Last week I had to pleasure to attend the first ever Hypertrophy Matrix Training Camp by Malcolm Gwillliam in Berlin at the MTM Personal Training Gym.
I´ve listed a few takeaways – have fun reading!
1. you can´t recreate the anabolic atmosphere of a training camp
I´ve been to a few training camps and there´s always one thing that stands out the most: the atmosphere. Maybe if you train at Gold´s Gym in Venice or at Das Gym in Vienna every time you step in for a workout there´s a great atmosphere but most of the time your standard gym does not supply this kind of anabolic atmosphere. A training camp is different – no matter where it takes place you can be sure there are only guys (and sometimes even woman: Hi Ines!) who love to train! This case happened last week at Berlin at the MTM Gym. 6 workouts in three days everyone was hyped and pushed another to give it your all. Great times – thanks guys!
2. program design I: difference between strength, hypertrophy and fat loss
As a coach I have a variety of things that I need to manage when I want my clients to acieve their goals. All good coaches will agree that nutrition is the most important part. For me personally the nutrition part is more like a pain in the ass. You have to do it. You need to plan and calculate it. If you don´t get that part right you won´t see any success with your clients. The program design part of my job is by far the most interesting – at least for me. I think program design is an art form. You can be really creative there with exercise selection, specialty methods and so on. Plus it´s also a numbers game. Intensity, reps, time under tension, volume – it´s all about numbers so you can also channel your inner Russell Crowe from a beautiful mind and get crazy about all the numbers to create a great program. Malcolm also explained how program design should be different taking into account the goal. Is the goal strength, hypertrophy or fat loss? Not only do you have different variables (e.g. for strength the most important number is intensity on the other hand for hypertrophy you vary between TUT and intensity as the main focus) but you also have to structure and change volume and intensity differently dependent on your clients goal!
3. program design II: be creative!
You can´t go wrong with a rep bracket of 5 – 7. Your average rep will be 6, if you get stronger for six reps in the main lifts there´s no way that you don´t lose bodyfat and put muscle on in the process. But you can and you need to switch it up a little bit to make training more fun! There are so many specialty method you can use to mix it up a little bit, wave loading, broad pyramid, VMA method, descending- and ascending sets, clusters and so on. Keep in mind that some methods are more for advanced clients but there is still enough variety to choose from that will also apply for novice trainees!
4. program design III: undulate everthing!
Malcolm gave us a great insight of how he created his Hypertrophy Matrix program that will last for 4 (FOUR!!!) years. The most important thing is that you can´t just focus on one training phase itself, you gotta zoom out and keep the bigger picture in mind. A 12 weeks macrocycle, the next 12 weeks marcocycle and the one after that. If you start at the wrong level you can dig yourself a program design hole, which is hard to get out of. So keep in mind the longterm goal of you client/athlete. You or your clients won´t progress by accident but by proper planing and designing great programs that build on each other.
one bonus pearl from the weekend
My personal trainer colleague Philip Schmieder aka the white Flex Wheeler (as he calls himself by the way) was also at the seminar and he is preparing to host his very first seminar about nutrition for general pop clients. As a little teaser of what to expect at his seminar he gave away one great tip for free:
„It´s easy to get lean. When I want to get lean I just it something that causes diarrhea. That way I´m sure going to be lean in two days!“
Great info, good talks, tough workouts, delicious food and awesome people!
Big thanks to Malte and Max from MTM Gym for hosting the seminar and of course to Malcolm for sharing his knowledge!