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The Fundamental Four

Understanding the four basic muscular aptitudes: strength, power, muscle mass, and muscular endurance.

Muscular endurance means how many times you can lift a given weight in a row without stopping.  This could be best related with cardio based workouts,  high repetitions with very little weights or resistance.  This is great for endurance but will shrink strength, mass and power.

Power is "speed strength," or how much you can lift very quickly.   Typically using a lighter weight that can be pumped out fast about 15 to 20 reps will build power but not add strength or mass, butt may contribute to endurance. 

Muscular Aptitudes


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Understanding how the muscles work and how you work them will determine what you get out of it.  Figure out your goal.  Do you want strength, power, the physique.  How you train determines what you get!

Strength is how much you can lift once, and it's the backbone of every sport on Earth, from the crouch-holding power of a skier to the one-finger pull-up of a climber.  If you are looking for pure strength you do your max weight at every gym session, while trying to increase the weight each time.  This will make you incredibly strong. however will not do a whole lot for making you bigger or add to your endurance.


Muscle mass Burns calories and it can support strength and power – not to mention make you look better in a T-shirt.  Mass is what gives you the "physique".  The way to build muscle mass is too lift very heavy weight reaching muscle failure at 6 to 8 reps.  If you can lift it 9 times, then its not heavy enough.



As for your training sessions themselves, the number one thing to remember is that each of the Fundamental Four responds to a different number of repetitions per set. Determine what you want to accomplish, and dont always stick to just one training style.  Mix it up to so you can have the mass and or the endurance and to keep from getting stuck on the dreaded plateau. 

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