Look Inside. Certain to become the bible of HIT-the training that revolutionized lifting with shorter, far-more-intense workouts-New High Intensity Training by Ellington Darden is the last word on how to achieve explosive growth safely, without steroids! For many dedicated bodybuilders, the weight-lifting theories of Arthur Jones are gospel. It was Jones, the inventor of Nautilus exercise equipment, who first discovered that short, intense workouts could produce better results than the long, high-volume workouts then in vogue. At the heart of the book is a complete, illustrated, six-month course for explosive growth.
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The audience that day at Duke University was getting restless. They were also getting insulted. The speaker had begun the seminar with a lecture about ignorance and stupidity, implying not so subtly that those who didn't accept his ideas were of the former persuasion.
He ridiculed the audience, ignored the scheduled break times, and threatened to "whip the ass" of a graduate student who dared question him. This was, after all, a man who'd once jerked a young Arnold Schwarzenegger out of a car and told him to shut his yapping trap. He certainly wasn't going to entertain the criticisms of some skinny college kid. The year was The speaker was Arthur Jones, inventor and founder of Nautilus and the father of high-intensity training.
By all accounts, Jones was a genius on many levels, but no one ever called him a "people person. Finally, Jones was whisked off stage and one of his assistants was asked to save the day and explain this new training concept The employee of Jones was a young Ph. Texas and Collegiate Mr. America contests a couple of years before. When this photo was taken, Darden was 5' 11" tall and weighed pounds.
Nervous but competent, he pulled it off. During the impromptu presentation, the young man referred to high-intensity training using the acronym HIT. The abbreviation stuck, and Dr. Ellington Darden took his place in bodybuilding history. He's written more than a dozen books on the subject, but hasn't focused on the hardcore bodybuilding market since Disappointed with the state of modern bodybuilding training, he decided to revive and update HIT, the revolutionary and controversial training method that once changed the face of muscle building.
T-Nation decided to sit down with Dr. Darden to discuss the book and what's become known as "New HIT. Can you sum it up for us? Ellington Darden: High-intensity training, in a nutshell, is getting maximum results in minimum time.
I credit Arthur Jones, the inventor of Nautilus exercise equipment, with this definition. Jones, who lived life in the fast lane, had little time to waste on exercise— unless it provided him with efficient results. For many years, Arthur Jones traveled the world filming and capturing wild animals for his documentary television programs.
Here, he is shown in his African base camp in feeding a baby elephant. In his left hand is one of his favorite means of protection: a lightweight M2 carbine. Jones initially recommended as many as 16 exercises, each performed one set to failure, three times per week. This eventually proved to be too much overall exercise. Mentzer went the other extreme: consolidated routines, some of which required only 3 or 4 exercises to failure, once every 10 to 12 days.
This was too little for maximum results, at least for the average trainee. My New HIT routines apply between 7 and 12 exercises per routines, one set to failure, twice a week. T-Nation: Gotcha. One of the underpinnings of HIT is outright hard work and intensity, but how is that defined? By going to failure? Contracting hard? Perceived effort? Making war faces? Darden: Going to "momentary muscular failure" is the guideline, but you have to learn how to reach failure correctly.
Under the best conditions, this process requires about two weeks of gradually easing into understanding and applying an intense, all-out effort on each exercise. In the early days at the Nautilus headquarters in Florida, Jones had little patience with most trainees.
He always preferred to "bust their asses" right out of the gate. As a result, they got a hell of a workout— if they could make it through the routine. And if they couldn't, they still got their systems shocked to a degree that they hadn't experienced previously. Either way, most guys left with the impression, "Wow, that Nautilus HIT feels different from my previous training. T-Nation: HIT is also known for stressing good form as in "train to failure but use good form. I'm confused. Darden: Good form involves the application of many fine points around the performance of each exercise.
Again, this requires appropriate teaching techniques and time. Jones figured that most bodybuilders, if they knew anything at all, knew the difference between strict and cheating repetitions on the barbell curl. Thus, he frequently used the curl to demonstrate his point of "outright hard work.
That's why I begin Chapter 1 with this dynamic description of barbell curls the Arthur Jones way. Later, I point out that cheating repetitions must be incorporated responsibly. You should use them only occasionally, and only in a controlled manner. Why is full-body training such a cornerstone of HIT? Darden: When I became interested in bodybuilding in , most of the Mr. America winners in the muscle magazines used whole-body routines.
I remember reading and applying the routines of Red Lerrille, Mr. Then, I recall meeting Red personally in Throughout the conversation he stressed whole-body training, three times per week. My best gains were always accomplished with whole-body workouts. Many champion bodybuilders of the s and s applied whole-body routines for the majority of their workouts. Pictured above are Steve Reeves Mr. America , John Grimek Mr. America , , and George Eiferman Mr.
America But back to the question, whole-body training is far more efficient than any type of split routine. Because it reduces the probability of overtraining. As a result of the indirect effect, you can't work your lower body without involving your upper body—and vice versa. It just makes sense physiologically, to work the muscular system as a whole, briefly—and rest it as a whole, too. Or, as Jones often said, "Split routines make about as much sense as sleeping with one eye open.
T-Nation: He did have a way with words. The cover of your new book, The New High Intensity Training, contains the blurb "Add up to 18 pounds of muscle in just two weeks. Darden: Hey, wait a minute. Reread that promise. It says: "Add up to 18 pounds in two weeks," not "Add 18 pounds in two weeks. So, yes, it's possible, but not probable, unless you have a large amount of genetic potential and the determination to work in a very disciplined manner. This has to be a world record for muscle gained in that time period.
T-Nation: Let me play devil's advocate. It's "muscle memory," it's water gain, it's fat gain In short, is it real muscle? Are those who see such gains in any special situations, like coming back from an injury or using steroids? His before-and-after measurements, photos and resting metabolic rate tests are consistent with the adding of significant muscle mass. Examine carefully the photos on pages and of my HIT book and you'll see what I'm talking about.
Furthermore, the pictures weren't retouched in any way. Let me go on record by stating that the unique, creatine-loading procedures—which Hudlow used—were probably responsible for percent of the gain.
Overall, from six months of HIT, Hudlow built 39 pounds of lean body mass. T-Nation: That's amazing. What's this unique creatine-loading procedure? Darden: David Hudlow and I, along with Tim Patterson, designed a formula for mixing creatine monohydrate and sugar into a gallon of ice-cold water.
Hudlow then consumed the solution according to our step guidelines, which are detailed in chapter I believe this is the best way to load and pack creatine into your muscles.
It certainly worked well for Hudlow. What happened there? Darden: Approximately 18 months after Viator won the Mr. America contest, a serious accident at a wire-extruding plant caused Viator to lose most of the little finger on his right hand.
Several days later, he almost died from an allergic reaction to an anti-tetanus injection.
The New High Intensity Training
The audience that day at Duke University was getting restless. They were also getting insulted. The speaker had begun the seminar with a lecture about ignorance and stupidity, implying not so subtly that those who didn't accept his ideas were of the former persuasion. He ridiculed the audience, ignored the scheduled break times, and threatened to "whip the ass" of a graduate student who dared question him. This was, after all, a man who'd once jerked a young Arnold Schwarzenegger out of a car and told him to shut his yapping trap. He certainly wasn't going to entertain the criticisms of some skinny college kid.