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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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Dr. Ken - Sensible Training
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Mark S

Sensible Training - A Logical Approach to Size and Strength
by Dr. Ken E. Leistner


With all the numerous changes that have taken place in the field of weight training over the years it has never been truer that "the more things change the more they remain the same". Armed with the accurate information collected over the years it is possible for anyone to improve their strength, their muscular endurance (to a certain extent), their cardiovascular endurance, and their appearance (a subjective evaluation) if the interested party is willing to take the brief time necessary to analyze the conditions necessary for inducing muscular growth stimulation.

The requirements haven't changed over the years, and the nonsense put forth by the commercially interested and biased parties hasn't changed either.

But most importantly, the irrational approach taken towards training hasn't changed a great deal either, and has prevented the vast majority of weight trainees from reaping even a small portion of the possible benefits made available by the use of the barbell.

Robert Sizer, a former pro-football player, All-American at Richmond University and at one time the most outstanding high school football player in the state of Virginia, was perhaps the first successful athlete in the area to pursue weight training in an attempt to improve his athletic ability at a time that this was believed to make one "musclebound", slow and uncoordinated.

Sizer was an 180lb offensive lineman, that by accounts was stronger and faster than most men weighing 250lbs at the time. At 15 YEARS OF AGE he could squat with 450 lbs (for reps), and bench press 420 lbs.

Sizer trained with a barbell fashioned out of concrete wheels that his father made for him. In the beginning he admitted he didn't really know what he was doing. "All" he did was train hard and brief with heavy weights on the major exercises.

Remarked Sizer:

"Unfortunately, as I became exposed to more people who were involved with training, I left my old methods behind and became bogged down in a progress- stifling method, or more accurately, methods of training...No one showed me how to train; I just went at it like I did everything else, and the hard work on each and every set brought results. But when I saw the other fellows doing things a bit differently, I adopted many of their techniques, not to my benefit".

The point? There are basic considerations one has to take into account when inducing muscular growth stimulation, and this, of course, is the whole point of utilizing weights. Some of the necessary conditions that must be met for optimal results are:

- using heavy movements over a full range of motion - continuing every set of every exercise to a point of momentary but complete muscular failure - using "basic" exercises, i.e, compound movements that work the major muscular structures of the body, like the squat - training at a level of maximum intensity - limiting the amount of work done - providing the necessary requirements for growth to occur - ensuring that the exercise is truly progressive

Much of this is so obvious that it needs no further explanation, but considering the almost unbelievable amount of false information available, without such a basic understanding the trainee will not be able to formulate a program that will bring results in a manner that is proportionate with the effort expended.

The only way to produce maximum possible increases in muscle tissue mass is by the production of maximum power. This can only be done by utilizing exercises that engage as much of the particular mass as is possible, and only when working over a full range of possible motion.

And while it is almost impossible to engage 100% of the available fibers, much more growth stimulation will occur if the exercise is carried out over as great a range as is possible. This also assists in the development of increased flexibility, as a heavy weight will pull the involved bodyparts into a fully extended position at the beginning of the movement and will also provide "prestretching" of that involved muscle. It is now apparent that the most important requirement for inducing maximum growth is intensity.

Carrying an exercise to the point of momentary but complete failure ensures that one is training at a point of greatest possible intensity (assuming that the trainee is putting forth effort and "not going through the motions" and thus "failing" long before reaching a point of actual muscular failure). There is no way to gauge the amount of effort being put forth unless one goes to the point of failure. That implies, simply, that 100% of momentary possible effort was put forth.

Also, it is only by working this hard that one can engage the maximum possible amount of muscle fibers. And unless this maximum amount of fibers is worked, growth will be retarded, if not impossible. Many trainees fear this. They are afraid of working as hard as is actually required, and thus they often return to their prior methods of training improperly.

It is much easier to perform 4 sets of 8 reps of a particular movement than it is to complete one set *correctly*; for example, doing 15 reps in proper form to a point where it is momentarily impossible to move the barbell with the involved bodypart.

I recently had the "pleasure" of training (for only one session, thankfully) with one of the leading bodybuilders in the United States. I convinced him to try "my way" of doing things, and he finally consented. I coaxed him through a set of leg presses, using approximately 300lbs, and he completed 18 reps.

This was followed by a set of full squats, using a fairly light weight (approx. 185 lbs), and he terminated the set long before his strength had been taxed. We then did standing presses and chins, and he did manage to go to a point of failure, although he did take momentary "breaks" during the sets to complain that the "weight is just too light to feel so heavy" and other such gems of wisdom.
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Terry Carter

Georgia, USA

Many trainees fear this. They are afraid of working as hard as is actually required, and thus they often return to their prior methods of training improperly.


Explains a lot of justification attempts, doesn't it?
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Raider22

Ohio, USA

I would say that close to 50% of the HIT enthusiasts don't train as hard as they can. Many people put the mental brakes on before they truly reach failure.
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Benjamin Dover

Terry Carter wrote:
Many trainees fear this. They are afraid of working as hard as is actually required, and thus they often return to their prior methods of training improperly.


Explains a lot of justification attempts, doesn't it?


It does.

There is a grown man posting on this very forum who has recently tried to justify his own pathetic attempts at quarter squats (and I'm being generous!) by "correcting" the form of a 110lbs girl!!! The lady in question was squatting with 110lbs for reps in reasonably deep and exquisitely controlled style. Justification? I hope he's feeling proud!

Another tosses around the words "specific" and "general" in completely the wrong context and paints a picture of thorough understanding! Amazingly, he does this to justify his own sad, ungainly "training model"...an approach that becomes more transparent by the day.

Most people here are either in hospital...or should be...because apparently their CNS(s) are so fragile, walking up the stairs is too intense. More justification for not working hard. Don't even LOOK at a barbell, your spine might explode...if you had one!

Oh, and "the big and strong don't do HIT"...that's the best. The drug addicted, genetic elite who are soon to be fat cripples...don't do HIT - so neither will we!

Great. Well thought out.

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SteveHIT

Good post.

Did Ken not post here before?

Why doesnt he now?
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SteveHIT

JamesT wrote:
There is a grown man posting on this very forum who has recently tried to justify his own pathetic attempts at quarter squats (and I'm being generous!)


Is there a link to the video?
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Mark S

stevehit wrote:
Good post.

Did Ken not post here before?

Why doesnt he now?


Yes he has posted now and again.

Probably the level of intensity shown in Wayne's videos has frightened him off.

Mark
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Raider22

Ohio, USA

One of the reason's people like Ken don't post here is there is not a whole lot to talk about. Not much you can say about compound lifts and brief hard work. Pretty simple stuff.
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SteveHIT

Mark HIT wrote:
Yes he has posted now and again.

Probably the level of intensity shown in Wayne's videos has frightened him off.

Mark


LOL!
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SteveHIT

Raider22 wrote:
One of the reason's people like Ken don't post here is there is not a whole lot to talk about. Not much you can say about compound lifts and brief hard work. Pretty simple stuff.


I know, but its good to here some good training information or a few stories or for a bit of inspiration.

Here's part of Kens definition on H.I.T . . .

"Rep speed HAS NOTHING, ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with that definition."

Maybe why he doesnt post.
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spud

Here is what Dr Ken had to say regarding the details of training, the kind of details that receive to much "air time" on this forum:

"You can "TUL", "rep count", "note the turnaround", and "sequence exercises properly" all of some significance, but the moment any of that gets in the way of actually training hard and to one's limit, it becomes bullshit that is no more than excess baggage."
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SteveHIT

spud wrote:
Here is what Dr Ken had to say regarding the details of training, the kind of details that receive to much "air time" on this forum:

"You can "TUL", "rep count", "note the turnaround", and "sequence exercises properly" all of some significance, but the moment any of that gets in the way of actually training hard and to one's limit, it becomes bullshit that is no more than excess baggage."


Sums it up pretty well for me.
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fbcoach

spud wrote:
Here is what Dr Ken had to say regarding the details of training, the kind of details that receive to much "air time" on this forum:

"You can "TUL", "rep count", "note the turnaround", and "sequence exercises properly" all of some significance, but the moment any of that gets in the way of actually training hard and to one's limit, it becomes bullshit that is no more than excess baggage."


Perfect :)
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Crotalus



"You can "TUL", "rep count", "note the turnaround", and "sequence exercises properly" all of some significance, but the moment any of that gets in the way of actually training hard and to one's limit, it becomes bullshit that is no more than excess baggage."


Yep, another nice quote from Dr. Ken.

Like they used to say on the old TV show 'Dragnet' ; " ..... the facts, Ma'am, just the facts .... "

I think way too many guys get so involved in this little stuff , that it ruins their training.
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Benjamin Dover

stevehit wrote:
JamesT wrote:
There is a grown man posting on this very forum who has recently tried to justify his own pathetic attempts at quarter squats (and I'm being generous!)

Is there a link to the video?


There's a link my man. Give me a chance to look.

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SanDiego

He's currently got a series of columns over at Titan Strength & Power, titled "History of Powerlifting, Weightlifting & Strength Training":

www.titanstrengthandpower.com/history_of_powerlifting_part_1.html
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simon-hecubus

Texas, USA

SanDiego wrote:
He's currently got a series of columns over at Titan Strength & Power, titled "History of Powerlifting, Weightlifting & Strength Training":

www.titanstrengthandpower.com/history_of_powerlifting_part_1.html


Oh Man, what a great set of articles. Literally hours of great insights and recollections going on there!
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marcrph

Portugal

fbcoach wrote:
spud wrote:
Here is what Dr Ken had to say regarding the details of training, the kind of details that receive to much "air time" on this forum:

"You can "TUL", "rep count", "note the turnaround", and "sequence exercises properly" all of some significance, but the moment any of that gets in the way of actually training hard and to one's limit, it becomes bullshit that is no more than excess baggage."

Perfect :)


Exactly!
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strengthmaster

Michigan, USA

SanDiego,

Thank you for that Titan-Power address.
That IS a great series of articles by Dr. Ken. He is a great story teller isn't he! For anyone interested in the history of not just powerlifting, but weight training in general, go read the articles. They are really interesting and entertaining.

Scott

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