The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness
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The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness

It’s no secret that when people contradict themselves, it has the effect of making the flaws in their actions or statements seem glaringly obvious. But what about when WE ourselves get caught contradicting ourselves by someone else?

By: Nick Tumminello Added: January 6th, 2014
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  1. #1
    Hungry like the wolf. Dgro's Avatar
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    20 Rep Squats for increased muscular endurance?

    Lately I've been tooling around with ways to increase short-term muscular endurance... for example, building strength in the last 100m of a 400m sprint

    I've never done 20-rep squats. For those who have, do you think there is/could be any carryover here?
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  3. #2
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    Probably not...... 20 rep squats can be good for certain things, but they wouldn't be my first choice for your purposes. Id focus on lower rep, lower fatigue type stuff to maximize power and efficiency. Further than that, Id try to focus on more specific methods of training.

    Have you thought of something Litvinov(esq)? Maybe combining heavy resistance work with 100-400m runs?

  4. #3
    Hungry like the wolf. Dgro's Avatar
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    Not quite sure what you mean by that - you mean like sled pulls?

    Lower rep, lower fatigue is basically how i've been training for the past 5 years. It's been great for speed and explosiveness, not so great for prolonged efforts (i.e. more than about 30 seconds). As for specific methods of training, absolutely, I'm just trying to specify my lifting towards my event as best as possible
    ::::::::::::::::::::Updated 9-16-11::::::::::::::::::::
    Deadlift 1x5 @ 408 Squat Max @ 370
    CG Bench 1x7 @ 225 Power Clean Max @ 235
    W Chinups 3x10 @ +50 Dips 1x5 @ +115

    Height - 6'3 Weight - 194lbs Age - 21

    "I've got a theory that if you give 100% all of the time, somehow things will work out in the end." - Larry Bird

  5. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Fanelli View Post
    Probably not...... 20 rep squats can be good for certain things, but they wouldn't be my first choice for your purposes. Id focus on lower rep, lower fatigue type stuff to maximize power and efficiency. Further than that, Id try to focus on more specific methods of training.

    Have you thought of something Litvinov(esq)? Maybe combining heavy resistance work with 100-400m runs?
    Dan, were you a competitive sprinter at any point in your life?

  6. #5
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    Ya, I haven't done or trained many for 400m type stuff, but the duration is still pretty short. The 20 rep squats may be semi useful just at allowing you to handle higher levels of lactate, but I still thing this would be better accomplished using more specific means of training (ie: running)

    This is the litvinov stuff I mentioned:

    http://www.t-nation.com/free_online_...tvinov_workout

    Basically what I meant is to combine resistance work with running; supresetted. Not resisted running. I'd imagine that you could modify the paramers he mentions in the article to meet your needs. Without knowing too much about 400m training, i'd think something like a set of something for legs (squat, deadlift, lunge) whatever in the 5-10 rep range to fatigue, followed by a 100-400m run would do the trick. You might initially just jog the 400m run, because you'll be tired, but over time you'd build up the speed of the run. Playing around with the distance would probably work too.

    But basically it would be similar to a version of "pre-exhausting"

    The other thing Ive done with runners, is to pre-fatigue them with something like bike, and then have them run. Its just a way of getting your HR and lactate levels up prior to even starting your running bout. So if you can run a 90 second 400m for example,this might be reduced to a 120 second 400m if it starts with a set of squats for 10 with 300lbs. But after some time, you might run a 90 sec 400m AFTER the squats. Then when you drop the squats, you'll be able to beat the original 90 sec.

    Make sense.?

    EDIT: And as I said, I dont train sprinters really, but I have a question about your training. I assume you are already doing a fair amount of 200-400m repeats (if thats what you'd call them). What I mean here, is that you run 400m at about 90% of your normal effort, then rest a short time and repeat for a number of sets. I dont see any reason why this wouldn't be a very effective way at increasing your "endurance" as well. If you cut down the rest between sets,you'll essentially be increasing your lactate handling abilities and endurance. IMO, i'd keep the resistance training stuff to what its best aimed at (strength/power) and use sport specfic stuff to target those needs. Hope this helps.
    Last edited by Dan Fanelli; 06-06-2011 at 06:58 PM.

  7. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by mchicia1 View Post
    Dan, were you a competitive sprinter at any point in your life?
    See my next post. I gave that warning, and I also dont have any clue as to the level of the OP. I agree, my experience with sprinting is limited to what Ive done skimboarding, and my understanding of physiology/training. But i'll let the OP decide if any of that can help him.

  8. #7
    Senior Member colinS3's Avatar
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    I haven't read anyone else's posts but you'd probably be best with asking a coach or somebody else who has extensive knowledge of lifting and sprinting. Otherwise you might just injure yourself or not make progress at a fast rate.

    However, to me the 20 rep squats sound good in theory. You'll definitely have better muscular endurance, the question is if it'll carry over to a 400 meter sprint. I would imagine yes... those last 100 meters of the 400 is all about anaerobic endurance... but I honestly have no knowledge on that type of training and its 400 meter sprint results. Wish I could actually help haha.

  9. #8
    Pro Strongman | Moderator Tom Mutaffis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dgro View Post
    Lately I've been tooling around with ways to increase short-term muscular endurance... for example, building strength in the last 100m of a 400m sprint

    I've never done 20-rep squats. For those who have, do you think there is/could be any carryover here?
    Although a 20-rep squat may not have direct carryover the time under tension can be similar with both; increased leg power and lactic acid tolerance would also be beneficial for a mid-distance runner.

    I am not very well versed with competitive running but if I were to apply some of my strength training principles I would say that the best way to train would be running/sprinting a variety of distances and possibly including some uphill work or training with restricted rest periods.

    Cross-training with things like cycling, rowing, or swimming may also be helpful.
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  10. #9
    Hungry like the wolf. Dgro's Avatar
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    I haven't read anyone else's posts but you'd probably be best with asking a coach or somebody else who has extensive knowledge of lifting and sprinting. Otherwise you might just injure yourself or not make progress at a fast rate.
    Sad truth is there aren't many people like that. Dedicated lifters who know A LOT rarely give a s*** about competitive running (much less any event longer than 100m), and every sprint coach i know (even at the olympic level) really doesn't have many concrete ideas about HOW to lift, just that it should be done.

    Although a 20-rep squat may not have direct carryover the time under tension can be similar with both; increased leg power and lactic acid tolerance would also be beneficial for a mid-distance runner.
    If it really does lead to increased lactic acid tolerance, then i would consider that a direct form of carryover. The fact that both you and Dan F mentioned this makes me think it's worth a try

    and i know i didn't make this clear, so to clarify i'm talking about offseason cross-training here. as far as stuff like hill workouts, running with restricted rest periods, and intervals / "repeats" go, all that's covered during the competition season...which happens to be 9 months long if you count the 3 months of base-building. with such a long season, there's really no reason to do any tough running workouts over the summer.
    ::::::::::::::::::::Updated 9-16-11::::::::::::::::::::
    Deadlift 1x5 @ 408 Squat Max @ 370
    CG Bench 1x7 @ 225 Power Clean Max @ 235
    W Chinups 3x10 @ +50 Dips 1x5 @ +115

    Height - 6'3 Weight - 194lbs Age - 21

    "I've got a theory that if you give 100% all of the time, somehow things will work out in the end." - Larry Bird

  11. #10
    Moderator Off Road's Avatar
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    I don't see traditional 20 rep breathing squats being much help for your intended purposes.
    I think there are far better tools in the tool shed to help with your running.
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  12. #11
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    Well if this is offseason stuff it may be worth a go. In that case what you are looking for is to find a balance between training power/strength and power endurance. Your event duration should still to some extent dictate your training parameters, but many methods could be viable initially. As far as the endurance component, I'd think there are local and peripheral factors at play here. Some kind of general circuit training exposing you to high levels of lactate will be beneficial, and the local endurance of your legs should be targeted as well. 20 rep squats could fit in there somewhere, but I still wouldn't put too much emphasis on it. I'd still suggest using weights for the power end of the spectrum. If you want to target endurance, reduce rest breaks. But still lower reps would be better. And for longer duration endurance stuff, I'd still suggest being more specific to running.

  13. #12
    Hungry like the wolf. Dgro's Avatar
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    So do you think instead of doing 20 rep sets, it would be better to do, say, repeat sets of 5 (with a lot more weight) with limited recovery time?

    I still had planned on lifting heavy in the 3-6 rep range a lot, just throwing on a grueling set of 20s about once per week
    ::::::::::::::::::::Updated 9-16-11::::::::::::::::::::
    Deadlift 1x5 @ 408 Squat Max @ 370
    CG Bench 1x7 @ 225 Power Clean Max @ 235
    W Chinups 3x10 @ +50 Dips 1x5 @ +115

    Height - 6'3 Weight - 194lbs Age - 21

    "I've got a theory that if you give 100% all of the time, somehow things will work out in the end." - Larry Bird

  14. #13
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    Its really tough to say.... Your overall training regimen is what matters. Say your strength/power work was heavier weights in the 3-6 rep range for multiple sets and 2-5 minute rest. You could use slightly less weight and do something like 4x5 with only 45-60 seconds between sets. You could also do some sort of supersetting of weights with running as I mentioned before. I think 20 reps squats CAN fit in there and work well, but I just wouldn't put too much emphasis on it for your goals. Its a great method of accumulating a ton of lactate, and thus potential endurance, and its great for hypertrophy (for some people). But still, I'd want to spend much more time being specific to running.

    Let me try to use an analogy to explain (be warned I often fail at analogies). But think of a boxer that needs more "endurance". Say his/her shoulders and arms fatigue and their power drops off. What you are recommending with with 20 rep squats, is sorta akin to saying this boxer should do high rep pushups. In saying that, I can easily see how this would be a very good possibility for training. But keep in mind, your event will typically last around 50 seonds, while a boxer truly does need more of a mix of power and endurance. Regardless of that fact, the boxer would probably benefit more from a 'mixed' method of training. Something like circuits, intervals, or complexes; whatever you want to call it. It might invovle clean and press for a heavy set of 3 followed by 60 seconds of sparring. Then rest and repeat.

    Again, my analogies often fail, as you can see.


    But the point im trying to make, is even in the off season, you can still keep a good amount of specificity in there. In theory, 20 rep squats may improve your 400m time very well, especially if strength endurance and lactate tolerance is holding you back. But there is going to be a degree of specificity here. I dont really know how much carryover you can expect from high rep squatting to sprinting of similar duration. (the muscles, movement patterns, velocities, etc. are all different. The only real similarity is the energy systems involved). But running on the other hand, is VERY similar to your event. And thats why I recommend mimicking the running more and using various methods to make it harder.

    And...... Having said all that, you might just have to give it a try. Despite what everyone wants you to believe, there are no absolutes with training. As long as you do it safely, I dont see how trying 20 rep squats in the off season is going to negatively impact you that much. If your strength/power stays the same or goes up and your 20 rep squat ability goes up, I would imagine your running performance will go up to some degree as well. Its just a matter of whether this is better that just focusing on the running more.

    Hope that helps...... Keep us informed though with what you do, and how it works. And if you get a chance to talk to a coach, i'd be interested in hearing his/her opinions.

  15. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dgro View Post
    So do you think instead of doing 20 rep sets, it would be better to do, say, repeat sets of 5 (with a lot more weight) with limited recovery time?

    I still had planned on lifting heavy in the 3-6 rep range a lot, just throwing on a grueling set of 20s about once per week
    Sorry for the long-winded response that didn't really answer this question. If your goal were bodybuilding purposes, I'd say the 20 rep squats might be a better option. In your case, i'd strongly feel that the other option of "repeats" (something like 4x5 with shorter rest) would be better. I'd probably use 20 rep squats sparingly as an indicator, and then use the repeats as a method of training to improve the 20 rep squats.

    Ex: you might be able to do 185 for a HARD set of 20 for your first time out. Then for a few weeks, do 225 for 4x5 while decreasing the rest breaks. Then the next time you try the 20 rep squats, you should be able to do something greater than 185.

  16. #15
    Moderator Off Road's Avatar
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    3 sets of 10 reps would be my choice.
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  17. #16
    Administrator chris mason's Avatar
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    What timeframe are you looking at for a 400?


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  18. #17
    weakling
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    Try looking up Verkhoshansky's writtings with regards to the 400m training...

  19. #18
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    I believe you will have better carryover to your event by using the weightroom to build strength and do conditioning more specific to your event. For someone who is not a trained runner, 20 rep squats will likely provide some carryover in terms of general anaerobic endurance. For someone who is already a trained runner, a more specific means of conditioning will likely be necessary.

  20. #19
    Hungry like the wolf. Dgro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chris mason View Post
    What timeframe are you looking at for a 400?
    about 48 seconds

    Quote Originally Posted by darkangel View Post
    Try looking up Verkhoshansky's writtings with regards to the 400m training...
    I will, thanks
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