Originally Posted by BendtheBar
My opinion on 90% work has changed a lot this year due to personal experience. I have made better progress in 14 weeks on bench and squat using more frequent 90% work than I did in years without it.
Yep, something to pick out that's very important here is how you respond to a routine is also dependant a lot on what you did prior to that routine. I fully believe it all follows the basic rules periodisation, you either go from periods of high volume/low intensity to periods of low volume/high intensity or you go from periods of low volume/low intensity to periods of high volume/high intensity, either works and often the first is done via the natural ebbs and flow of life.
For example, lifter makes decent gains on some high volume training but as typical of all lifters thinks he can progress faster on something else. Grass is greener or simply he succumbs to the inevitable law of accommodation and stalls. So what does he do, he curse high volume and he goes to a low volume split and boom, progress. Lifter credits the low volume for increased gains. Was it that really?
Or was it the interaction between the two. The higher volume stuff building the strength, or as Starr would put it, widening the base of the pyramid, and the low volume allowing the lifter to express that strength while not in a state of fatigue.
To fully understand the benefits of lower percentages we need to discuss them within the workings of a fully periodised plan.
I know I sound like a broken record with this but 2 weeks of frequent and heavy loading followed by a week or two of light work really does work well in the grand scheme of things. A big mistake I see people generally make in their training is that their 'lows' are too high, so that their 'highs' are never high enough.