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Rea;ising what worked/works for you

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  • Rea;ising what worked/works for you

    Hey guys/girls

    I was just interested if you have worked out what works for you regarding training?

    I have tried numerous training styles sicne I first picked up a weight/started training. It goes to show that conventional wisdom isnt always correct and we really do respond differently to exercise.

    I have found that actually using rep ranges and activities that to many would be more endurance based reps actually builds more muscle on me. That does of course crossover with the thinking thinking that hypertrophy occurs best if a set if 40 seconds or longer in duration. Of course providing that adequate calories (good calories) are consumed then all programs and training methods should work for each person, to a greater or lesser extent.

    From past experience I had great success with:
    * DC training. This called for 3 sets of an exercise with heavy weight using rest/pause to extend the set thus eliminating breaks. I was however consuming a great number of calories at this time.
    * I also had success with Starting Strength, this bucked the higher rep thinking, but again my calories were very high here.
    * I then put together a program combining the use of heavy weights done in pyramid circuit style. This was done after some time with CF. I wanted to put together a program my clients could use that was time effective, allowed for strength increases, but also used the cf principle of the rush factor between movements. This program saw an increase in reps and I actually gained weight and improved conditioning on this very effectively.
    * As I mentioned I used CF. This was an on/off affair depending on injuries from rugby. I yielded results both good and bad.
    * Fast forwarding experimentation with different training styles (I am my own guinea pig for my clients) I went through body weight routines from start to completion. I had great success with Marks LHT programme. The higher rep all out sets were a great test of endurance and strength. After finishing this I have dabbled with several similar ideas and am now using another bodyweight routine that although different still encorporates the same ideas (it would be impossible to continue using something like marks program, the goal reps would have to be increased for their to be any progress - increased high rep/failure sets would lead to burn out).

    I have also found that for endurance and leg size, cycling has proved a winner for me. I cant squat due to past injuries and cycling (steep hill work) has done wonders. I am now hoping that a potential addition of rowing could yield the same results. I am hoping that with my diet kept at the level it is now (I am eating primally and for my blood type) that this additional strength/endurance activity should bring similar positive results.

    Just curious what works best for you OR what you are doing just now training wise?


    It isn't the mountains ahead that wear you out....Its the grain of sand in your shoe.

  • #2
    It seems just about anything works.

    I would do things differently depending on the goal. I think anywhere between 1 and 3 workouts per week is plenty depending on how much time you have. I'd only change sets/reps and exercises depending on the goal.

    I've had good results doing rest pause sets as with DC training. I'd probably stick with that, but I can't because I need my immune capabilities to be optimal due to health issues. So instead, I'm stuck doing something similar to 5 x 5, where the sets are hard but not exactly HARD as done with DC training. I'm thinking of trying the sets DC style again, but inserting 2 cruising weeks after 5 blasting weeks; I think I could actually handle that.

    As mentioned above, I think 2-3 workouts per week can work fine depending on how much time you have. But personally this year I was actually able to get in the best shape in over a decade with only one HIT workout per week consisting of 3-5 exercises and lasting only 20 minutes. The key was doing all sets rest pause style such as with DC training. I also supplemented with creatine in which I believe helps a lot in getting more reps. Those workouts done brutally hard with compound movements helped me to keep my muscles strong. I shed the fat away simply by cutting calories.

    Most people won't believe it if you tell them they can lose fat with such little training and without the addition of cardio. I didn't either initially. I had to try it for myself to see if it would work. And it does.

    The only problem with the above mentioned strategy is that it doesn't incorporate any extra activity. And as mentioned in PB, such extra physical activity is necessary for both its mood elevating affects and moderate physical activity for its immune enhancing affects.

    From my own personal experience, for only aesthetic results I do believe that 1-3 workouts per week is plenty depending on your goals and how much time you have. If you don't have as much time or just don't want to dedicate the time, 1 still works great. If you're a bit more ambitious and dedicated or a competitive athlete, 2-3 might be more suitable. But one still will work well for most people.

    On the side, you still need that extra low-moderate activity. And my honest recommendation is that if you have any good ideas in mind, ideally it should be anything fun that you'd do on your leisure time. Let that be hiking, swimming, sex, or what ever. Heck, even cleaning the house would be fine, but it's just not as fun. My overall idea is that your workouts should be efficient (intense, brief, and infrequent) and affective to serve a purpose, but you still need to live an active life outside of the gym for overall health.

    The best advice I could ever give on this stuff is that for a good body you don't need to do cardio or to spend a lot of time in the gym; its more diet and specifically calories. But to be healthy, you'd better be leading an active life!!!


    • #3
      I mostly lug weights around with me. At the moment I'm at 10kg by hand and 17kg on my back (done on separate days, not both at once, I'm afraid) (holidays = slow progress), which I carry between 40min and an hour a day, sometimes an hour and a half to two hours. I'll be upping to 12kg and 20kg soon.
      I'm also doing random exercises seing as I've just noticed how certain minor muscles are escaping development. Already do goblet squats, incline push-ups and running up and down stairs. Starting to do: proper shrugs, dumbbell squats, dumbbell pullovers and inverted rows (kinda). I may start using a barbell when at my fiance's house.
      Perfection is entirely individual. Any philosophy or pursuit that encourages individuality has merit in that it frees people. Any that encourages shackles only has merit in that it shows you how wrong and desperate the human mind can get in its pursuit of truth.

      I get blunter and more narcissistic by the day.
      I'd apologize, but...


      • #4
        krav maga just works for me. maybe its the primalness of fighting that I like. Or the complete workout from it, some muscles just aren't worked with normal workouts.


        • #5
          Well, I realized that lifting heavy 3x a week and trying to lift more every single time didn't work. So I'm going to try something less stressful.
          Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.


          • #6
            Originally posted by sbhikes View Post
            Well, I realized that lifting heavy 3x a week and trying to lift more every single time didn't work. So I'm going to try something less stressful.
            What happened?
            Yeah, my grammar sucks. Deal with it!


            • #7
              This will sound odd...I split my weight workouts up.

              They now fit in with my Tri workout of the day, Tri in the morning and weights in the evening.

              Swimming with chin ups, plank, seated row.
              Cycling with press ups, triceps dips and crunches.
              Jogging with deadlift, pike and squats.

              As you can see, I mix freeweights/gym and bodyweight.


              • #8
                Lifting so heavy so often was just too much for me. I am going to try less frequency and slower increases. I want to have a life outside of lifting and be able to add as much of any other kind of activity as I want.
                Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.


                • #9
                  For me at the moment I am finding just sticking with the compound movements, multiple sets of low reps, is working the best. Triples on the deadlift (5 sets at the moment, but wanting to crank it up to 8 with shorter rest time), with 3 sets of 5 on everything else (bench, shoulder press and front squat). Going a bit over the top on the warm up does seem to sap energy for the working sets, however, it keeps injuries from flaring up, so thats the way it has to be.
                  Primal and deadlifting my way to health (hopefully)


                  • #10
                    I went Primal in May 2012 and have earned great results... I have lost 30lbs and my health numbers are solid. I stay away from all grains and processed sugar. However, at times I feel very tired/sluggish. Any tips on workouts or ways to avoid that sluggish feeling. I walk on a daily basis -golf, local track, etc... I would like to gain energy and to turn my remaining fat to muscle... I have a little bit of that skinny fat look.... Thanks for any ideas/help


                    • #11
                      1. Barbells.
                      2. Simple routines.
                      3. Hard work.
                      4. Simple diets; cut calories if necessary.