CHAPTER 3
The Ultimate
10x10 Mass Workout
We are conditioned to think that lifting heavy weights is
the only way to build muscle. Because the poundage you
use on an 8x8 or 10x10 set grouping is relatively light, it
seems counterintuitive that it could add mass fastbut it
does.
If a strength coach like Charles Poliquin has such high
praise for it, you know it works; however, keep in mind
that Poliquin recommends one to two minutes between
sets as opposed to Gironda's 15 to 20 seconds. We
prefer something
in betweenthe
amount of time it
takes your partner
to complete his or
her reps, which is
30 to 40 seconds.
The 10x10
method targets
the motor units
that innervate the
high-growth fibers
despite the lighter
poundage. In our
previous e-books

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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

we've discussed the size


principle of fiber recruitment.
That states that on the first
lighter reps of a set the lowthreshold motor units fire,
toward the middle of the set
the mediums fire, and toward
the end of the set the highthreshold motor units fire as
you reach failure.
That important hypertrophic progression still occurs
during the 10 sets; however, it doesn't happen on each
setat least not on the first fewbut rather builds over
the course of all 10.
In other words, the low-threshold motor units are
fatigued on the first few sets; the mediums are attacked
during the middle sets, and you pull in a high number of
high-threshold motor units during the last reps of each of
the last two or three sets.
In addition to optimal fiber recruitment, you also get
a wicked growth-hormone-producing burn and a skinstretching pump, which will build the capillary beds and
stretch the fascia, the muscle-fiber encasements. That
fascia expansion can allow more muscle size to happen,
as it relieves constriction and provides more room for fiber
growthmuch like stretching a balloon before you blow it
up. The prestretching allows you to blow it up bigger with
less effortand you want that to happen to your muscles
too. They will blow up big with the 10x10 method.

The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

17

Okay, we've established that you will use the 10x10


method on each of the Ultimate Exercises, but what kind
of bodypart split is best? Because the method is quite
taxing, a full-body program is outyou would be a limp
dishrag halfway through every workout.
In fact, legs should be on their own day because 10
sets of squats and 10 sets of hamstring work will be very
draininga day of rest after that workout is a good idea
too so that your overall system can recover.
Here's the ideal split for most trainees:
Week 1
Monday: Chest, Delts, Triceps, Abs
Tuesday: Quads, Hamstrings, Calves
Wednesday: Rest
Thursday: Lats, Midback, Biceps
Friday: Chest, Delts, Triceps, Abs
Week 2
Monday: Lats, Midback, Biceps
Tuesday: Quads, Hamstrings, Calves
Wednesday: Rest
Thursday: Chest, Delts, Triceps, Abs
Friday: Lats, Midback, Biceps
Repeat Week 1, etc.
Notice that legs get one workout per week, on Tuesday;
the upper-body workouts rotate over three days, Monday,
Thursday and Friday. Here are the workouts...

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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout


Workout 1: Chest, Delts, Triceps, Abs
Exercise, 10 sets x 10 reps

Poundage

Decline presses
or Wide-grip dips

Dumbbell upright rows


or Seated bent-arm
lateral raises

Parallel-bar dips
or Decline extensions

Incline kneeups

Rest about 30 to 45 seconds between and after sets of most exercises.


Rep speed should be about 1.5 seconds up and 1.5 seconds down.
Weight stays the same for all 10 sets of 10 reps; 10th set you should
get only 8 to 9 reps...
Increase the poundage slightly on all sets for an exercise if you
get 10 reps on the 10th set.

The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout


Workout 2: Quads, Hamstrings, Calves
Exercise, 10 sets x 10 reps

Poundage

Squats or Smith squats

Stiff-legged deadlifts

OR

Leg presses

Feet-forward Smith squats

Knee-extension leg press


calf raises
or Donkey calf raises 8 x 20

Rest about 30 to 45 seconds between and after sets of most exercises.


Rep speed should be about 1.5 seconds up and 1.5 seconds down.
Weight stays the same for all 10 sets of 10 reps; 10th set you should
get only 8 to 9 reps...
Increase the poundage slightly on all sets for an exercise if you
get 10 reps on the 10th set.

20

The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout


Workout 3: Lats, Midback, Biceps
Exercise, 10 sets x 10 reps

Poundage

V-handle pulldowns

Chest-supported
dumbbell rows
or Bent-over rows

Undergrip pulldowns
or Cable curls

Rest about 30 to 45 seconds between and after sets of most exercises.


Rep speed should be about 1.5 seconds up and 1.5 seconds down.
Weight stays the same for all 10 sets of 10 reps; 10th set you should
get only 8 to 9 reps...
Increase the poundage slightly on all sets for an exercise if you
get 10 reps on the 10th set.

The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

21

Ultimate 10x10 Workout Reminders


1) No warmup sets are necessary; the first few sets
of the 10x10 regimen act as a warmup.
2) The ideal rep speed is 1 1/2 seconds up and
1 1/2 seconds down; always keep your form strictno
heaving or jerking the weights.
3) Rest 30 to 45 seconds between setsor as long
as it takes your partner to finish his or her set.
4) Note that you do 8x20 on calf work. Calves require
higher reps due to their endurance capacity and fiber
density. If you add forearm work, the same is true
of that muscle group. You may want to try 8x15 for
forearms. You could add wrist curls and reverse wrist
curls on back-and-biceps day.
5) After six weeks on the Ultimate 10x10 Mass
Workout, back off the intensityuse the same
workouts with the same weights but do 8x10 instead
of 10x10. Eliminating the last two sets means you will
have no all-out reps. After that lower-intensity week
7, you can go back to the intense version or move
to the Heavy/Light version later in this book or move
to another program (remember, change triggers new
gains).
6) If you try the complete 10x10 workout and feel a
craving for heavy-weight sets, you may be more suited
to the heavy/light version in the next chapter.

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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

10x10 Strength-Progression Variation


Olympic strength coach Charles Poliquin has a
power-oriented take on the 10x10 method based on his
German Volume Training model. Since you're focusing
on strength, you use a lower rep range, 4-5, and you
rest 90 seconds between sets.
Those aren't the only changes. Poliquin increases the
load by five percent every workout for two workouts
in a row, but reduces the target rep by one for every
weight increase. Here's an example using the bench
press for a trainee who can bench 300 pounds for 10
reps with strict form:
Workout 1: 10 sets of 5 with 300
Workout 2: 10 sets of 4 with 315
Workout 3: 10 sets of 3 with 330
Workout 4: 10 sets of 5 with 315
Workout 5: 10 sets of 4 with 330
Workout 6: 10 sets of 3 with 345
Poliquin says that at this point you will be able to
bench 330 for 10 strict reps, a 30-pound increase.
Realize that because your rest is two to three times
as long, the 10 sets will take longer than the standard
10x10 protocol, which requires 30 to 40 seconds of
rest between sets.
If you're a bench press fanatic, you could substitute
the flat bench for declines in Workout 1 and use the
above progression. It will take longer to complete, but
you'll build your bench press poundage quickly.
The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

23

CHAPTER 4
Heavy/Light
10x10 Mass Workout
You probably consider yourself a bodybuilder. That
means you should be concerned with building muscle.
Strength should be a secondary concern; however, using
relatively light poundages at every workout in the 10x10
programeven if it feels incredibly heavy on the last few
setsdoesn't satisfy that craving most of us have to
move some heavy iron every so often.
That doesn't mean you should abandon itjust that you
could include both a 10x10 workout for each bodypart
alternated with a more standard heavy protocol.
One of our most popular programs is the 3D Power
Pyramid routine from
The X-traordinary
Muscle-Building
Workouts e-book.
Trainees like it
because it produces
fast results in both
size and strength.
One of the keys
to that program is
the pyramid system
on the big midrange
exercises....
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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

To pyramid, you
first do two to three
progressively heavier
warmup sets. Then
for your first work set
you pick a weight that
allows nine reps. For
work set 2 you add
weight, enough to
bring your reps down
to 6-7. For work set 3
you add weight again
and finish with 3-4 allout reps.
That will satisfy your craving for moving some big
weights and also help you generate max force, which is a
key component of muscle hypertrophy.
After you pyramid on the big midrange exercise,
you follow with one set of a stretch- and one set of a
contracted-position exercise. Here's an example for
quads:
Midrange: Squats, 3 x 9, 6, 3-4
Stretch: Sissy squats, 1 x 8-12
Contracted: Leg extensions, 1 x 8-12
That Positions-of-Flexion routine provides full-range
work, which trains the key components of muscle growth:
max force (midrange), stretch overload (stretch) and
tension/occlusion (contracted).

The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

25

In the Heavy/Light 10x10 Workout, you will train every


bodypart with that full-range protocol on Heavy day.
Light day will be reserved for the one-exercise 10x10
approach. It's a great combination that can stimulate
big gains via a number of different pathways. Use the
same split, but with heavy (H) POF and 10x10 as your
so-called light (L) workouts:
Week 1
Monday: W1Chest (H), Delts (L), Triceps (L), Abs (H)
Tuesday: W2Quads (H), Hamstrings (L), Calves (L)
Wednesday: Rest
Thursday: W3Lats (L), Midback (H), Biceps (L)
Friday: W4Chest (L), Delts (H), Triceps (H), Abs (L)
Week 2
Monday: W6Lats (H), Midback (L), Biceps (H)
Tuesday: W5Quads (L), Hamstrings (H), Calves (H)
Wednesday: Rest
Thursday: W1Chest (H), Delts (L), Triceps (L), Abs (H)
Friday: W3Lats (L), Midback (H), Biceps (L)

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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

Week 3
Monday: W4Chest (L), Delts (H), Triceps (H), Abs (L)
Tuesday: W2Quads (H), Hamstrings (L), Calves (L)
Wednesday: Rest
Thursday: W6Lats (H), Midback (L), Biceps (H)
Friday: W1Chest (H), Delts (L), Triceps (L), Abs (H)
Week 4
Monday: W3Lats (L), Midback (H), Biceps (L)
Tuesday: W5Quads (L), Hamstrings (H), Calves (H)
Wednesday: Rest
Thursday: W4Chest (L), Delts (H), Triceps (H), Abs (L)
Friday: W6Lats (H), Midback (L), Biceps (H)
Repeat Week 1
Simply print out the six workouts on the next few pages
and follow them as listed abovethe numbers, such
as W1, W2, etc., are the individual workouts (Monday is
Workout 1; Tuesday is Workout 2, and so on).
The results were well worth the hard work
[using 10x10 on squats]. I took measurements
of my legs before and after starting the 10-sets
program to accurately record the results. I was
overjoyed to find out that, at the end of the
seven-week program, my legs had grown almost
two inches. Thats an amazing gain [for an
advanced bodybuilder], especially in less than
two months.
John Hansen
Mr. Natural Olympia
Author of Natural Bodybuilding
The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

27

Heavy/Light Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout


Workout 1: Chest (H), Delts (L), Triceps (L), Abs (H)
Exercise

Poundage

Decline presses**
or Wide-grip dips**, 3 x 9, 6, 3-4
Flat-bench flyes*, 1 x 8-10
Cable flyes
or Cable crossovers, 1 x 8-10
Dumbbell upright rows
or Seated bent-arm
laterals, 10x10
Parallel-bar dips
or Decline extensions, 10x10
Incline kneeups, 2 x 10-15
Full-range crunches, 2 x 10-15
Asterisks mean one (*) or two (**) warmup sets. If you do one, use
about 70 percent of your work weight, 8 reps; if two use 50 percent
and 80 percent, 12 and 8 reps.
Rest 30 to 45 seconds between and after sets of 10x10 exercises; rest 2
to 2 1/2 minutes between and after all other sets.
Rep speed should be about 1.5 seconds up and 1.5 seconds down.
Weight stays the same for all 10 sets of 10 reps; 10th set you should
get only 8 to 9 reps...
Increase the poundage slightly on all sets for a 10x10 exercise if
you get 10 reps on the 10th set.

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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

Heavy/Light Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout


Workout 2: Quads (H), Hamstrings (L), Calves (L)
Exercise

Poundage

Squats**, Smith squats**


or Leg presses**, 3 x 9, 6, 3-4
Sissy squats*, 1 x 8-10
Leg extensions, 1 x 8-10
Stiff-legged
deadlifts, 10x10
Knee-extension leg press
calf raises
or Donkey calf raises, 8 x 20
Asterisks mean one (*) or two (**) warmup sets. If you do one, use
about 70 percent of your work weight, 8 reps; if two use 50 percent
and 80 percent, 12 and 8 reps.
Rest 30 to 45 seconds between and after sets of 10x10 exercises; rest 2
to 2 1/2 minutes between and after all other sets.
Rep speed should be about 1.5 seconds up and 1.5 seconds down.
Weight stays the same for all 10 sets of 10 reps; 10th set you should
get only 8 to 9 reps...
Increase the poundage slightly on all sets for a 10x10 exercise if
you get 10 reps on the 10th set.

The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

29

Heavy/Light Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout


Workout 3: Lats (L), Midback (H), Biceps (L)
Exercise

Poundage

V-handle
pulldowns, 10x10
Chest-supported
dumbbell rows**
or Bent-over
rows**, 3 x 9, 6, 3-4
Bent-arm bent-over
laterals, 2 x 8-10
Undergrip pulldowns
or Barbell curls, 10x10

Asterisks mean one (*) or two (**) warmup sets. If you do one, use
about 70 percent of your work weight, 8 reps; if two use 50 percent
and 80 percent, 12 and 8 reps.
Rest 30 to 45 seconds between and after sets of 10x10 exercises; rest 2
to 2 1/2 minutes between and after all other sets.
Rep speed should be about 1.5 seconds up and 1.5 seconds down.
Weight stays the same for all 10 sets of 10 reps; 10th set you should
get only 8 to 9 reps...
Increase the poundage slightly on all sets for a 10x10 exercise if
you get 10 reps on the 10th set.

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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

Heavy/Light Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout


Workout 4: Chest (L), Delts (H), Triceps (H), Abs (L)
Exercise

Poundage

Decline presses
or Wide-grip dips, 10x10
Dumbbell upright rows**
or Seated bent-arm
laterals**, 3 x 9, 6, 3-4
Incline one-arm laterals, 1 x 8-10
Standing laterals, 1 x 8-10
Parallel-bar dips**
or Decline extensions**, 3 x 9, 6, 3-4
Ovehead extensions*, 1 x 8-10
Pushdowns, 1 x 8-10
Incline kneeups, 10x10
Asterisks mean one (*) or two (**) warmup sets. If you do one, use
about 70 percent of your work weight, 8 reps; if two use 50 percent
and 80 percent, 12 and 8 reps.
Rest 30 to 45 seconds between and after sets of 10x10 exercises; rest 2
to 2 1/2 minutes between and after all other sets.
Rep speed should be about 1.5 seconds up and 1.5 seconds down.
Weight stays the same for all 10 sets of 10 reps; 10th set you should
get only 8 to 9 reps...
Increase the poundage slightly on all sets for a 10x10 exercise if
you get 10 reps on the 10th set.

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Heavy/Light Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout


Workout 5: Quads (L), Hamstrings (H), Calves (H)
Exercise

Poundage

Squats, Smith squats


or Leg presses, 10x10
Stiff-legged
deadlifts**, 3 x 6-10
Leg curls, 2 x 8-10
Knee-extension leg press
calf raises**
or Donkey calf raises**, 3 x 12-15
Standing calf raises, 2 x 12-15
Seated calf raises*, 2 x 15-20

Asterisks mean one (*) or two (**) warmup sets. If you do one, use
about 70 percent of your work weight, 8 reps; if two use 50 percent
and 80 percent, 12 and 8 reps.
Rest 30 to 45 seconds between and after sets of 10x10 exercises; rest 2
to 2 1/2 minutes between and after all other sets.
Rep speed should be about 1.5 seconds up and 1.5 seconds down.
Weight stays the same for all 10 sets of 10 reps; 10th set you should
get only 8 to 9 reps...
Increase the poundage slightly on all sets for a 10x10 exercise if
you get 10 reps on the 10th set.

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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

Heavy/Light Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout


Workout 6: Lats (H), Midback (L), Biceps (H)
Exercise

Poundage

V-handle chins**
or V-handle
pulldowns**, 3 x 9, 6, 3-4
Dumbbell pullovers*, 1 x 8-10
Stiff-arm pulldown, 1 x 8-10
Chest-supported
dumbbell rows
or Bent-over rows, 10x10
Undergrip pulldowns*
or Barbell curls*, 3 x 9, 6, 3-4
Incline curls*, 1 x 8-10
Concentration curls, 1 x 8-10
Asterisks mean one (*) or two (**) warmup sets. If you do one, use
about 70 percent of your work weight, 8 reps; if two use 50 percent
and 80 percent, 12 and 8 reps.
Rest 30 to 45 seconds between and after sets of 10x10 exercises; rest 2
to 2 1/2 minutes between and after all other sets.
Rep speed should be about 1.5 seconds up and 1.5 seconds down.
Weight stays the same for all 10 sets of 10 reps; 10th set you should
get only 8 to 9 reps...
Increase the poundage slightly on all sets for a 10x10 exercise if
you get 10 reps on the 10th set.

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33

CHAPTER 5
10x10 Q&A
Q: I'm using The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout,
but I feel like I need to specialize on my
shoulders. Should I add another exercise and do it
in the 10x10 style?
A: That's one pretty good way to specialize for more
size. Remember, in Vince Gironda's 8x8 system he usually
had trainees do two or three exercises in that style for
each bodypart. You could do the Ultimate Exercise in
10x10 fashion, then add another move for 8x8.
Another route you can take is to follow up the 10x10
Ultimate Exercise with the other two Positions-of-Flexion
moves for one or two sets each.

Incline one-arm lateral raises, the stretchposition exercise for the medial-delt head.

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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

Seated lateral raises.

For instance, for shoulders you do dumbbell upright


rows for 10x10, and then follow with one or two sets of
incline one-arm laterals (stretch, pictured on the previous
page) and one or two sets of standing or seated laterals
(contracted, pictured above).
We really like the POF-exercise-add-on approach
because with that method youre training the target
muscle through its full range as well as getting at all of the
key facets of growth stimulationmax force (midrange),
stretch overload (stretch) and tension/occlusion
(contracted).
So what about 8x8 on all three POF exercises for the
bodypart you want to specialize on? Vince would no
doubt approve. If you can handle the pain, it can produce
extraordinary gains.
Notice that there is space below each exercise in The
Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout on pages 19-21 so you can
write in additional exercises for all bodyparts or only the
ones you want to specialize on.
Q: In Workout 2 (legs) of The Ultimate 10x10
Mass Workout you have leg presses followed by
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35

feet-forward Smithmachine squats OR


squats followed by
stiff-legged deadlifts.
Why those two
different choices for
quads?
A: If you do squats for
quads, it may be difficult
to do feet-forward Smithmachine squats for
hamstringsthat's just too
much squatting20 sets,
200 reps. It's better to do
the stretch move for hams,
stiff-legged deadlifts.

Smith-machine squats.

To put it another way, if you decide to do feet-forward


Smith-machine squats for hamstrings, you don't want
to do squats beforehand or fatigue may prevent optimal
hamstring activation when you get to feet-foward Smith
squats. In that case leg presses are the best choice to use
before feet-forward Smith-machine squats. So it's...
Leg presses, 10x10
Feet-forward Smith-machine squats, 10x10
OR
Squats, 10x10
Stiff-legged deadlifts, 10x10

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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

Q: In The Ultimate Fat-to-Muscle Workout, you


emphasize muscle damage as important because
the repair process after the workout raises the
metabolism and burns fat. You provide that
damage with negative-accentuated sets. Will I be
getting enough muscle damage with the 10x10
program to continue the fat-to-muscle process,
or should I add an NA set for each bodypart?
A: In that e-book we talk about Arnold Schwarzenegger
not doing much, if any, cardio work to get ripped for
competition. He got his share of fat-burning muscle
damage via volumelots of setsnot negativeaccentuated work.
Arnold achieved cut contest
condition with almost zero
cardio work. (Balik photo)

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37

Volume is exactly what you get with the 10x10 method.


You will get sore, which is an indication that you have
triggered muscle microtrauma that raises your metabolism
during the repair process (fat burning increases).
If you use the Heavy/Light 10x10 Workout on pages 2833, you may want to substitute a negative-accentuated
set for the last low-rep set on the big midrange exercises
on Heavy workouts. That will insure that you're getting
sufficient metabolism-raising microtrauma at every
workout. For example, the Heavy biceps workout is...
Barbell curls, 3 x 9, 6, 3-4
Incline curls, 1 x 8-10
Concentration curls, 1 x 8-10
Change it to...
Barbell curls, 3 x 9, 6, 7(NA)
Incline curls, 1 x 8-10
Concentration curls, 1 x 8-10
For an NA set, you reduce the poundage so you can
raise it in 1.5 seconds and lower each rep in six seconds.
The eccentric, or negative-stroke, emphasis has been
shown to increase muscle damage.
Make that one simple changean NA set on the first
exerciseto every Heavy workout in that program, and
you'll get almost the same muscle-packing, fat-hacking
effects as The Ultimate Fat-to-Muscle Workout.

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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

Q: I find that X Reps [or end-of-set partials]


work well for me at increasing mass. You don't
have them listed in the programs. Should I not do
them on 10x10 exercises?
A: For the uninitiated, X Reps are partial reps that
you perform in the semistretch position after full-range
exhaustion. For example, when you stick at the end
of a set of cable curls, move the bar to just above the
arms-extended position and drive up about eight inches.
Continue to pulse out as many of those low-end X-Rep
partials as possible, then terminate the set.

End-of-set XRep partials


can increase
your mass gains
exponentially.

We
mentioned the
size principle
of fiber
recruitment
earlierin
any set to
exhaustion you
bring in the
low-threshold
motor units
first, during
the easier
reps, then the
mediums and
finally the highthreshold motor
units on the last
difficult reps.

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39

The problem is that the nervous system falters before the


muscle, so many of the key growth fibers are left dormant.
That means less growth stimulation.
If you continue with three to five X-Rep partials after
exhaustion, the target muscle is forced to call in its
reserves, which includes more key growth fibers. That's
the reason we say X Reps make any set three to five
times more effectivethose end-of-set partials make a
tremendous inroad into the fast-twitch fiber reserve.
We call them X Reps because they extend the set
although after trying them you may think the X stands for
excruciating!
On any 10x10 exercise, you can do X Reps on the very
last set, number 10, if you can. You will have to fight
through fatigue and pain to make it happen, but it can
be doneand X Reps should increase your mass gains
exponentially. [Note: X Reps are impossible on some
exercises, like the bottom of a squat or barbell curl. That's
explained in The Ultimate Mass Workout, the original XRep manual that chronicles the development of and our
transformation with X Reps.]
Q: Are there any supplements that can help me
make better gains with the 10x10 method?
A: The most difficult thing to cope with using more
volume with short rest periods is fatigue and burn caused
by lactic acid and ammonia pooling in the target muscle.

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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

That fatigue-product accumulation is one reason the


nervous system short-circuits your sets before all of the
fast-twitch fibers are taxed. One supplement that has
been shown to increase muscle energetics is creatine. We
suggest about four grams before and after every workout.
Beta-alanine is a relatively new supplement that converts
to carnosine in muscle. That has been shown to buffer
lactic acid so you can grind out more growth reps (more
size stimulation with every set).
Muscle research shows that the biggest bodybuilders
have more than twice the carnosine levels of nontraining
individuals due to an adaptation to intense training.
Scientists surmise that because they do so many painzone sets, the biggest bodybuilders stockpile carnosine
to help them get bigger and stronger.
Beta-alanine converts to carnosine, so by taking it you
load your muscle tissue with carnosine and can power
further into the growth zone on any
work set. Take two capsules of a
product like Red Dragon upon
awakening in the morning and two
before training. [Note: Many people
get a skin-tingling effect from betaalanine, but thats a normal reaction.]
The most potent instant-strength
supplement we've every used is
Gakic by MuscleTech. It's somewhat
pricey, but it works. It's an ammonia
buffer that allows you to power out

The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

41

more reps similar to beta-alaine, but


via a different pathway (remember,
BA buffers lactic acid).
Everyone we've talked to who has
tried Gakic, even the most skeptical,
have found it to be effective at
increasing strength from the very first
use. It eventually stops working after
a few weeks, but when that happens,
you simply stop using it for a few
weeks. Then re-introduce it down the
road for another strength surge.
Using creatine before and after your workouts and betaalanine and Gakic before will provide a lot of anabolic
ammunition for extraordinary 10x10 muscle-mass gains.
Q: I've gotten the fullest muscle growth and
development with [three-exercise] Positionsof-Flexion workouts. Only one exercise per
bodypart, even if it's 10 sets of 10, can't give me
total growth stimulation. How would you suggest
I work in 10x10 if I want to do full POF routines
for each bodypart every time I train?
A: We hear you. Once you understand the many
layers of muscle growthmax force (midrange), stretch
overload (stretch) and tension/occlusion (contracted)it's
counterintuitive to think one exercise can do it all. The
Ultimate Exercise can do a lot, but it can't cover all of the
various hypertrophic facets.

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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

10x10 will work for a number of weeks or even months,


but then you have to change to continue to gain. It's the
nature of adaptation. For example, if you use the oneexercise 10x10 program for six weeks, you may continue
to get gains if you use it again for another phase; however,
a better route is to use a different program for a while,
then go back to 10x10 later.
To answer your question, a great variation on the
Heavy/Light 10x10 program on pages 28-33 is to do full
POF programs for each bodypart, but at one workout
do 10x10 on the big midrange exercise, then one set
of a stretch move and one set of a contracted move. At
your next workout do two to three heavy work sets on
the midrange- and stretch-position exercises, but end
with 10x10 on the contracted-position move. Here's an
example using triceps...
Workout 1
Decline close-grip bench presses, 10 x 10
Overhead extensions, 1 x 8-10
Pushdowns, 1 x 8-10

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43

Workout 2
Decline close-grip bench presses, 2-3 x 8-10
Overhead extensions, 2 x 8-10
Pushdowns, 10 x 10
That gives you muscle-building variation as well as extra
volume plus intensityand you train all bodyparts with full
POF for complete development.
Up to this point we haven't discussed much about using
the 10x10 method on contracted-position exercises, but it
can add a lot to your mass. There are even entire training
systems based on ending bodyparts with volume and/or
high reps on an isolation exercisefor example Hany
Rambod's FST-7 and Eric Broser's FD/FS method (fiber
damage, fiber saturation).
In the 3D Muscle Building e-book we discuss and
outline our version of Broser's Power/Rep Range/Shock
workout, and we found that altering the Power-week
workouts from all low-rep work to ending with isolation
moves done in drop-set fashion did great things for
our mass. Ending with 10x10 on the finishing isolation
exercises may be even better as the pump will be
immensesimilar to Workout 2 above.
One thing we have noticed is that on many isolation
exercises you may want to increase the reps for optimal
muscle stimulation. For example, we often use 8x12 on
pushdowns and concentration curls for arms.

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The Ultimate 10x10 Mass Workout

Q: Thank you for introducing me to the 10x10


mass method. Im getting the best musclesize gains Ive ever achieved. I plan to use this
workout to reach my ultimate size potential.
A: We appreciate the compliment, however, as we said
in the Introduction, you need change to continue to make
gains. No workout will work forever. It's the nature of the
human body and muscular adaptation.
In other words, the gains youre making with the 10x10
workout, while spectacular at the moment, will eventually
slow down; then it's time to move to another workout,
either something completely different or a variation of
10x10. There are a few suggestions in this e-book and
more complete programs at X-traordinaryWorkouts.com.
For now, however, keep blasting away with 10x10 and
pack on as much mass as you can with it. It can take
your muscle mass to the next level, transforming your
physique!

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45