Decembulk Review (Jason Maxwell)

DecembulkReviewJasonMaxwellJason Maxwell has created a new program for gaining muscle mass just in time for the holidays.  I was very impressed with his DUP Method program, (a system for increasing your one-rep max) so I was looking forward to checking it out.

Maxwell’s bulking program is called Decembulk, and I’ve had the opportunity to look over it.   I’ll start this review by sharing what you get if you decide to invest in this program:

Decembulk Program Components:

The Getting Started Guide:  This short document simply tells you how to use the program–read the manual, decide how many days you want to train, and follow the nutrition and training protocols accordingly.  Pretty simple, which is a good thing (I don’t like overly complicated programs).

Printable Training Logs:  Decembulk is set up with some flexibility in terms of training frequency.  You can train 3, 4, or 5 days a week according to your schedule and preferences.  You simply print out the training logs accordingly.

Training Calendar:  This will guide you through the program by telling you which workout you are supposed to do on a given day.  If the calendar says “Workout A1,” for example, you just find that workout on your training log.  The calendar has guides for the 3, 4, and 5 day a week program.

Bulking Calculator:  This spreadsheet will guide you through the nutrition aspect of the program by showing you how many calories and macronutrients you should be taking in.  Be sure to pay attention to it: people tend to overestimate or underestimate the amount of food/calories they are actually consuming.

Bonus Material:

You’ll also get three bonuses when you order Decembulk:  6-Minute Finishers, for arms, shoulders, and chest.  You can add these “mini routines” to the end of your training sessions in order to give additional attention to lagging body parts (or muscles you just want to give extra attention to).

Decembulk Program Review:

Muscle size and strength are connected, but you are likely to see the best results when you train with one specific goal in mind.  Jason Maxwell has designed Decembulk for those who want to spend a few weeks focusing on hypertrophy/mass.  His workouts are designed to create the perfect combination of tension, muscle damage (on the microscopic level), and metabolic stress in order to help you achieve new gains.  This, combined with the right nutrition, should go a long way in helping you put on a few pounds of quality mass.

Let me be clear on something here:  this program is not a fat loss system (that should be obvious, but I just wanted to make it 100% clear).  If you are wanting to lose fat there are several other programs out there (Maxwell’s DUP Method can be adjusted for fat loss).  Decembulk is not for you if your goal is anything other than putting on mass.

I think this program would be good for the following:

*Beginner/intermediate trainees who have been training for a while and want to focus on getting bigger.  Decembulk would be great for guys who have learned a few of the basics and want to take their mass-building to the next level.

*Athletes who want to move up in weight class or just get bigger for their chosen sport.  The winter season is when a lot of guys want to focus this goal, and I think Maxwell’s program would be good for this.

*Returning trainees who want to regain some size they have lost during a layoff.  Those who have been out of training for a while and want to start back by putting on some mass should see good results.

*Ectomorphs (skinny guys) who want a system specifically designed for gaining weight.

If you match one of these descriptions then I think Decembulk would be a good investment.  It is a reasonably priced program and I think you’d find it to be a good investment of your hard-earned money.

Just CLICK HERE if you’d like to try this program or learn more.

 

Muscle Memory

The only serious weightlifting injury I’ve ever had happened back in 1996.  I had been experimenting with heavy weighted dips (doing this exercise with over 100 lb. attached to a belt).  It was great for my ego, but I think it is largely to blame for wearing out all the cartilage in my AC joint (where your clavicle meets the shoulder).  My doctors told me it was a pretty common injury among those who lift weights.  My only option (other than live in pain) was to surgically remove the bone spur that had developed.

This meant I’d have to lay off the weight training for six weeks or so.  I still remember returning to the gym for the first time after the layoff.  I was wearing one of my favorite sleeveless workout shirts.  Looking in the mirror was depressing–my arms looked like pipe cleaners to me.  Needless to say, I probably didn’t look nearly as bad as I thought.  Regardless, my arms had clearly lost some of their size.

Fortunately my size and strength returned very quickly. I actually broke some personal strength records within the next year or two.

I’m using this little story to illustrate a concept that is a bodybuilder or strength athlete’s best friend: muscle memory.

Technically this term (as most commonly used) has little to do with strength and size.  Muscle memory refers to things your body “remembers” to do after multiple repetitions.  My fingers, for example, are effortlessly typing this article without my brain thinking about each individual keystroke.

But many in the iron game have used this term to refer to what I experienced after my injury:  gains in strength and size usually come back much more quickly than it originally took to earn them.  We’ve kind of adopted “muscle memory” as a term to explain this phenomenon.

satellitecellsI have since learned how this works.  It has to do with satellite cells and their role in hypertrophy (muscle growth).  Satellite cells are located on the outside of muscle fibers and normally lay dormant.  But when a muscle is stressed/damaged through resistance training, they go to work.  These cells multiply and go to the site of the damage (keep in mind we are talking about damage at the microscopic level).

Here’s where it gets really interesting: satellite cells “donate” their nuclei to the muscle cells, which its one of the factors that cause it to increase in size (this is one of the main concepts in the MI40X program).  Trained muscle cells have more nuclei than untrained muscles, and this change remains even after one stops training.  The change, in fact, may be permanent.1

Formerly trained muscles, therefore, are already primed to grow back to their previous levels of size and strength–the additional nuclei are already there in the muscle cells, “waiting” to do their thing.

Muscle memory is real.  This is good to know if you need to take some time of due to injury, illness, or any other reason.

Reference:
1. J Exp Biol. 2016 Jan;219(Pt 2):235-42. doi: 10.1242/jeb.124495. Muscle memory and a new cellular model for muscle atrophy and hypertrophy.

Daily Undulating Periodization (DUP) Training Jason Maxwell; Mike Samuels

TheDUPMethodReviewI’ve had an opportunity to check out a new program called The DUP Method (from Jason Maxwell and Mike Samuels). I’ll start this review by explaining what you get if you decide to invest in this program:

DUP Method Program Components:

#1 The DUP Main Manual

This document serves as a starting point, explaining the overall training philosophy and science behind the strategies you’ll be using.  It will give you an overview of the program as well as some different options for training frequency (anything from 2-5 days).  Once you’ve read this you’ll have a basic understanding of why this method should make you stronger.

#2 The DUP Method Nutrition Guide

Needless to say, you can’t get big and strong without a good eating plan.  This document will show you how to set up your diet/nutrition in order to maximize the benefits of your training.  You’ll be guided in calculating your daily caloric intake as well as macronutrients (fats, proteins, and carbohydrates).  Be sure to look over this carefully–many trainees fail to reach their goals because they don’t put much thought or planning into their diet.

#3 The Optimal DUP Workout Log

According to the author, the ideal setup for this program is to train five days per week.  That may sound like overtraining, but you have to remember that the volume (number of sets and reps) is adjusted so you’ll be able to adequately recover.  Anyway, this workout log is convenient because you can print it out or put it on your smartphone.  Either way you could bring it to the gym with you.

#4-Day Per Week Workout Log

As the name implies, this workout is designed for those who can only train four times per week.

#5 The “Busy Man’s” Workout Log

This one is for those who can only train three times a week.

#6 DUP For Beat Up Lifters Workout Log

This is a program variation for lifters who are a little older and/or training around old injuries. Some trainees, for example, may have back issues or joint problems that require them to make some adjustments in their exercise selection, etc. This would be helpful for men (or women) in that situation who want to keep getting stronger while avoiding re-injuring themselves.

#7 DUP For Hypertrophy Workout Log

As the title implies, this program is set up for those who are primarily concerned with building muscle (vs. those who are only interested in strength/powerlifting).

#8 DUP For Fat Loss

Last but not least, these workouts are set up for those who are interested in maximizing fat loss while also benefiting from the strength aspects of the training.

Bonuses:

You’ll also get some nice bonus material if you decide to order.
BONUS #1: Bench Press Tutorial Video
BONUS #2: Squat Tutorial Video
BONUS #3: Deadlift Tutorial Video
BONUS #4: Bigger Bench Checklist
Bonus #5: Customization Guide
Bonus #6: DUP Arms Specialization

Deadlift Tutorial
Bonus Material (Deadlift Tutorial)

I think you’ll find the video tutorials especially helpful. You can watch them online or download them onto your hard drive (I’d recommend downloading them).

Additional Products (Upsells):

Here are additional program packages you can add on to the basic package. You do not have to purchase these, but you can if you are interested:

The Accelerator Package:
This includes a manual for diet, training, supplementation and complete workouts for those who want to do an all-out, 6-day per week training schedule.

The Done-for-You Package: This includes spreadsheets for all five of the workouts in the basic package.  You just put your one rep max in and it calculates it for you.  A nutrition spreadsheet is also included.

The Specialization Package: This includes specialization guides for bench press, deadlift and squat. These programs would be useful for those who really want to focus on improving one of these lifts.

REVIEW:

Have you ever noticed how many guys go to the gym and lift the exact same weight for the same number of reps week in and week out?  The reason is pretty simple: they are training like newbies.

Beginner trainees will usually get a little bit stronger every week, regardless of training methodology.  But linear progression (adding a little weight to the bar each workout) will only get you so far.  You will eventually reach a “sticking point”–a lesson I learned the hard way back in the 90’s.

This is where periodization comes in–training in a way that works with your muscular and neurological system.   Daily Undulating Periodization is a unique variation of this strategy that can be very effective.

Keep this in mind: this way of training is not like the typical bodybuilding type split you see in the magazines (and gyms).  But I think you’ll find it to be a refreshing change of pace–one that is backed by science.  One study, for example, found that the DUP method was superior to linear methods (like 5×5) for building strength in those with significant training experience.1

I believe the DUP Method can teach you how to start making progress again if you find yourself stuck in a rut of no noticeable gains.

*Intermediate to advance trainees who want to break through plateaus in their overall strength.  This includes increasing your max in the bench press, squat, and deadlift.

*Athletes who want to increase their strength in order to be more competitive in sports.

*Guys (or girls) who want be strong in addition to looking strong.

*Trainees who are willing to commit to a different style of programming than what they may be used to (especially those who have done a traditional bodybuilding split).

If any of these descriptions fit you then I think the DUP Method would be a worthwhile investment as part of your training library.  Just CLICK HERE if you’d like to order this program or learn more.  Don’t delay because the price will be going up soon. 

Reference:

1. J Strength Cond Res. 2002 May;16(2):250-5. A comparison of linear and daily undulating periodized programs with equated volume and intensity for strength.