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Thread: Progressive Overload vs. Constant Switching

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    Banned KingJustin's Avatar
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    Progressive Overload vs. Constant Switching

    I'm hoping Anthony and a couple others will chime in here.

    From the start of my lifting "career," I have found that I have my best results when I pick a program, stick with it, train intensely, and keep upping the weights. When I start bouncing around, I always have trouble. Now, that might be because when I bounce around I really don't know how much weight to use on various exercises, but I think the point is still the same.

    I have been completely sold that progressively increasing the weight you use on the same movement is the way to go. Yeah, maybe switch the exercise in 6-8 weeks, but then you take that exercise and increase weight for awhile, and then switch again.

    How does this compare to a lifting style that involves constant changing of exercises, so that you might not see the same movement for 3+ weeks? Is it possible for that style to compete with progressive overload over time?

    Also, how about the neural adaptations? Maybe I'm different from a lot of you guys, but if I haven't done an exercise for awhile, when I go back to it I lose 10-15% on my 1rm. It takes me 2-3 weeks minimum to get back to where I was at. Does this hurt the "crossfit" style?
    Last edited by KingJustin; 04-04-2007 at 08:47 PM.

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    Senior Member Sensei's Avatar
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    My reply may sound flippant, but it isn't meant to be.

    If you are training to squat 600, 700, 800lbs, then you better plan on squatting... A LOT. The same thing goes for any other specific lift or skill.

    If you are training for appearance, then there are probably a variety of ways to go about that.

    No matter what, learning to squat, press, deadlift, clean, etc. proficiently is a lot harder than most people think. Most people would do well to spend more time mastering them IMHO.
    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
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    You can do the same exercises for years and make progress on them. Intensity variation is the key to doing this.

    You do need some diversity of stimuli, but if your goals are just to get strong or whatever, you can do that with 5-6 exercises and letting the diversity come from variation in intensity and volume.

    Rotating exercises is good in some instances for those concerned with physique development, but even then it's really only a concern once you're fairly advanced. The basics will go a LONG way towards developing a muscular and balanced physique.

    There's not a whole lot of other reasons besides boredom to alternate exercises.
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    Banned KingJustin's Avatar
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    Forgot about this thread.

    Ok, I buy into the "if you want to squat a lot of weight, you better be squatting" argument, but let's say we're talking size and general strength only (i.e. if given a "random" leg exercise, how strong are your legs?).

    I know that you can gain size with the same exercises being progressively overloaded. I'm not worried about that, as that has been what I've done my whole weightlifting "career."

    What I'm wondering, is whether routines like CrossFit work for building size and strength. Ignore the fact that CF does high amounts of cardio, and just take the general principle that it requires lots of exercise switching.

    Since you are (a) never gaining the neural adaptations to movements, and (b) never progressing on movements as far as your body knows (you do cleans once, wait 3 weeks, then do cleans again, for example), are you actually able to have your muscles hypertrophy to the same degree as someone just progressively overloading? Are you able to put on the same amount of strength?

    And yeah, I realize that if you're a high level bodybuilder and you've been doing the same 5 exercises your whole life, you'll need to work on your inner quads or your brachialis or something ... ignore that part though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KingJustin View Post
    I'm hoping Anthony and a couple others will chime in here.

    From the start of my lifting "career," I have found that I have my best results when I pick a program, stick with it, train intensely, and keep upping the weights. When I start bouncing around, I always have trouble. Now, that might be because when I bounce around I really don't know how much weight to use on various exercises, but I think the point is still the same.

    I have been completely sold that progressively increasing the weight you use on the same movement is the way to go. Yeah, maybe switch the exercise in 6-8 weeks, but then you take that exercise and increase weight for awhile, and then switch again.

    How does this compare to a lifting style that involves constant changing of exercises, so that you might not see the same movement for 3+ weeks? Is it possible for that style to compete with progressive overload over time?

    Also, how about the neural adaptations? Maybe I'm different from a lot of you guys, but if I haven't done an exercise for awhile, when I go back to it I lose 10-15% on my 1rm. It takes me 2-3 weeks minimum to get back to where I was at. Does this hurt the "crossfit" style?
    tons of people stick with set routines, mostly what they have read on the net or what an instructor has given them - i dont agree with a set routine, especially the set days, i never have set days

    the way i personally do it is have a rough idea of what i wanna train coming in, an ill work certain exercises pretty much all the time, but most of them change from time to time

    ill alternate forms of pressing with a pull or squat sesh, i train when im ready to train, not on a set day, just usually ill have what ima do next in mind - heres an example of what i could do:

    sunday - strongman lifting in the day + deadlift, cleans, rows, shrugs etc at night
    monday - pressing focused on overhead
    tuesday - grip
    wednesday - squats, rack pulls, core work
    friday - pressing forcused on bench press
    saturday - rest

    i have nothing against routines like 5 x 5 for example, it probably will work for you, but it cant be every single time, week in week out - try out as many different things as you can, get to know your own body, an figure out what work best for you, then cycle those things to keep your training fresh >i feel this is the best way to make progress, not a set routine, no matter who came up with it, because he/she is not you

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    As I Am Paul Stagg's Avatar
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    While partially wrong, pacman has a point. (Whats wrong is that someone who bench presses 225 (100kg) as a 1RM isn't advanced enough to know what to do, unless that someone is a 100 pound female).

    You will learn what variations to make to improve your training.

    You correctly point out that there are two stages of adaptation. The first is CNS adaptation - you get better at the lift because you are getting better at the lift. You are learning how to perform the lift, not really building muscle.

    The second stage is where you are good at the lift, and in order to improve, you actually have to get stronger.

    If you keep changing the lift, you never get to the second adaptation, which is the one that makes you bigger.

    That doesn't mean that you can't alter your training occasionally, but PMDL's point is correct, you can vary the lift via intensity.

    Keep in mind, adding weight to the bar is a change.

    If you take two twins, and one does a different routine every week, and one hammers away at the basics, in a year, the second will be bigger, stronger, and look better, all else being equal.
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    i think thats a very stupid way of looking at things, an to be honest you sound like a complete idiot - some people can bench press 300+lbs the very first time they do it, thats makes them advanced enough to know what they are doing? they may not even know the name of the exercise

    if you wanna look at things in terms of strength, you probably shouldn't take there worsed lift thats never been important to them, but if your gonna, you should look at the progress they have made since they 1st did it, not what they lift now

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    Breaker of Skulls Guido's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2PACMAN2 View Post
    i think thats a very stupid way of looking at things, an to be honest you sound like a complete idiot - some people can bench press 300+lbs the very first time they do it, thats makes them advanced enough to know what they are doing? they may not even know the name of the exercise
    Whoah, Nelly! Did you just call Paul an "idiot", and insult an opinion?

    Paul had a valid point. Let's not argue semantics and take the gist of that idea for what it is, which is right on.

    BTW, show me someone who benches 300+ lbs their first ever time in the gym and I'll show you the proverbial 100lb Chinese girl who can warm up with my max (hint: ain't gonna happen).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guido View Post
    Whoah, Nelly! Did you just call Paul an "idiot", and insult an opinion?

    Paul had a valid point. Let's not argue semantics and take the gist of that idea for what it is, which is right on.

    BTW, show me someone who benches 300+ lbs their first ever time in the gym and I'll show you the proverbial 100lb Chinese girl who can warm up with my max (hint: ain't gonna happen).
    no, i said he sounds like a complete idiot, which he does from that post - andy bolton would know a ton about training without doing any on the base of what he said >an the insult was sent my way, and to other people as well, a lot of people bust there a** to get to 2pps on bench

    im sure freaks like winters, bolton, an henry put up big numbers from the off

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    As I Am Paul Stagg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2PACMAN2 View Post
    i think thats a very stupid way of looking at things, an to be honest you sound like a complete idiot - some people can bench press 300+lbs the very first time they do it, thats makes them advanced enough to know what they are doing? they may not even know the name of the exercise

    if you wanna look at things in terms of strength, you probably shouldn't take there worsed lift thats never been important to them, but if your gonna, you should look at the progress they have made since they 1st did it, not what they lift now
    Unless English is your second language, I'm not terribly concerned about who 'sounds like an idiot'.

    I very much look at progress. I've said before I'm more impressed with a guy who starts at a skinny 125 and gets to a big lean 220 than I am with someone who started at 220 and got to a big lean 275. Same goes with training poundages.

    But what makes you advanced enough to know exactly what your weaknesses are and how to train them is a little more than a 225 pound bench press. I'm not belittling your progress, I'm simply suggesting you are not a particularly advanced lifter, and as such would be better served staying focused on the basics.
    Last edited by Paul Stagg; 04-11-2007 at 08:05 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Stagg View Post
    Unless English is your second language, I'm not terribly concerned about who 'sounds like an idiot'.

    I very much look at progress. I've said before I'm more impressed with a guy who starts at a skinny 125 and gets to a big lean 220 than I am with someone who started at 220 and got to a big lean 275. Same goes with training poundages.

    But what makes you advanced enough to know exactly what your weaknesses are and how to train them is a little more than a 225 pound bench press. I'm not belittling your progress, I'm simply suggesting you are not a particularly advanced lifter, and as such would be better served staying focused on the basics.
    what has a bench press number got to do with anything?? this doesn't make any sense, i know your not actually stupid so i dont get this..

    im a little lost on what your saying here as well, as i do focus on the basic lifts, i always keep certain lifts in my training, those are the basic lifts - look at the outline i gave >squat, deadlift, bench press, overhead press, row, shrug etc

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    First off, an insult was never sent your way. He agreed with your point but had a different opinion on part of the matter. That was never an insult.

    And how can you pull Andy Bolton into a discussion about beginners? Andy started with the basics and as an advanced athlete still does the basics. I don't get your point with that.

    Quote Originally Posted by pacman
    an the insult was sent my way, and to other people as well, a lot of people bust there a** to get to 2pps on bench
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul
    I very much look at progress. I've said before I'm more impressed with a guy who starts at a skinny 125 and gets to a big lean 220 than I am with someone who started at 220 and got to a big lean 275. Same goes with training poundages.
    He's not taking anything away from those that have busted their ass to get to 225 but he's saying that it's still not an advanced lift unless its about twice your bodyweight. Not taking away anything from you but just giving an idea.
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    i feel an insult was sent my way - the 100lb girl comment about my crappy bench was insulting, an very selective as its my worsed lift as its never been a focus of mine + i could only bench 78lbs when i 1st did it

    could have selected 205lb dumbbell shrugs or how i can hold over 600lbs in my hands double overhand, or anything to do with core strength like 22 rep weighted decline crunch with 90lbs, 140lb 20 rep dumbbell side bends or dumbbell rows with the same, but no, goes to my worsed lift an makes out thats whats wrong with my post - stupid way of looking things in the 1st place, insulting, an came across to me as a bit of an a**

    done with this thread

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    Grammar Nazi BG5150's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2PACMAN2
    done with this thread
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    Last edited by BG5150; 04-11-2007 at 09:25 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2PACMAN2 View Post
    i feel an insult was sent my way - the 100lb girl comment about my crappy bench was insulting, an very selective as its my worsed lift as its never been a focus of mine + i could only bench 78lbs when i 1st did it

    could have selected 205lb dumbbell shrugs or how i can hold over 600lbs in my hands double overhand, or anything to do with core strength like 22 rep weighted decline crunch with 90lbs, 140lb 20 rep dumbbell side bends or dumbbell rows with the same, but no, goes to my worsed lift an makes out thats whats wrong with my post - stupid way of looking things in the 1st place, insulting, an came across to me as a bit of an a**

    done with this thread


    Nobody insulted you. Is your reading comprehension as bad as your spelling?
    Last edited by Chubrock; 04-11-2007 at 09:32 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2PACMAN2 View Post
    i feel an insult was sent my way - the 100lb girl comment about my crappy bench was insulting, an very selective as its my worsed lift as its never been a focus of mine + i could only bench 78lbs when i 1st did it
    Clearly, your reading skills are on par with your writing skills. He wasn't insulting you, nor was he calling your bench crappy.

    Go back, read it all again, and this time keep his advice in context.

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    Senior Member Anthony's Avatar
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    A few things ...

    Cosgrove describes 6 basic human movements; squat, deadlift, lunge, push, pull, and twist. Most useful movements will be variations or combinations of these and will have tremendous carryover into other movements. So to answer your first question, not only is it conceivable to make great progress on few movements, it's arguably advisable. As PMDL said, the greatest variations will come from intensity and volume.

    To address your comments on Crossfit ... I know you have good intentions, but your impressions of CF are off base.

    1) Crossfit is NOT a set program. It's a set of principles. How you apply those principles depends on your strengths, weaknesses, and goals. If you can list and describe their 3 principles, I'll lay off. The WOD you see posted on the main page is an example ... a good example, but still an example. If you check out the affiliate sites, you'll notice they all have different focus, approach, etc. Same principles, different methods.

    2) Look at their exercise section - everything is a variation of the movements I mentioned above - squats, deadlift, lunge, push, pull, twist. This focus is common amongst most successful programs.

    3) Cleans were performed 3 times in the past 3 weeks. But this ties into what I said above ... CF is a set of principles, not a program. The WOD is a great start, but most athletes will eventually tweak to suit their current situation. If your clean sucks, you need to clean on a regular basis. If your conditioning sucks and is holding you back in your sport, maybe you need to cut back on the strength work and focus on the metcon. Or vice versa. CF openly encourages additional skill practise, new sports, new activities, etc. It's not set in stone.

    4) If you were implying that CF uses a lot of aerobic activity, that's not true. 95% of Crossfit work will be done at high intensity in the phosphagen and glycolytic energy systems - both of which are anaerobic.

    5) Can you get big and strong using CF? Absolutely. Let's address the "big" aspect first. What do you need to get big? Heavy weights and food. Well, there's as much heavy lifting in the default WOD as most powerlifting routines. There could be even more if you so choose. Seeing "big" guys who use CF won't be as common because most people are more interested in increasing their strength to weight ratio, rather than lugging around an extra 50 pounds. Remember, CF is designed to increase performance and will naturally attract the "athlete" instead of the "bodybuilder." Having said that, I personally know a pro BB who uses CF (at least he was last time we spoke and I have no reason to think he switched).

    Now let's address the "strong" aspect. Look into the influences on Crossfit - olympic weightlifting, powerlifting (specifically westside), gymnastics, etc. Look at the relationships; Burgener, Rippetoe, Kubick, John, Hatch, etc. Check out who they list as "Friends" on the main page - tremendous influence from strength/power organizations. There are some top American weightlifters who use CF (Eva T just broke 2 national records and she's in her 40's). My girlfriend Jodi is on pace to break the Canadian deadlift record. The list goes on ... and again, it's a matter of how you apply the principals. Unfortunately, most people gloss over the strength aspect because it doesn't stand out from what they already know - but it plays a HUGE role.

    6) Now do you see why I didn't expect someone to walk into a CF gym and train alone? A lot of people have a very vague and misguided impression of CF because of a few "crazy metcon" workouts. It's a double edge sword ... the thing that gets your attention (crazy metcon) is the same thing that prevents further understanding. So I urge you to do some more reading. Remember, there are three main principles. Find them, learn them, understand them. Once that happens, the reason for their success becomes very clear.
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    Senior Member beatlesfreak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anthony View Post
    Eva T just broke 2 national records and she's in her 40's.
    Eva T is in her 40s???!!!?

    No way!

    I would have never guessed that if you hadn't told me.

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    Banned KingJustin's Avatar
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    Conjugated periodization, as in rather than linear-periodization where you train certain abilities individually, you are instead training them all together (ME, DE, repetition all each "week")?


    Well, the next question was kind of answered by Anthony, in that it really depends on your individual body how much you can alter exercises and still see a carry-over. Apparently some people can make relatively large changes, and others can only make small changes. That pretty much sums up enough of the theory stuff.

    As far as something I wanted to apply to myself ... I know that I, personally, am one of the people that can only make small changes movement-wise if I want a carry-over. So.. as far as my rotation on max effort days, might it be worth looking into something less like traditional Westside (i.e. max bench week 1, 5x5 bench week 2, repeat max bench week 3, etc.?) for me?

    If not, should I consider keeping the same exercise for 3 weeks in a row before switching rather than switching each week? Or, would the fact that I haven't done just normal flat bench in so many weeks hurt me when I go back to do it? (i.e. 3 weeks flat, 3 weeks 3board press, 3 weeks floor press, 3 weeks 1 board, 3 weeks close grip, 3 weeks 2 board, then back to flat)
    Last edited by KingJustin; 04-12-2007 at 02:17 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KingJustin View Post
    Conjugated periodization, as in rather than linear-periodization where you train certain abilities individually, you are instead training them all together (ME, DE, repetition all each "week")?
    More or less, you need to look at what falls it what catergoery.

    Quote Originally Posted by KingJustin View Post
    As far as something I wanted to apply to myself ... I know that I, personally, am one of the people that can only make small changes movement-wise if I want a carry-over. So.. as far as my rotation on max effort days, might it be worth looking into something less like traditional Westside (i.e. max bench week 1, 5x5 bench week 2, repeat max bench week 3, etc.?) for me?
    Well that depends, do you want a bigger 1EM or do you want bigger triceps? Joe Defranco incorperates a max reps day inreplacement of the speed work in the bench, I've made size gains doing this.

    Quote Originally Posted by KingJustin View Post
    If not, should I consider keeping the same exercise for 3 weeks in a row before switching rather than switching each week? Or, would the fact that I haven't done just normal flat bench in so many weeks hurt me when I go back to do it? (i.e. 3 weeks flat, 3 weeks 3board press, 3 weeks floor press, 3 weeks 1 board, 3 weeks close grip, 3 weeks 2 board, then back to flat)
    Your speed is what gets you through the bottom portion of the bench, have you ever been in a situation where you can't even push the bar an inch off your chest (other than the bar just being too heavy?)? You will be doing full ROM work on DE day. You don't have to go a full three weeks with your exercise selection, you can do it in one week rotations - so that you full ROM bench once a month as well as doing board work.


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    Banned KingJustin's Avatar
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    Maybe I should make a new thread about this, but ...

    Yeah, I already understand the repetition method, dynamic effort and the traditional 8x3 with 1 minute rests (but, of course, it could really be anywhere from 1-5 reps per set, but Louie's research shows that 16-24 reps is the best rep range total volume), etc, etc.

    That said, I had done DE work for a solid year straight and I really just don't believe it had any carry over to my bench whatsoever. The only thing that I thought it might have helped was keeping my body used to the full ROM movement pattern, but my explosiveness and all that never improved from DE work.

    So, I dropped it and so I don't do real conjugated periodization now (as far as I recall, metal melitia doesn't either, and look at their benches). Now, I am only do bench once a week. The DE day I just do heavy push presses and sometimes some close grip work (but, so much benching bothers my shoulders, so I rotate this exercise). With that in mind, I'm worried that too much change in my ME exercise is going to hurt me in the long run, so I'm wondering if there were other reasonable alternatives.

    And yeah, I know about Joe DeFranco's WS4SB program ... I just don't like that (a) the rep range is so damn high, (b) I am really burnt after that work, (c) I'm benching even more, so it hurts my shoulders.

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    Player Hater PowerManDL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KingJustin View Post
    Conjugated periodization, as in rather than linear-periodization where you train certain abilities individually, you are instead training them all together (ME, DE, repetition all each "week")?
    This starts getting into murky territory where even the authorities aren't too clear on things.

    Best way I could explain it is to break it into two factors: qualitative (motor abilities, ie DE, ME, or RE-type work), and quantitative (volume and intensity).

    Linear periodization is a quantitative approach whereby volume decreases as intensity increases over some particular time frame. This is associated with the style popularized by Medvedyev, Bompa, and what was known as the Western or traditional model, where you had hypertrophy, strength, power, etc as discrete phases. This approach uses the rep range to define volume and intensity, so you might start the cycle with sets of 12-15, then 8-10, then 6-8, then 3-6, and finish with 1-3.

    This doesn't account for a few things though:

    i) linear planning doesn't define a time frame. It can occur in a week, in a month, or across successive months, so long as a decrease in volume and increase in intensity occurs.
    ii) there are other ways besides changing the rep range to control volume.
    iii) there are other ways besides changing the rep range to control intensity.
    iv) you can have a cycle that is linear overall but still has smaller peaks and tapers. for example, in a 16-week cycle where volume is trending downwards and intensity is trending upwards, you can still have smaller phases where this doesn't hold true.

    Basically, there's nothing written in stone about how to train motor abilities AND the volume/intensity relationship. They're certainly related, obviously, as volume and intensity within certain boundaries define what quality is being developed.

    The original conjugate sequence system as defined by Verkoshansky uses individual blocks of training with a single emphasis, but with maintenance of other previously developed qualities. It also organizes these blocks in a fashion that takes into account the persistence of the prior adaptation. Since hypertrophy tends to retain longer than power, and power work tends to maintain it, you train hypertrophy and general development first. There's also no real emphasis on linear relationship between V and I, as this approach focuses more on concentration of specific loads. In other words, volume is kept static more or less, only the motor emphasis changes.

    This actually doesn't have a lot of carryover to barbell sports, as it was designed with other types of athletes in mind. The Westside interpretation can under some circumstances be considered a version of this, though, depending on how you want to look at it.

    As far as something I wanted to apply to myself ... I know that I, personally, am one of the people that can only make small changes movement-wise if I want a carry-over. So.. as far as my rotation on max effort days, might it be worth looking into something less like traditional Westside (i.e. max bench week 1, 5x5 bench week 2, repeat max bench week 3, etc.?) for me?
    If you're not strong enough to be considered "elite" I'd suggest that you're not advanced enough to be using the Westside approach. Rotation of exercises each week only works if you've got a high skill and proficiency in your lifts, which is somewhat related to your ability to "be strong".

    If you're not advanced enough for that (and there's no shame in that), then sticking to a simpler progressive overload approach will likely be superior.

    Remember that elite PLers train how they do because that's how they *have* to train. They've already put in years of ass-busting to get to that level, and the ballpark tends to change when that happens. What they do is what is required for them to get stronger as they get increasingly closer to their limits. You don't have that restriction, so a more straightforward approach will tend to work better.
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  23. #23
    As I Am Paul Stagg's Avatar
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    I think I was unclear.

    Someone who benches 225 is not advanced enough to know how to adapt their training from session to session and get the most out of it. As you gain training experience, you find the places where that short term change works and where it doesn't. (For the record, I'm not that advanced, either. My weak points? That I'm weak. All over.)

    So there's not really much point in changing the lifts constantly if what you want is to get bigger and stronger.
    Squats work better than supplements.
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  24. #24
    Banned KingJustin's Avatar
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    Anthony-
    I'm guessing by CrossFit principles you are referring to:
    Constantly varied, functional movements performed at a high intensity? As in, not having a set routine, going to the gym, and working extremely hard in whatever you're doing (whether it's one of those workouts like "Fran" or doing 7 singles of push press).

    I really don't know the other principle. Maybe something to do with training all parts of fitness.


    And by saying:
    "Ignore the fact that CF does high amounts of cardio, and just take the general principle that it requires lots of exercise switching."

    Yeah, I mis-spoke. I realize that the W.O.D. is not "CrossFit," and I realize that most of CrossFit's cardio is very anaerobic, and finally that even the W.O.D. does a lot of ME type stuff.




    Ok, that said, I feel like my original question was sort of misunderstood as well. Let me re-explain with examples.

    When I think of focusing on progressive-overload, I think of something like this:
    You are doing front squats.
    Week 1: 300 x 10
    Week 2: 315 x 10
    Week 3: 330 x 7
    Week 4: 330 x 10
    Week 5: 345 x 7
    Week 6: 345 x 10
    Then, you switch intensities.
    Week 7: 385 x 1 x 8 sets
    Week 8: 400 x 1 x 8 sets
    Week 9: 415 x 1 x 6 sets
    Switch intensities
    Week 10: 315 x 15
    Week 11: 315 x 19
    Week 12: 315 x 21
    Then repeat or something.

    In this case, your body is used to the motor pattern for squatting, and your CNS has made necessary adaptations. It also has a certain load that was placed on it, and then notices that load is increased.


    Compare that to a routine that just completely changes exercises every day, i.e.:
    Monday - Clean
    Thursday - Front Squat
    Next Monday - Leg extensions
    Next Thursday - Lunges
    Monday - Zerchers
    Friday - Hack squats
    Monday - Step-Ups
    Friday - Rear lunges
    Monday - Cleans

    etc, etc. The questions here are, in the second routine (a) does your body gain any neural adaptations when you go to do cleans again? (b) if you ARE able to increase the weight, does your body really even consider it progression? It has been 4 weeks since you last did cleans, so does it "remember" the fact that you used 235 lbs the first time, and now you're using 250 lbs? (c) Can you grow on this routine with anything like the first one? (d) Can you gain "general quad strength" on this routine like you could if you just focused on front squats and hack squats with the progressive-overload principle? I guess this has kind of already been answered, I just wanted to make it more clear for everyone.


    And now that I look at it, maybe the second example wouldn't be considered a CrossFit routine.
    Last edited by KingJustin; 04-11-2007 at 12:53 PM.

  25. #25
    Senior Member Anthony's Avatar
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    a) why would you wait 4 weeks to do cleans if they are important to you?

    b) going from 235 to 250 is getting stronger. Getting stronger is progression.

    c) your example routine sucks, but provided you were using enough frequency, getting stronger, and feeding yourself properly, yes you will get bigger.

    d) again, your example routine sucks, but yes you can gain "general" strength that carries over into other movements (that's why squats and deadlifts are so great).

    ps - you listed the CF principles, but I get the impression you don't understand them fully. Rather than side track this discussion, feel free to email me and I'll get back to you this evening if I have time.
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