Hail to the Dinosaurs!
Here's a simple way to help keep
making regular, steady progress
in your training.
Vary your volume and intensity by
doing different sets and reps for
the same exercise in different
workouts -- and create two
parallel progress paths.
I call it Dino Style Double
Progression -- and it works
For example --
Let's say you train the Trap Bar
deadlift once a week -- and let's
say you can pull 350 for 3 x 5 in
good form. (No bouncing, no gutting
it up, just good, solid, perfect reps.)
So here's what you do for your
working sets (which will always
come after a series of progressively
heavier warm-up sets, such as 135 x 5,
185 x 5, 225 x 5, 275 x 5 and 315 x 5.)
In week one, you would do 3 x 5 with
350 for your working sets.
In week two, you would do 1 x 5 with
350, 1 x 3 with 360 and 1 x 1 with 370.
In week three, you go back to the 3 x 5
and do 3 x 5 with 355.
In week four, you would do 1 x 5 with
355, 1 x 3 with 365 and 1 x 3 with 370.
Art that point, the weights are going
to be feeling pretty heavy, so slow
the progression down by repeating each
workout two or three times before
The trick is, follow two different
progression paths -- one where you're
working to progress for 3 x 5 working
sets and the other where you're working
to progress with 1 x 5, 1 x 3 and 1 x 1
The different set/rep schemes have a
different training effect, even though
you're doing the same exercise -- and
you keep your mind fresh by tackling
new challenges from week to week.
And yes, you can do this with other
set/rep systems. For example, 3 x 5
working sets in one workout and 5
heavy (but not max) singles for your
working sets in the next workout.
You also can use the add one rep per
workout progression that we've covered
in other recent emails to make progress
in both workouts.
Good stuff, sensible and effective, not
rocket science, but not mindless heaving
and pulling. A good combination of art
and science -- which is what strength
training is (or should be).
As always, thanks for reading and have
a great day. If you train today, make
it a good one!
Yours in strength,
P.S. I cover other keys to great workouts
in Strength, Muscle and Power:
P.S. 2. My other books and courses --
including Dinosaur Training and Gray
Hair and Black Iron -- are right here:
P.S. 3. Thought for the Day: "If training
was rocket science, we'd lift space ships
instead of barbells." -- Brooks Kubik