Hail to the Dinosaurs!
One of our longtime Dinos is switching from
5 x 5 for his squats to 20 rep breathing squats.
So he asked about where to start and how to
He's read the standard advice for doing 20
rep breathing squats.
You've probably read it, too.
You take your maximum weight for 10 reps
(which is strange, because how many people
know their maximum weight for 10 all-out
reps in the squat?).
And then you start squatting - with or without
any warm-up sets (which also is strange).
And you force yourself to grind out one rep
after another until you get 20 reps with your
10 rep weight.
The goal is to work so hard your eyeballs
pop out of your head - or you cough up a
kidney - or other similar hyperbole.
Then you fall on the floor in a heap - and
lay there for 20 or 30 minutes, twitching
And then you're incredibly sore for several
days - or perhaps a full week - after this one
set on your first "breathing squat workout."
Now, that sounds fine, and it reads well, and
it sells tons of books, courses and magazines.
But is it the best way to start doing 20 rep
I don't think so.
There's absolutely no reason to kill yourself
the first time you do 20 rep breathing squats.
They're like anything else.
The best way to start is light and easy - get
the feel of the exercise - and give yourself
some time to adapt to the new movement.
That includes - very importantly - time to
rev up your cardiovascular system so you
can handle the unique demands of the 20
rep breathing squat.
I like to do this:
1. Start with 50% of your estimated 10 rep
weight - and do 20 reps with it.
If you're not sure what your 10 rep max is,
then start with something like 100 pounds
and work up from there.
It really doesn't matter where you start -
what matters is what you have on the bar
when you finish the program.
2. Train breathing squats once a week.
3. Add 5 pounds every time you do them,
and gradually and steadily work up to a
That's the common sense way of doing it.
And quite frankly, it's the very best way of
By the way, do you know about Peary
He was one of the early pioneers of the
20 rep breathing squat - and one of its
He started with an empty barbell when
he began doing his 20 rep breathing
That was good, because he didn't have
to cough up a kidney during his first
From there. over a couple of years, he
slowly worked up to some serious weight
on the bar - and he gained almost 100
pounds of muscle in two years.
For a complete review and step by step
instruction on sensible progression for
the 20-rep breathing squat - and for
many other sane, sensible, effective
old-school progression systems, grab
a copy of Dinosaur Training Secrets,
Hard-copy and Kindle editions
See the complete list of PDF books and
courses at our products page:
Enjoy the course - and always start light and
easy on any new exercise - and work up in
weight slowly, gradually and progressively.
Yours in strength,
P.S. 2. My other books and courses are
right here at Dino Headquarters - including
links to my PDF courses and my Kindle
Hard-copy and PDF
P.S. 3. Thought for the Day:
"Slow cooking makes tasty meals - and it
also builds strong bodies."
- Brooks Kubik
BEFORE YOU LEAVE . . .
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