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Thread: 4 Week Experimental Program

  1. #1
    AKA Tony Arkitect FFF's Avatar
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    4 Week Experimental Program

    Just finished a 4 week program with my newest athlete, Tyler who I've only been coaching a few months. Going into this program he had recently hit PRs of 112/137/247. He bombed in the snatch at AOIII w/107 in the snatch. I set up this 4 week training block, trying some different things, and the results were good. At the end of the program he did 115/145/260, and very, very nearly made a C&J at 150. The way I set this program up was separating days the way athletes might separate workouts if they're doing two-a-days. One day is "practicing the sport" and the following day is a "strength" workout. Volume and intensity were modeled using Prilepins. Being that the squats were timed, the percentages are based off of the best squat under 1.5s (lowest point of ROM to lockout), and not the true one rep maximum.

    If anyone wants to give this program a try, I'd love to hear your feedback on how it went for you. Also any questions, comments, critiques are welcome.

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    How would this be modified without an ability to time a squat?

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    Quote Originally Posted by PVCPipe View Post
    How would this be modified without an ability to time a squat?
    Great question. What my athletes typically do for timed squats if they are training by themselves is film. If you don't want to watch and time each set after you did it, you can film your entire squat session performing the max number of sets, and then time them sometime before your next workout to have an idea of where it is you slow down. At the next workout maybe only film and immediately watch the sets beyond where you failed at the last workout.

    You can also just try to use your best judgement to decide when your squats have become too slow. Beyond that, hold a stop watch with this technique:

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    Ok just gonna ignore all that terrible advice and follow the much more instructional video. That guy gets it

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    This looks more interesting that running Texas Method. I will give it a go.

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    Thanks, might give this a go after current block. Where did the 1.5 seconds squat idea come from (as in, why 1.5 seconds specifically)?

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    AKA Tony Arkitect FFF's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PVCPipe View Post
    Ok just gonna ignore all that terrible advice and follow the much more instructional video. That guy gets it
    #smart

    Quote Originally Posted by tangoncash007 View Post
    This looks more interesting that running Texas Method. I will give it a go.
    Please let me know how you do, and what (if any) modifications you my make. I'd recommend finding your timed max squats before starting. I found that most of my athletes were able to do about 90-93% of their true 1RM within the 1.5s window.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom View Post
    Thanks, might give this a go after current block. Where did the 1.5 seconds squat idea come from (as in, why 1.5 seconds specifically)?
    I actually got the idea from Jim Napier's books. I think mostly the books aren't that great, but just as no one is right about everything, it's unlikely someone is wrong about everything. If I read a book and can take away even one bit of information I didn't have before, I think it's worth it. Jim wants everything to be timed, squats, pulls, the lifts themselves, which I think is overkill, but I like the concept, and squats are easy to apply this metric to. He also recommends squats at 1 second or less, which I think is a bit extreme.

    Ironically, "speed work" is something used a lot in certain powerlifting circles, and I think it works. Most people wouldn't think of a squat a speed exercise, but I've noticed that not that when I tell my athletes to try to move fast in the ascent in the squat, they actually can move a lot faster than they would when they simply try to "stand up." It also helps to limit ugly out of position grinding reps, which I don't think really do anything for you anyway.

    One last thing to watch out for, is when trying to go fast, sometimes athletes will then descend quicker and take a harder bounce out of the bottom. Try not to get too lose in your descent, and stay as tight as possible and focus on speed on the way up.
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    I just finished 3 months (3 cycles) of a pretty high volume training block and was not looking forward to another cycle. This is a fraction of the volume I've been working at and I'm coming off of a 1 week deload. Would you say that this would be a good time to run this program as a sort of peaking block to realize some of the strength gains in the previous higher volume block?

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    AKA Tony Arkitect FFF's Avatar
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    Absolutely!

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    Do you HAVE to maintain the 1.5 sec tempo on the squats? Or just keep going until there is a significant change in speed?

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