According to the author, the greatest culprits that cause an over-sized look are the very kind of exercises that are considered the most effective for muscle growth: the dead lift and the squat.
These two compound exercises are universally regarded as the best for overall muscle growth because of the stress they place on your body and nervous system.
Here is where the program is unusual. According to Rusty Moore, the problem is that by applying “non targeted” muscle growth with squats and dead lifts you end up looking like a curvy, beefy meat-head. Very strong and impressive for sure, but not necessarily the best looking.
The reason for that would be that bulging quads break the linearity of your physique making you look “curvy” and out of proportion, with legs too big compared to your upper body.
Sure, if you do too many squats and dead lifts you may end up with bull-like legs, however this is still a long way to say that they should be skipped altogether. After all, squats and dead lifts are notorious for boosting metabolic rate, spurring muscle growth all over and helping burn fat, when combined with proper nutrition.
In other words, it takes time and effort to get bulky legs out of proportion and the banning of squats and deal lifts from the program may be an over reaction by the author out of fear of not getting a sculpted, well proportioned physique.
Myofibrillar Hypertrophy Strategy
Training for strength with low repetitions combined with low body fat increases the definition of your muscles giving them the much coveted dense look. However, the program strategically switches to high repetition range to prevent plateaus.
The Visual Impact Muscle Building plan also includes a kind of hybrid repetition range, around 4/5 reps, designed to get the best of high and low ranges and increase density and size at the same time.
The workouts are arranged in a way to to shift the balance away from an excessive high-repetition, sarcoplasmic growth (6/15 reps) and more towards a low-repetitions myofibrillar range (1/3 reps), though there is space for both.
Having said this, the program is not biased against high repetitions as such, as long as these are strategically implemented with low repetitions as required for best results.
In other words, you need both, it is the balance that needs to be shifted. Too many low-reps cause you to look harder but undersized, and too many high-reps cause you to look bigger but also softer.
The Advanced Ripped Technique
Since skin shrinking is slower that fat burning, the program implements an advanced strategy that requires cutting down calories while exercising in the strength, low-reps range (1/3) precisely for the purpose of losing some sarcoplasmic, fluid muscle size, around 5 to 10 pounds lighter than your final targeted body weight.
In other words you diet while training for strength at the same time and your muscle and overall size goes smaller than the final size you are after. Doing this for a couple of months gives your skin time to adapt to your new, smaller waist and body size and fit tightly around it.
Next, you re-introduce the high- reps (6 to 15) for muscle mass about 3 weeks before a contest or you hit the beach without increasing carbohydrates and your muscle will actually fill into your skin even tighter, making you look ripped.
Then you can turn to maintenance mode by switching back to low repetition range and keeping your calories on track.
Additional Standard Fat Loss Technique
If this sounds too complicated and daunting, there is also an easier, standard technique that involves reducing your body fat gradually over 6 to 8 weeks without losing muscle mass at all. This gives your skin plenty of time to shrink around your muscle for excellent definition.