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Old 01-16-2012, 05:09 PM   #11
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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..[/I]
Or more broadly, an example of the Hawthorne effect - increased productivity as a result of more monitoring (self-monitoring in this case) and a change - any sort of change.

The Sheiko routines are interesting. As far as I remember, they don't flip into higher percentages - it's 70s-80s all the way and some are following these year round. I think there's a powerlifter on Sugden who uses them a lot. So some aren't following accumulation to intensification protocols.
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Old 01-16-2012, 05:14 PM   #12
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Or more broadly, an example of the Hawthorne effect - increased productivity as a result of more monitoring (self-monitoring in this case) and a change - any sort of change.
Absolutely, that has to be a factor also. A big factor as we always say is you gotta believe in what you're doing. A big change initiates positive feelings and motivation.

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The Sheiko routines are interesting. As far as I remember, they don't flip into higher percentages - it's 70s-80s all the way and some are following these year round.
You're right in that they don't have to flip into higher percentages. Some will just cycle the volume blocks continuously. Not sure I like the idea of that, maxes are a little too planned.

Mentally it has it's toll as well, if maxing is this massive event in a yearly schedule that is a lot of pressure. Also not a lot of practice at lifting heavy either. Not an approach i'd like anyway, I like being able to pull/push maxes most weeks of the year.

Interesting points raised here, I wouldn't mind trying to implement some lighter work in some blocks. Perhaps some singles or doubles for 10+ sets timed. One of the sets/reps approaches I use is based on Prilepin:

http://www.elitefts.com/documents/prilepins_chart.htm

In that I will do 6 triples at around 70-80%. I tend to vary that approach with the daily max + back offs. It's not something i've done consiously it just seems to have come about organically. Some days I may do the triples, other days I may do the daily max + back offs. Ultimately I think they both have a part to play in recent lifting PRs. I did play around with the idea of blocks devoted to triples and blocks devoted to the daily max + back offs but I tend to go by whatever I feel like doing, which works better.

Last edited by Fazc; 01-16-2012 at 05:18 PM.
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Old 01-16-2012, 05:18 PM   #13
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My experience varies depending on lifts. Squats for example I hammered away at 80% for nearly the last 3 years and made absolutely zero progress. Bench Press I spent the last 2+ years training around 80-85% and added maybe 10-15 pounds to my total. I did a lot of sets around these percentages for both lifts. A lot. Didn't help me a bit.

Deadlifts are a different story. Last year I dropped 80% work and focused only on 20 rep sumo sets for quite a long time. When I came back to conventionals I started to destroy PRs like crazy. My max went up my about 60 pounds in 6 months and I didn't work above 80% until the final month or two before my meet. I will add that I starting using a ton of speed work during this time, and began attacking the bar, and I think this was a major contributing factor ion my progress. Also, perhaps the rep work helps my glute and hamstring weaknesses..
That's interesting that such a low percentage pushed up your deads so much, but lower percentages did little for squats.

Maybe it's because deads start from, er, a dead stop. Overcoming the initial inertia is a major deal - you have to get the bar moving and moving fast. With elastic recoil, it's less of a factor in squats, perhaps?
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Old 01-16-2012, 05:24 PM   #14
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Mentally it has it's toll as well, if maxing is this massive event in a yearly schedule that is a lot of pressure. Also not a lot of practice at lifting heavy either. Not an approach i'd like anyway, I like being able to pull/push maxes most weeks of the year..
Yeah, that's an issue. I just couldn't run a routine like Sheiko or Korte year round. Also: the sheer volume grinds you down after a while. I seem to remember 16 sets of squats on some days - not particularly heavy, but still murderous.
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Old 01-16-2012, 06:50 PM   #15
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Deadlifts are a different story. Last year I dropped 80% work and focused only on 20 rep sumo sets for quite a long time. When I came back to conventionals I started to destroy PRs like crazy.
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That's interesting that such a low percentage pushed up your deads so much, but lower percentages did little for squats.

Maybe it's because deads start from, er, a dead stop. Overcoming the initial inertia is a major deal - you have to get the bar moving and moving fast. With elastic recoil, it's less of a factor in squats, perhaps?
Exactly what I was thinking. The deads require you to fire a lot of muscle all at once to get the lift started which is more closely related to doing a maximal effort in the other lifts.
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Old 01-23-2013, 08:06 AM   #16
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I'd love to chime in a bit about Sheiko, as it's really the only one of these programs I have experience in.

Previous to starting Sheiko I had tried a westside approach and 5/3/1. I wasn't getting gains out of either one. Since switching to Sheiko in May 2012 I've gained 30-40kg on my squat, 10-25kg on my bench, anddd not much on my dead (5-10kg). All of these are more gain then I'd had in a couple years on westside and 5/3/1.

I'll admit that this could potentially be from switching from low frequency to high frequency, but I also want to disagree slightly with the notion that technique work at 70-80% won't carry over. If you're constantly drilling mental cues into your head, you're definitely going to be more likely to just do them without thinking when it comes time for a competition. Additionally, all of those sets at a relatively low percentage allows you to work on technique a lot. You can really catch issues and work on them.

Another thing, Sheiko programs DO go above 80%. There are several days that are 85-90%, although they are often limited to certain programs (Sheiko 30, for example, has at least two squat days with 90% work).

Finally, I'd like to add one little notion. BORIS SHEIKO is a COACH. Those numbered programs you see in excel spreadsheets and on websites are for a specific athlete at a specific time of his or her training cycles. The philosophies of Sheiko are what is important. Following Prilipen's chart, use block periodization, etc. In this way, you can have accumulation blocks with not much 90% work, but you can then use an intensification block with plenty of 90% work (IF that's what works for you, programming your own "Sheiko" is all about knowing what will work for you, personally), followed by realization to peak. Yes, Sheiko is purely a competition based approach to strength. You practice the lifts like a pitcher practices throwing, or like Dwight Howard SHOULD practice free throws; repetitively.

EDIT: I'd also like to add what is somewhat trendy right now: Work capacity. "Sheiko" builds a tremendous amount of work capacity, and lets you program it fairly linearly. Upping your overall work capacity is, as many think now, the only true way of getting "stronger" overall.

Last edited by Paradox; 01-23-2013 at 09:46 AM.
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