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Old 07-08-2011, 05:07 AM #1
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LEMUR - The Unified Theory of Hypertrophy

Intro

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dake View Post
Lurker's Experimental Method of Unified Resistance training.
There are as many theories about strength and bodybuilding trainers as there are strength coaches. However, an exhaustive survey of ALL programs associated with rapid body composition changes shows that there are some common principles that tend towards encouraging gains.

Principles

In the very broadest sense, this is what we're looking at:

1. Neural conditioning - specifically, recruitment of the maximum number of motor units. This includes form drilling, maximum tension repetitions, post-tetanic activation potential, and exercise frequency.

2. Fiber/tissue Damage and Remodeling - In order to signal mechanical stretching and inflammation cascades, you do have to damage the fibers. However, as different loading styles produce different mechanical conditions inside the muscle, a variety of techniques should be employed. This is the foundation of the bro-science of "muscle confusion". In particular, intensity techniques and exercise choices emphasizing maximum force production while in a stretched position are important. Heavily loaded stretches also fit under this category, although there will be more on that later.

3. Muscular hypoxia and the biochemical response to training - Probably the core of this program is the argument that the traditional regard for "the pump" by bodybuilders and bros alike is actually rooted in very sound science related to acute GH production, average serum and acute muscular levels of IGF-1, and the ability of lactate (feel the burn) to cleave intramuscular IGF-1 into IGF-DES, which shows 1000% of the anabolic activity of normal IGF-1 in vitro with muscle tissue. While we are not focusing on the androgen pathway, it is intimately connected to the IGF-1 pathway, and so a generally favorable hormonal state should be maintained and would complement the program (and any program) well.

4. Frequency -For neural and chemical reasons, more is better. The issue is managing volume and fatigue in such a way that the maximal amount of body-chemical (Serum IGF-1) change and neural entrainment can be enacted without reaching the mythical "overtraining" point in terms of CNS fatigue, adrenal exhaustion, or muscular failure.

5. Periodization - No program can maintain effectiveness indefinitely, largely because the principles of #2 result in forced adaptation. Remember that to force adaption, one must step outside their comfort zone.

Diet and supplementation principles will be covered briefly at the end of this post. They are designed to act synergistically with the enhanced frequency of the training state.


2 Kinds of workout

The basis of this program is thus: You'll have 2 kinds of workouts in a given week. This type of conjugate periodization is, of course, totally common, but this is a more radical departure than in Westside, PHAT, or BBB. Before breaking down into specifics in the template, the 2 types of days and their utilization of the principles discussed above are as follows:

Type 1: Mechanical Loading Training

These are, roughly, traditional workouts. You will want to structure 3 OR 4 of these per week, with the idea being to hit muscle groups between 1.5 and 2 times per week.

FOR EACH BODY PART, the breakdown is as follows


1. Warm up as necessary, weights under 70% 1RM, avoid constant tension for >6 seconds with any weight above 35% of max.

2. Perform a single rep with 85-90% of your maximum with FAST bar speed. This activates as many muscle fibers as possible, an effect that lasts roughly 5 minutes. You absolutely cannot grind this rep out, and total time under tension including racking and unracking must be less than 6 seconds. The 6 second guideline is due to golgi tendon inhibition. You may do a double at 85% if you like, but the key is that you must max out your force production. Ideally, lifting a nice heavy load this early should leave you feeling like a beast, ready to do anything, and totally unfatigued (unlike a 1RM max effort)

3. WITHIN 2-3 MINUTES Perform roughly 6 reps with around your 6 rep max. The last rep should NOT be a grinder, though it should be difficult, you do not want to lose bar speed and have a tremendously long tension time. This is still a heavy set, and focus should really ideally be on nailing the form and getting maximum power development, especially at the stretch point where the eccentric becomes concentric.

4. Wait 10-15 seconds/breaths, and drop the weight roughly 10%. If you think you can get more than 3 with the original weight, don't drop. Rep out this weight, still not approaching failure (each mini set should have a rep in the tank). Discontinue the set at the first sign of reps becoming "grindy".

5. Wait 10 seconds/breaths, and repeat step 4. Dropping perhaps another 5-10% of load is OK, but no more. Weights you could do for more than 12 reps are probably not going to produce sufficient load for the goal fiber damage here. You want around 25 reps through 5 or 6 mini sets per body part performed in this fashion.

6. Once your mini sets of 3 reps have been completed, you can rest. I recommend heavy loaded stretching at this point, per Doggcrapp. The body part you've just used will no longer be used for maximum force activation, so neural inhibition at this point via stretching is ok.

7. Select a very high stretch/pump exercise, and do 2 sets of 15-20+ reps. Your focus here should be on embracing lactate burn and pushing through it. You must not bottom out or top out the movement, releasing tension. If you have Kaatsu arm bands, you may use them at this point, though it is not necessary. Because the failure is not mechanical or neural in these cases, you can and should push all the way to the end. The second such set should be concluded by dropping weight with a "burnout set" (a single drop in weight should be fine, as the goal here is maximum time of burn - you're trying to convert high levels of serum IGF-1 to IGF-DES in the target muscle via lactate.)



YOU MAY SPLIT THESE MECHANICAL HYPERTROPHY DAYS HOWEVER YOU LIKE, TRAINING INSTINCTUALLY OR AS PER RECOVERY AND LAGGING PARTS DICTATE, HOWEVER, BECAUSE FAILURE IS CAREFULLY MANAGED, MORE FREQUENT LOADINGS ARE BETTER.



Type 2: Neural and Biochemical Enhancement Training

First and foremost, this is purely supplementary - If you cut out a normal mechanical loading workout to do this "instead", you will fail. Muscles still must be trained with heavy load.

Basically, the idea here is that a quick, portable (home) workout designed to not fatigue the mechanical condition of muscles or the nervous system can still have tremendous benefits if we use our good friend science to maximize the gains from our mechanical loading training.

These workouts are ideally performed every off day, even multiple times in one day, and should not take much time or lifestyle alteration at all. I clock mine at under 20 minutes.

Enter Kaatsu Training.


Japanese researchers have found that very significant myofibrillar hypertrophy can be induced by doing frequent loading of 30% 1rm weight with high reps while the blood return is restricted with elastic bands.
http://www.ergo-log.com/hypoxia.html

I cannot stress enough at this point to be careful. Venous restriction should last no longer than 5 minutes at any time. ANY sign of discomfort including numbness suggests that the restriction is too tight and training should be discontinued.
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Old 07-08-2011, 05:07 AM #2
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The protocol for the NBC workout:

1. Perform high set/low reps, maximum speed work with exercises you want to get stronger on.

TAKE AS MUCH CARE AS POSSIBLE TO MAKE THE FORM MATCH YOUR REAL LIFTS. Broomstick when squatting and measuring grip width on bench (perform pushups on knuckles), for instance. Again, you should be nowhere near failure, but you should be producing as much force as possible. Bodyweight (speed/jump) squats, speed pushups, and explosive pullups are good candidates here.

I'd prescribe sets of no more than 5 (even singles from the stretched positive are good for pullups) with care to nail down the form and explosive force for each exercise. Avoiding the eccentric motion of the exercise, within reason, is fine with me. Pushups, for instance, ideally should start from a dead stop. Squats, dialing in the proper level of bounce at the bottom is important.

The idea here is that you can "grease the groove" neurally , as Pavel Tsatsouline says, without having to put much actual mechanical stress on the muscle. The more times you perform a benching or squatting motion, the more ingrained those firing patterns become. Ideally for strength you'd near-max a concentric every day, like bulgarians, but research shows speed work with loads above something like 35% still have significant benefits. With these mini workouts and a strong attention to faithful-to-gym form you should be able to increase the frequency of strong neural firings for the major lifts (other than deadlift, which is helped by squatting and possibly hip thrusting) by something like 200% compared to other programs.


2. Do hypoxia/venous restricted sets on muscles you'd like to see hypertrophy. CAREFULLY.
I've used ACE bandages folded over, then wrapped tightly and tucked under itself to get a blood restriction, and it seemed safe and effective. Remember, you're hunting the most pump possible. Generally you want to keep the occlusion under 5 minutes and shoot for ~50+ reps with a very light weight (20-35% of 1rm). I'd recommend doing this with bodyweight squats every session, because the demonstrated serum GH peak is so much higher than with arms. Larger muscle groups should be trained restricted FIRST so as to give serum GH benefit to later groups: http://www.ergo-log.com/wantbiggerbiceps.html



DIET, PERIWORKOUT NUTRITION, TIMING


Diet should be roughly the same as always - I like leangains, but depending on your schedule and goals, it may or may not be for you. At least 1.5g of protein (QUALITY SOURCES - Meat and dairy only, pretty much), 18kcal per g bodyweight on a bulk, -500kcal below maintenance on a cut. Limit sweets and starches to after the gym OR mini sessions where ever possible.

Periworkout protocol - Mechanical Loading

-90m: last carb containing meal. Get protein and plenty of water, and enough carbs to sustain the workout. If you're going to hyperhydrate with glycerol and sea salt, take it now. Could take the creatine here if desired.

-30m: sulbutiamine if you take it (Lurker Stim pack)

-20m: Caffeine+1,3dm if you take them. 5g L-Arginine and a recommended dose of choline source (CDP-choline, DMAE, Alpha GPC etc) will enhance GH output. Any GH releasers (L-dopa, Huperzine A, etc) would also be taken here.

Beginning workout/Sip during: ~12g BCAA or 35g carbless whey. This will fuel the workout without interfering with GH release. I generally take about half at the start and sip the rest

After: Standard recovery shake with carbs + protein + creatine



Periworkout protocol - Neural/Biochemical loading

Should be at least 90m carb and fat fasted.

-20m: 5g L-Arginine and a recommended dose of choline source (CDP-choline, choline citrate, DMAE, Alpha GPC etc) to enhance GH output. Any GH releasers (L-dopa, Huperzine A, etc) would be taken here.

Beginning or during or after workout: ~7g BCAA or 20g carbless whey. Creatine optional.


SAMPLE TEMPLATE


Use 1 rep max calculator to dial in weights. http://www.nsca-lift.org/fly%20solo%...ram/onearm.asp

Rotate 2 exercises per bodypart slot

DAY A (Mech)

CHEST - (Preactivate BB Bench) Bench (decline BB or flat BB unless upper chest is lagging), cable crossovers for burn)
SHOULDERS (Preactivate with push press, or skip) press variations, lat raises,vertical row, or lat raise machine for burn)
TRICEPS (Preactivate with to range dips, or skip) Presses or pulls, looking for max tension, skull crusher variants for burn
BACK WIDTH (Preactivate with target exercise) Chin/pullup/pulldown variations, bentover 1-arm motorcycle rows for burn
BACK CENTER (No preactivation) CG/DB/Tbar Row or deadlift variations for tension, strict CG cable rows for burn)


DAY B (Mech)

BICEPS - (Preactivate with loaded cg Chin/pullup) looser form curls for max power/tension, spider or preacher style strict curls for burn
FOREARMS - Don't bother preactivating, reverse curls to taste. Can do the burnout with wrist flips with dbs in hand
HAMS - Preactivate on target exercise. Barbell hip thrust/SLDL/good mornings for one choice, curl/GHR variant as the other. Burnout with ham curls/GHR
QUADS - Squat variants. Probably do want back squats here, but placed chronologically BEFORE hams that training day. Should be back squatting 50+% of leg days. Hack squats work too. The stretched position is key for heavy quad exercises. For the burn sets, somersault squats, walking lunges, and extremely high (30+) rep leg extensions are a good call.
TRAPS - I would add shrugs on this day, just doing them all on 1 bar or smith machine or hammer strength machine. No Preactivation needed, traps are brutal to begin with so i recommend heavy power oriented shrugs. Using the rep structure outlined for mechanical days would be fine.


CALVES - No preactivation, just a heavy set and a burnout set. Calves are proven to respond well to occlusion training and if yours are lagging AND you care enough to fix it, this is a viable option on mechanical loading OR NBC training days. Conceivably you could train calves in some form every day if they're a bad weak point. I don't bother with calves on Mechanical leg days anymore. 200+ occluded reps is totally within reason for lagging calves.


Sample NBC Training Session


1. Light dynamic stretch/warmup

2.
Neural training. These are most easily done in circuit fashion. Compresses the workout and keeps things fresh. Mine are as follows:

6 sets of 5 speed back BW squats, focused on speed out of the hole, simulating proper bar and hand position

6 sets of 5 plyo (leaving the ground) pushups, with straight wrists (knuckle pushups) and proper hand positioning for bench press loading. Focusing on typical bench cues like tight back.

6sets of 2-5 explosive chins from dead hang

3. Occlusion training. Use your ACE Bandages or bands to tie off the target body parts, close to the core.


3x sets of high rep bodyweight squats (can loosen form here). Rhythmic tempo. Feel the burn. Subsequent sets will fail much faster than the first due to continued restriction. 30+ 15+ 15+ is the bare minimum for rep requirements

3x sets of light curls while under Kaatsu venous restriction below shoulder. Rhythmic tempo. Subsequent sets will fail much faster than the first due to continued restriction. 30+15+15 is the bare minimum rep requirement.

200x calf raises while occluded.

Pushups while occluded in the arms also cause chest growth, for reasons I am unsure of. This suggest pushups and chinups could be effective under restriction as well.


DOMS from an NBC day should actually be much less than normal: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19826283 This is probably due to higher chemical anabolism.

Light stretching and/or foam roller/pvc pipe/theracane/lacrosse ball myofascial release if needed.

SAMPLE SCHEDULE
Day 1: Mech A1
Day 2:NBC
Day 3:Mech B1
Day 4:NBC
Day 5:Mech A2
Day 6:NBC
Day 7:Mech B2
Day 8:NBC
Day J:Begin repeating.

Additional NBCs can be added for 2x in a day or on workout days as well, as long as the rules apply in terms of the periworkout protocol. I'd also keep them at least 4 hours away from mechanical workouts on either side.

Link for Kaatsu bands:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pump Revolution
http://www.aluminumbats.com/rawlings...eballbelt.aspx

They should be $5~ at your local sporting goods store.
DISCLAIMER
Don't be an idiot. Bloodflow restriction is serious. I haven't run this program in entirety yet, but I have experienced many of the benefits of pieces of it by adding more widowmakers and burnout sets to my own heavy lifting. Deadlift clusters, for instance, make perfect sense in light of this information regarding post tetanic activation. By managing failure, I hope this can be a more sustainable version of DC training. It's possible NBC days will interfere with normal training more than I think. We just don't know yet.

The central portion of mechanical training (rest pause without true failure) is derived from Myo-Reps and titan training. Traditional reverse Pyramid training or even more strength focused programs such as 1,6,1,6 or 5x5 style could theoretically be substituted for those protocols while leaving the rest of this intact. Similarly, Layne Norton's loadings for Power days on PHAT could be used in that slot.

Most lifters here would probably be best off plateauing on Starting Strength before doing ANYTHING else. As with my DC guide, this assumes you know how to train already. For newbies I in no way recommend this.

Thanks for your time, and I hope some of this makes sense. I have opted not to include more references, because they would make this totally unreadable. If you have questions about SPECIFIC reasoning, I can readily produce references or cross examples.

Lurker
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Old 07-08-2011, 07:48 AM #3
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Oh lawd I am ready for this. Lurker,
  1. Could I do A1 mon, NBC tue, B1 wed, NBC thurs, A2 friday, NBC sat & sunday, B2 mon and so on?
  2. A gym is not needed for NBC right? As long as we have a pullup bar.
  3. When do we rotate exercises? Obviously A1 and A2 will have different exercises (B1 and B2 as well), but when do we switch them out?
  4. What does progression look like?
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Old 07-08-2011, 08:32 AM #4
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1. Yes, absolutely. I suspect that's about the perfect amount of volume. Obviously missing an NBC here and there isn't too bad.

2. No, it's definitely not needed, it's way too time intensive for most people to make the "gym trip" 7 days per week

3. I'd say every 3-4 weeks, but enough to keep things fresh. If you feel you're obviously stalling on something, swap it out. Very much by feel.

4. For now, I'm just assuming small loading increases in the myo-rep sets. Additionally, you should manage more force-producing (higher speed) reps from week to week. Because you're trying to live on the threshold and force adaptation, I think that gains should show up a bit more clearly than on DC, because there are generally more reps (sort of a higher training resolution).
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Old 07-08-2011, 09:45 AM #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pelto View Post
Cliffs?
for each body part
Preactivation -> Myo-reps -> Stretching-> Burnout sets

Kaatsu training and speed/form work on 'off' days.

Periworkout protocol to maximize dat dere GH release
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Old 07-08-2011, 09:58 AM #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lurker27

for each body part
Preactivation -> Myo-reps -> Stretching-> Burnout sets

Kaatsu training and speed/form work on 'off' days.

Periworkout protocol to maximize dat dere GH release
I've always been meaning to ask you. How much of an effect do you think gh manipulation has? Being that actual synthetic GH takes months to kick in.
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Old 07-08-2011, 09:59 AM #7
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I agree, I think there is benefit over traditional programs but I have no idea how much


EDIT: Most lifters here would probably be best off maxing out on Starting Strength before doing ANYTHING else. As with my DC guide, this assumes you know how to train already. For newbies I in no way recommend this.
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Old 07-08-2011, 10:01 AM #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smart Parts Player12 View Post
I've always been meaning to ask you. How much of an effect do you think gh manipulation has? Being that actual synthetic GH takes months to kick in.
1. Most people who take GH use it incorrectly. Here we are focused on GH not for its own sake but as part of a hormonal cascade resulting in IGF-DES

2. IGF-1 and IGF-DES, which is what we're really focusing on, kick in noticeable differences much faster than that when used as exogenous supplements.
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Old 07-08-2011, 10:09 AM #9
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Originally Posted by Lurker27 View Post
I agree, I think there is marginal benefit over traditional programs but I have no idea how much
so i guess we will have to see how it works for certain people. we have a decent variety of people on here, from not very much experience at 150, to a lot at 300, and vice versa. we should get a good idea if it works and what type of lifter it works for
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Old 07-08-2011, 11:17 AM #10
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I have a feeling that the pullups might pose an issue to some of the heavier ( 250+) dudes.


Redacted.
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Old 07-08-2011, 11:27 AM #11
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I cannot imagine bodyweight squats being a problem on ANY day for anyone who is qualified to do this program in the first place. Pullups @ singles or doubles should be OK, I think, but due to mind-muscle connection being so poor in the back for most people, pullups are a sort of diffuse compound activity, lacking a lot of coordination. The explosive pullups could be dropped for anyone not caring about their pullup performance. However, since we're trying to get stronger in order to bolster the mechanical training days, you probably are sacrificing back hypertrophy as well.


Keep in mind, this is all more or less speculation at this point, but I do know that I can do 6 sets of 5 (explosive/jump) bodyweight squats literally any day regardless of training status.
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Old 07-08-2011, 11:36 AM #12
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I wont be doing the mech until I get back to school, but I think I'm going to start doing the NBC now
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Old 07-08-2011, 11:39 AM #13
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Not a bad idea, serum igf-1 levels will take over 2 weeks to build in your system
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Old 07-08-2011, 02:45 PM #14
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I usually eat an apple or something within 1-5 minutes before working out, is the counter-productive?
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Old 07-08-2011, 02:55 PM #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nikilwig View Post
I usually eat an apple or something within 1-5 minutes before working out, is the counter-productive?
For GH release, yes.
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Old 07-09-2011, 06:38 AM #16
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Had to Read, and Re-Read this 3 times over.

Excited to try this out.


Lurker, if you're looking to see actual results I'm willing to keep a log of anything you might be interested in. PM me if there's anything specific you'd like to see tracked.
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Old 07-09-2011, 10:34 AM #17
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If you could track measurements of a few measurements over time, that would be awesome - obviously strength gets tracked by means of a logbook
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Old 07-09-2011, 07:45 PM #18
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Lurker, are you thinking that this program will be one for slow progress (such as 5/3/1) or that most people will see gains rather immediately?


Basically, if I ran this for a month and didn't see a lot of gains, would it be justifiable to completely scrap it?
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Old 07-10-2011, 04:15 AM #19
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OK then, what if I told you that I thought it could be ridiculously effective?

Look at the research on blood occlusion in trained athletes - rugby players added an inch+ to their thighs in 8 weeks of occlusion training, verified as true myofibrillar hypertrophy by MRI scan.

Anyone who has done deadlift clusters already knows that neural preactivation works. the second rep is much much easier than the first.

And to be honest, it isn't that complicated. If you're doing DC now, the only changes are adding ONE easy heavy rep to the warmup, slightly tweaking the RP structure (no absolute failure, more mini sets), and then adding more "widowmakers". I probably should change legs to be first on legs day though.

Adding the mini workouts is purely a way to work kaatsu in. It's not complicated, its a totally separate routine. All I'm saying here is hey, drill form on big lifts with speed in off days to get more form-reps in. Then, the occluded work produces a large GH spike and drives more chemical changes in the muscle in a system that is PROVEN to

1. build muscle (very well) and strength (worse than traditional training alone)
2. Have LESS DOMS than light weight (~30% of 1rm weight) to failure for same # of sets

And, all the mini workouts for a week are probably less than an hour of work

I would budget 6-8 weeks to do this properly, unless you added in a few of the kaatsu sessions beforehand. Not really enough chances to see the lifts get better otherwise. Even in close to fully trained athletes I wouldn't be shocked to see 15% CSA increase in the most heavily targeted muscle groups.

That's like what, 7% on diameter? That's noticeable. That wouldn't be an unreasonable departure from the literature.

This is designed as a bodybuilding/powerbuilding program. I imagine that this would be beneficial for a powerlifter a long ways out from a meet, when you have plenty of time to train for muscle density and ingrain neural firing patterns. If I were primarily interested in powerlifting, I'd probably recommend straight texas method.

I'd say learning this system is not more difficult than DC or PHAT in any meaningful way.
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Old 07-10-2011, 05:49 AM #20
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How the **** is it complicated?

Just because he didn't provide a full week's example write-up so you didn't have to read?
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Old 07-10-2011, 11:23 AM #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by japanese bros
"Longer-term studies have shown several advantageous adaptations as a result of occlusion training. A research team looked into the effects of performing leg extensions twice weekly for two months in elite rugby players. The athletes were separated into three groups: those doing leg extensions with blood occlusion of the thighs at 50 percent of 1RM, those doing leg extensions without blood occlusion at 50 percent 1RM and a control group doing no exercise. Strength and quadriceps size improved by 14 percent and 12 percent, respectively, in the blood-occlusion group, while neither increased in the nonocclusion or control groups."
reference on trained bros
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