Reduced volume works for me.

Look, I'm not going to lie. There's a guy in here, "Lockout", that makes this one of the least productive and most boring places to talk training on the internet, and no one can be bothered to ban him. Buyer beware. Arguments about minutiae. Ad hominems. Appeals to authority. Training #1.

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Reduced volume works for me.

Postby lockout » Tue Feb 20, 2018 9:04 am

I'm giving a style a try that I had success with before.

Abbreviated workout. Squatting or deadlifting every other week, on its own workout. Bench and row on its own day. Throw in an off week once a month or so.

Worked pretty well for me in the past. Now that I'm trying it again, I'm noticing something. When I tried doing more exercises recently, I more so felt like I was holding back. But when I switched to more abbreviated, I felt like I could just pile on the weight.

And going over my notes from a few years back, I was actually the strongest I'd been in most recent years. So there's definitely something to it.

I don't know what else to say about it. In my old notes, I had a rationale as to why I thought it worked. Yet it seems natural for me to want to try to do more. Mike Mentzer would say that's irrational.

But anyways, my theory was that it takes time to recover. And a recovered muscle is a stronger muscle. You don't really gain or lose muscle once you've hit your max anyways. But even if you could grow more, theoretically a heavier more intense workout would work better.

Strange? Yes. But what can I say? It it works it works. And if it ain't broke, don't fix it.

Just wanted to share.
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Re: Reduced volume works for me.

Postby stevein7 » Wed Feb 21, 2018 2:39 am

I like those routines.
I just read one from Ditillo.
Squat, chin, dip.

10 sets of 4-6 reps. Go heavy and reduce weight as you fatigue.
Twice per week.

Alternatively 7 sets same protocol, three times per week.
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Re: Reduced volume works for me.

Postby lockout » Wed Feb 21, 2018 1:12 pm

stevein7 wrote:I like those routines.
I just read one from Ditillo.
Squat, chin, dip.

10 sets of 4-6 reps. Go heavy and reduce weight as you fatigue.
Twice per week.

Alternatively 7 sets same protocol, three times per week.


Heavy sets and low reps work the best. Sets of 5 was my compromise in my later years. It's heavy, but not heaviest. Better for pacing yourself.

But I have an idea. Suppose you can do 85% for a 5RM. Why do 1x5? Why not just do 5x1 instead with the same weight, but using CAT? Or work up to a top single at 85%?

The rationale is you are still lifting the same weight, but using CAT. So it's actually more force per rep. And you aren't pushing yourself to the max the way you would with HIT workouts with a set to failure or a west side ME workout at 90%+.

But either way. I prefer abbreviated workouts better. They allow me to feel fresh. And if I feel fresh, I can lift heavier.

Some of the stuff Brooks Kubik talked about over the years is actually starting to make more sense to me. He talked about doing 4 sets while working up to a top single. He talked about covering the entire body over a period of 2 weeks. Doing only 2-3 exercise per workout. And even days where you do singles, but not necessarily all out singles.

I'm finally getting it. It's all about pacing yourself so you can stay fresh. And if you're fresh, you're going to be able to lift more weight.
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Re: Reduced volume works for me.

Postby stevein7 » Thu Feb 22, 2018 3:50 am

A lot of this stuff kind of just happens anyway. Periods of harder training, easier training. Life imposes it. Get the flu, get an injury, go on holiday etc.

But the rule is that the better you are, the more difficult it is to get better and your training has to be organised to reflect that reality.

At first you can get PRs every session, then every week, then things get tricky.
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Re: Reduced volume works for me.

Postby lockout » Fri Feb 23, 2018 1:36 pm

So I tried a workout like the way Brooks Kubik explained. Just a handful of singles working up to a top single. For bench press. Then I did chins.

His whole argument makes a lot more sense now. The thing is, everyone says to start off light and work your way up. OK you can do that. But it doesn't mean you have to do high reps and it doesn't mean you can't do singles.

If I start out light with high reps, it takes too long to progress. Think about it. If you started out with sets of 8-12, then 5x5, etc., how long will it take for you to get up to a heavy weight? Too long and by the time you get there, you'll be burnt out. Doing singles cuts through all the bullshit and takes you there right away.

That's how west side did it. That's how metal militia is. Heavy sets of 1-3. And it works. That's also how Arthur Saxon used to do it a century ago, and obviously it didn't hurt him in the muscularity department.

That's one thing I realized over the years. There is a lot of stuff that looks cute on paper and may even be popular. But what works in the real world might be both dirt simple and also unconventional.
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Re: Reduced volume works for me.

Postby lockout » Sat Feb 24, 2018 3:20 am

So what about this?

Sanchez was saying not to do squats and dead lifts in the same week. Also WSB used to do it similar with only one or the other on ME day, but the DE day is medium weight. They also do 8-12 sets of 1-3. Plus it's very very heavy when training with gear and requiring more time for recovery. OK, fair enough.

But looking at it the way Brooks Kubik explained it, if you're lifting both raw and natural, the weight isn't going to be as heavy as with the other methods. No less warm ups are needed. He used the example of doing 4 sets working up to a top single. That's 30-50% the volume of the other methods.

So theoretically, you could still lift heavy that way, but due to it being both less weight and volume, it seems it'd also be less taxing and therefore require less time for recovery.

I like it. And I think that way one could handle doing both squats and deaflifts in the same week.

In fact, like I said, I tried it for one workout. And it is taxing, but not as bad as doing 8-12x1-3, 5x5, etc..
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