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Allen Cress
05-03-2010, 05:20 PM
This is my first week back after 17 days off from training and diet. I am currently just 4lbs over my contest weight at 194 lbs. I will gradually build back into intensity this next week and go all out starting next week. he

As far as diet I am going to do the Cycle Diet, which i haven't done in about 3 years. I will start my calories at 3000 and do a 40/45/15 split. I will have a Mid-week calorie spike on Wednesdays and an all out re-feed day on Saturdays.

Here is my training split for my new protocol.

Day 1: Chest/ Arms
Day 2: Legs
Day 3: Back
Day 4: Off
Day 5: Shoulders/ Arms
Day 6: Power day
Day 7: Off

Here is an example of one of my Chest/Arms days:

1) Low incline DB press 3 x 5-6, 100 lbs
2) High Incline DB press 3 x 6-8 ,90 lbs
3a) Push ups on push up bar with feet elevated high 3 x 10-15
3b) DB floor press lockouts 3 x 6-8, 80 lbs
4a) Horizontal cable fly 3 x 15-20, 25 lbs
4b) Flat BB press (no lockout, feet up) 3 x 10-12, 175 lbs

5a) DB concentration curl 3 x 8-12, 35 lbs
5b) One arm low rope ext. 3 x 12-15, 30 lbs
6a) Single arm DB preacher curl 3 x 8-10, 35 lbs
6b) One arm Horizontal cable ext. 3 x 12-15, 55 lbs
7a) Single arm Zottman curl 3 x 8-10, 30 lbs
7b) One arm pushdowns 3 x 15-20, 17.5 lbs

The plan this off season is to obviously put on as much quality size as possible and I have until next march before I start contest prep for my next contest. this will be the longest off season I have had in about 5 years. Time to hit it hard and grow!

Allen Cress
05-05-2010, 11:16 AM
My first week back and can't hardly walk after Legs, LOL. I knew this was coming.

1) BB split squat 3 x 8-10, 145 lbs
2) BB alternating lunges 3 x 8-10, 135 lbs
3) Single DB split squat, lateral side 3 x 10-12, 75 lbs
4) BB squats 3 x 25, 205 lbs
5) Single leg extention 3 x 12-15, 30 lbs

AB/ Core for 15 min

Tonite is my first spike night, time to put away about 3000 calories in ine meal!

Behemoth
05-06-2010, 07:48 PM
I'm in for this, very excited to follow along!

How did you handle your transition over? Being only 4lbs over stage weight while not liftin for 17 days is jaw dropping impressive to me.

Curious as to what you day to day calories/macros are as well as the midweek spike and full out refeed day. Care to indulge?

Allen Cress
05-07-2010, 11:36 AM
I'm in for this, very excited to follow along!

How did you handle your transition over? Being only 4lbs over stage weight while not liftin for 17 days is jaw dropping impressive to me.

Curious as to what you day to day calories/macros are as well as the midweek spike and full out refeed day. Care to indulge?

On my 2 weeks off I just ate freely and if I wanted something I would have it. I ate sandwiches, and lots of homecooked foods during my time off like pot roast, quiche, lasagna, etc... I would eat out usally once a day. I really never touch fast food as I enjoy more quality type foods like staek, sushi, and only occasionally have dessert as I like more fat oriented foods.

My metabolic rate is very high and has become more and more efficient every year from proper training protocols and sound nutrition as well. Over the last 3-4 years I never really rebound at all after a contest but I also dont binge and go crazy with junk food like a lot of competitors do because of the extremes they went to during prep.

I listed my calories above, they are at 3000 on my diet days. I usually take in around an extra 3000-5000 calories on my Mid-week spike and around 10-15,000 on my re-feed days.

Here was a meal I had this Wed for my Mid-week spike:
- 8 wings
- large salad w/ ranch, eggs, cheese, ham, fritos
- 6 rolls with butter
- 16oz NY strip
- Loaded baked potato
- 2rice cakes with natural peanut butter.

I don't have sugar oriented foods on my mid-week spike.

Behemoth
05-07-2010, 08:07 PM
Here was a meal I had this Wed for my Mid-week spike:
- 8 wings
- large salad w/ ranch, eggs, cheese, ham, fritos
- 6 rolls with butter
- 16oz NY strip
- Loaded baked potato
- 2rice cakes with natural peanut butter.



That was done at texas roadhouse wasn't it?

Allen Cress
05-08-2010, 08:55 AM
That was done at texas roadhouse wasn't it?

LOL, no, but i like that place. It was at a locally owned restaurant.

Allen Cress
05-09-2010, 08:51 PM
Yesterday was my first whole re-feed day and I knew I needed it. I actually weighed 1 lb under contest weight Saturday morning. I was up 18 lbs this morning from it. I will more than likely be back down near my starting weight before my Mid-week spike on Wed.

Hopefully with the Half day spike on Wednesdays my body will start storing again, but we're just getting started. With my training protocol i should definitley add some size.

Here was the cheat day:

Meal 1
-10 eggs over medium
-6 sausage links
-8 pieces of toast with peanut butter and jelly
-apple fritter

Meal 2
-Homemade cornbread chcicken pot pie (ate almost the whole thing but my GF snuck out a piece)
-1 pint of ice cream

Meal 3
-Chips and queso
-Chicken nachos
-3/4 lb burger with bacon, onion rings and cheese on top
-Fries
-4 scoops ice cream

Meal 4
-loaf of homemade banana bread with peanut butter and jelly

Meal 5
-30 buffalo wings
-cobb salad
-fries

Meal 6
-2 burgers
-Steak burrito
-1 pint ice cream


Had a killer Chest/Arms workout with a massive pump from all the calories on my re-feed day.

Allen Cress
05-11-2010, 11:33 AM
Had a good back workout, but can feel that its definitely the day before my mid-week spike as my energy levels dipped some towards the end of the workout.

1) T bar row 3 x 8-10, 165 lbs
2) One arm DB row 3 x 8-10, 120 lbs
3) Close grip pulldown 3 x 10-12, 200 lbs
4) Wide Pulldown 3 x 10-12, 180 lbs

5a) Alternating Tubing speed rows 3 x 20 each arm
5b) Recline pull ups 3 x 10-15
5c) BB shrugs 3 x 10-12, 275 lbs

6) Single leg calf raise 3 x 25-30
7a) Standing calf raise 3 x 8-10, 130 lbs
7b) Seated calf raise 3 x 15-20, 20 lbs

Behemoth
05-11-2010, 04:09 PM
Any chance posting some workouts with the weight you use. I know you consider feeling the muscle much greater than simply the weight you use, which I agree with. Just curious as to how much weight you and still keep that solid mind muscle state where you're not just goin through the motions.

Allen Cress
05-11-2010, 08:41 PM
Any chance posting some workouts with the weight you use. I know you consider feeling the muscle much greater than simply the weight you use, which I agree with. Just curious as to how much weight you and still keep that solid mind muscle state where you're not just goin through the motions.

Sure. I will edit my previous posts with weights used.

Mclovin1
05-12-2010, 03:59 AM
What does your current diet look like when your not cheating LOL

Allen Cress
05-12-2010, 06:32 AM
What does your current diet look like when your not cheating LOL

Its the same pretty much everyday. I have some variety but its the same each meal for the most part. Calories are always exactly the same as they have to be for the cycle diet to work.

1) 2 cups egg whites, 3 shredded wheat biscuits, 1 tbsp natural peanut butter
2) 2 scoops Nitrean, 1 serving Results
3) 160g Chicken, 140 g pasta or 2.5 cups rice
4) 160g chicken, 280g potato
5) 2 cans tuna, 60g mini rice cakes
6) 2 cups egg whites

Joe Black
05-14-2010, 03:13 AM
Super clean diet!

Keep up the good work, looking forward to seeing how your off season pans out!

ryuage
05-14-2010, 12:45 PM
im curious as to why you would require a refeed if you already are in a calorie surplus (ie not cutting)

Allen Cress
05-15-2010, 12:09 PM
im curious as to why you would require a refeed if you already are in a calorie surplus (ie not cutting)

3000 calories is not a calorie surplus for me by any means, its submaintenance which is how the cycle diet works and why I need a mid-week spike and a re-feed day. This diet is designed to gain muscle while staying pretty lean.

Last off season I was up to 6000 calories. This is where individuality comes in and why formulas are only a base to start from.

Behemoth
05-15-2010, 12:14 PM
3000 calories is not a calorie surplus for me by any means, its submaintenance which is how the cycle diet works and why I need a mid-week spike and a re-feed day. This diet is designed to gain muscle while staying pretty lean.

Last off season I was up to 6000 calories. This is where individuality comes in and why formulas are only a base to start from.

Very intriguing. Of the last year or two I've learned the importance of some sort of cyclical approach for off season gaining.

What do you factor your maintenance to be at? And averaged over a week, would I be correct in assuming you are in a surplus?

Allen Cress
05-15-2010, 12:48 PM
Very intriguing. Of the last year or two I've learned the importance of some sort of cyclical approach for off season gaining.

What do you factor your maintenance to be at? And averaged over a week, would I be correct in assuming you are in a surplus?

My maintenance would probably be around 3500 or so, but would have to implement it to really know.

It would be hard to get an average due to flucuations in my mid0week spike and re-feed day as I can take in 10,000 cal one day and the next week do 13,000 on a re-feed day. But yes I am in a slight calorie suplus due to the re-feeds. One of the keys with this diet is maintaining high leptin levels and keep them from downregulating, hence the 1 and half spike days.

Allen Cress
05-15-2010, 12:49 PM
More than likely I will go back to a bulking type diet around August-September and do that until I start my contest prep next year.

Allen Cress
05-18-2010, 11:56 AM
Training was extremely intense today. The tri-plexes had my oxygen debt thru the roof and I had a tremendous pump thru the whole workout.

1) Wide Pulldowns 3 x 12-15, 200 lbs
2) Reverse pulldown 3 x 12-15, 180 lbs

3a) Compound Tubing Row 3 x 15-20
3b) DB pullover 3 x 10-12, 75 lbs
3c) DB shrug, hammer grip 3 x 15-20, 100 lbs

4) One arm DB row 3 x 10-12, 110 lbs

5a) Alternating bent DB row with rotations 3 x 10-15, 40 lbs
5b) Tubing swimmers 3 x 15
5c) BB shrugs 3 x 8-10, 275 lbs

Tomorrow is my Mid-week spike and hunger is very high right now.

Coke
05-18-2010, 06:53 PM
Killer back and trap workout Allen, what you are doing is great.

f=ma
05-23-2010, 08:48 AM
checking in... how is the offseason training and diet going? anything noteworthy happening?

Allen Cress
05-23-2010, 07:47 PM
checking in... how is the offseason training and diet going? anything noteworthy happening?

Everything is going great. I'm steadily gaining weight while staying lean. I've put on 8lbs in last 2 weeks. The diet is point on with the Mid-weeks spike and all out re-feed day.

I have about 7 weeks left on my current protocol then I am helping Scott put on a Workshop in Canada then a week off brfore hitting my next protocol.

Allen Cress
05-23-2010, 07:57 PM
My power day went well. Its very demanding on the nervous system. I always keep at least 2 reps in the tank on all exercises.

1A) Flat BB bench press 10 x 4, 240lbs
1B) Leg press 10 x 10, 7 plates per side

2) Deadlifts 5 x 5, 290 lbs

Behemoth
05-23-2010, 08:15 PM
Do you have business cards that have your website on it? I bet you get a lot of tail with the right implementation of those... not that you ever would use them for that of course:)

Joe Black
05-25-2010, 01:40 AM
Man, your refeeds sound gooooooooooooooooooooooood ;)

Hey, I haven;t forgotted about that flyer, things are just crazy right now!

We'll be running your article soon too, I haven;t forgotten that either :)

f=ma
05-31-2010, 08:40 AM
allen.. what is your PWO carb of choice? for simplicity, I have chosen dextrose.. but im thinking about reworking things in order to swap for additional oatmeal. if I may inquire, with what have you had the best results?

Allen Cress
05-31-2010, 09:57 AM
allen.. what is your PWO carb of choice? for simplicity, I have chosen dextrose.. but im thinking about reworking things in order to swap for additional oatmeal. if I may inquire, with what have you had the best results?

In the off season its usually some sort of fruit like blueberries, pineapple, or grapes. But honestly you can have any starch as well. Total calories and balance is much more important than PWO carbs.

The only time I use dextrose is if I'm doing an all out bulk type diet (5000-6000 calories) and I need something that digests easy and is calorie dense.

ELmx479
05-31-2010, 07:25 PM
I like following this journal. Any reason you don't do pull ups instead of pull downs? Also, curious as to what you think about the new HCT-12 routine for gaining size?

Allen Cress
06-01-2010, 09:15 AM
I like following this journal. Any reason you don't do pull ups instead of pull downs? Also, curious as to what you think about the new HCT-12 routine for gaining size?

I do pull ups sometimes depending on where they are placed in my protocol. If they are one of the middle to last exercises I would not be able to perform them to get to get total muscle activation due to the muscle being fatigued so I either use pulldowns or assisted pull ups.

Remember my main goal is size not strength so I do what will enable me to stimulate as much muscle as possible. I'm not concerned with if I can do a lot of pull ups or not. Some people are built to do them and some are not and this is where individualization comes in. This is also a factor that comes into play when I design programs for people. An individuals anatomical leverage is a big factor for exercise choices, especially when development is the main goal.


HCT-12 is a great program especially because it has structure, which most individuals are missing. It keeps them from pinballing from one thing to the next.

Mclovin1
06-04-2010, 04:23 AM
Hey Allen,

Hope everything is going well.

What does one of your Delt/arm workouts look like bro?

Allen Cress
06-05-2010, 10:08 AM
Hey Allen,

Hope everything is going well.

What does one of your Delt/arm workouts look like bro?

Here is what I did this week:

1a) Seated side laterals3 X’s 10-12
1b) Seated DB Press 3 X’s 12-15

2a) Seated DB Press 3 X’s 8-10
2b) BB Upright Rows 3 X’s 12-15

3a) DB Upright Rows 3 X’s 15-20
3b) Cable Rear Delts 3 X’s 15-20

4a) Front Alternate Raise 3 X’s 10-12 EA
4b) DB or Cable Bent Laterals 3 X’s 15-20

5a) Lying Alternating DB Triceps Extensions 3 X’s 8-10
5b) Horizontal Cable Biceps Curls 3 X’s 15-20

6a) Overhead Rope Extensions 3 X’s 10-12
6b) Machine Preacher Curls 3 X’s 12-15

7a) Triceps Bench Dips feet on SB 3 X’s 15-20
7b) Alternating Zottman Curls 3 X’s 10-12 EA

This only part of the overall structure of my program and this workout is not done every week.

Mclovin1
06-05-2010, 10:15 AM
Thanks.

Looks intense.... All those supersets must be a killer.

How's everything else going? are you doing any cardio ? Your diet ( on the other page) look great with all those carbs.. do you not think it's better to take in carbs around workouts and then taper them off?

I'm trying to lose some fat right now and have been told that it's best to only eat carbs at meal 1 and post workout then just protein and fats?

How does that sound?

Allen Cress
06-06-2010, 10:19 AM
How's everything else going? are you doing any cardio ? Your diet ( on the other page) look great with all those carbs.. do you not think it's better to take in carbs around workouts and then taper them off?

I'm trying to lose some fat right now and have been told that it's best to only eat carbs at meal 1 and post workout then just protein and fats?

How does that sound?

Never any cardio during off season beside my training.

Balance is the key to a good diet plan. I don't belive at all in the whole pre, peri, and post workout carbs around workouts and don't implement that with clients. That makes things too complicated when it doesn't need to be that way.

Carbs are important and needed, just the amount is important depending on the individual and the ratio used.

f=ma
06-07-2010, 02:50 AM
so why no cardio at all? intensity is high enough without added boredom? :) (cardio is so boring)

Joe Black
06-09-2010, 03:01 AM
No cardio would be awesome lol, but those super sets look pretty brutal! I've switched to them again recently and it's amazing how much they kick your ass!

Allen Cress
06-09-2010, 10:35 AM
so why no cardio at all? intensity is high enough without added boredom? :) (cardio is so boring)

My weight training is my cardio(anaerobic). My intensity is always high and oxygen debt is always there. Regular cardio does nothing to improve your metabolic rate or support muscle so no use in doing it. Try doing 3 sets of 25-30 on Squats at the end of a leg workout and tell me how your legs and your lungs feel. Thats real conditioning!!

Unless you are trying to get really lean it shouldn't be implemented as long as your training protocol is sound and your intensity is high. Even when trying to get lean it should be used based on an individual. Too many people think traditional cardio is a must to stay or get lean and its not by any means.

Allen Cress
06-10-2010, 02:22 PM
Here are some pics I took today after my Mid-week spike yesterday. I am weighing 205 lbs, 15 lbs over my contest weight. My cycle diet is going great and adding some size while staying lean.

Here is what I had for my Mid-week spike:

Meal 1
-8 rolls of sushi

Meal 2
- 4 large pancakes with 4 tbsp of peanut butter

After I take a week off at the end of this training protocol I will start my clean bulking diet.

Coke
06-10-2010, 03:52 PM
Great pics Allen, always in the winning circle!!

f=ma
06-10-2010, 04:59 PM
allen, looking stacked. so did you develop your diet routine from years of experimentation? why change what youre doing if youre adding size and staying lean?

Allen Cress
06-10-2010, 07:13 PM
allen, looking stacked. so did you develop your diet routine from years of experimentation? why change what youre doing if youre adding size and staying lean?

The Cycle Diet was developed by my mentor Scott Abel over 15 years ago. It is tweaked to meet what my body needs, but very effective to stay lean while adding size once your in a supercompensation state.

Even though I will add some size doing this diet I need a much greater influx of calories to make much larger gains in a shorter amount of time. Once I reach the muscle size I truly need then the cycle diet is what i will use year round in off season.

f=ma
06-10-2010, 08:08 PM
is the cycle diet discussed in the abel approach? its not exactly a cheap book.. but I am intrigued. do you know anything additional about whats discussed in the book? im most interested in the diet side of things.

Allen Cress
06-11-2010, 04:49 AM
is the cycle diet discussed in the abel approach? its not exactly a cheap book.. but I am intrigued. do you know anything additional about whats discussed in the book? im most interested in the diet side of things.

If you want more in-depth info on the cycle diet you should purchase the "Science behind the Cycle Diet" dvd. I think u can buy it as a download or dvd. The Abel approach is more training oriented, not diet. The best products on diet are MP3 downloads and pretty cheap. The Abel Dietary Priciples and The Truth About Diet should help you out.

Joe Black
06-16-2010, 02:27 AM
You look awesome in your new pics, perhaps buy some looser boxers though ha ha ;)

Seriously though, incredible stuff and I am taking on board your comments about hitting the weights in a way which really tests your capacity - super sets, minimal rest periods and intervals for cardio. I still do a bit of steady state here and there, but definately not like I used too.

Allen Cress
06-22-2010, 12:41 PM
Legs are completely trashed. I have a deep soreness in every inch of my quads, hams, and glutes.

For the past 2 weeks I have been implementing a Bodyweight metabolic leg circuit at the end of my leg day to practice and conditrion myself for the upcoming Workoshop I'm helping Scott with. I'm only doing 1-2 rounds just to practice so it doesn't take away from my current protocol.

Legs

1) Split squat 3 x 6 EL
2) Single DB Medial split squat 3 x 6-8
3) Single DB Lateral split squat 3 x 8-10
4) Alt. BB lunge 3 x 10 EL
5) BB squats 3 x 30

Bodyweight leg circuit:
-Single leg split jump x 10 EL
-Crossover step up x 8-12 EL
-Step up/reverse lunge combo x 10-15 EL
-Single leg lunge x 10-20 EL
-Single leg iso-holds against wall x 30 sec EL

Only 2 more weeks of training, then the Workshop, then 1 week off!

chevelle2291
06-22-2010, 02:48 PM
Legs are completely trashed. I have a deep soreness in every inch of my quads, hams, and glutes.

For the past 2 weeks I have been implementing a Bodyweight metabolic leg circuit at the end of my leg day to practice and conditrion myself for the upcoming Workoshop I'm helping Scott with. I'm only doing 1-2 rounds just to practice so it doesn't take away from my current protocol.

Legs

1) Split squat 3 x 6 EL
2) Single DB Medial split squat 3 x 6-8
3) Single DB Lateral split squat 3 x 8-10
4) Alt. BB lunge 3 x 10 EL
5) BB squats 3 x 30

Bodyweight leg circuit:
-Single leg split jump x 10 EL
-Crossover step up x 8-12 EL
-Step up/reverse lunge combo x 10-15 EL
-Single leg lunge x 10-20 EL
-Single leg iso-holds against wall x 30 sec EL

Only 2 more weeks of training, then the Workshop, then 1 week off!

Hey Allen. :hello:

Jeez, 3x30 BB squats. How much weight are you using on those?

What's your opinion on DB lunges? Are they effective for quad development?

Allen Cress
06-22-2010, 04:46 PM
Hey Allen. :hello:

Jeez, 3x30 BB squats. How much weight are you using on those?

What's your opinion on DB lunges? Are they effective for quad development?

I think I had 170 lbs on there.

Yes, lunges are great for quad & overall leg development whether you use a BB or DB.

ELmx479
06-22-2010, 08:37 PM
Interesting leg day with crazy high reps. Sets of 30 on squats?? Hell, one 20 rep set is enough to kill someone, haha. So, basically you don't care about weight at all? Just working the muscle you are training. Seems like the standard around the net is always put more weight on the bar and eat more. Care to shed some light on the subject?

chevelle2291
06-22-2010, 09:48 PM
Interesting leg day with crazy high reps. Sets of 30 on squats?? Hell, one 20 rep set is enough to kill someone, haha. So, basically you don't care about weight at all? Just working the muscle you are training. Seems like the standard around the net is always put more weight on the bar and eat more. Care to shed some light on the subject?

I'd be interested in hearing your opinion on this too, Allen.

Allen Cress
06-23-2010, 06:14 AM
Interesting leg day with crazy high reps. Sets of 30 on squats?? Hell, one 20 rep set is enough to kill someone, haha. So, basically you don't care about weight at all? Just working the muscle you are training. Seems like the standard around the net is always put more weight on the bar and eat more. Care to shed some light on the subject?

When training specifically for development (cosmetics) I could care less how much I lift. My only guideline is if its challenging in whatever rep range I do. I haven't focused on how much I lift since I use to compete in powerlifting. Most don't do 20 or 30 rep squats because they are soo demanding and obviously you have to put less weight on the bar and a lot of peoples ego gets in the way.

There is nothing wrong with increasing strength, but the problems is when people in the industry say the only way to grow or increase muscle mass is to get stronger or add more and more weight to the bar, this just isn't true.

There is a ceiling effect to max strength so what happens when you cant lift more does that mean you can't grow? Of course not. Your muscle only knows how much stress its under not how much weight you are lifting and yes there is a difference. Training the muscle and not the movement is one way to activate more muscle fiber and to target what your trying to develope.

Also training in different ranges and planes of motion outside of traditional lifts will stimulate more muscle activation as well which will induce growth. Learning how to properly lift a weight for a desired effect is what is missing with most when training for muscle development.

Another thing is if you just focus on training intensely and properly stimulating the muscle strength will come overtime. Once I started training the way I train now, after I stopped powerlifting, I gained twice the size I ever did when training just for strength.

Now I'm not saying you should never do low reps as I still surf the strength curve, but if size is your main goal you should mainly stay in the 6-20 rep range and incorporate functional moves as well. Proper program design tailored to the individual is very important.

Time+Patience
06-23-2010, 06:54 AM
Allen-- I love how you always preach "individual" requirements, as it's hard for everyone to be able to gain off of the same program or diet that someone else follows. Your pictures look great BTW. You've added a SOLID 8 pounds.

That last post is great. It definitely is hard to get away from the ego and and lower the weights, or sometimes people don't have the frame of mind to do a set of 30 reps on Squats. I know I've had both problems from time to time.

It's pretty neat to see how your approach to dieting and training is. Over time I've thought of how I want to approach my dieting during the off-season and even pre-contest and it appears that I'm developing a protocol that's similar to the type of dieting approaches that you follow. It might not be the same, but it's pretty interesting and encouraging to see some other folks going along those same lines.

But I don't believe I'm along the exact the same lines as you, I definitely don't go as high as you on your spike days, but I'll be playing aorund with my diet over time. Thus far I've actually leaned out a bit at 195 pounds while following a diet along the lines of what you do with 1-2 "spikes" weekly.

I might have to nab some of Abel's work to read more about it for more guidance on what I'm playing with. I'm accidentally and slowly following your footsteps.

ELmx479
06-28-2010, 08:53 PM
When training specifically for development (cosmetics) I could care less how much I lift. My only guideline is if its challenging in whatever rep range I do. I haven't focused on how much I lift since I use to compete in powerlifting. Most don't do 20 or 30 rep squats because they are soo demanding and obviously you have to put less weight on the bar and a lot of peoples ego gets in the way.

There is nothing wrong with increasing strength, but the problems is when people in the industry say the only way to grow or increase muscle mass is to get stronger or add more and more weight to the bar, this just isn't true.

There is a ceiling effect to max strength so what happens when you cant lift more does that mean you can't grow? Of course not. Your muscle only knows how much stress its under not how much weight you are lifting and yes there is a difference. Training the muscle and not the movement is one way to activate more muscle fiber and to target what your trying to develope.

Also training in different ranges and planes of motion outside of traditional lifts will stimulate more muscle activation as well which will induce growth. Learning how to properly lift a weight for a desired effect is what is missing with most when training for muscle development.

Another thing is if you just focus on training intensely and properly stimulating the muscle strength will come overtime. Once I started training the way I train now, after I stopped powerlifting, I gained twice the size I ever did when training just for strength.

Now I'm not saying you should never do low reps as I still surf the strength curve, but if size is your main goal you should mainly stay in the 6-20 rep range and incorporate functional moves as well. Proper program design tailored to the individual is very important.

Thanks, that was a great reply. I am finding myself more interested in looks vs. strength but I have a lot to learn.

Allen Cress
06-29-2010, 11:54 AM
The last 3 weeks I have lost 4 lbs without changing anything. I am still on the Cycle diet with my regular days at 3000 calories with 1 and a half days per week of re-feeds were I typically eat 10,000 cal on a whole re-feed day and 5-6000 cal on my half day.

So to keep weight from dropping anymore I will add 1000 cal to my regular days until I take a week off after the workshop next week. After the break I will start back up with pure bulking diet the rest of the off season.

Monday I destroyed Legs:

1) DB split squat 3 x 8-10
2) BB Alternating Lunge 3 x 8-10
3) Single DB lateral split squat 3 x 10-12
4) BB squats 3 x 25

AB/Core work

ThomasG
06-29-2010, 11:59 AM
Good stuff in here allen your training always peaks my interest. Why do you leave squats at the end when they are traditionally done first on a leg day?

Allen Cress
06-29-2010, 05:05 PM
Good stuff in here allen your training always peaks my interest. Why do you leave squats at the end when they are traditionally done first on a leg day?

Why do them first? Most people do them first out of traditionalism and so they can use more weight. For development purposes there is absolutely no reason you need to always do them first. When training for just muscle mass putting stress on the muscle is one of the most important things as well as training hard. Also when doing a compound movement like squats last you will obviously use less weight which is a good thing for a lot of people because it will allow them to target that muscle even more.

Don't get stuck in traditionalism, step outside the box and you will progress much quicker.

ThomasG
06-29-2010, 05:24 PM
Why do them first? Most people do them first out of traditionalism and so they can use more weight. For development purposes there is absolutely no reason you need to always do them first. When training for just muscle mass putting stress on the muscle is one of the most important things as well as training hard. Also when doing a compound movement like squats last you will obviously use less weight which is a good thing for a lot of people because it will allow them to target that muscle even more.

Don't get stuck in traditionalism, step outside the box and you will progress much quicker.

I would say do them first because squats will induce more growth overall than
1) DB split squats
2) BB Alternating Lunges
3) Single DB lateral splits

Also a lower risk of injury performing them first. I'm always trying to think outside the box and try new philosophies which is why I ask.

Very interesting. I train for performance but I am in complete agreement with the train the muscle not the movement for cosmetic purposes. I've read a lot of Abel's material and implement it when training my cosmetic athletes. That's got to take some mental dexterity to do 3x25 on squats at the end of a workout.

Allen Cress
06-29-2010, 06:47 PM
I would say do them first because squats will induce more growth overall than
1) DB split squats
2) BB Alternating Lunges
3) Single DB lateral splits

Also a lower risk of injury performing them first. I'm always trying to think outside the box and try new philosophies which is why I ask.
.

How would doing them first induce more growth? The only reason I see you saying this is because you can use more weight, which is not the key to more growth. Again placing the targetid muscle under stress, time under tension, TEP(training efficiency percentage) which is the number or percentage of reps in a given set that elicit an adaptive response.

You do not have to be 1RM “strong” in terms of how much you can lift, to develop a body or develop strength; but you do need to apply max efforts consistently. For development How much you lift is secondary to how hard you lift. So it’s not about “lifting more” it is about “lifting better.” The mind muscle connection is at the heart of the notion that the muscles work the weights; the weights don’t work the muscles.

Split squats and lunges activate your hams, glutes, and quads as much as Squats do, but I'm not saying one is better than the other because they all are great movements for development. Always placing squats first doesn't create a developed and balanced physique its the collection of exercises placed properly in a program and tailored to fit an individuals specific anatomical leverage.

The only reason one would get injured is if they are using too much weight, which comes back to them lifting with their ego and not their muscle.

Behemoth
06-29-2010, 07:04 PM
How would doing them first induce more growth? The only reason I see you saying this is because you can use more weight, which is not the key to more growth. Again placing the targetid muscle under stress, time under tension, TEP(training efficiency percentage) which is the number or percentage of reps in a given set that elicit an adaptive response.

You do not have to be 1RM “strong” in terms of how much you can lift, to develop a body or develop strength; but you do need to apply max efforts consistently. For development How much you lift is secondary to how hard you lift. So it’s not about “lifting more” it is about “lifting better.” The mind muscle connection is at the heart of the notion that the muscles work the weights; the weights don’t work the muscles.

Split squats and lunges activate your hams, glutes, and quads as much as Squats do, but I'm not saying one is better than the other because they all are great movements for development. Always placing squats first doesn't create a developed and balanced physique its the collection of exercises placed properly in a program and tailored to fit an individuals specific anatomical leverage.

The only reason one would get injured is if they are using too much weight, which comes back to them lifting with their ego and not their muscle.

Man was all of this perfectly put. The second paragraph is especially dead on to what I know from personal experience over the years as a lifter who strives only for size, density and balance. Unfortunately I think it takes far too long for a lot of lifters to really grasp what this means with regard to their workouts week in and week out. Using less weight at times to focus on a better contraction, or explosiveness, control, mind-muscle connection etc etc is so important in hypertrophy. As well as lifting very heavy has it's place too, it's all about pushing the muslce as far as it can be pushed whether that be through the weight used or some other venture. You said it so well Allen.

chevelle2291
06-29-2010, 07:12 PM
So Allen, would you recommend a beginner bodybuilder to train in said way? I.e., using a weight that feels difficult, but if it's less weight than used last workout it's okay? I currently train higher volume and strive for more reps or weight every session. Did you ever train in such a way?

Maybe I'm not being perfectly clear. I guess what I'm asking is would you recommend such auto-regulation to a beginner?

And Rory, I thought you had always pretty much trained for linear progression, no? As in constantly putting striving for more weight on the bar each time, etc.?

:confused:

Behemoth
06-29-2010, 07:36 PM
And Rory, I thought you had always pretty much trained for linear progression, no? As in constantly putting striving for more weight on the bar each time, etc.?

:confused:

No. I definetly don't. For instance I worked up to 335 for sets on BB rows last winter. But eventually dropped that down nearly 100lbs to work up the weight again with more feel. It's somewhat hard to explain unless you're really cognitive of what true muscular failure is IMO. If I never work past that weight again I'm fine with it. I know I can still induce an incredible amount of hypetrophy using less weight than weights I've peaked up to. But the goal is always upward progression, it's just the balance of the relationship of when weight beomes more important than feel (but I belive at times weight is more important too, ultimately allowing us to back off again and use somewhat lighter weights with more control). Obviously feeling the sets maximally with 95lbs on the bar would be fairly futile in this instance.

This is Allens journal so I'll let him answer the first part of your question. My personal opinion though is that starting out it would be very easy for a beginning to lower the weight and think they're getting the same recruitment as they would with straight linear progression. For that reason I advise a more traditional approach of more weight or more reps for the somewhat newer lifter who doesn't have as much mastery over certain lifts. I just don't see how a newer lifter would really know just how to push themselves with a dropping back approach.

chevelle2291
06-29-2010, 07:41 PM
No. I definetly don't. For instance I worked up to 335 for sets on BB rows last winter. But eventually dropped that down nearly 100lbs to work up the weight again with more feel. It's somewhat hard to explain unless you're really cognitive of what true muscular failure is IMO. If I never work past that weight again I'm fine with it. I know I can still induce an incredible amount of hypetrophy using less weight than weights I've peaked up to. But the goal is always upward progression, it's just the balance of the relationship of when weight beomes more important than feel (but I belive at times weight is more important too, ultimately allowing us to back off again and use somewhat lighter weights with more control). Obviously feeling the sets maximally with 95lbs on the bar would be fairly futile in this instance.

This is Allens journal so I'll let him answer the first part of your question. My personal opinion though is that starting out it would be very easy for a beginning to lower the weight and think they're getting the same recruitment as they would with straight linear progression. For that reason I advise a more traditional approach of more weight or more reps for the somewhat newer lifter who doesn't have as much mastery over certain lifts. I just don't see how a newer lifter would really know just how to push themselves with a dropping back approach.

Clearly I have a lot to learn about training... :p

ThomasG
06-29-2010, 07:43 PM
How would doing them first induce more growth? The only reason I see you saying this is because you can use more weight, which is not the key to more growth. Again placing the targetid muscle under stress, time under tension, TEP(training efficiency percentage) which is the number or percentage of reps in a given set that elicit an adaptive response.

You do not have to be 1RM “strong” in terms of how much you can lift, to develop a body or develop strength; but you do need to apply max efforts consistently. For development How much you lift is secondary to how hard you lift. So it’s not about “lifting more” it is about “lifting better.” The mind muscle connection is at the heart of the notion that the muscles work the weights; the weights don’t work the muscles.

Split squats and lunges activate your hams, glutes, and quads as much as Squats do, but I'm not saying one is better than the other because they all are great movements for development. Always placing squats first doesn't create a developed and balanced physique its the collection of exercises placed properly in a program and tailored to fit an individuals specific anatomical leverage.

The only reason one would get injured is if they are using too much weight, which comes back to them lifting with their ego and not their muscle.

Thanks for the informative post Allen.

Allen Cress
06-30-2010, 05:59 AM
So Allen, would you recommend a beginner bodybuilder to train in said way? I.e., using a weight that feels difficult, but if it's less weight than used last workout it's okay? I currently train higher volume and strive for more reps or weight every session. Did you ever train in such a way?

Maybe I'm not being perfectly clear. I guess what I'm asking is would you recommend such auto-regulation to a beginner?
:

Yes, but there is a greater TEP in the advanced trainee than there is in the intermediate lifter; for the beginner or intermediate lifter difficulty only comes near the end of a set, usually the last 3-4 reps in say a 10 rep set as opposed to an advanced trainee whose first rep and last rep are the same as far as recruitment.

This is a learned response/adaptation that takes place over time. Learning to recruit larger motor units for strength performance is a skill set developed and refined over time. Advising someone to train very low reps with a lot of external resistance is a mistake because their systems, nervous systems, have not adapted to that level of quick and sustained motor unit recruitment so by only doing 3, 4, 5 reps they don't recruit many fibers to stimulate growth.

Also don't think heavy or light when it comes to the weight you use think of whether its challenging in whatever rep range you use.So don't strive for more weight or reps that will come over time, strive for more muscle activation during a set.

DavisK
07-02-2010, 04:50 PM
5c) BB shrugs 3 x 10-12, 275 lbs


Hey Allen great article! This journal has been very interesting! You are a machine! Anyways, I noticed that you had BB and DB shrugs at the end of a tri-plex during your Back day. What is the reason for that? Don't shrugs target the traps mainly? Wouldn't that be more applicable during your Shoulder day?

Allen Cress
07-02-2010, 09:58 PM
Hey Allen great article! This journal has been very interesting! You are a machine! Anyways, I noticed that you had BB and DB shrugs at the end of a tri-plex during your Back day. What is the reason for that? Don't shrugs target the traps mainly? Wouldn't that be more applicable during your Shoulder day?

Remember ur traps go from the neck down the back so they can be trained with delts or back. Also the overall design of the program makes a difference. There is always more than one way to do things. This is where the art of program design comes in. As long as the principles r still applied.

Allen Cress
07-04-2010, 05:23 PM
Her is the Bulking diet I will start after my week off training. I will increase calories even more when needed.

Meal 1:
2 cups egg whites
3 shredded wheat biscuits
1 banana
1 tbsp natural peanut butter

Meal 2:
5 scoops Maximus

Meal 3:
200g Chicken
2 cups rice

Meal 4:
200g Chicken
2 cups rice

Meal 5:
200g extra lean beef or 2.5 scoops Nitrean
100g pasta or large bag mini rice cakes

Meal 6:
2 cups egg whites
2 shredded wheat biscuits or fruit

f=ma
07-05-2010, 05:43 AM
nice, thanks for posting that up, allen. my attempted diet is very similar to what youre doing atm. so do you keep that exactly setup persistent throughout the week or do you still do "refeeds" or days of elevated calories? I supposed that would depend on where you are relative to your projected maintenance. where do you think you are right now in terms of calories reqd?

Allen Cress
07-05-2010, 10:16 AM
nice, thanks for posting that up, allen. my attempted diet is very similar to what youre doing atm. so do you keep that exactly setup persistent throughout the week or do you still do "refeeds" or days of elevated calories? I supposed that would depend on where you are relative to your projected maintenance. where do you think you are right now in terms of calories reqd?

With this diet I will not have a whole re-feed day. I will only have 2-3 meals on my off day(Saturday) not on my plan.

Right now I am estimating I am about 1000 cal under maintenance, which is why I have 1 and half day re-feeds.

POWERZN
07-05-2010, 02:45 PM
wow 1000 kcals under maintainance, that must be tough days to get trough, of course the loading days in mind I believe it's possible to do, eric

Allen Cress
07-05-2010, 02:52 PM
wow 1000 kcals under maintainance, that must be tough days to get trough, of course the loading days in mind I believe it's possible to do, eric

Its not tough at all because of the re-feeds. Energy is high all week. I am just hungry on most days but that doesnt bother me.

f=ma
07-05-2010, 06:06 PM
doesnt being 1k cals under defeat the purpose of a bulk? maybe there is some detail in what youre doing that im not understanding.. i dont see how a 1.5 day refeed can overtake an effective 5.5k weekly deficit before the refeed.. yes youre eating hard.. but most of those excess cals are literally going to waste. am I missing something?

DavisK
07-05-2010, 07:46 PM
doesnt being 1k cals under defeat the purpose of a bulk? maybe there is some detail in what youre doing that im not understanding.. i dont see how a 1.5 day refeed can overtake an effective 5.5k weekly deficit before the refeed.. yes youre eating hard.. but most of those excess cals are literally going to waste. am I missing something?

Allen is currently in a 1K cal deficit with the 1.5 days of refeeding. This doesn't apply to his bulking diet.

b_chest31
07-05-2010, 09:15 PM
Thanks for providing all of the info you have. It's a great thread.

With your bulking diet do you add sauces to your chicken, rice or breakfast?

f=ma
07-06-2010, 02:13 AM
Allen is currently in a 1K cal deficit with the 1.5 days of refeeding. This doesn't apply to his bulking diet.

this makes more sense and is pretty obvious in hindsight hah, i still dont understand the point of the deficit for an offseason diet though.

Allen Cress
07-06-2010, 09:12 AM
doesnt being 1k cals under defeat the purpose of a bulk? maybe there is some detail in what youre doing that im not understanding.. i dont see how a 1.5 day refeed can overtake an effective 5.5k weekly deficit before the refeed.. yes youre eating hard.. but most of those excess cals are literally going to waste. am I missing something?

I am not currently on a bulking phase. The cycle diet is used to add lean mass slowly while staying lean. A bulking diet which I will start after my week off will keep me above maintenance everyday.

Also you can't break it down to a 5000 cal a week deficit, the body doesn't work in such a black and white manner. Also its more like 700 cal to be a little more exact. But as my body becomes more efficient at using fuel maintenance levels change which is why listening to my bio-feedback is the best way to assess and move forward.

Allen Cress
07-06-2010, 09:14 AM
Thanks for providing all of the info you have. It's a great thread.

With your bulking diet do you add sauces to your chicken, rice or breakfast?

I always use ketchup, splenda, Walden farms condiments, sea salt, mustard, and all kinds of spices all year long even during contest prep.

Allen Cress
07-06-2010, 09:15 AM
this makes more sense and is pretty obvious in hindsight hah, i still dont understand the point of the deficit for an offseason diet though.

You have to be in a relative calorie deficit for the cycle diet to work. It has to do with leptin horomone, thyroid levels, etc.....

Chris407
07-06-2010, 09:52 AM
Hi, Allen. I just wanted to say thank you for your explanation of why you put squats last in your workout. It helped me to realize that I've been putting too much focus on the amount of weight on the bar for certain lifts, rather than focusing on the muscle.

DavisK
07-06-2010, 10:07 AM
Hi, Allen. I just wanted to say thank you for your explanation of why you put squats last in your workout. It helped me to realize that I've been putting too much focus on the amount of weight on the bar for certain lifts, rather than focusing on the muscle.

Chris if your goals are purely cosmetic, Allen is right on! For me I used to be all about the big 3 "powerlifts." I did Eric Cressey's Maximum Strength program 1.5-2 years ago. Of course, my numbers went up, but my physique did not really improve. At 165 lbs. I had a 445 DL, 355 SQ, and 265 BP. I know they are weak by powerlifting standards, but I'm not a powerlifter. After that time, I started following the training prinicples similarly to what Allen does. Fast forward to the present day, I'm still the same weight, but my physique has definitely improved without even worrying about my "numbers." "Train for development and strength will come." I think Allen could attest to the same experience. He used to be a powerlifter.

Chris407
07-06-2010, 11:23 AM
Chris if your goals are purely cosmetic, Allen is right on! For me I used to be all about the big 3 "powerlifts." I did Eric Cressey's Maximum Strength program 1.5-2 years ago. Of course, my numbers went up, but my physique did not really improve. At 165 lbs. I had a 445 DL, 355 SQ, and 265 BP. I know they are weak by powerlifting standards, but I'm not a powerlifter. After that time, I started following the training prinicples similarly to what Allen does. Fast forward to the present day, I'm still the same weight, but my physique has definitely improved without even worrying about my "numbers." "Train for development and strength will come." I think Allen could attest to the same experience. He used to be a powerlifter.

Yeah, I used to be very focused on lifting for numbers, but have changed my focus to aesthetics. I've been really happy with the improvements I've made, but its been hard to let go of focusing on the numbers on certain lifts (deadlift and military press). I didn't even realize I was still stuck on the numbers until I read through some of Allen's posts.

Allen Cress
07-19-2010, 10:12 AM
After a week off its time to get back to growing. I had an incredible time at the workshop in Canada and there were alot of eye opening info for everyone when it came to training, nutrition, and supplements. Everyone definitley got more than their moneys worth. We had a great turn out with some high end bodybuilders, fitness competitors, coaches, and strength athletes who all got humbled on the work part of the workshop.

I will start my bulking diet today as well as my new protocol which I will implement cross innervation into it.

Here is my diet:

1) 2 cups egg whites, 3 shredded wheat, 2 tbsp natural peanut butter, fruit
2) 2 scoops nitrean, fruit
3) 200g chicken, 2.5 cups rice
4) 160g chciken, 2.5 cups rice
5) 160g lean beef, 100g pasta, 1 tbsp pb
6) 2 cups egg whites, 2 shredded wheat or fruit


Today training session chest & single side back

1) Flat DB press 3 x 6, 1 x 8-10, 1x 10-12, 1x 12-15
2) Incline DB press 4 x 8-10
3) Seated press 1 x strip set
4) Incline bar press 3 x 12-15
5) Seated cable fly 3 x 12-15

Quad plex (no rest, after doing left side go straigh to right) 4 x 10-15
- Single side Cable reverse grip row
- Single side Reverse grip pulldown
- Single side Wide Pull down
- Single side Low pulley row

Time to grow!!!

Coke
07-19-2010, 04:12 PM
Great that you got the chance to interact with your peers at the recent workshop.

f=ma
07-20-2010, 02:56 AM
allen, at this point, where are you in terms of leanness?

Allen Cress
07-20-2010, 05:27 AM
allen, at this point, where are you in terms of leanness?

Still pretty lean with abs visible. Even when I bulk I tend to stay very lean because of my porportions. Thats the thing when really bulking everyone looks different dpending on their build and where they hold fat the most. Some guys just look bigger and others look a little sloppy, but if you are a hard gainer then you need to bulk to build that foundation and put the mirror away for a while.

f=ma
07-20-2010, 05:34 AM
aye about the bit with the mirror. i am far from a hard gainer. i finally found my maintenence cal levels after about a month of bumping cals slowly. i did indulge a lot last week after a big loss of psychological control but it wasnt too damaging.. the net effect was a little fat gain and pretty much completely filling glycogen levels. my bulking diet is comparable to yours except i dont really mess with rice because its such a PITA to measure dry.. prefer pasta for that reason -- it is the first time i have tried to gain with controlled, lower fat intake focusing mainly on carb levels and i'm interested to see how it pans out. hopefully i can stay reasonably lean over the next 20lbs.. and i'll surely be following along here to see how you progress, which im sure will be very well. do you have your next show picked out at this point?

depotman
07-20-2010, 06:14 AM
Training was extremely intense today. The tri-plexes had my oxygen debt thru the roof and I had a tremendous pump thru the whole workout.

1) Wide Pulldowns 3 x 12-15, 200 lbs
2) Reverse pulldown 3 x 12-15, 180 lbs

3a) Compound Tubing Row 3 x 15-20
3b) DB pullover 3 x 10-12, 75 lbs
3c) DB shrug, hammer grip 3 x 15-20, 100 lbs

4) One arm DB row 3 x 10-12, 110 lbs

5a) Alternating bent DB row with rotations 3 x 10-15, 40 lbs
5b) Tubing swimmers 3 x 15
5c) BB shrugs 3 x 8-10, 275 lbs

Tomorrow is my Mid-week spike and hunger is very high right now.

Allen, when you do your tri-plexes how long do you wait before moving from your 3a exercise to your 3b exercise and so on?

Then when you have completed 3c how long do you rest before you start the next set?

Thanks,

Jake

depotman
07-20-2010, 06:54 AM
Also don't think heavy or light when it comes to the weight you use think of whether its challenging in whatever rep range you use. So don't strive for more weight or reps that will come over time, strive for more muscle activation during a set.

This is a great statement right here. and definitely something I will use in my training sessions.

I'm wondering what literature you suggest people get their hands on, if they are interested in your training protocols, and methodology? Any specific books on nutrition and training protocols you recommend?

POWERZN
07-20-2010, 08:03 AM
Depotman, the intention of a triplex or quadplex is to move from one to another without rest and work the 3 or 4 stations after eachother. The only rest you have is going to the other station and try to get in as much air as you can going to the station. After completing the triplex I rest not too long and try to start again with incomplete recovery depending on the feedback my body gives me, for exemple lesser rest between triplex 1 and 2 and longer rest between triplex 3 and 4, maybe Allen can chime in about what he does exactly, eric

Allen Cress
07-20-2010, 12:44 PM
aye about the bit with the mirror. i am far from a hard gainer. i finally found my maintenence cal levels after about a month of bumping cals slowly. i did indulge a lot last week after a big loss of psychological control but it wasnt too damaging.. the net effect was a little fat gain and pretty much completely filling glycogen levels. my bulking diet is comparable to yours except i dont really mess with rice because its such a PITA to measure dry.. prefer pasta for that reason -- it is the first time i have tried to gain with controlled, lower fat intake focusing mainly on carb levels and i'm interested to see how it pans out. hopefully i can stay reasonably lean over the next 20lbs.. and i'll surely be following along here to see how you progress, which im sure will be very well. do you have your next show picked out at this point?

That was directed at you just a statement in general for anyone else reading this thread. By the looks of your avatar you have a great base and a clean bulk is definitley what you should be doing.

I never measure rice dry, 1 cup cooked is 45 grams carbs. Everything I measure is cooked besides oatmeal.

My next contest is next June.

Allen Cress
07-20-2010, 12:47 PM
Allen, when you do your tri-plexes how long do you wait before moving from your 3a exercise to your 3b exercise and so on?

Then when you have completed 3c how long do you rest before you start the next set?

Thanks,

Jake

It all depends on the context of the protocol. For this one I rested 20-30 sec before the next exercise and I just assessed my feedback to gauge when I would start the next set. I don't use a stop watch or anything.

Allen Cress
07-20-2010, 12:52 PM
I'm wondering what literature you suggest people get their hands on, if they are interested in your training protocols, and methodology? Any specific books on nutrition and training protocols you recommend?

One of the best books to start getting a grasp of the methodology is "The Abel Approach" by Scott Abel. You can purchse it on his website. As far as training protocols they are designed for myself and based on my current needs state and goals. As far as nutrition I study various books and research(be careful what you read), one being a text "Modern Nutrition". Also Scott's MP3 the truth about diet is great stuff . He is my mentor and I have learned alot from him and apply the methods and principles in my own way to my clients.

depotman
07-20-2010, 01:05 PM
It all depends on the context of the protocol. For this one I rested 20-30 sec before the next exercise and I just assessed my feedback to gauge when I would start the next set. I don't use a stop watch or anything.


One of the best books to start getting a grasp of the methodology is "The Abel Approach" by Scott Abel. You can purchse it on his website. As far as training protocols they are designed for myself and based on my current needs state and goals. As far as nutrition I study various books and research(be careful what you read), one being a text "Modern Nutrition". Also Scott's MP3 the truth about diet is great stuff . He is my mentor and I have learned alot from him and apply the methods and principles in my own way to my clients.

Allen thanks for the replies, I have purchased "The Abel Approach" by Scott Abel. I can already say after just reading 30 minutes worth of the content I have learned a ton of info.

Loving the info on working out your arms and chest. Makes good sense and not necessarily the stuff I have been doing. This will help me out immensely. It kind of feels like I have been wasting a lot of time with some of the stuff I have been doing. Almost like paddling up stream if you will, glad to get pointed in the right direction on some of my training.

Allen Cress
07-22-2010, 01:17 PM
I'm 4 days into new protocol and diet and everything is going smoothly except being sore everywhere, which is always the case after a week off. Definitley going to increase calories after this week as hunger is getting higher as week progresses and I get back into the full swing of things.

Today I did Back and a Bi-lateral circuit.

1) Wide pulldowns 1 x 6-8, 2 x 8-10, 1 x 10-12
2) One arm row 4 x 8-10
3) Reverse grip pulldown 4 x 10-12
4) Bent BB row 3 x 10-12
5) Straight arm pulldown 3 x 15

Bi-lateral circuit: Do weak side first for all exercises then go straight to other side , no rest: 3 x 8:
- Single side DB split squat
- One arm DB row
- Single side DB chest press off SB
- DB Side lateral Throw
- Single arm DB tricep ext
- Single arm DB cheat curl

Had a good old feeling of naseau after this.

DavisK
07-22-2010, 01:31 PM
Allen, what is your training split for this new program?

POWERZN
07-22-2010, 02:31 PM
Allen has laid out his program split in page 1 of this thread. eric

depotman
07-22-2010, 02:40 PM
Looks great Allen, thanks for the info and thanks for sharing you routines.

Allen Cress
07-22-2010, 03:39 PM
Allen has laid out his program split in page 1 of this thread. eric

This is a whole new program from what I was doing when I started this thread.

My split is:

Day 1: Legs/calves
Day 2: Chest
Day 3: Shoulders
Day 4: off
Day 5: Back
Day 6: Arms/Core
Day 7: off

I am also applying cross-innervation techniques at the end of chest, shoulder, and back day.So this is a Hybrid program and not purely traditional.

DavisK
07-22-2010, 04:03 PM
This is a whole new program from what I was doing when I started this thread.

My split is:

Day 1: Legs/calves
Day 2: Chest
Day 3: Shoulders
Day 4: off
Day 5: Back
Day 6: Arms/Core
Day 7: off

I am also applying cross-innervation techniques at the end of chest, shoulder, and back day.So this is a Hybrid program and not purely traditional.

So for today it was Back/Bilateral Circuit. What is done at the end of the chest and shoulder days?

Allen Cress
07-22-2010, 06:10 PM
So for today it was Back/Bilateral Circuit. What is done at the end of the chest and shoulder days?

Its not the same week to week. I have 4 different workouts/rotations with each muscle.

LuNa
07-23-2010, 01:38 AM
This is such a great journal, especially for a beginner like me. Great information and diet and such, but could you elaborate a bit more on supplements that you use while bulking.

POWERZN
07-23-2010, 06:59 AM
It is interresting to see what the possibilities are while thinking outside of the box. Sometimes people are stuck
in a repertoire of exercises for mass, exercises for being on a diet, cardio for getting lean. So it is good to see
for people that the ways to ' get there ' are endless and it has not to be either ' this' or 'that' .
Of course it stays individual and just copying Allen's workout is stupid because this program is written for
HIM and not in a general way, the program is what Allen needs at this moment of his training carreer and
personal feedback will lead him trough his off season with the right adjustement, eric

Allen Cress
07-23-2010, 09:22 AM
This is such a great journal, especially for a beginner like me. Great information and diet and such, but could you elaborate a bit more on supplements that you use while bulking.

I'm not a fan of many supplements other than protein shakes for the most part. Especially in the off season I rely on food to get what I need. Eating 4000-5000 cal a dayI pretty much get everything I need.

Allen Cress
07-23-2010, 09:27 AM
It is interresting to see what the possibilities are while thinking outside of the box. Sometimes people are stuck
in a repertoire of exercises for mass, exercises for being on a diet, cardio for getting lean. So it is good to see
for people that the ways to ' get there ' are endless and it has not to be either ' this' or 'that' .
Of course it stays individual and just copying Allen's workout is stupid because this program is written for
HIM and not in a general way, the program is what Allen needs at this moment of his training carreer and
personal feedback will lead him trough his off season with the right adjustement, eric

Goood point! Just copying what I do is not the way to get optimal results especially if you are a beginner. I have built a high workload capacity over the years and just doing my workouts could end up in overtraining. Each program is done for a reason to elicit a specific response to go into the next protocol.

Yes, too many people are traditionalists and are afraid to step outside the box. If you want better results don't be afraid to do so. My results have jumped off the charts over the last 5 years by stepping outside the box so to speak.

DavisK
07-23-2010, 10:30 AM
Goood point! Just copying what I do is not the way to get optimal results especially if you are a beginner. I have built a high workload capacity over the years and just doing my workouts could end up in overtraining. Each program is done for a reason to elicit a specific response to go into the next protocol.

Yes, too many people are traditionalists and are afraid to step outside the box. If you want better results don't be afraid to do so. My results have jumped off the charts over the last 5 years by stepping outside the box so to speak.

I'm just curious about your protocol. I understand that you have built a high workload capacity and that it's individual. I thought that your bilateral deficit would always proceed your Back workout.

My 1st program that Theo gave me was an Innervation program where there were 4 different workouts per muscle group with some of the body parts (days) would always be proceeded by either quad/ham blasts or abs/core circuits. Just thought yours was similiar like Back/Bilateral circuit or Chest/Quad Blasts etc....

Allen Cress
07-23-2010, 12:31 PM
I'm just curious about your protocol. I understand that you have built a high workload capacity and that it's individual. I thought that your bilateral deficit would always proceed your Back workout.

My 1st program that Theo gave me was an Innervation program where there were 4 different workouts per muscle group with some of the body parts (days) would always be proceeded by either quad/ham blasts or abs/core circuits. Just thought yours was similiar like Back/Bilateral circuit or Chest/Quad Blasts etc....

I am doing an innervation based workout, but the circuits are not always the same like after shoulders I do a Glute/ham circuit but i have 3 different ones I use. The bi-lateral circuit will always go after back but the movements can vary.

Astreocclu
07-24-2010, 02:31 PM
What kind of differences are there (if any) between your methods and Scott Abels. i also see that you have been up quite a high work capacity, and it seems also that your work outs are pretty damn intense. How long does it take to increase ones TEP. Is it an ongoing process? Do start out fairly intense with new trainees and then work on increasing their volume and workload capacity?

POWERZN
07-24-2010, 05:01 PM
Allen is a mentoring student of Scott Abel ( this means something man ! ) , so of course he is using Scott's methods but Allen is learning the ' principles ' , after learning them there are many methods to reach your goals. Like Scott says ' methods are many , principles are few ' Ones you know the principles the methods
you can use for a client to reach his / her goals are endless , eric

Allen Cress
07-25-2010, 12:03 PM
What kind of differences are there (if any) between your methods and Scott Abels. i also see that you have been up quite a high work capacity, and it seems also that your work outs are pretty damn intense. How long does it take to increase ones TEP. Is it an ongoing process? Do start out fairly intense with new trainees and then work on increasing their volume and workload capacity?

We use basically the same methodology, everyone should be using the same principles. I have my own way I apply these things as do most coaches and do what I know and believe works best.

There is no time frame on how long it takes to increase ones TEP or workload capacity. It depends on many factors. If someone has been in athletics their whole life then they have a better developed CNS which will enable them to start at a higher workload and train with greater intensities than someone who has only lifted weights.

Where an individual starts will depend on where they are currently at. The goal is to always teach them to increase intensity while increasing workload capacity.

Allen Cress
07-30-2010, 01:45 PM
Back into training 100% after the first break-in week back. I have uped my calories by about 500 this week and have put on 3 lbs. I'm taking in about 300g protein, 550 carbs, and 50 fat. Weight is at 204 lbs.

Training was good today Did some arm and core work.

Arms:
- Overhead cable extention 1 x strip set
- Pushdowns 4 x 10-12
- One arm reverrse grip pushdown 4 X 12-15
- DB contentration curl 1 x 6, 1 x 6-8, 2 x 8-10
- One arm preacher curl 3 x 10-12
- machine preacher curl 3 x 8-10
- One arm hammer curl 3 x 10-12

Core:
1a) High to low cable chops 3 x 15 ES
1b) ab rollouts 3 x 15

2) Rocky abs 3 x 10

Joe Black
08-02-2010, 10:29 AM
Hey Allen, looks like everything is going well for you.

Definately feeling your approach to scaling up the intensity and volume and the focus on improving work capacity in general over time.

A quick question - what are your thoughts on training movements vs training muscle groups?

Allen Cress
08-02-2010, 01:58 PM
Hey Allen, looks like everything is going well for you.

Definately feeling your approach to scaling up the intensity and volume and the focus on improving work capacity in general over time.

A quick question - what are your thoughts on training movements vs training muscle groups?

If your overall goal is strength and power then your main focus should be on training movements but only with olympic lift variations, squats, bench press, deadlift, and functional exercises. You still want to train the muscle on other traditional lifts like rows, pulldowns, DB press, lateral raises, etc.... to make sure you get proper muscle activation.

Now if your overall goal is development (gaining mass/size) then training the muscle is extremely important so that almost all the stress is on the targeted muscle and you can feel it thru the entire range of motion from the stretch position into the contarted position for greater stimulation and uscle breakdown. But like I have written about before movement based exercises like olympic lift variations and functional exercises should be implemented at certain points in programs during the year for optimal CNS development and to keep your body balanced, which will leadf to greater development and also enhance metabolic rate and workload capacity.

You should never just train one way all the time year in and year out, but more time should be spent geared towards ones main goal.

Allen Cress
08-02-2010, 02:04 PM
Todays Leg workout:

1) Front squat 3 x 8-10
2) Single Leg curl 4 x 12-15
3) Leg ext. 5 x 10-15
4) Seated leg curl 4 x 12-15
5) One legged Leg press 3 x 15

Calves (All 3 sets are done back to back to back with no rest, decreasing time each set)
1a) Rocking calves (heels never touch) 3 X 30s, 20s, 10s
1b) TRX leaning calf raise(heels never touch) 3 x 30s, 20s, 10s

Next weeks leg day will be pure torture and one of the hardest I have ever done!!

Joe Black
08-02-2010, 02:43 PM
Interesting, thanks for the reply.

The reason I asked is because I have just started a 3 day, full body routine based around movements (squats, deads, push press, bench etc) but also containing things like chins, pull ups, rows, DB press etc.

I prefer training like this rather than bodypart splits nowadays, but my plan was to build a foundation of strength through a full body/movement type routine and then perhaps shift to bodypart and a more muscle focused routine.

Thoughts?

Allen Cress
08-02-2010, 04:32 PM
Interesting, thanks for the reply.

The reason I asked is because I have just started a 3 day, full body routine based around movements (squats, deads, push press, bench etc) but also containing things like chins, pull ups, rows, DB press etc.

I prefer training like this rather than bodypart splits nowadays, but my plan was to build a foundation of strength through a full body/movement type routine and then perhaps shift to bodypart and a more muscle focused routine.

Thoughts?

Nothing wrong with full body routines but no need to limit it to just big compound movements, Adding some olympic variations such as one arm snatches once every 3rd workouts is a great addition along with functional movements.

You don't have to do just bodypart splits to have a muscle focused (hypertrophy) program. I have many Hybrid programs that are strength & hypertrophy focused. Many ways to program designed and application.

Allen Cress
08-09-2010, 05:39 PM
This was one of the most grueling Leg days I have had in a long time. Today I am sore in every muscle of my quads and hams. It took 45 min to do just 3 sets, but that was the workout.

Leg 30's : 3 sets X 30 reps (each exericse is done for 30 reps in an extended fashion which means if you can crank out 20 or more reps in a row the weight is too light.) Minimal rest between each.

1A) Leg press X 7 plates each side
1B) BW walking lunge
1C) Front squats X 100 lbs
1D) Leg curls X 85 lbs


I have had to adjust my eating plan again due to no weight gain. On top of the 5000 cal I'm eating I will have 1 cheat meal a day (high quality foods of course) and 3-4 on Saturdays. Weight is stuck at 205 lbs.

b_chest31
08-10-2010, 10:58 AM
Sounds like a fun diet. I just wanted to let you know even though I don't post much, I still read your log whenever I can. Hopefully you keep updating it for us.

chevelle2291
08-10-2010, 04:34 PM
This was one of the most grueling Leg days I have had in a long time. Today I am sore in every muscle of my quads and hams. It took 45 min to do just 3 sets, but that was the workout.

Leg 30's : 3 sets X 30 reps (each exericse is done for 30 reps in an extended fashion which means if you can crank out 20 or more reps in a row the weight is too light.) Minimal rest between each.

1A) Leg press X 7 plates each side
1B) BW walking lunge
1C) Front squats X 100 lbs
1D) Leg curls X 85 lbs


I have had to adjust my eating plan again due to no weight gain. On top of the 5000 cal I'm eating I will have 1 cheat meal a day (high quality foods of course) and 3-4 on Saturdays. Weight is stuck at 205 lbs.

Wow that is insane.

Obviously we only get a snapshot of your workouts, but are you usually working in the 20-30 rep range for leg workouts? What's the purpose of the higher reps?

POWERZN
08-10-2010, 04:45 PM
In this workout I think Allen's main purpose is the duration of overload instead of the amount of overload, eric

Allen Cress
08-10-2010, 06:04 PM
Wow that is insane.

Obviously we only get a snapshot of your workouts, but are you usually working in the 20-30 rep range for leg workouts? What's the purpose of the higher reps?

It depends on the context of the program I am doing if I do higher reps. On average I do stay in the 10-20 rep range for legs. I have and still do power/strength based programs where my reps are around 5-8.

I have found for overall mass nothing is better than higher reps for legs, especially quads. Now the thing is if you are suppose to do a set of 20-25 reps and you can pump them out straight without a pause then the weight is too light. When I do 15+ reps I use a weight that allows me to only be able to do 10-12 straight reps then have to pause to get more. These are called extended sets and I use them mostly with squats, leg press, leg curls, RDL, never single leg movements.

f=ma
08-22-2010, 08:24 AM
any updates on the training?

Allen Cress
08-28-2010, 02:28 PM
Sorry its been a while since I've posted, clients have been keeping me busy.

Since I started incorporating 1 cheat meal everyday 2 weeks ago on top of my 4500 cal diet I have gained 2lbs and am currently at 212 lbs. I have also started having a hand full of almonds twice a day between meals to help increase my calories. At this point I just have tomake sure I maintain a good appetite and don't suppress it. I look to maintain 212-215 for the next couple months then hopefully gain some more after that. I want the 212 to be a new set weight and I have to maintain it for a minimum of 2 months for that to happen.

I still have 6 months left in my off season so I have plenty of time. I have also been dealing wiith medial epicondlytis on my left elbow due to some extreme tightness in my forearm but I have been getting ART done everyweek and its geeting better.

Here was my back day Thursday:

1) T-bar row 4 x 8-12, 195lbs
2) Seated cable row 4 x 12-15, 210lbs
3) Close grip pulldown 4 x 10-12, 170lbs
4) One arm DB row 3 x 10-12, 110lbs
5) One arm Hammer strength low row 3 x 10-12 170lbs

Bi-lateral circuit 3 x 8 reps.

I will be heading out to Vegas in 4 weeks for my annual Bday trip as well as to check out the Olympia. I plan on hitting up Golds gym with a friend (who is a monster, 350lbs 6' 3") and we plan on shooting some video of us working out. If we do I'll post it on the forums.

Coke
08-29-2010, 03:37 PM
We are all get different results based on our different or individual approaches as you well advocate at times. It's awesome how you go about it all Allen, including sharing your experiences with others.

Looks like you strategically gained about 8lbs within the last month...you staying in the 215 range before fine tuning your physique with contest prep is quite ideal, with your type of build.

POWERZN
08-30-2010, 08:25 AM
Allen, seems to me an interesting aproach to train very basic programs and always add some kind of triplex or quadplex or bi-lateral circuit. I think it's a good change from doing hybrid or MET programs and it will also keep you leaner in the off-season instead of doing traditional bodypart bodybuilding programs.
When you have finished your back workout and start with the bi-lateral do you first warm up every exercise or do you start the bi-lateral circuit at full power ? This type of training is also probably the reason you can keep increasing calories, eric

Allen Cress
08-30-2010, 09:12 AM
Allen, seems to me an interesting aproach to train very basic programs and always add some kind of triplex or quadplex or bi-lateral circuit. I think it's a good change from doing hybrid or MET programs and it will also keep you leaner in the off-season instead of doing traditional bodypart bodybuilding programs.
When you have finished your back workout and start with the bi-lateral do you first warm up every exercise or do you start the bi-lateral circuit at full power ? This type of training is also probably the reason you can keep increasing calories, eric

My current program would be considered a hybrid because of the added circuits and complexes.

I do One warm up round on all exercises involved in circuit then go all out.

This type of training does help with keeping and/or improving metabolic rate but at same time I could do the program without the hybrid approach and still need the calories I do because of my intensity levels when training. I am in O2 debt just doing single sets. Its also a progression over time with programs.

The circuits added are to induce more growth with the next program as well.

DavisK
08-30-2010, 12:30 PM
1) T-bar row 4 x 8-12, 195lbs
2) Seated cable row 4 x 12-15, 210lbs
3) Close grip pulldown 4 x 10-12, 170lbs
4) One arm DB row 3 x 10-12, 110lbs
5) One arm Hammer strength low row 3 x 10-12 170lbs



Allen, for the T-Bar rows do you use a machine or do you just stack 25s at the end of a barbell? Also, what type of grip do you use for them?

Allen Cress
08-30-2010, 09:02 PM
Allen, for the T-Bar rows do you use a machine or do you just stack 25s at the end of a barbell? Also, what type of grip do you use for them?

I put a barbell in the corner and put 35's on it. I either just grip the bar or use a close grip triangle bar.

Allen Cress
09-01-2010, 10:00 AM
Hit shoulders with ham/glute blast yesterday and my legs are still sore from sunday's leg thirties!!

1) Seated side laterals 1 x strip set
2) Reverse pec deck 4 x 10-15
3) Alternate front raise 3 x 10-12
4) One arm bent cable lateral 3 x 12-15
5) Hammer strength press 3 x 12
6) DB upright row 3 x 15

Ham/Glute blast:
1a) DB sumo squat 3 x 20
1b) TRX leg curl 3 x 15
1c) BW glute/ham raise 3 x 15
1d) Anterior reach 3 x 12 ES

Allen Cress
09-05-2010, 02:40 PM
Legs
1) squats 4 x 12-15 250lbs
2) seated leg curl 4 x 10-12 160lbs
3) leg press 4 x 20 8 plates per side
4) leg extensions 4 x 12-15 150lbs
5) deadlifts 3 x 12-15 225lbs

calves
1) single leg press calf raise 4 x 20-25
2) standing calf raise 4 x 8-15

Allen Cress
09-11-2010, 01:20 PM
This past week I made a few changes to my diet. I started feeling a little sluggish and somewhat bloated from all the carbs so based on my body's feedback I dropped my carbs from 600g+ to 400-450g and increased my fat from 60g to 180g.

I am feeling more energetic, less bloating and appetite has increased so I should be able to increase calories even more after a couple weeks. Weight is at 215lbs.

Allen Cress
09-20-2010, 10:14 AM
Weight is holding around 216 now and still pretty lean especially for off season. Body is workinbg much better with my diet changes. I'm off to Vegas Thursday to watch the Olympia nd go to fitness expo as well as celebrate my Bday. Will also hit Golds Gym while I'm out there and may shoot some video with my friend, who is a monster weighing 350lbs and 6'4" . Will post some on forums if we do it.

Legs;

1) leg ext. 5 x 15-20
2) Leg press 4 x 12-15
3) Front squats 4 x 15
4) leg curl 3 x 10-12
5) stiff leg deadlift 3 x 15

Calves
1) standing calf raise 4 x 25-30
2) seated raise 4 x 10-15

Coke
09-21-2010, 03:40 PM
Sounds like a super weekend ahead, have a great time at the Mr. O, and happy B'day too Allen.

ThomasG
09-21-2010, 04:51 PM
Weight is holding around 216 now and still pretty lean especially for off season. Body is workinbg much better with my diet changes. I'm off to Vegas Thursday to watch the Olympia nd go to fitness expo as well as celebrate my Bday. Will also hit Golds Gym while I'm out there and may shoot some video with my friend, who is a monster weighing 350lbs and 6'4" . Will post some on forums if we do it.

Legs;

1) leg ext. 5 x 15-20
2) Leg press 4 x 12-15
3) Front squats 4 x 15
4) leg curl 3 x 10-12
5) stiff leg deadlift 3 x 15

Calves
1) standing calf raise 4 x 25-30
2) seated raise 4 x 10-15

I'll assume your legs respond better to high rep high volume training. Do you ever rep lower in the 5-8 range for legs?

Allen Cress
09-22-2010, 06:13 AM
I'll assume your legs respond better to high rep high volume training. Do you ever rep lower in the 5-8 range for legs?

Depending on the context of my program and what my current needs state I do low reps every so often in a program. I always surf the curve at some point during the year, but a majority of the time I do stay higher volume with legs. I have programs where strength and power are the focus and I have ones where I do a strength & Hypertrophy focus, and a majority where hypertrophy is the main focus since that is my main goal.

I have found that they grow more with higher reps, especially quads, than with lower rep schemes, but low reps do have their place if they are placed properly in the overall design of a program. I use top be a competitive powerlifter for 3-4 years and even though I became strong I never developed the amount of size I wanted, which led me to higher volume approach, but this does not mean junk volume as many do. Volume is more than just more reps & sets.

Allen Cress
10-07-2010, 06:41 AM
Shoulders & Ham/glute blast:

Hammer Strength Press 3 x 5, 1 x 8, 1 x 12-15
One arm cable bent lateral 3 x 12-15
One arm cable side lateral 3 x 12-15
Alternating Front cable raises 3 x 10-12
Standing DB side lateral with one foot on bench 3 x 12-15

1a) Anterior reach 3 x 10-12 ES
1b) SB Hip extention 3 x 15
1c) SB Leg curl 3 x 15
1d) SB hip lift 3 x 12-15
1e) SB reverse hyper 3 x 15

Weight is holding around 215lbs. Calories still at 4500. Since I have decided to take all of next year off to add as much size as possible I am looking to get up around 230. I haven't taken a whole year off in 5 years so my body should really respond well.

I will do about 3-4 more weeks on my current program then take a week off before starting my next protocol.

DavisK
10-08-2010, 06:40 AM
Shoulders & Ham/glute blast:

Hammer Strength Press 3 x 5, 1 x 8, 1 x 12-15
One arm cable bent lateral 3 x 12-15
One arm cable side lateral 3 x 12-15
Alternating Front cable raises 3 x 10-12
Standing DB side lateral with one foot on bench 3 x 12-15

1a) Anterior reach 3 x 10-12 ES
1b) SB Hip extention 3 x 15
1c) SB Leg curl 3 x 15
1d) SB hip lift 3 x 12-15
1e) SB reverse hyper 3 x 15



Allen, do you have any days in your program where you just train chest for instance and nothing else? Do you have any idea what your next program will look like?...Do you have people who accuse you of 'juicin'? I showed your avatar pic to someone the other day, and he was like "oh he's on it for sure." I told him that you have been doing this for a long time 12-15 years on a consistent basis with proper programming and everything in-line. I guess people just don't understand what it takes. :confused:

Allen Cress
10-10-2010, 10:51 AM
Allen, do you have any days in your program where you just train chest for instance and nothing else? Do you have any idea what your next program will look like?...Do you have people who accuse you of 'juicin'? I showed your avatar pic to someone the other day, and he was like "oh he's on it for sure." I told him that you have been doing this for a long time 12-15 years on a consistent basis with proper programming and everything in-line. I guess people just don't understand what it takes. :confused:

Yes, my arm and leg days. Not looking at whats next until this one is finished. I try and stay away from the whole steroid talk. I just find that regardless if someone is taking it or not that others will use it as an excuse because they don't realize that if you don't train and eat the way you need to consistently you won't reach your goals. You can't just do a cycle and look like Jay Cutler as a lot of uninformed people want to believe.

Allen Cress
10-14-2010, 05:33 PM
Back:

1) Wide pulldowns 1x 6-8: 210lbs , 2 x 8-10: 200lbs, 1 x 10-12: 180lbs
2) One arm DB row 3 x 10: 120lbs
3) Close grip pulldown 3 x 10-12 180 lbs
4) BB bent row 3 x 10-12: 165lbs
5) DB pullover 3 x 15: 55lbs

I have 2 more weeks on this program then I will take 7-10 days off before starting my next protocol. Body is feeling a little beat up.

Behemoth
10-15-2010, 06:36 PM
Good training in here Allen.

It's been a while since I've read any extensive publication (something more than an article or study) on bodybuilding and I'm itching to. Scott Abel intrigues me, what book would you reccomend from him to start with?

Allen Cress
10-16-2010, 03:11 PM
Good training in here Allen.

It's been a while since I've read any extensive publication (something more than an article or study) on bodybuilding and I'm itching to. Scott Abel intrigues me, what book would you reccomend from him to start with?

For training "The Abel Approach" is bar none one of the best in the industry. I have been lucky enough to have been mentored by Scott and learned how to apply things properly and to look at the immediate and cummalitive effects of a training protocol and how one program applies to the next to work towards your goals. Also how the context of a program is very important instead of just doing random exercises within the workout.

For Nutrition the best book out there is "Modern Nutrition". Its also very extensive and in depth.

DavisK
10-17-2010, 10:11 AM
5) DB pullover 3 x 15: 55lbs

I have 2 more weeks on this program then I will take 7-10 days off before starting my next protocol. Body is feeling a little beat up.

Allen, when you perform the DB pullover do you do it like it's demonstrated in Scott's video? The pullover is a chest and back exercise, right? I currently have this exercise in my program for every other chest day.

Allen Cress
10-17-2010, 05:46 PM
Allen, when you perform the DB pullover do you do it like it's demonstrated in Scott's video? The pullover is a chest and back exercise, right? I currently have this exercise in my program for every other chest day.

Haven't seen the video. It does hit the chest but in my opinion it stimulates the lats much more. I keep my elbows at the same angle thru the whole range of motion and pull at the elbow and with the lats. Also lay across the bench keeping hips low .

If doing it for chest make sure to bend the elbows a bit more and flex as you pull the DB over.

Allen Cress
10-24-2010, 12:03 PM
This is my last week of training before I take 7-10 days off. I have enjoyed this program and have made some good gains.

Legs:
1a) leg press 3 x 30 ; 7 plates per side
1b) Walking lounges 3 x 30; bodyweight
1c) Front squats 3 x 30; 100lbs
1d) Leg curl 3 x 30; 105lbs

All these , except lunges, were done extended set fashion

ELmx479
10-25-2010, 03:45 PM
What program are you using next?

Allen Cress
10-25-2010, 08:42 PM
What program are you using next?

Not sure yet. It will be put together on my week off.

DavisK
10-26-2010, 01:27 PM
Allen, do you use any supplements besides protein powder?

Allen Cress
10-26-2010, 08:50 PM
Allen, do you use any supplements besides protein powder?

I also use Maximus weight gainer from At Large Nutrition because it has almost 700 calories and I take in about 700-800 per meal. During my workouts I use to drink gatorade for extra calories but it bloated me so i switched to waxiemaize.

Other than those 2 that's all I'm using for this off season besides lots of food!!

Allen Cress
10-26-2010, 08:56 PM
Shoulders

1) Seated side laterals 1 strip set
2) Reverse Pec Deck 4 x 10-15
3) Cable front raise 3 x 10-12
4) One arm cable bent lateral 3 x 12-15
5) Hammer strength Press 3 x 12
6) Horizontal cable laterals 3 x 15

2 days to go then it time to take a break.

DavisK
10-28-2010, 09:08 AM
During your most recent implementation of the Cycle Diet, did the mid-week spike replace the last one or two meals of that day?

Allen Cress
10-28-2010, 11:45 AM
During your most recent implementation of the Cycle Diet, did the mid-week spike replace the last one or two meals of that day?

With my variation I ate 3 diet meals then the rest of the day was whatever I wanted, just no sugar oriented foods.

Allen Cress
10-30-2010, 08:50 AM
Well I have offically started my time off from training. I will take about 7-10 days off depending on how my body feels and then start back up woth a new training protocol.

MY weight is around 210lbs and have been maintaining it for about 2-3 months. Noiw its time to induce more growth and step up the calories again. Since I have all next year off from competing I want to take it nice and slow with the gains and have quality over quantity.

Coke
10-30-2010, 07:26 PM
You deserve a little break, the way you go at it...like the approach too, patient and methodical.

POWERZN
11-01-2010, 01:24 PM
It's all about STRUCTURE, eric

Allen Cress
11-04-2010, 11:56 AM
My week off is almost up and I have enjoyed just relaxing and resting all week.

I finished designing my next program yesterday. I am taking a complete Hybrid approach with this one based around Power. The 2 main days the program is built around is 4 sets of 6 reps and these are bi-plexed together. The other days will be complexes and traditional hypertrophy along with plyos as well.

Look forward to starting it Monday.

POWERZN
11-04-2010, 02:18 PM
Keep us posted Allen, we learn a lot from you, you show us that someone with no exeptional genetics and a normal life and a job can have results in the real world. Like mentor Scott Abel used to say ' hard work pays off '
eric

Allen Cress
11-04-2010, 03:46 PM
Keep us posted Allen, we learn a lot from you, you show us that someone with no exeptional genetics and a normal life and a job can have results in the real world. Like mentor Scott Abel used to say ' hard work pays off '
eric

Thanks, I will keep you guys up to date. Hard and consistent work pays off always. I remember when I started competing I weighed 130lbs and Now 16 years later I'm a solid 210. Long road but well worth it.

POWERZN
11-04-2010, 04:16 PM
You must be a real inspiration for your gym members, eric

Joe Black
11-05-2010, 03:02 AM
My week off is almost up and I have enjoyed just relaxing and resting all week.

I finished designing my next program yesterday. I am taking a complete Hybrid approach with this one based around Power. The 2 main days the program is built around is 4 sets of 6 reps and these are bi-plexed together. The other days will be complexes and traditional hypertrophy along with plyos as well.

Look forward to starting it Monday.

That sounds awesome, can't wait to see what the program looks like!

Allen Cress
11-08-2010, 12:17 PM
Today was my first day back to training after 9 days off. Today was a power based day and as you can see not your traditional bodypart split, which should show people, physique competitors especially that stepping outside the box is a good thing and is needed for bettyer development if placed properly.

1A) Squats 4 x 6
1B) One arm DB snatch 4 x 3 each arm

2A) Incline DB press 4 x 6
2B) BB bent row 4 x 6

3A) DB shoulder press 4 x 6
3B) Pressdowns 4 x 6-8

4A) BB curl 4 x 6-8
4B) Cable crunches 4 x 12-15

I will use the first week back as a break-in period and gradually build up intensity over that time and be back to 100% next week.

POWERZN
11-08-2010, 01:24 PM
Seems like a real challange such a program. How do you warm up if you go to a different muscle like the dumbell presses, do you work up the weight with 2 light sets before doing 4 X 6 reps or can you handle this without real warming up sets.
Doing heavy moves warms up the body totaly but still have to be carefull for injuries.
I personally would do 2 light sets before going to the real sets but I am always afraid that people blindly would copy your program and injure themselves, eric

bon courage demain my friend

Allen Cress
11-08-2010, 04:35 PM
Before anything I always do some GPP warm ups then do physical rehersal warm ups until I'm ready to go. If I do incline presses which is a different plane of motion than the previous exercise I just do 2-3 warm ups pyramiding up then start my working sets

Decent
11-09-2010, 02:29 AM
Thanks for the awesome journal. It's both inspiring and educational.

Two part question.

1a) What usually causes you to switch up programs? Most people try something new when their strength gains start to slow down, but your programs seem based around quality reps and volume. How do you know when it's time for a change?

1b) Have you lost any strength and if so, how much? I read that you used to be a powerlifter, and I'm curious how often you test your old PRs. Does your newer training method carry over to 1 RM's or take away from them?

Thanks again.

Allen Cress
11-09-2010, 12:25 PM
Thanks for the awesome journal. It's both inspiring and educational.

Two part question.

1a) What usually causes you to switch up programs? Most people try something new when their strength gains start to slow down, but your programs seem based around quality reps and volume. How do you know when it's time for a change?

1b) Have you lost any strength and if so, how much? I read that you used to be a powerlifter, and I'm curious how often you test your old PRs. Does your newer training method carry over to 1 RM's or take away from them?

Thanks again.

1a) I listen to my body's bio-feedback when it comes to changing things. There is more than one factor involved, things such as energy levels, concentration levels, appetite, achy joints, strength density decline, etc.... to name a few. My programs are based on my current needs state and what I did previously has to do with what i do next as well.

1b) I could honestly care less what my 1RM is as it has nothing to do with my goals. I havent done a 1RM since I competed in powerlifting and in general unless you are a competitive powerlifter doing a 1RM has no benefit or payoff in training or athletics.

I train for development and strength just comes naturally without thinking too much about it or worrying about what percentage of a weight I am lifting. I just use a weight that is challenging for whatever rep scheme I am using and train hard. I think way too many people get caught up in percentages and numbers and it takes away from the training itself. Train intense and results will come and don't force it by thinking you have to always put more and more weight on the bar.

I'm not saying you should train light , but train as heavy as you can in the rep range you're using with good form.

Decent
11-09-2010, 11:13 PM
That makes sense. I guess it's just easier for people (self included) to gauge progress by using raw numbers. It takes a while to break out of that mindset.

Good advice though, thanks.

Allen Cress
11-11-2010, 11:00 AM
Here was my Leg focus day:

1) Leg press 4 x 12-15

Quad Blast: 3 sets
2a) BW speed squats x 25
2b) Long jump leaps from crouch position x 10-15
2c) Alternating Reverse lunges x 24
2d) Squat jumps x 10-12
2e) Duck walks x max

3a) Step ups 3 x 10-12
3b) Preacher curl 3 x 8-10

4a) Leg extentions 3 x 12-15
4b) Alternating Zottman curl 3 x 10

POWERZN
11-11-2010, 11:50 AM
Allen, one quick question : the bicep exercises are they meant as unloading and do they come back at another day or is your bicep program integrated in your leg workout for another reason ? eric

Allen Cress
11-11-2010, 12:35 PM
Allen, one quick question : the bicep exercises are they meant as unloading and do they come back at another day or is your bicep program integrated in your leg workout for another reason ? eric

Unloading can only be done without load, in which this is not the case. I have a certain amount of volume for biceps for the week and different rep ranges and I bi-plex them for metabolic payoff as well.

Allen Cress
11-14-2010, 01:04 PM
Day 5

1a) Deadlifts 4 x 6
1b) Flat DB press 4 x 6

2a) DB Clean and press 4 x 6
2b) One arm T-bar row 4 x 6

3a) DB High pulls 4 x 6
3b) Overhead rope extention 4 x 8-10

4a) One arm push up 4 x 6 each arm
4b) Reverse pressdown 4 x 12-15

Upper and mid back are sore as hell.

First week back complete now its time to crank intensity up 100%

Allen Cress
11-16-2010, 07:55 PM
Complexes & Conditioning:

1a) Shrugs 3 x 10-15
1b) Seated side laterals 3 x 15
1c) Bent DB laterals 3 x 12-15
1d) 2 arm Front DB swing 3 x 10-15
1e) Alternating DB Overhead press 3 x 10-12 each arm

2a) Sit outs 3 x 10-12 each side
2b) Contralateral Hand to Toe touch 3 x 8-12 each side
2c) ABC Head to toe Cable crunch 3 x 15
2d) SB Step Offs 3 x 8-12 each side

3a) SB hip extention 3 x 15
3b) Leg curls 3 x 8-15
3c) Glute/Ham raise 3 x 10-15
3d) One arm/ one leg deadlift 3 x 12-15 each

DavisK
11-17-2010, 07:40 AM
Allen, do you do any recreational athletic events on the side like playing basketball, MMA, or whatever else? If so, I imagine that gets factored into the programming, right?

Allen Cress
11-17-2010, 11:40 AM
Allen, do you do any recreational athletic events on the side like playing basketball, MMA, or whatever else? If so, I imagine that gets factored into the programming, right?

Not really, I use to do MMA and play basketball here and there but not anymore, don't have the time.

Allen Cress
11-23-2010, 09:29 PM
Chest & Back recovery/isolation day

1a) Close grip pulldown 3 x 12-15
1b) Flat DB fly 3 x 12-15

2a) TRX push up 3 x 15-20
2b) Recline pull ups 3 x 12-15

3a) Cable pull outs 3 x 12-15
3b) Cable crossover 3 x 15

4a) Alternating DB press off SB 3 x 12 EA
4b) Straight arm pulldown 3 x 15

Calves

My diet is currently at 4500 per day and weight is at 212 lbs. I look to get up to around 220 in the next 10 weeks. I have a mild case of medial epicondolytis (golfers elbow) and I am getting ART done every week to take care of it.

DavisK
11-25-2010, 02:36 PM
Chest & Back recovery/isolation day

1a) Close grip pulldown 3 x 12-15
1b) Flat DB fly 3 x 12-15

2a) TRX push up 3 x 15-20
2b) Recline pull ups 3 x 12-15

3a) Cable pull outs 3 x 12-15
3b) Cable crossover 3 x 15

4a) Alternating DB press off SB 3 x 12 EA
4b) Straight arm pulldown 3 x 15

Calves

My diet is currently at 4500 per day and weight is at 212 lbs. I look to get up to around 220 in the next 10 weeks. I have a mild case of medial epicondolytis (golfers elbow) and I am getting ART done every week to take care of it.

Are you still on the CD incorporating 1.5 cheats days? I know that your current program is not a traditional body part split. What does the weekly breakdown look like then or does it change every week?

Allen Cress
11-25-2010, 10:16 PM
Are you still on the CD incorporating 1.5 cheats days? I know that your current program is not a traditional body part split. What does the weekly breakdown look like then or does it change every week?

I haven't been on the cycle diet since July. I usually have 1-2 cheat meals a week. Since my calories are so high I rarely ever have cravings and since I've decided to take all next year off from competing I will more than likely continue to bulk to add as much quality size as possible .

As far as my split days are broken down into 2 power days consisting of 6 reps , 1 leg focus day, 1 chest/back isolation day, and a complex day consisting of shoulders, core, & hams/glutes. Certain exercises are rotated each week.

POWERZN
11-28-2010, 07:15 AM
Allen, looking at the calories you were eating at the end of the preparation of your last contest you went down to around 2200 kcals. Now you are eating around 4500 kcals and maybe it will higher within a few months when you get heavier. How do you handle the hunger after a few weeks on a diet, I mean being used to eating between 4000 and 5000 kcals for more then a year and going below 3000 kcals it must be phychological difficult no matter what the conditioning will be at the end and would you be able to go all the way to being ripped if there was no contest planned and only doing this for yourself, eric

Allen Cress
11-28-2010, 03:40 PM
Allen, looking at the calories you were eating at the end of the preparation of your last contest you went down to around 2200 kcals. Now you are eating around 4500 kcals and maybe it will higher within a few months when you get heavier. How do you handle the hunger after a few weeks on a diet, I mean being used to eating between 4000 and 5000 kcals for more then a year and going below 3000 kcals it must be phychological difficult no matter what the conditioning will be at the end and would you be able to go all the way to being ripped if there was no contest planned and only doing this for yourself, eric

For me its the same every contest, never harder. Hunger is just part of the process and I don't look at it as anything more than a fat burning signal. Because my calories are soo high in off season I actually look forward to dieting because of the amount I have to eat in off season.

I would never get myself as conditioned as I do for contest just for myself because its not a sustainable condition and has no relevance other than a contest or photo shoot. Mentality is one of the biggest factors when leaning out and I never have an issue because as an athlete that's just my natural mentality.

Allen Cress
12-01-2010, 05:32 AM
This past week I increased my calories and now they are averaging about 5000-5500 a day depending on if I'm able to eat an 8th meal. My weight was stuck around 210 for the last 3-4 weeks and appetite was fine so we'll see where this takes me.

Example day:

1) 5 whole eggs, 1 cup egg whites
3 shredded wheat biscuits
2 tbsp natural peanut butter

2) 3 scoops nitrean
2 tbsp olive oil
1 1/4 cup rice

3) 220g chicken
300g potato
2 servings almonds

4) 3 scoops whey isolate
16oz apple juice
1 scoop waixemaize

5) 200g beef
300g potato
1 serving almonds

6) 4 scoops maximus
1 tbsp olive oil

7) 7 whole eggs
1/2 cup grape nuts

8) 3 scoops nitrean
2 tbsp olive oil

DavisK
12-01-2010, 10:57 AM
This past week I increased my calories and now they are averaging about 5000-5500 a day depending on if I'm able to eat an 8th meal. My weight was stuck around 210 for the last 3-4 weeks and appetite was fine so we'll see where this takes me.

Example day:

1) 5 whole eggs, 1 cup egg whites
3 shredded wheat biscuits
2 tbsp natural peanut butter

2) 3 scoops nitrean
2 tbsp olive oil
1 1/4 cup rice

3) 220g chicken
300g potato
2 servings almonds

4) 3 scoops whey isolate
16oz apple juice
1 scoop waixemaize

5) 200g beef
300g potato
1 serving almonds

6) 4 scoops maximus
1 tbsp olive oil

7) 7 whole eggs
1/2 cup grape nuts

8) 3 scoops nitrean
2 tbsp olive oil

How do you consume the olive oil?

Allen Cress
12-01-2010, 12:49 PM
How do you consume the olive oil?

I just mix it in with my shakes

POWERZN
12-02-2010, 05:05 AM
Allen, while eating that much calories can you still see your abs and does your face get bloated ?
Most people, including me look like being are on a heavy steroid cycle while being on more than 3000 kcals.
ERIC

Allen Cress
12-02-2010, 10:20 AM
Allen, while eating that much calories can you still see your abs and does your face get bloated ?
Most people, including me look like being are on a heavy steroid cycle while being on more than 3000 kcals.
ERIC

I can still see the outline of my abs. I never get too bloated unless I eat a lot of processd food or restaurant food. I do hold water but nothing crazy. Its definitley all individual. I store most of my fat in my low back and glutes.

POWERZN
12-02-2010, 12:26 PM
In my case my legs, back, even glutes stay pretty lean but all the fat goes to my lower abs and a bit to my inner legs and that is really disturbing cause you always look like being out of shape.
Of course this is feedback to how your body reacts on the food you eat and it tells what kind of bodytype you are. eric

POWERZN
12-02-2010, 01:18 PM
Allen, how many days a week do you workout ? And is it weekly the same, exemple the power days on a certain day, leg oriented day on a certain day ...... thanks, eric

DavisK
12-02-2010, 01:50 PM
As far as my split days are broken down into 2 power days consisting of 6 reps , 1 leg focus day, 1 chest/back isolation day, and a complex day consisting of shoulders, core, & hams/glutes. Certain exercises are rotated each week.

Eric, maybe this could answer your question somewhat.

Allen Cress
12-02-2010, 02:21 PM
Allen, how many days a week do you workout ? And is it weekly the same, exemple the power days on a certain day, leg oriented day on a certain day ...... thanks, eric

I workout 5 days per week. Each day is on the same day every week .

POWERZN
12-03-2010, 08:12 AM
Allen, from looking at your diet you seem to eat a lot more protein than you use to eat, in grams it's a lot but in % it's of course logical at that many calories, eric

Allen Cress
12-03-2010, 09:48 PM
Allen, from looking at your diet you seem to eat a lot more protein than you use to eat, in grams it's a lot but in % it's of course logical at that many calories, eric

Its all relative to the calorie intake, which is how I always design it. Protein is important but the protein sparing nutrients are just as important. Too many people just focus on protein intake not realizing that if carbs and fats aren't where they need to be you will use protein for fuel instaed of rebuilding muscle.

POWERZN
12-05-2010, 03:06 AM
Allen, how do you compare the intensity of your training in relation to the period you were dieting on 1500 kcals a few years ago, the period before it was discovered that your metabolism is unique, Eric

Allen Cress
12-05-2010, 05:47 PM
Allen, how do you compare the intensity of your training in relation to the period you were dieting on 1500 kcals a few years ago, the period before it was discovered that your metabolism is unique, Eric

My training intensity was just as high then as it is now. The calories I was taking in is what my body functioned off off then and over time as I increased my metabolic rate and lean mass the calories were adjusted due to my body's bio feedback . Also when I was at 1500 cal I was on cycle diet with 1 & half re-feed days.

DavisK
12-06-2010, 12:57 PM
My training intensity was just as high then as it is now. The calories I was taking in is what my body functioned off off then and over time as I increased my metabolic rate and lean mass the calories were adjusted due to my body's bio feedback . Also when I was at 1500 cal I was on cycle diet with 1 & half re-feed days.

How much did you weigh at that time?

Allen Cress
12-06-2010, 06:29 PM
How much did you weigh at that time?

I think about 190 lbs off season.

Allen Cress
12-12-2010, 09:18 PM
After being on my 7-8 meals for the last 2 weeks my weight hit an all time high of 224lbs. Everything is progressing nicely and with a full year left for my off-season I should make some good gains. Im still dealing with a slight case of elbow pain but it only effects direct ARM work. My orthopedic is having me get an MRI done next week to make sure its not some rare issue, can't remember what he called it.

Power day 2

1a) partial deadlift 4 x 6
1b) flat BB press 4 x 6

2a) BB clean & press 4 x 6
2b) one ARM t-bar row 4 x 6

3a) BB high pull 4 x6
3b) rope pressdown 4 x 10

4a) one ARM pushups 3 x 6 EA
4b) lying DB extension 3 x 12-15

POWERZN
12-13-2010, 12:25 PM
Allen where can we see how the one arm T-BAR rows is done, I have an idea but still... eric

Allen Cress
12-13-2010, 01:53 PM
Allen where can we see how the one arm T-BAR rows is done, I have an idea but still... eric

There isn't one. I just put an Olympic bar in the corner, load up 25lb plates , use a staggered stance and do a row. You get a really good stretch doing these.

POWERZN
12-21-2010, 02:51 AM
Hi Allen, yesterday I did a tryout out your power day nr 1, I did 3 instead of 4 sets and had to search for the right weight . This training being a piece of your new 5 day training is an event on itself, from what I felt yesterday
( huge oxygen dept ) from doing 2 compound movements in biplex I think this program is something you can't do for more than 8 weeks for danger of overtraining and certainly something people can't do with not enough calories in their bodies. eric

Allen Cress
12-28-2010, 12:52 PM
Hi Allen, yesterday I did a tryout out your power day nr 1, I did 3 instead of 4 sets and had to search for the right weight . This training being a piece of your new 5 day training is an event on itself, from what I felt yesterday
( huge oxygen dept ) from doing 2 compound movements in biplex I think this program is something you can't do for more than 8 weeks for danger of overtraining and certainly something people can't do with not enough calories in their bodies. eric

There is never a set period of how long to do any program that is completely individual. I am on my 8th week and look to go another 3-4 weeks. You have to remember proper progression of programs overtime will increase ones workload capacity and be able to handle higher end program like the one I'm currently on. This definitley not something a beginner should do.

I still feeel really good and actually have gotten stronger these past couple weeks. I never force strength by contstanly putting weight on bar every week , I just listen to my body and when it feels stronger I increase weight. Too many people always try to put more and more on the bar and try to force their body to get stronger and this can lead to injury. You will get stroger overtime but you have to coax the body to do so not force it.

Allen Cress
12-28-2010, 12:59 PM
1a) Squats 4 x 6, 340lbs
1b) BB snatch from Hang 4 x 6, 140lbs

2a) Incline DB press 4 x 6, 110lbs
2b) BB row 4 x 6, 175lbs

3a) Hammer S. Shoulder Press 4 x 6, 110lbs per side
3b) Pressdown 4 x 6-8, 120lbs

4a) Cable curl 4 x 6-8, 80lbs
4b) Lying leg raises 4 x 12-20

My weight is hanging around 221-224 and I am going to just maintain this weight for a few months before trying to gain more. My body is at that point where it will be somewhat uncomfortable to go any higher and my appetite has also decreased as well. This is where you nevber force your body to try and gain weight or you will just put on non-functional weight which is not what i want.

POWERZN
12-29-2010, 04:12 AM
Allen, these are pretty impressive weights for a natural bodybuilder, I guess you always were strong.
Keep up the good work and stay motivated , you are a inspiration for a lot of us, eric

Allen Cress
12-31-2010, 08:50 AM
1a) Leg press 4 x 12-15, 9plates per side
1b) Cable side lateral 4 x 15-20, 20lbs
1c) Cable curl 4 x 10-12, 80 lbs

2a) BW squats on Bosu (bubble side down) 3 x 30
2b) BW Alternating Lunge 3 x 15 Each
2c) Leg extentions from plank 3 x 20-30
2d) Gliding hamstring curl 3 x max

3) Step ups 3 x 10-12, 115 lbs

4a) Leg extention 3 x 15, 170 lbs
4b) TRX T raise 3 x 15
4c) Preacher curl 3 x 12-15, 70lbs

POWERZN
01-07-2011, 05:29 AM
Allen, in this leg focus day you use a non-balistic quad blast instead of a explosif quad blast.
Has this a special reason or is it only for keeping the joints healthy, it's easy to overtrain on explosif
movements.
This is a hybrid approach for sure, it makes you feel more allround athlete instead of doing traditional bodybuilding and still have the effect of muscles growing bigger, eric

Allen Cress
01-10-2011, 08:08 AM
Allen, in this leg focus day you use a non-balistic quad blast instead of a explosif quad blast.
Has this a special reason or is it only for keeping the joints healthy, it's easy to overtrain on explosif
movements.
This is a hybrid approach for sure, it makes you feel more allround athlete instead of doing traditional bodybuilding and still have the effect of muscles growing bigger, eric

Because of the heavier weights I'm using in this program it is used everyother week to take it easy on my joints. I will get more growth out of the next program because of this one due to CNS demand and its carry over effect to traditional training. A perfect example of proper program progression.

Allen Cress
01-10-2011, 08:11 AM
I am starting my 10th week on this program and look to do 2-3 more weeks max before taking a week off. Joints are feeling it a little and taking a bit longer to warm up as well.

As far as diet, since dropping my calories I feel great and performance has increased in gym. I'm holding around 219lbs and will probably stay right around here for about 3 months before trying to gain more.

whatdahell?
01-14-2011, 02:42 AM
This should probably be obvious to me but when you say a b c...are you performing tri sets or....?

Allen Cress
01-15-2011, 11:40 AM
This should probably be obvious to me but when you say a b c...are you performing tri sets or....?

Yes, that means they are done back to back with little to no rest

Allen Cress
01-21-2011, 11:24 AM
I Have one more week on my current program then I will be taking a week off from training. This has been a brutal but effective program and when I transition into a more traditional bodypart split for my next program I should see some good gains and carry over.

I also posted some video from one of my workouts in the Video section on forums

POWERZN
01-25-2011, 11:49 AM
Allen, so you did this program ( hybrid power - conditioning ) for almost 12 weeks now and from there ( first rest for 1 week ) you move on to a more traditional bodybuilding program that will give you a carry over effect to muscle growth.
Of course traditional bodybuilding training will make part of the training but I guess there will be some real athletic moves and combo's in there that the ' traditional bodybuilders ' would not do or even refuse to do.
I showed the video's to some people in my gym and also I showed them your competition pics and said you were a natural bodybuilder, they looked in disbelief.
So Allen, stay motivated and keep up the good work.
ERIC

Allen Cress
01-26-2011, 02:56 PM
Thanks bro. For this next program I will be going pretty much all traditional with maybe a few unique exercises, but at this point my body needs to back off the ballistic and most explosive moves such as jumps and olympic moves to give my joints and tendons a break. I have been doing some type of hybrid for the last 6 months.

Allen Cress
02-01-2011, 10:38 PM
I am in the middle of my week off and will start back on Monday. My body is enjoying the rest and recovery.

I just finished designing my next program and I will be on a bodypart split:

Day 1: Arms/core
Day 2: Legs
Day 3: Shoulders/ calves
off
Day 4: Chest/ core
Day 5: Back/ calves
off

I am using different intensity techniques with each bodypart and changing the exercise sequence every week with 4 different sequences, then repeat.

whatdahell?
02-02-2011, 02:54 PM
I am in the middle of my week off and will start back on Monday. My body is enjoying the rest and recovery.

I just finished designing my next program and I will be on a bodypart split:

Day 1: Arms/core
Day 2: Legs
Day 3: Shoulders/ calves
off
Day 4: Chest/ core
Day 5: Back/ calves
off

I am using different intensity techniques with each bodypart and changing the exercise sequence every week with 4 different sequences, then repeat.

I've been trying some of these workouts. Been kicking my ass, man. Appreciate it.

Allen Cress
02-07-2011, 06:48 AM
Today was my first day nback training. I will use the first week or so as my break-in week a gradually up my intensity. Today was Arms/core. For the next month I will be sticking with high reps and slow execution on triceps because I am just getting over some tendonitis. Bodyweight is holding around 216-217

- Pushdowns 4 x 15-20
- Overhead tubing ext. 4 x 15
- Machine dips 3 x 15

- Alternating Tube curls 3 x 10-12
- one arm cable curls 3 x 10-12
- preacher curls 3 x 10-15
- one arm zottman curl 3 x 10

Kept rest periods short 30-60 seconds

DavisK
02-08-2011, 10:51 AM
- Pushdowns 4 x 15-20
- Overhead tubing ext. 4 x 15
- Machine dips 3 x 15

- Alternating Tube curls 3 x 10-12
- one arm cable curls 3 x 10-12
- preacher curls 3 x 10-15
- one arm zottman curl 3 x 10

Kept rest periods short 30-60 seconds

Any particular reason why you are incorporating tubing into the workouts?

Allen Cress
02-10-2011, 10:19 AM
Any particular reason why you are incorporating tubing into the workouts?

Tubing is much easier on the joints. It increases in resistance during the concentric part of the lift and basically deloads during the eccentric.

Allen Cress
02-10-2011, 10:25 AM
This was a short but brutal workout.

Leg curl 3 x 15, 12, 8. Then 1 drop set of 10-10-25

BB stiff legged deadlift , 2 light warm ups then 2 sets of 10-12 with a hard flex on each and every rep

Leg press 3 x 10-15, slow negative and explode up then right back down. NO Pauses

Hack squat 3 x 10-12. No lockouts. On last set pause at the bottom of each rep and no nockout at top, then drop weight in half and pump out 15 reps.

3 rounds of 1 min deep stretching on each quad.

Allen Cress
02-10-2011, 10:28 AM
MY delts have never been soo engorged with blood and the lactic acid burn was insane!

Heavy partial lateral swings 4 x 35

Reverse pec deck 3 x 35

Incline rear lateral swing 1 x drop set 60, 30, 10. Last set do a pause contraction on ever rep and full ROM

Allen Cress
02-22-2011, 07:41 PM
Seated leg curl 4 x 15, 12, 10, 35

Leg press 3 x 15 (slow negative)

Hack squats 3 x 8 (no lockouts)

Squats 3 x 8 (last set did 1 1/2 reps)

DB stiff legged deadlift 4 x 12 (only come up 3/4)


Crawl out of gym!!

Allen Cress
02-23-2011, 02:15 PM
I modified my diet last week to help get in the calories I need. I was having problems eating everything before because I was constantly full and bloated, so I had to put something together that allowed for easy digestion.

1) 1 cup egg whites, 4 whole eggs, 1 cup oatmeal, 40 grams raisins, 16oz orange juice

2) 200g chicken, 2 cups rice, 1 cup peas, 1 dessert

3) 3 scoops nitrean, 16oz apple juice, 1 scoop waixe miaze

4) 10oz steak, 2 cups rice, english muffin with jam and peanut butter

5) 2 tuna sandwiches, large banana, 16oz milk

6) 3 scoops nitrean, 1 tbsp olive oil, 1/2 cup grape nuts

JJD975
02-25-2011, 07:37 AM
Are you no longer taking Results?

af92
02-25-2011, 09:00 AM
What brand of waixe miaze are you taking? I was tempted to try some myself.

Thank you for your time and great journal Allen!

POWERZN
02-26-2011, 11:01 AM
Hi Allen, been very busy these days just like you.
I'm rebuilding my gym, training hard and having lots of new custumors who want to train for summertime, that last one is every year but with the new gym I gained back some old custumors who heared about the changes I made in infrastructure. ( a mix of hardcore and the bodyshop training center )
Allen, do you also have the problem when you go back to traditional for a while that you lose condition quickly and feel lesser athletic ? Sometimes backing off intensity is good for neurological rest but when you go back to MET - HYBRID training the first weeks it always feels like dying during the workout.
Just curious how the transition phase from traditional going to MET - HYBRID feels for you ? eric

Behemoth
02-26-2011, 12:46 PM
What do your macros work out to be Allen?

Allen Cress
02-28-2011, 12:35 PM
Are you no longer taking Results?

Not right now, I cycle off it for 8-12 weeks.

Allen Cress
02-28-2011, 12:36 PM
What brand of waixe miaze are you taking? I was tempted to try some myself.

Thank you for your time and great journal Allen!

Its by IDS. I love the grape flavor.

Allen Cress
02-28-2011, 12:42 PM
Hi Allen, been very busy these days just like you.
I'm rebuilding my gym, training hard and having lots of new custumors who want to train for summertime, that last one is every year but with the new gym I gained back some old custumors who heared about the changes I made in infrastructure. ( a mix of hardcore and the bodyshop training center )
Allen, do you also have the problem when you go back to traditional for a while that you lose condition quickly and feel lesser athletic ? Sometimes backing off intensity is good for neurological rest but when you go back to MET - HYBRID training the first weeks it always feels like dying during the workout.
Just curious how the transition phase from traditional going to MET - HYBRID feels for you ? eric

Not really, a little maybe. My intensity levels are soo high I usually have high O2 debt even after a single set just like when I do a bi-plex or tri-plex. The more advanced you become the more yout TEP will increase and every set you do is exhausting.

But even on my traditional programs i still do athletic exercises for core and usually pair those and I use some high intensity techniques that are exteremely demanding like strip sets or 1 1/2 reps.

As with any new program I just take my first week to break into it and go from there.

Allen Cress
02-28-2011, 12:47 PM
What do your macros work out to be Allen?

Protein is about 360-375, Carbs are 550-600 depending on what desserts I have, and Fat is around 100g.

For desserts I stick with lower fat types like oatmeal rasin cookies or pastrys. Not things like cheesecake which will set heavy. Things that digest easily.

Allen Cress
03-02-2011, 05:53 AM
Cable bent laterals 4 x 10-15
one arm cable side laterals 3 x 15-20
DB press 4 x 10-12
seated side laterals 3 x 10-15
Horizontal front cable raises 3 x 15

seated calf raise 4 x 15
standing calf raise 3 x 10; last set triple drop 10-10-10

POWERZN
03-03-2011, 03:17 AM
Allen, the shoulder training is it done with incomplete rest or as a circuit with metabolic effect ?
Eric

Allen Cress
03-04-2011, 04:35 PM
Allen, the shoulder training is it done with incomplete rest or as a circuit with metabolic effect ?
Eric

Its done in single set format.

Allen Cress
03-15-2011, 08:24 AM
Squats 2 x 8-10, 1x12-15, 1x15-20
Seated leg curl 4 x 15
Leg extention 3x15
DB sumo squat 3x15-20
Walking lunges 3 x 10 each leg

POWERZN
03-16-2011, 04:16 AM
Seems like traditional torture again, very curious for the following workouts, Eric

Allen Cress
03-21-2011, 08:12 AM
Incline BB press 3 x 6
Hammer strength flat press 4 x 8-12 (1-2 sec hard contraction each rep)
Incline DB press 4 x 10-12
Flat DB fly 3 x 12
Crossover 3 x 15 (slow tempo)

1a) SB step offs 3 x 10 each leg
1b) High to low cable chop 3 x 12 each side
2a) Rocky abs 3 x 8-10
2b) ab rollouts 3 x 15 (1 sec pause at bottom)

Weight is holding steady at 215lbs and will probably stay there until I try to add a bit more starting at the end of April. Calories are still around 4000-4500

POWERZN
03-22-2011, 03:54 AM
Very intense core circuit, would be something to see you do on your youtube channel, eric
Hard work pays off, like the master always says !!!

Allen Cress
03-24-2011, 08:41 AM
45 degree calf raise 4 x 12-15; 1 triple drop 10-10-10

Over & Back press 4 x 12
Standing cable rear lateral 4 x 25
6 ways 4 x 10

POWERZN
03-24-2011, 09:12 AM
Allen, how are the 6 ways done, it even sounds hard, eric

Allen Cress
03-24-2011, 03:36 PM
Allen, how are the 6 ways done, it even sounds hard, eric

From a seated position do a side lateral raise. When you reach the top swing your arms around to the front then do a front raise over head, Go back down the same way. It doesn't take much weight at all, I use 12.5 lb DBs.

POWERZN
03-25-2011, 06:24 AM
Allen, I think back in the days Milos Scarev used to call this ' seated dumbell lateral fly raises ' , very hard exercise due to the continues tension principle, eric

Allen Cress
03-30-2011, 11:55 AM
Leg press 3 x 20 ; 8 pl per side
Leg curl 3 x 12-15; 130lbs
Squats 3 x 10-15 ; 240lbs
DB stiff legged deadlift 3 x 12-15; 100lbs
Leg extention 2 x 15; 130lbs, slow negative
Glute blaster machine 3 x 15

3 rounds of 1 min deep quad stretches, then hams

POWERZN
03-30-2011, 01:23 PM
Allen, for people who do not have a glute blaster can they also replace it with lateral step - ups ?
eric

Allen Cress
03-30-2011, 03:26 PM
Allen, for people who do not have a glute blaster can they also replace it with lateral step - ups ?
eric

A better option would be to attach a cable to you ankle and do kickbacks to really isolate the glutes.

POWERZN
03-31-2011, 03:09 AM
Thanks, eric

Allen Cress
04-06-2011, 03:52 PM
Standing calf raise 6 x 20 reps (last 10 reps are partials)

Heavy DB side lateral partial swings: 4 x 30
Reverse pec dec: 4 x 35
Incline rear lateral swing drop set: 60 reps, 30 reps, 10 reps. (last 10 reps were full range and 2 sec contractions)

POWERZN
04-12-2011, 03:28 AM
Allen, with your competition diet last year I saw that you ate regulary 2 cups egg whites, I was wondering how do you cook them since it's almost too much to bake in 1 pan ? eric

Allen Cress
04-12-2011, 06:38 PM
Allen, with your competition diet last year I saw that you ate regulary 2 cups egg whites, I was wondering how do you cook them since it's almost too much to bake in 1 pan ? eric

I would either scramble them in a 16 inch skillet or make pancakes with the egg whites mixed with shredded wheat.

Allen Cress
04-12-2011, 06:41 PM
I am going to be on this current program for one more week after this one then I will take a week off before starting my next program which will be a hybrid.


Seated Leg cur 4 x 15
Horizontal leg press 3 x 15-20, 12-15, 8-10
DB sumo squat on 2 boxes 4 x 15-20 ( flex glutes hard every rep)
Waslking Lunges 3 x 15 each leg

Throwbak42
04-19-2011, 12:13 PM
Allen,

From reading your information, you have done some impressive work as far as improving your metabolism. I feel as if I messed mine up a bit going from 305 to 227 in about 4 months, 3 years ago. Do you have any advice for me to improve my metabolism?

Allen Cress
04-21-2011, 02:37 PM
Allen,

From reading your information, you have done some impressive work as far as improving your metabolism. I feel as if I messed mine up a bit going from 305 to 227 in about 4 months, 3 years ago. Do you have any advice for me to improve my metabolism?

Its hard to say without a full assessment. If you have damaged your metabolism you have to realize there is no quick fix and it takes a proper approach to get you back to normal. A balanced diet that serves the body and a proper training protocol to assist in it.

Allen Cress
04-21-2011, 02:41 PM
Tomorrow will be my last training day for 9 days. My weight is holding at 210-213 lbs and when I start my new protocol I will up my calories and tryo to gain some more size. Janurary will be here before I know it and it will be contest prep time.

Chest
1) Cable flys 4 x10-12 (hard flex on every rep)
2) Incline DB press 4 x 10-12
3) Cable crossover 3 x 15 (slow)
4) Flat DB press with twist at top 3 x 10-12

POWERZN
04-22-2011, 12:22 PM
Enjoy the rest Allen and keep us posted. eric

Throwbak42
04-25-2011, 09:31 AM
I appreciate your answer. Thanks!

Allen Cress
05-02-2011, 07:48 AM
I just started back training after a week off from training and diet. My body feels better and I'm ready to go. I lost 6 lbs during my time off, which usually what happens. I was in vegas for 4 days and only ate 3 times a day.

I have started a new diet and will adjust as needed. I am going to try to add 10-15 lbs over the next 3 months or so.

Sample Diet:

1) 2 cups egg whites, 2 whole eggs, 1 cup oats, 2 tbsp peanut butter

2) 2.5 scoops Nitrean, 1.5 tbsp olive oil, 1 cup rice

3) 250g chicken, 250g potato, 35g almonds

4) 45 min before workout: 2 scoops Nitrean, 1 scoop BCAA+, 1 tbsp olive oil, 40g waixe maize
After workout: 2 scoops Nitrean, 8oz juice, 30g waixe maize

5) 250g Chicken, 1cup rice, 35g almonds

6) 2.5 scoops Nitrean, 1.5 tbsp oil, 1 cup rice

7) 6 whole eggs, 1 cup oats

Allen Cress
05-02-2011, 07:56 AM
My new program is a Power Hybrid. Its roughly based around Squat, bench, and deadlits. The goal is to bring up my posterior chain (hams/glutes) and add some density.

1) Squats 4 x 8
2) Alt. BB lunge 3 x 8-10

3a) Step ups 3 x 8-10
3b) Inverted row 3 x 15

4a) Leg curl 3 x 8-10
4b) One legged glute bridge 3 x 12-15
4c) SB lateral leg raise 3 x 12-15

5a) Bulgarian split squat 3 x 10
5b) Hammer S. Low row 3 x 10-12
5c) SB leg curl 3x 15-20

My glutes and hams felt like they were going to rip off there was soo much muscle activation, Good stuff!

Allen Cress
05-03-2011, 09:52 AM
1) Flat BB press 4 x 8 (no lockout and stop about 1 inch from chest)
2) Incline DB press 3 x 6-8

3a) DB shoulder press 3 x 6-8
3b) BW squat jumps 3 x 10-12

4a) Side lateral 3 x 15
4b) High to low cable chop 3 x 15 ES
4c) BW squats 3 x 25

5a) Close grip bench 3 x 8-10
5b) T rotations 3 x 10 ES
5c) Skaters 3 x 10 ES

POWERZN
05-03-2011, 03:58 PM
Wow, this is some weird high tech hybrid stuff, makes my head spin around.
Curious to see the other workouts and how the program will flow together and what influence it will have on your body composition.
The new diet has a good structure and seems something that can be done for a longer period, since you can manage that many calories you don't have to worry about getting fatter, eric