Here’s how a strip set works. You would do a failure set at 90%, then drop that in half for a failure set, and then again in half for another failure set. To figure out what 90% is you would simply figure out the weight you could do exactly 1 time. As an example if I were to do a dumbbell press I could do about 80 lbs in each arm 1 time before my arms fell off, and I was forced to go through life with no arms. Needless to say nobody wants you to for through life with no arms so you would drop that weight to 90% of that which would be 72 lbs but of course you could go down to 70 lbs and start there. At 90% failure you would probably be lucky to do 4 reps. Now you immediately go to 35 lb dumbbells and go to failure. Even if you think 35 lbs is light you are blown out from the 70s so you may only get about 6 reps. Silly enough when you drop down to 20s after that you may still be lucky to get 8 reps because you are worn down. That is one set, and you would do them all in 4 sets.
If you really want to maximize the effect you would have a training partner and the two of you would spot the other one for an extra 2 reps per weight, and really exhaust yourselves. While you are spotting your workout partner that would be the perfect amount of time for you to rest, before you do set two, then three, then four. In this strip set configuration you would also do no more than three exercises per heavy muscle (quads, pecs, lats, traps) and no more than two exercises per light muscle (biceps, hamstrings, triceps, deltoids, calves) and your abdominals would be an every other day thing regardless, and you would NOT use weight on any abdominal routines. Everything with your lower torso would be to failure. You can see with the limited amounts of exercises where it would be important to do mass exercises (presses, rows, squats etc) as opposed to the café standard exercises (hammer curls, concentration curls and the myriad of definition exercises that people do).
This is NOT for the faint of heart and it definitely is not for someone who is out of shape. If you haven’t graduated to standard pyramid sets (starting at a lower weight with higher reps and increasing the weight and dropping the reps etc) for a month or two then you will not be ready for strip sets. You will also have to maintain a rather strict diet too. Women who eat less than 1200 calories a day, cannot do these without risking injury pretty easily, and men who drop beneath 1500 are definitely risking injury. The benefits of strip sets will be an amazing power increase when you go back to the pyramid sets and the bulking up. For women it will definitely strip fat off of you while making your muscles long and lean. If you decide to give these a try please be kind and let us know how your progress goes, and get out there and get your healthy on!