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

Itís 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
    Senior Member Sensei's Avatar
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    Understanding "Escalating Density Training"

    ***Understanding EDT (Escalating Density Training)***

    "Escalating Density Training" is a training method devised by strength coach, Charles Stanley. What distinguishes EDT from other methods is its emphasis on training 'density' which is defined as the work-to-rest ratio of a specified period of time.

    EDT protocol is surprisingly easy to program and implement. Workouts are structured around 15 minute "PR Zones" in which the trainee will alternate between two exercises, usually antagonist, bilateral antagonist, or distantly located muscle groups (such as curls and tricep extensions, or left arm DB snatches and right arm DB snatches, or squats and chins).

    Initially, weights used will be more or less equal to the trainee's 10 rep maximum. The trainee will start a stopwatch and then begin his sets; performing a set with exercise A, take a short rest, perform a set with exercise B, take a short rest, and then start again with exercise A - this is continued until the 15 minutes has expired. Total reps for each exercise are recorded and when that "PR Zone" is performed again, the trainee will try to break his/her record. The "goal" is to perform as many repetitions as possible within the allotted time, in other words to maximize your training density.

    A sample "PR Zone" might look something like the following (based on a sample given in Charles Staley's book, Muscle Logic: Escalating Density Training):

    Set 1: Squats - 225lbs x 5
    Set 2: Chins - x 5
    Set 3: Squats - 225lbs x 5
    Set 4: Chins - x 5
    Set 5: Squats - 225lbs x 5
    Set 6: Chins - x 5
    Set 7: Squats - 225lbs x 5
    Set 8: Chins - x 5
    Set 9: Squats - 225lbs x 5
    Set 10: Chins - x 5
    Set 11: Squats - 225lbs x 4
    Set 12: Chins - x 4
    Set 13: Squats - 225lbs x 4
    Set 14: Chins - x 4
    Set 15: Squats - 225lbs x 3
    Set 16: Chins - x 4

    Total Time: 15 mins
    Total Sets/Exercise: 8 sets
    Total Sets: 16 sets
    Total Reps/Exercise (i.e., your "PR"): 36

    The number of sets, the number of reps/set, and the rest intervals are determined by the trainee as the workout progresses. Often, the initial sets may seem easy and the later sets will become increasingly difficult. Form should never be compromised and later sets should generally be stopped short of failure although they make require herculean efforts to complete.

    EDT sessions are typically 3x/week, each session lasting 15, 30, or 45 minutes in length, depending on the training experience, work capacity, and goals of the trainee. Individual sessions may be whole-body workouts, or split according to bodypart or chosen exercises. Beginners would probably do best to start with lighter weights and one "PR Zone" per workout. As strength and work capacity increase, more training volume can be added and more advanced trainees may have as many as three PR Zones in a single training session.

    For more information on EDT, I highly recommend you pick up a copy of Charles Staley's book, Muscle Logic: Escalating Density Training. It is available online and at many bookstores. The following links are also good resources:

    Escalating Density Training by Charles Staley
    http://www.t-nation.com/readTopic.do?id=459765

    Escalating Density Training, Phase 2
    http://www.t-nation.com/findArticle.do?article=201edt2

    The EDT Arm Specialization Mesocycle: One Inch in One Month (Oh, and Yes, It WILL Hurt!)
    http://www.t-nation.com/findArticle.do?article=208edt2

    End Your Strength Plateaus NOW - EDT for Maximal Strength Breakthroughs!
    http://www.t-nation.com/findArticle.do?article=225plat2

    Compound EDT: New Applications For An Old Favorite!
    http://www.t-nation.com/readTopic.do?id=632710
    Last edited by Sensei; 10-17-2006 at 11:43 AM.
    A child does not learn to squat from the top down. In other words, he does not suddenly make a conscious decision one day to squat. Actually, he is squatting one day and make the conscious decision to stand. Squatting precedes standing in the developmental sequence. This is the way a child's brain learns to use the body as the child develops movement patterns. Therefore, a child is probably crawling, rocks back into a squatting position with the back completely relaxed and the hips completely flexed, and stands when he has enough hip strength. This approach makes a lot of sense and can be applied to relearning the deep squat movement if it is lost. -Gray Cook
    Lifting Clips: http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=johnnymnemonic2
    Blog: http://squatrx.blogspot.com/

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  3. #2

  4. #3
    Senior Member Jorge Sanchez's Avatar
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    That looks very interesting. I might just have to give it a go in the near future.
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  5. #4
    *Bingo Fuel clawhammer_33's Avatar
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    Looks very similar to the tabata method.
    Face it: biceps are the muscle that classifies you as a muscle man.

    Striding across the fields, carrying a vorpal blade, cometh Clawhammer! And he gives a bloodthirsty bellow:

    "As sure as predators devour prey, I shall paint the town a sanguine shade of doom!!!"
    Hilarity

  6. #5
    Senior Member Sensei's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by clawhammer_33
    Looks very similar to the tabata method.
    Kind of, but not really. Tabata (20secs on/10secs off x8) is certainly a training method that maximizes training "density", but, in EDT the work and rest intervals are not set like in Tabata protocol. I don't know if people superset exercises during Tabata either.
    A child does not learn to squat from the top down. In other words, he does not suddenly make a conscious decision one day to squat. Actually, he is squatting one day and make the conscious decision to stand. Squatting precedes standing in the developmental sequence. This is the way a child's brain learns to use the body as the child develops movement patterns. Therefore, a child is probably crawling, rocks back into a squatting position with the back completely relaxed and the hips completely flexed, and stands when he has enough hip strength. This approach makes a lot of sense and can be applied to relearning the deep squat movement if it is lost. -Gray Cook
    Lifting Clips: http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=johnnymnemonic2
    Blog: http://squatrx.blogspot.com/

  7. #6
    Senior Member Jorge Sanchez's Avatar
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    Have you tried EDT at all, Sensei?
    quidquid Latine dictum sit altum videtur

  8. #7
    Senior Member Sensei's Avatar
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    No, but I have a training partner that did and liked it.
    A child does not learn to squat from the top down. In other words, he does not suddenly make a conscious decision one day to squat. Actually, he is squatting one day and make the conscious decision to stand. Squatting precedes standing in the developmental sequence. This is the way a child's brain learns to use the body as the child develops movement patterns. Therefore, a child is probably crawling, rocks back into a squatting position with the back completely relaxed and the hips completely flexed, and stands when he has enough hip strength. This approach makes a lot of sense and can be applied to relearning the deep squat movement if it is lost. -Gray Cook
    Lifting Clips: http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=johnnymnemonic2
    Blog: http://squatrx.blogspot.com/

  9. #8
    Senior Member Anthony's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info sensei. Sounds similar enough to some of my metcon training, so I guess I agree it can be beneficial.

    Oh, and supersetting tabata stuff is pretty common.
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  10. #9
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    It was Charles Stanley's Muscle Logic: Escalating Density Training that got me in the gym 4 months ago. It seems to be working pretty good for me.

  11. #10
    *Bingo Fuel clawhammer_33's Avatar
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    Is the book significantly better than the articles?
    Face it: biceps are the muscle that classifies you as a muscle man.

    Striding across the fields, carrying a vorpal blade, cometh Clawhammer! And he gives a bloodthirsty bellow:

    "As sure as predators devour prey, I shall paint the town a sanguine shade of doom!!!"
    Hilarity

  12. #11
    Do that voodoo that he do
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    I've had a few friends do this program. The ones that have liked it have been combo athletes like rock climbers.

    I use a few principals from it with my clients, but as a whole it doesn't fit a lot of goals.
    Be a man. Be awesome at it. Be proud of it. Beyond the Barbell

    "Borris is correct. That sounds logical if you ask me."
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  13. #12
    Grammar Nazi BG5150's Avatar
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    The trainee will start a stopwatch and then begin his sets; performing a set with exercise A, take a short rest, perform a set with exercise B, take a short rest, and then start again with exercise B - this is continued until the 15 minutes has expired.
    Is the above missing something? I looks like the set scheme would be:

    A, rest, B, rest, B, rest, B, rest.... or does it imply: A, B, B, A, A, B, B, A...?

    The example was A, B, A, B
    There are no stupid questions, just stupid people.
    Two wrongs don't make a right, but three rights make a left.
    Are you eating while you are reading this? You should be... --hrdgain81
    Remember, kids, if you type well the Grammar Fairy will leave a quarter under your pillow. The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation

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  14. #13
    Senior Member Sensei's Avatar
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    Yep, that's a typo. Thanks!
    A child does not learn to squat from the top down. In other words, he does not suddenly make a conscious decision one day to squat. Actually, he is squatting one day and make the conscious decision to stand. Squatting precedes standing in the developmental sequence. This is the way a child's brain learns to use the body as the child develops movement patterns. Therefore, a child is probably crawling, rocks back into a squatting position with the back completely relaxed and the hips completely flexed, and stands when he has enough hip strength. This approach makes a lot of sense and can be applied to relearning the deep squat movement if it is lost. -Gray Cook
    Lifting Clips: http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=johnnymnemonic2
    Blog: http://squatrx.blogspot.com/

  15. #14
    Grammar Nazi BG5150's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sensei
    Yep, that's a typo. Thanks!
    Thought so, just wanted to make sure I wasn't missing anything.
    There are no stupid questions, just stupid people.
    Two wrongs don't make a right, but three rights make a left.
    Are you eating while you are reading this? You should be... --hrdgain81
    Remember, kids, if you type well the Grammar Fairy will leave a quarter under your pillow. The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation

    Well, the Blog's (finally) back (again!): Love and Hope and Sex and Dreams Feel free to stop by and comment.
    Here is my newly-created World of Warcraft Blog: BG's WoW Blog. Once again, feel free to stop by and comment.

  16. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by clawhammer_33
    Is the book significantly better than the articles?
    The book has basically the same info that is in the articles.

  17. #16
    Tearing **** Up FortifiedIron's Avatar
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    Good stuff.

    Kc

  18. #17
    Fury Divine RickTheDestroyer's Avatar
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    Alright, so I'm starting to feel a little beaten down by a few months of the good old westside template, and I'm thinking about doing this for a couple weeks to let my body recover from the repeated maxing out.

    I'm fat and my lack of conditioning is hideous, but I'm probably going to do two PR zones each workout anyway (brave last words...). The point is that I want to keep my strength, increase my work capacity, and not turn into a fat ****.

    I was thinking like doing something like this three times a week:
    PR Zone 1: Bench/Chins
    PR Zone 2: Squats/Heavy kettlebell swings

    I was thinking that my other option is to do something like:
    Workout A: Squats/Chins, followed by sled dragging/car pushing
    Workout B: Heavy Swings/Bench, followed by sled dragging/car pushing

    Would this be suitable or would I be better off doing more of an upper/lower scheme with the individual workouts? Am I totally missing the point on this?
    530S/320B/475D
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  19. #18
    Senior Member Sensei's Avatar
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    I'm no expert, but I'd stick with the idea of pairing antagonist or distal antagonist muscle groups for the PR zones. So, squat+chins and maybe swings+bench (your second option), or something like that - there's no way I'd want to pair squats w. KB swings, but that's just me.

    Sled dragging+car pushing sounds like a brutal PR Zone!!!!
    A child does not learn to squat from the top down. In other words, he does not suddenly make a conscious decision one day to squat. Actually, he is squatting one day and make the conscious decision to stand. Squatting precedes standing in the developmental sequence. This is the way a child's brain learns to use the body as the child develops movement patterns. Therefore, a child is probably crawling, rocks back into a squatting position with the back completely relaxed and the hips completely flexed, and stands when he has enough hip strength. This approach makes a lot of sense and can be applied to relearning the deep squat movement if it is lost. -Gray Cook
    Lifting Clips: http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=johnnymnemonic2
    Blog: http://squatrx.blogspot.com/

  20. #19
    Proud Father Maki Riddington's Avatar
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    I have his DVD but have yet to watch it.

    What a meaningful post that was.
    Last edited by Maki Riddington; 10-25-2006 at 05:25 PM.
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    "Test all things; hold fast what is good.": 1 Thessalonians 5:21

    "I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do--this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.
    So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God's law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God--through Jesus Christ our Lord!"
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  21. #20
    Fury Divine RickTheDestroyer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sensei
    I'm no expert, but I'd stick with the idea of pairing antagonist or distal antagonist muscle groups for the PR zones. So, squat+chins and maybe swings+bench (your second option), or something like that - there's no way I'd want to pair squats w. KB swings, but that's just me.

    Sled dragging+car pushing sounds like a brutal PR Zone!!!!
    Cool- thanks for the help.
    I'd probably be doing either dragging or pushing (remarkably, the pushing is considerably easier because my tire sled does not drag easily), but yeah both would be godawful. I'm going to add that stuff mostly because I can't stand the idea of working out for only 15 minutes (even if I spend the whole time wanting to die), but hopefully it'll serve to prevent some soreness as well.
    I think some good will come of this.
    530S/320B/475D
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  22. #21
    Senior Member Anthony's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RickTheDestroyer
    my tire sled does not drag easily
    Try it on a newly paved/tarred driveway! It squeeks!!
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  23. #22
    Fury Divine RickTheDestroyer's Avatar
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    I catch a pebble from time to time and the noise is horrible (as is the white line it digs into the pavement). Usually I'm too focused on pulling to worry about it though.
    530S/320B/475D
    With strength I burn

  24. #23
    Senior Member Sensei's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RickTheDestroyer
    Cool- thanks for the help.
    I'd probably be doing either dragging or pushing (remarkably, the pushing is considerably easier because my tire sled does not drag easily), but yeah both would be godawful. I'm going to add that stuff mostly because I can't stand the idea of working out for only 15 minutes (even if I spend the whole time wanting to die), but hopefully it'll serve to prevent some soreness as well.
    I think some good will come of this.
    I think if you did sled dragging and car pushing, that 15 minutes will be plenty long enough...

    btw, I've been doing a lot of EDT workouts lately for those of you who don't check the training logs. I certainly don't plan on doing them exclusively, but it's going well w. my work schedule being what it is right now and my injuries.
    A child does not learn to squat from the top down. In other words, he does not suddenly make a conscious decision one day to squat. Actually, he is squatting one day and make the conscious decision to stand. Squatting precedes standing in the developmental sequence. This is the way a child's brain learns to use the body as the child develops movement patterns. Therefore, a child is probably crawling, rocks back into a squatting position with the back completely relaxed and the hips completely flexed, and stands when he has enough hip strength. This approach makes a lot of sense and can be applied to relearning the deep squat movement if it is lost. -Gray Cook
    Lifting Clips: http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=johnnymnemonic2
    Blog: http://squatrx.blogspot.com/

  25. #24
    Fury Divine RickTheDestroyer's Avatar
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    I... hate... you... Sensei...
    530S/320B/475D
    With strength I burn

  26. #25
    Senior Member Sensei's Avatar
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    I think you shot your wad a little early today... You'll get more sets and reps next time and hate me less.
    A child does not learn to squat from the top down. In other words, he does not suddenly make a conscious decision one day to squat. Actually, he is squatting one day and make the conscious decision to stand. Squatting precedes standing in the developmental sequence. This is the way a child's brain learns to use the body as the child develops movement patterns. Therefore, a child is probably crawling, rocks back into a squatting position with the back completely relaxed and the hips completely flexed, and stands when he has enough hip strength. This approach makes a lot of sense and can be applied to relearning the deep squat movement if it is lost. -Gray Cook
    Lifting Clips: http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=johnnymnemonic2
    Blog: http://squatrx.blogspot.com/

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