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I tried it and I'm not a big fan of the super slow method. I definitely felt the burn but I felt like things became so uncomfortable I couldn't fully stimulate the muscles like I do in my normal workouts. I just didn't feel like I got a good workout. I think he makes some good points about using machines vs. free weights and the core weight excercises he suggests are definitely the most effective movements for building muscle but I'm not a big fan of super slow. I also disagree w/ lifting only once/week. Personally, I prefer 2-3 times/week.
I do the Body by Science (BBS) workout once per week and two other free weight workouts as well-all total body. Usually i do a hard, free weight, compound exercise workout (squats, presses, rows, etc.) on Monday, a BBS workout on Thursday and a lighter version of Monday's workout on Saturday. I love the BBS workout! But I break a few of Dr. McGuff's rules/recommendations. My big 5 usually turns into a big 8-10. And, as I said, I don't limit my total workouts to one per week (overtraining by his standards-and maybe true). The slow reps are very intense-a totally different feel from my other free weight, faster rep workouts. I pretty much consider it my "metabolic" workout as the weights are heavy (relatively) the work is hard and the pace is fast. You really huff and puff-it's great.
As for doing it with free weights-I don't. You maybe able to incorporate some less complicated free weight compound exercises or some isolation moves but as for big moves like squats and deadlifts-no way. They are too complicated, require too much of a "groove" to do in slow fashion. Thats my opinion anyway.
@maranne-you don't really even need to join a gym. If you only do one BBS workout per week (that's all you'll really want to do) and maybe one or two home workouts-you just need a gym one day per week-hardly worth paying dues. I don't know where you live but I have been able to find community centers and some high school gyms with adequate machines that cost very little on a per workout basis ($2-3). So you only spend $12 for 4 workouts a month vs. a $30-40 gym membership.
I have been using the BBS workout for a month and a half. I found it really difficult at first to really last the 90-120 seconds of time under load McGuff suggests due to aerobic conditioning. I have since improved and am really able to push my muscles to failure. I do the basic Big5 on machines and do the 1 workout a week. I believe the long recovery period is helpful and have had very good strength gains and feel stronger. The one workout a week feels wrong if you have been used to more workouts per week. I am going to keep on trying it for a while longer certainly.
It feels wrong to me as well to "only" do one super slow workout per week...I normal do 3 free weight based compound full body workouts and 2-3 sprint workouts. I just came across this book. The concept seems really interesting, and it is going against conventional wisdom :0)
I might start with a mix of 1 BBS workout and 2 full body usual workouts (overtraining, I guess) and maybe 1-2 sprints?! More overtraining?! Its hard to find a balance it seems.....thoughts anyone?
I know for a fact that three total body workouts per week and 2 sprint sessions per week would lead to overtraining in my case. I've done it. I ended up with continuous and severe sore legs as well as pretty severe hip pain. I noticed that when I decreased my workout volume (weights) and eliminated the sprints, I felt better and got stronger. I don't think you have to eliminate the sprints, but if you find yourself struggling with that amount of work, try decreasing it/manipulating the volume until you come to something that works for you. It's an experiment of one.
thanks for your ideas! I am currently in the Uk but there is not a nice gym where I live. Since I will be leaving to live in Austria again, I will probably join my old gym for various reasons such as space to work out properly, and the wellness area (saunas etc.) is amazing.So all in all it will be worth it to me.
Besides all that I am planning on skiing again in the winter and keeping up with my walking and yoga.