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Old 05-27-2011, 10:31 AM   #7
Strongman & Trainer
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Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: The Iron Pit
Posts: 3,939
Training Exp: 5 years total
Training Type: Powerbuilding
Fav Exercise: Log Clean Press
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Originally Posted by BendtheBar View Post
A properly structured strength building workout for beginners to early intermediates won't look that much different than a properly structured muscle building workout. They use most of the same core exercises, and both require a focus on progression to maximize results.

I talk to people you have added substantial muscle each day, from pro bodybuilders to amazing body transformations. Though they train differently, one thing is consistent...99% will tell you that progression on a smart selection of exercises was the key to their gains.

I know of no other way to get as big and strong as simply pushing yourself on every set for as many reps as possible, and adding weight at every opportunity. (This applies to beginners to intermediates)

A rep range by itself is an indicator of nothing. Studies are great but they can't gauge effort. Strength, in studies, is usually looked at as a byproduct and not the mechanism driving gains. Studies also can't trump endless decades of real world information.

I don't care who you are. I don't care what rep range you train in. As a beginner to early intermediate, pick a rep range that works for you and ram the heck out of progression. Never waste a set and you will become a beast.

For most natural trainees, strength and muscle building are virtually the same for several years. (Depending on the trainee, and his goals)

All this Weider magazine 40 sets, pumping, TUT, blasting hoo-ha might be needed for some 280 pound gorilla to make gains and stimulate growth on their 82nd steroid pulse or whatever, but it's simply not needed for a beginning to early intermediate NATURAL bodybuilder.

AND, when a natural MUSCLE BUILDER does get to intermediate levels, switching to a mindless 6 to 12 range and increasing volume won't do much by itself. Some form or progression will still be required. Yes, you can drop the weight and use various techniques - like rest pause, slow negatives, whatever. These techniques can be great at saving the joints from the constant strain of heavy weight. But they still require progression.

You can't do the same workout with the same weight day in and day out for years and expect results - for size or strength. We all know this. So if we all know it, and we realize progression needs to come into play sooner or later, why the heck is this even a discussion?

On one hand we "need" muscle confusion - or a new workout every 8 to 12 weeks, but on the other we don't "need" a relentless focus on progression?

The best ways to "confuse" your muscles are:

1) Actually getting your butt to the gym week in and week out.
2) Taxing the heck out of them with heavy barbell and dumbbell exercises.
3) "Confusing" them by adding more reps, and then more weight.

If anyone knows of a better system for building size and strength than this for beginners to intermediates, speak now.
Originally Posted by *MC* View Post
The teacher in me thinks the entire workout section of that site (and many others) needs to be redesigned and things need to be renamed.

It makes more sense to me (from the perspective of reducing confusing for people new to training) to have workouts and training programs listed by what you either want to do (compete in strongman, PL meets, body-build, lose fat) or what you do (play sports, gain speed, maximize endurance, run triathlons) or even what you want to look like (fitness model, strong man competitor, bear) than the way they are now.

There also should be simple statements at the front of all training programs.

Things like:

1. If you want to be bigger than you are now, you have to get stronger than you are now (and eat a lot of food).

2. If you are big/overweight and want to get smaller than you are now, you are going to have to get stronger than you are now (and eat less/better food than you do now).

3. In order to be 190 pounds with 6-pack abs, you first have to be 215 pounds with a slight belly.

All the details and minutia can really overwhelm even people with some knowledge. I think of Palmer at the other site-- kid is working hard and busting his butt and making progress and every 2 weeks of so, he starts to over think himself based on all the chatter that goes on around this program versus that program. I think a lot of his confusion comes from the manner in which those with knowledge outline and deliver said information.

If we don't want new lifters confused, we need to speak more clearly and simply.
Originally Posted by LtL View Post
Some solid points made here. All I would add is that it doesn't matter what your goals are:

BB, PL, Strongman, Sport Performance

If you work your big compound lifts and make them stronger, you will make progress. Be that progress in size, speed, strength or explosiveness. Ain't no one ever become an olympic champion in anything by doing 15 sets of curls twice per week and not training legs because they're already doing some running.

These are all really great statements... I started editing down to the nuggets but didn't want to trim away the WIN.



Axle clean-press: 100 kgs (220 lbs)
Bench press: 135 kgs (298 lbs) - 1st PL meet 16th October 2011
Deadlift w/Barbell: 180 kgs (397 lbs)
Deadlift w/Hexbar: 225 kgs (496 lbs)
Farmers walk: 240 kgs (530 lbs), 50 feet
Front squat: 100 kgs (220 lbs)
Log clean-press: 100 kgs (220 lbs)
Strict OHP: 85 kgs (187 lbs) 3 reps
Tyre flip: 260 kgs (573 lbs), 100 feet
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