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MPS and hypertrophy

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  • MPS and hypertrophy

    Hi Jordan,

    I'm trying to wrap my head around muscle protein synthesis.

    You've written elsewhere that MPS rates are elevated about 48-72 hours after a workout, depending on a number of factors, and hence high-frequency programming approaches are better for hypertrophy (assuming sufficient training advancement, work capacity, and so on). If volume (which I understand to be the main determiner of hypertrophy) is held constant, how much does frequency matter?

    For example, consider the following two plans.

    Plan A:

    M: Curls 3x8
    W: Off
    F: Curls 3x8

    Plan B:

    M: Curls 2x8
    W: Curls 2x8
    F: Curls 2x8

    Volume is the same, and let us stipulate everything besides frequency is too (intensity, rest periods, etc.).

    Based on your comments, I would expect Plan B to be slightly more effective for producing bicep gainzzz. Is this correct, and would the difference be large enough to be practically significant?


  • #2
    Depends on the person. The more trained they are, the more volume resistant they are in terms of generating elevated MPS. In other words, it's gonna take more volume to generate a slightly smaller MPS response in a trained lifter vs. an untrained lifter. At some point, you will need to train more frequently to get more MPS as the rate is no longer elevated as long as it once was.

    Given that this question is about biceps, however, you should be training them 2x/wk right now.
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