MUSCLE BUILDING Program
HOW TO GET STARTED:
STEP 1: Click "Start Program"
STEP 2: Select the month
STEP 3: Select the week
STEP 4: Select the day
STEP 5: Follow the video for each exercise
STEP 6: Rest for 60 seconds between each set
STEP 7: Rest for 60 seconds between exercise
STEP 8: When you finish click "End Workout"
STEP 1: Click "Start Program"
STEP 2: Select the month
STEP 3: Select the week
STEP 4: Select the day
STEP 5: Follow video for each exercise
STEP 6: 60-sec rest between each set
STEP 7: 60-sec rest between exercise
STEP 8: Click "End Workout"
FREquently asked questions
Q: What Does The Name "TA2" Stand For?
A: TA2 stands for “Train Anywhere. Train Anytime”, and with the TA2 Muscle Building program, paired with Undersun Resistance Bands, you will have the freedom to do precisely that. Don't be fooled with all that flexibility though, TA2 is a true muscle building and strength program.
Q: What Makes This Program Different Than Other Resistance Band Programs?
A: Most of the resistance band programs out there are designed as full-body workouts. The downside of this style of training is that it's almost impossible to give each muscle group the concentrated attention they need to maximize muscle development. TA2 was designed using a weekly muscle building "split" with each muscle-group trained on separate days. This approach allows for multiple exercises per body-part, a higher quality of work, and ultimately more muscle.
Q: Can Resistance Bands Build Muscle Like Traditional Free Weights?
A: Not only can resistance bands build muscle just like traditional weights, they even have some advantages over free weights, other than just being portable. Unlike free weights where the level of resistance is fixed throughout an exercise, resistance bands create Linear Variable Resistance (LVR), meaning that the more you stretch them, the more resistance they create. This variable resistance more closely matches the natural strength curve of your muscles, where you are typically weaker at the start of a movement and stronger toward the end. This allows for stronger peak contractions, and therefore more potential muscle growth.
Q: How Does The Program Work?
A: The TA2 Muscle Building Program follows a time-proven muscle building split, with each muscle group broken up into different training days. Each workout consists of multiple exercises per body part, with a strategically designed set and rep structure, to maximize mind-muscle connection, elicit peak muscular contractions, and develop explosive strength and muscle growth. Every 4-weeks the program progresses, attacking the muscles with new angles, and new exercises, utilizing resistance bands only.
Q: How Many Days Per Week Do You Work Out?
A: The TA2 Muscle Building Program follows a 5-day muscle building split, with each muscle group trained different days. The most effective schedule is 2-days in a row of workouts, followed by 1-day rest, then 3-days of workouts, followed by 1-day of rest, before starting the cycle again. This split allows for adequate recovery for all muscle groups.
Here’s what it would look like:
Q: How Long Is Each Workout?
A: Most of the workouts are 4 total exercises, with 4-sets per exercise. If you keep your rest between sets down to 1-minute, you should be able to complete each exercise in 6-7 minutes. At four exercises this puts your total workout time at roughly 30-minutes. It’s a misconception that you need to spend an hour plus in the gym to build muscle. Whether you’re training with resistance bands, machines or free-weights, if your workout is more than 40-minutes, that you just means you’re resting too long.
Q: How Do You Use The Calendar?
A: To make it easy to follow the program we’ve created a calendar on the main page, with all 12-weeks of the program. The workout and rest days are already scheduled in for you, so all you need to do for each workout is click on appropriate day. That will take you directly to your workout for the day. When you’ve completed the workout click the “END WORKOUT” button. Each time you login you will be taken back to this same main calendar page.
Q: How Long Is The Rest Between Each Exercise?
A: To shorten your workout time, and keep the intensity high, it’s recommended that you only rest 60-seconds between exercises. This is going to keep your heart-rate elevated as well, which will have a calorie burning effect. If you need more rest time, go ahead and take it. As you progress through the program just incrementally shorten your rest periods and try to get down to that 60-second mark.
Q: How Long Is The Rest Between Sets?
A: Just like the rest between exercises, ideally you want to keep your rest between sets to 60-seconds.
Q: How Many Sets Do I Do?
A: For each exercise, in the TA2 Muscle Building Program, you will be doing 4 total sets.
Q: How Many Reps Do I Do?
A: The TA2 Muscle Building Program was designed using a 20/10/10/15 Rep Structure, popularized by TA2 Co-Creator, James Grage.
Q: Why Are The Reps Different Each Set?
A: The number of sets, repetitions and speed of the repetitions are all by design.
Here is a breakdown of each of the 4 sets:
Set 1 - 20 Reps: The common presumption with a first set of 20 repetitions is that it’s just a warm-up set. This is not completely untrue, but there’s more to it than merely warming up the muscle. One of the biggest reasons that individuals have a hard time building muscle is they haven’t figured out mind/muscle connection. In any given movement, or exercise, our brain and body naturally wants to recruit as many muscle groups as possible to perform the given task. This is natural, but with resistance training the trick is learning how to target a particular muscle as much as possible. To do this goes against our instinct so it requires focus to learn to target a specific muscle. Most people have difficulty learning this because they are told that you always have to pick up the heaviest resistance you can find if you want to build muscle. The irony is that the heavier you go, the more likely you are to recruit other muscles. The point of doing the first set with 20 reps is going with a resistance level that you can do with strict form, so that you can focus on good quality contractions each and every rep. This is why I call Set #1 an “Activation Set”, where you are forcing your body to activate all of the motor units in the muscle, for a peak muscle contraction, as opposed to recruiting assistor muscles, to complete the movement. If you’ve selected a resistance that’s still challenging (don’t sandbag it) you will really start to feel that muscle burn after 12-14 reps. Embrace that burn and etch that feeling into your mind. Learning to really feel a muscle is the first critical step in learning Mind/Muscle connection. Now besides warming up the muscle and developing that connection with the muscle, you have the additional benefit of pre-fatiguing the muscle, priming it for your remaining 3 sets.
Sets 2 & 3 - 10 Reps: In both Set #2 and Set #3 the focus is on controlled rep speed, both in the concentric, isometric and eccentric contractions. In these two sets you will go with a heavier resistance than you used in Set #1, but make sure that you can still get the same quality contractions that you did in your first set. It’s best to aim for a resistance that feels really difficult at 5-6 reps and then the last 4-5 are extra challenging. If you got to 10-reps and feel like you could do a few more then the weight is too light.
Set 4 - 15 Reps: Just like the first set, your final set serves multiple purposes. The primary focus it to build power. One of the advantages of bands, over free-weights, is that it makes it easy to train more explosively, which activates those fast-twitch muscle fibers. These are the type of muscle fibers that make you run faster, jump higher, and lift heavier. When training with free-weights there’s a significant downside to training with faster rep speeds. Once you get that weight moving fast, momentum carries the weight and robs you of resistance. When using bands you are not able to create momentum, so no matter how explosively you do the movement you get maximum resistance all the way through the range of movement. In Set #4 we take advantage of this opportunity by doing 15-reps explosively. Use the same resistance that you did in your first set, but now we are going to do them quickly. The one adjustment we want to make is to shorten our Range of Motion (ROM) slightly, to make sure that we have constant tension throughout the movement. In other words, we don’t ever want the band going slack. Even though we are doing 15 reps, our total Time Under Tension (TUT) is shorter.
Q: What Is a Concentric Contraction?
A: In a concentric contraction the muscle shortens as it contracts. If you were doing a biceps curl, in this phase you would be curling the weight up. This contraction is about 1-second in time, and needs to be powerful, yet controlled.
Q: What Is an Isometric Contraction?
A: In an isometric contraction the muscle is contracted, but the length of the muscle does not change. In other words, you are holding the contraction in one spot. For the purpose of the TA2 program you will want to do a mini-isometric contraction at the peak of the movement. You don’t have to pause at the top, just make sure you give it that extra little squeeze right as you reach the top. This is going to ensure that you get a peak contraction and activate as many muscle fibers as possible.
Q: What Is an Eccentric Contraction?
A: In an eccentric contraction the muscle lengthens in a contracted state. This is also called doing a “negative”. Right after lifting a weight (concentric) and squeezing (isometric) the eccentric would be the phase where you slowly control the weight back down to the starting position. Think of your muscle as the brakes that are slowing it down. The eccentric phase is often neglected, which is a big loss, considering that more muscle is broken down (and therefore built back stronger) in the eccentric phase than the concentric. The key to a good eccentric contraction is the speed. Try to aim for a 2-second eccentric contraction.
Q: What Is Time Under Tension (TUT)?
A: In any given rep or set structure, it isn’t just about how many reps you do, that determines how hard a muscle works. What you’re really looking at is Time Under Tension (TUT) which is the total time that your muscle is under tension in the concentric, isometric and eccentric phases. If you have a 1-second concentric contraction, a half-second isometric and a 2-second eccentric, then your TUT per rep would be 3 ½ seconds. If you take the number of reps and multiply it by the TUT, you get the total Time Under Tension for the set.If we look at the TA2 program, in Sets #2 and #3, we have a rep speed of aproximately 3 ½ seconds, multiplied by 10 reps, which gives us a TUT for that set of roughly 35 seconds. The ideal TUT for muscle size and strength gains (hypertrophy) the ideal range is 30-70 seconds. In Set #4, although we have 15 reps as opposed to 10, our TUT is very similar. Let’s compare: Using an explosive rep speed of less than 1-second on the eccentric and concentric, and no pause on the isometric, we have a TUT per rep of less than 2-seconds. Multiply that by our 15-reps and we have roughly 30 seconds. As you can see, although we’re doing more reps, our TUT is less, but still in that ideal range for building muscle.One of the peripheral benefits of Set #4 is that we’re also driving more blood into the muscle. Besides the fact that we all like the way a good muscle pump feels, it also serves a muscle building purpose. By driving more blood into the muscle, along with it comes muscle building nutrients like glucose and amino acids.
Q: What Is The Progression Through the 12-Week TA2 Muscle Building Program?
A: Progression, in a weight training routine, simply means that as you get stronger you need to continue to challenge your muscles in new ways, in order to continue making progress. There’s no magical “Progression Strategy” that is going to be more effective than you simply pushing yourself out of your comfort zone each and every workout. Changes in muscle strength and size come from adaptations, made by your body, when it is forced to do more than it is used to doing. The rule is this: If you always do what you can always do, then you will always remain the same. In other words your body isn’t going to build muscle if you keep lifting the same amount of weight every time you workout. The lesson here is that much of the progression in a routine comes from your effort and intensity, more than it is from the types of exercises that you are doing. With that being said, introducing new exercises is important and that’s why throughout the TA2 program new exercises are brought in to challenge you, and maximize progress over the entire 12-weeks.