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Determine the Length of Your Workouts

Evaluate Your Progress

Keep Warm-Up in Perspective


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"Doing more exercise with less intensity,"
Arthur Jones believes, "has all but
destroyed the actual great value
of weight training. Something
must be done . . . and quickly."
The New Bodybuilding for
Old-School Results supplies
MUCH of that "something."

 

This is one of 93 photos of Andy McCutcheon that are used in The New High-Intensity Training to illustrate the recommended exercises.

To find out more about McCutcheon and his training, click here.

 

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Not Sure

I started with the original HIBB back when it first came out. It took me only a couple of weeks to find out my body could not handle 3/wk of 20 sets. I backed off to 2/wk 10 or 12 sets and that worked well for the 6-8 months I stuck to it.

I've been more off than on since then so never accomplished much. In one on period I went to a A/B program and pushed that to the point where I could not recover from 2 sessions a week. 2 in 8 days worked but raised h*ll with the scheduling. I think it was on that incarnation where I adapted superslow reps(maybe from the Big book?)

In my on periods lately I've worked back to a BBS like 3 SS sets once a week. I NEED about 5 days and again scheduling that just sucks too much. One bad thing about once/wk is I tend to lose interest and it contributes to me dropping off again.

It's not that I ever decided on BBS or Consolidation or whatever, I just worked myself to this point in a natural progression. It's definitely low recovery ability not excess strength. My athletic ability has always been lousy in every way. When I stick with it for a while I only work my way up from very weak toward average.

At 49, fat(~27%) and weak I've reached a point where I really need to stick to SOMETHING just to avoid being a sickly blob in another decade or 2. I'd like to take the frequency back up to 2/wk with a squat day and a deadlift day but I don't know how.

I'd rather stick to SS reps because they seem to protect my f***ed up shoulder pretty well. Trying to judge a useful NTF level with 3-4 slow reps feels very difficult.

Thoughts?

Thanks

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crazeeJZ

You never said what your scheduling problem is to give you a scheduling suggestion. You can't do Mon., Fri., Wed., Mon., Fri., Wed.? That's a fixed 4-5 days between workouts.

If you increase frequency to 2/wk, don't do squats and deadlifts in the same program, too much lowerback work. Do either squats, or deadlifts/leg presses.
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Not Sure

I hadn't even been thinking about 1.5/wk for this point in my life.
I really only have thu and mon as lifting days because of my other commitments.

You really think mon dl and thu sq would be too much? I've been on the borderline of trying to do them in the same workout except that the cardio effect of both would kill me. My lower back actually sucks less than most of the rest of my body. Never had a problem with it but it sure would stink to create one now. I'm a home gym'er so leg press is not an option. I do have a leg extension attachment for my bench.

Maybe dl/sq alternated on th with upper then upper body only on monday? Maybe that with LE/LC on monday? One reply and you've already got me thinking new things. Now I have to decide which thoughts are stupid. :)
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crazeeJZ

Not Sure wrote:
I hadn't even been thinking about 1.5/wk for this point in my life.
I really only have thu and mon as lifting days because of my other commitments.

You really think mon dl and thu sq would be too much? I've been on the borderline of trying to do them in the same workout except that the cardio effect of both would kill me. My lower back actually sucks less than most of the rest of my body. Never had a problem with it but it sure would stink to create one now. I'm a home gym'er so leg press is not an option. I do have a leg extension attachment for my bench.

Maybe dl/sq alternated on th with upper then upper body only on monday? Maybe that with LE/LC on monday? One reply and you've already got me thinking new things. Now I have to decide which thoughts are stupid. :)

Since you overtrained on a higher exercise A/B workout 2 times a week, try a consolidation A/B workout 2 times a week.

If you want to do both squats and deadlifts, do squats on monday, and deadlifts on thursday so that you give your lower back more rest days after deadlifts.

Maybe Squats, Shoulder or Incline Press, and Dips on Mondays. Deadlifts, Pulldowns, and Biceps(or Calves) on Thursdays.

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Mr. Strong

Go for 3 times a week, if you want to stop yourself from stopping and dropping out then you need to form a long term habit. Most people can train 3 times a week no problem.
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Mr. Strong

If you want to make a positive change, such as increased strength, muscularity, weight loss, etc, then you have to commit to it, doing something once a week is hardly a strong commitment.
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simon-hecubus

Texas, USA

Not Sure wrote:
I hadn't even been thinking about 1.5/wk for this point in my life.
I really only have thu and mon as lifting days because of my other commitments.

You really think mon dl and thu sq would be too much?


In a word, yes. I'm 47 and seem to recover OK on 5-6 exercises twice a week (IF I don't push it past simple positive failure). However, despite continued success with 2/wk, I still avoid pushing my lower back too hard.

What about splitting it 3 or 4 ways? Just cause you train 2/wk doesn't mean that '2' is the number of different workouts at your disposal.

Right now I'm experimenting with a 3-way breakdown with Squats, SLDLs, and Leg Press as my primary leg movements.

Do you think you could handle 2 movements 2/wk?

MON
Squats
Overhead DB Press (easier on shoulders)

THU
SLDLs
Bench Press or Dips

MON
Leg Press
Chins or Pulldowns or Rows (Hammer High Rows to me nicely splits the vertical and horizontal 'grooves')

THU
Squats etc.


Could you handle one more exercise if it wasn't too megabolic?

MON
Squats
Overhead DB Press (easier on shoulders)
Biceps Curls

THU
SLDLs
Bench Press or Dips
Face Pulls or Rear Delt or other RC movement

MON
Leg Press
Pulldowns or High Rows
Forearm or Calf movement

THU
Squats etc.


In any case, if you like 2/week then do 2/wk. Try 3 sets and go with a reasonable progression. It doesn't matter IMO if you push yourself until you're dick-in-the-dirt every time as long as you are improving each workout.

You could start with a movement that's easy for 3-4 SS reps and just add 5-10 lbs/workout until it gets extremely hard. When 3 reps is an all-out effort, then switch exercises. Believe me, you won't have all that long to wait.

If you start to feel run-down, irritable, sleeping poorly, etc. then take a break.

If going 2/week means you have to take a break every 6-8 weeks, then that's what it is --- don't beat around the bush. If you can only go 3 weeks on and 1 week off, then that's what is is too.

YOU set the paradigm that twice/week works well for your:
1. Schedule
2. Workout Attitude

Saying that on one hand you PREFER twice/wk, BUT your very limited recovery ability limits you seems to me like it's freezing you in place.

Get fucking moving, my friend, before you turn into that shapeless blob you worry about.

Find ways to 'recover better'. Relax better. Eat better. Sleep more.

I like twice/wk myself and have down-sized my exercises a couple of times in the last few years to meet my aging recovery abilities.

I've got other pointers too, but right now you just need to get moving. Sorry for the tough talk, but I really do wish you the best of success.

Regards,
Scott
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Not Sure

Thanks much for the inputs.

If my recovery ability is below average as I have reason to think it is then what 'most people' can do is by definition not relevant. 3 weight workouts in a split or hard/easy or strength/metabolic layout may be good.

I'm actually walking 3 days/wk also. At this moment it is sucking up some recovery ability. I didn't mention it because it looks like in a few more weeks I'll reach my modest goals for time/distance and it will gradually become a low-intensity background activity that is more a moving-meditation and systemic health insurance policy that I enjoy rather than a progressive performance based workout.

I'm still studying and considering the detailed suggestions. Strong encouragement to commit is definitely appreciated. However, I do have to fight a tendency to over-plan when enthusiastic so that I end up quitting altogether when other things grab my attention. A 'poor' routine done for the rest of my life would be so much better than a perfect routine done for 3 weeks.

Thanks again.


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simon-hecubus

Texas, USA

It doesn't have to be a poor routine, just have one you can look forward to improving upon.

Looking forward to improvement each and every workout can be quite motivational.
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SanDiego

simon-hecubus wrote:
It doesn't have to be a poor routine, just have one you can look forward to improving upon.

Looking forward to improvement each and every workout can be quite motivational.


Well said. At age 47, if you're not looking to become as muscularly large as possible, and would to like to remain active: work out at a level that allows you to either progress slowly or maintain weights. Exercise 3x per week at a reasonable intensity level, with reasonable volume, working out the entire body over the course of the week.

Use impeccable form and enjoy your chosen movements.
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