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Old 12-03-2009, 03:20 PM   #1
Gerhard Lavin
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Anabolic Hormones and Growth

No it's not another thread on the morality of AAS, but rather an interesting review on a study by Lyle McDonald. You can read it here. (WFS)

The take away message is and I'll quote "Leg training has no magic impact on overall growth, most of which is determined locally (through mechanisms of tension and fatigue mediated by changes in local muscular metabolism). If you want big arms, train arms. If you want big legs, train legs."

In other words the hormonal response from big compounds lifts does not contribute significantly to muscle growth but rather it's the fact the big compound lifts hit the most musculature. I won't change the way I train but it does change my understanding of the affect of training.
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Old 12-03-2009, 04:16 PM   #2
Shane Skowron
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Re: Anabolic Hormones and Growth

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Originally Posted by Ger Lavin View Post
In other words the hormonal response from big compounds lifts does not contribute significantly to muscle growth but rather it's the fact the big compound lifts hit the most musculature.
Exactly. Yet his conclusion is completely devoid of this fact:

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And if folks are wondering why empirically ‘folks who train legs hard’ seem to get big compared to those who don’t, I’d offer the following explanation: folks willing to toil on heavy leg work work hard. Folks too lazy to train legs hard often don’t. And it’s the overall intensity of the training that is causing the difference, not the presence or absence of squats per se. Which is why guys who only hammer pecs and guns get big pecs and guns even if they couldn’t find the squat rack in the gym: the small acute hormonal responses to training are simply irrelevant to overall growth.
How about the more obvious fact that squats and deadlifts provide hypertrophy stimuli for the upper body too?

Deadlifts involve forearms, traps, lats, pecs, hamstrings, and lower back. Squats involve quads, hamstrings, back, abs, and to a lesser extent, biceps.
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Old 12-03-2009, 04:22 PM   #3
John Jaeckel
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Re: Anabolic Hormones and Growth

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Originally Posted by Shane Skowron View Post


How about the more obvious fact that squats and deadlifts provide hypertrophy stimuli for the upper body too?

Deadlifts involve forearms, traps, lats, pecs, hamstrings, and lower back. Squats involve quads, hamstrings, back, abs, and to a lesser extent, biceps.
If all you did was train bench press and deads, you've have a fairly balanced, well-developed physique, with the exception of calves I guess.
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Old 12-03-2009, 06:34 PM   #4
David Meverden
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Re: Anabolic Hormones and Growth

Interesting study. Thanks for posting this. I'm glad that they look at the ACTUAL ENDPOINT (are they stronger?) rather than some proxy that is just ASSUMED to lead to an endpoint.

Now my questions:
1) What did "high volume leg training" consist of? Super sets of quad extension and calf raises might make me less sure of the applicability to barbell squats (though I guess I can't think of any training effect barbell squats would have BESIDES the hormones mentioned).
2) Did the low hormone group do ANY leg training? This study shows that there is no benefit to the hormonal boost IMMEDIATELY after the training, but is it still possible that heavy whole body lifting have a lasting effect in the days of recovery? If both groups did leg training, just not on the same day, this could indicate that there is still some benefit to leg training for upper body lifts.
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Old 12-03-2009, 07:50 PM   #5
Donald Lee
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Re: Anabolic Hormones and Growth

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Originally Posted by David Meverden View Post
Interesting study. Thanks for posting this. I'm glad that they look at the ACTUAL ENDPOINT (are they stronger?) rather than some proxy that is just ASSUMED to lead to an endpoint.

Now my questions:
1) What did "high volume leg training" consist of? Super sets of quad extension and calf raises might make me less sure of the applicability to barbell squats (though I guess I can't think of any training effect barbell squats would have BESIDES the hormones mentioned).
2) Did the low hormone group do ANY leg training? This study shows that there is no benefit to the hormonal boost IMMEDIATELY after the training, but is it still possible that heavy whole body lifting have a lasting effect in the days of recovery? If both groups did leg training, just not on the same day, this could indicate that there is still some benefit to leg training for upper body lifts.
2) There was no low hormone group. There was one group. Low hormone day they trained one arm. High hormone day they trained the other arm.
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Old 12-03-2009, 11:34 PM   #6
Blair Robert Lowe
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Re: Anabolic Hormones and Growth

DL works the calves a bit as well.
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Old 12-04-2009, 12:17 AM   #7
Michael Ingley
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Re: Anabolic Hormones and Growth

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Originally Posted by John Jaeckel View Post
If all you did was train bench press and deads, you've have a fairly balanced, well-developed physique, with the exception of calves I guess.
it would be more balanced if all you trained was deads/squats/press
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Old 12-04-2009, 04:35 AM   #8
David Meverden
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Re: Anabolic Hormones and Growth

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2) There was no low hormone group. There was one group. Low hormone day they trained one arm. High hormone day they trained the other arm.
OHH! I did not realize that. That changes things. That means there WAS no control group, and that the specificity of this study really is JUST to the question of that 15-30 min hormonal spike, not any other potential effect of whole body/lower body training.

Thanks!
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Old 12-04-2009, 05:47 AM   #9
John Jaeckel
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Re: Anabolic Hormones and Growth

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Originally Posted by Michael Ingley View Post
it would be more balanced if all you trained was deads/squats/press
Agreed
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Old 12-29-2009, 09:39 AM   #10
Drew Cloutier
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Re: Anabolic Hormones and Growth

Actually i'd say more balanced incline bench, squat, dead.

my argument would be that if you ONLY did OHS, squat, dead VS incline bench(30 degrees), deads, squat. sure shoulders, and triceps would get trained, but chest would be neglected, remedy that by doing incline bench instead, so your chest, shoulders, triceps get hit.
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