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    Progress form.

    Pomiar: 29.07/09.10/17.10/23.10/8.01/14.01/21.01/17.02

    WAGA: 78.4/84.0/84.8/84.4/x/89.6/88.3/89.2

    log: tofik

    tofik February 20th, 2018 12:21 Go to last post

    Progres form:

    Pomiar: 7.10/15.10/22.10/29.10/05.11/12.11/19.11/26.11/03.12/10.12/30.12/07.01/14.01/21.01/28.01/03.02/11.02/18.02

    log: Gosia2906

    ryba266 February 19th, 2018 18:04 Go to last post

    Progress form.
    Pomiar: 20.08/03.09/10.09/17.09/07.10/15.10/22.10/29.10/05.11/12.11/19.11/26.11/03.12/10.12/30.12/07.01/14.01/21.01/28.01/03.02/11.02/18.02

    log: Ryba

    ryba266 February 19th, 2018 17:59 Go to last post
  • Let's build some mass - the annual cycle for newbies part 3

    author Puma

    The third mesocycle brings a major change. You’ll be able to demonstrate some strength. The loads will grow very rapidly, without a smallest effort.

    Let’s look at what you’re standing on at the moment. You’ve completed six training phases based on correction and accessory movements designed along with your rehab specialist. You’ve gained some serious mass and strength. After 18-36 weeks you’ve already mastered all the exercises and you can perform them with an ideal technique. Diet is adjusted exactly to your individual need and you manipulate it in order to progress on daily basis. Having fullfilled these conditions, you’re surely a different man than the one who started lifting some time ago.

    Why am I writing this? Because the effect is unsatisfactory if only one factor had failed. People often tend to have an attitude like: „Here I’ll do my best, here I don’t care“ or „If I do my best here and here, I won’t have to struggle here“. Unfortunately - it doesn’t work that way. A very frequent example is when someone takes training seriously but really doesn’t pay attention to the diet. Training won’t give you any sufficient results unless it’s supported by energetic, survival and building background. It’s a guaranteed failure.

    Another example is maxing the weight at the expense of proper technique. It won’t work either. Spoiling the technique changes the order of muscle activation, in most cases these are the muscles that take part in the exercise. Whenever we don’t set the proper position - which is simultaneously the safest and the strongest one - we make the exercise a target one and less efficient. A target exercise doesn’t build overall mass. Some lacks appear, the structure collapses and you spoil the posture you’d been able to develop throughout long weeks.

    I chose that mesocycle on purpose, in order to remind you of that. Usually this is the moment when the lifter relishes his abilities. Don’t let yourself be deluded. Exercise scrupulously, eat according to your own (always-changing) needs. Only that will give you a visible progress.

    Essential Changes

    Type of training changes, we’ve got some new, more demanding and complicated methods. What also changes is the type of effort and „the enemy“. Up to this it’s been your condition that failed in compound movements. It’s natural but we’ve got it already behind us. Now, you’ll achieve muscle failure. It’s a different division, yet not the ultimate one. The ultimate border is CNS failure and we’re still far from that. Nevertheless, we should introduce some changes in order to transfer the hard work into a new, appreciable body.

    The major change is in the post-workout meal. I encourage you to significantly increase the protein intake. Of course, do it reasonably but now, 40 grams should be a standard for everyone between 70 and 90kg.

    Because of the specifity of the training, post-workout carbohydrates should be increased by 1/4 of the body mass. So, if you’re weighing 100kg at the moment, you add 25grams of carbohydrates to your post workout meal. Again - be reasonable here. You don’t take into consideration your weight 18 weeks ago. It’s all about your current weight.

    In the first mesocycle you provided yourself with carbohydrates intake amount to half of your body mass. In the second mesocycle you added 1/4. Now, you’re also adding 1/4. So now you provide yourself with equivalence of your body mass in carbohydrates. I remind you also that post-workout meal is a separate one! Overall intake and post-workout intake are not the same thing. Diet is being calibrated as it’s been untill now, step by step method. This will also be our method till the end of your „carreer“. It’s as natural as breathing.

    In this mesocycle pick accessory movements after the first week. New ranges of reps will mean a different engagement of fibres. It’ll turn out for sure that in the majority of exercises, different muscle parts will become the new weakest links. As for example: there’s no use in working on partial bench press if a normal bench press appears to be a problem. It works the same way the other way round.

    There will be a plenty of things which will change. One thing for sure - there’ll be significant weak links. It’s also natural. As everyone has to breathe, also every compound movement has a weakest link at some stage. It’ll be a different one for everybody. It derives from your individual body parametres. Understanding this is as key. Of course - in your „newbie“ case, I’m talking about exercises improving posture or working on another aspect of rotator cuffs. Here, there are no advanced powerlifting „scripts“. Nothing beyond what you’ve been up to untill now. According to the rule „less is more“.

    Mesocycle III: The Fibres Engagement

    Phase VII

    Duration: 3-6 weeks
    Number of training days: 4
    Type of training: ABxCDxx
    Variety of training days: 4

    Training Program A

    1 Back Squat / Ramp 3 / max break: 180 sec
    2a Front Squat / Ramp 6 / no break
    2b Back Squat / Ramp 6 / max break: 120 sec
    3a Glute Ham Raise / Ramp 10 / no break
    3b Back Squat / Ramp 10 / max break: 120 sec
    4 Back Squat /one set : 20 reps / no break

    Training Program B

    1 Chin-Up / Ramp 3 / max break: 180 sec
    2a High Pull / Ramp 6 / no break
    2b Chin-Up / Ramp 6 / max break: 120 sec
    3a Barbell row / Ramp 10 / no break
    3b Chin-Up / Ramp 10 / max break: 120 sec
    4 Chin-Up / one set : 20 reps/ no break

    Training Program C

    1 Standing Press / Ramp 3 / max break: 180 sec
    2a Dips / Ramp 6 / no break
    2b Standing Press / Ramp 6 / max break: 120 sec
    3a Bench Press / Ramp 10 / no break
    3b Standing Press / Ramp 10 /max break: 120 sec
    4 Bench Press / one set: 20 reps / no break

    Training Program D

    1 Deadlift / Ramp 3 / max break: 180 sec
    2a Narrow Incline Bench Press / Ramp 6 / no break
    2b Deadlift / Ramp 6 / max break: 120 sec
    3a Preacher Curl/ Ramp 10 / no break
    3b Deadlift / Ramp 10 / max break: 120 sec
    4 Deadlift / one set: 20 reps / no break

    A lot of new stuff, lot of new rules to acknowledge and understand. Figuring it out, step by step and proper understanding of what you have to do is the base of huge mass and strength progress in this phase.

    The first, biggest change is lack of any form of failure. There are no failures in all the training programs. We ramp everywhere and whenever we feel we’re losing the tempo - it’s time to stop. You can’t cross that line. If you do that, you’ll quickly get a lot of strength for a while, just to end up with a plateau ranging from the end of this phase to the end of the mesocyckle.
    It’s no the way you should train. Work precisely and technically. We avoid failure not to give the organims too much stimulus. The phase looks specifically, so many of you can understand it wrong. It gives you very much stimulus just from definition.

    Another major change is the new range of reps - 3. It’ll be a shock for your body but in a very positive way. Just from the mechanical point of view, the loads will be increased by 20%. Also, we’re not in the mass range anymore. It’ll also contribute significantly to increasing the loads. The third part of the riddle is that contrary to the previous phase, here you perform the first exercise on your own. Nothing will slow you down. As you see - it may turn out that you’ll be fighting with loads 30-40% bigger at the transition and there’s even no talk about an additional effort or progress. It’s still to be worked on.

    The growth is huge and inevitable but you can’t let the chaos take advantage of it. Otherwise all the work you’ve done will go to waste. You have to set the border because it describes the aim you pursue. No army, even the biggest and the most advanced will win a war unless it has its target. Without a target we’re shooting at random, killing both the enemy and our people, civilians and also the provision guys so generally...no good.

    Our border is the tempo. 3010 still stays. Don’t think you can do more. Obviously you can but it won’t do you good. We’re building basic strength and mass. We don’t want to be a powerlifter. Besides - they don’t train that way.

    If we lose the tempo - the set is over. No fear, on the first training you’ll exerience a huge strength jump. On the next one, even bigger and this is the way you’ll be progressing till the end of the phase. If you’ll wisely stick to the assumptions, you can finish the phase even in 9 weeks. No loss, just pure, monstrous gain. It’s better to increase the weight by 3/4 nine times, than by 100% three times and fall because of the lack of regeneration, right? No rocket science here.

    In the 3-rep range, other fibres than those you already know, will be in the lead. Different muscle groups will turn out to be the weak link. It’s a very important thing to understand. The same exercise don with different range of reps utilizes particular muscle fibres, as well as individual muscles and the overall muscle system differently.

    What is more, the body will do everything to disturb the movement path during exercise. Here’s the trick, here’s the mass. The key to victory is not letting that kind of situation happen. Whatever happens - you’re still performing the same exercise. Bench press will serve as an example. The more reps - the more your body will try to force you to keep the barbell higher on the chest, to widen the grip etc. Don’t allow it to do that. Do the same movement all the time, don’t trust yourself - observe and feel. You’re fighting with a primitive impulse. Mass equals fitght - it’s not just a walk in the park with your girlfriend.

    Treat the training plan of particular day as a 3-ramping exercise. Then, as 6-ramping exercise with an obstacle, then as a 10-ramping exercise with an obstacle. At the end - one set with 20 reps. The more quality. technique and tempo between 3 and 20 reps - the better. Form a neurological point of view, there is such a huge gap between 3RM and 20RM, that you can say those are different exercises! Seemingly, it’s the same squat - but everything works differently.
    Of course the „obstacles“ are also proper exercises which build you. Don’t treat them as necessary evil. The better you perform them, the bigger stimulus you’ll get.

    Remember - there are no failures. Thus, choose the loads wisely in the superset ramps. Always ramp from zero (from the exercise 2a to 4). The reason is simple - every new ramp, will be little bit weaker than it would’ve been if you’d performed it at the beginning of the workout. The lose of the tempo will appear sooner than you think.

    There will be a huge progress in the exercise that moves the body in space. Everyone of you (no matter how much he weighs) will get rid of exercise straps he had to use during chin-ups. You’ll be very strong here. Add the weight courageously and you’ll need no assistance after that phase at all. Chin-Ups won’t be a nightmare anymore.

    You’ll get some useful knowledge in this phase. You’ll learn the real, full picture of comound movements and your body behaviour during the rep-range change. This knowledge is priceless because it’ll show you how to design your workouts in the future, when you’ll already know how your body reacts to a particular position. Take notes - it will benefit in the future.

    Phase VIII

    Duration: 3-6 weeks
    Number of training days: 4
    Type of training: ABxCDxx
    Number of training days: 4

    Training Program A
    1 Front Squat / Ramp 3 /max break - 180 sec
    2 Glute Ham Raise / Ramp 6 / max break - 120 sec
    3 Back Squat / Ramp 10/ additional -5% / additional – 5% / additional -5% / max break - 120 sec

    Training Program B
    1 Dips / Ramp 3 / max break - 180 sec
    2 Bench Press / Ramp 6 / max break - 120 sec
    3 Standing Press / Ramp 10/ additional -5% / additional – 5% / additional -5% / max break - 120 sec

    Training Program C
    1 Barbell Row / Ramp 3 / max break - 180 sec
    2 High Pull / Ramp 6 / max break - 120 sec
    3 Chin-Up / Ramp 10/ additional -5% / additional – 5% / additional -5% /max break - 120 sec

    Training Program D
    1 Deadlift / Ramp 6 / max break - 120 sec
    2a Preacher Curl/ Ramp 8/ additional -5% / additional – 5% / additional -5% / additional -5%/ no break
    2b Narrow Incline Bench Press / Ramp 8/ additional -5% / additional – 5% / additional -5% / additional -5%/ max break - 90 sec

    A very nice change and complete reverse of the situation. The previous phase was a move forward in terms of strength in the main exercises, the current one will do exactly the same with the remaining ones. You can expect exactly the same effect.

    Pay special attention to the tempo, since it decides how many 3-rep sets we’ll be able to perform.

    The previous phase was also when you made your chin-up quite a strong lift which (who knows) may become your leading lift in the nearest future. Now, you’ll do exactly the same thing with dips. No need to use exercise straps. 3 rep range will give you a tremendous boost - the unpleasant limit of muscle endurance will vanish.
    The strength progress will be even easier than in the case of main lifts in the previous phase. Firstly - you’ve never worked so hard in front squat and barbell row. Secondly - your body is now used to lifting big weights, so there will be neither fear nor psychological and neurological shock. There’ll be no sensation in joints and tendons, since they’ve already been prepared. Watch out for the tempo - it’s your fast train to progress. You get on it and before you even know it, you’re at the „Mass and Strength“ station.

    Again, don’t let yourself be deluded - there are no muscle failures.

    The third group of exercise will have 6 rep range. They’ll be very nice to perform, as there are no supersets anymore. You’ll feel the stimulus to fight with the load. The same thing as with the 3 rep range. If the tempo is right - go for it.

    A big surprise and the key of the program lies in basic exercises. The previous created a strength monsters out of them. Big loads, big fight, big strength. Remember - while building basic mass and strength you care about harmony. Sticking to the rule of balance, the criteria are simple and obvious. What is your strong side doesn’t give you progress, what is your weak side...yes - it does give progress. Plain and logical. That’s exactly what we’re going to do now. We’ll put the „monster“ to the mass fight. Not as the first but as the last exercise. Not in the 3 rep range (it’s very strong there) but in 10 rep range. Not on a single ramp, but with 3 „close-to-failure“ sets in the same zone. There’ll be moaning and groaning typical when you attack the weak side, however it’ll give you great progress.

    A careful observer will surely discover the mechanism we’ve been sticking to. In the VII phase we worked on strength in some of the exercises, in phase VIII we work on strength in those exercises in which we’ve been developing mass and the other way round. Simple. Brutal. Highly effective.

    Training day D breaks the schema deliberately. Arms need supersets at this stage and they will benefit from them. One -5% than in the case of other exercises.

    Phase IX

    Duration: 3-6 weeks
    Numbe of training days: 3
    Type of training: AxBxCxx
    Variety of training days: 3

    Training Program A

    1 Back Squat / Ramp 8 / -5% / -5% / 120 sec break
    2 Deadlift / Ramp 8 / -5% / -5% / 120 sec break
    3 Front Squat / Ramp 8 / -5% / -5% / Top Max / 120 sec break
    4 Glute Ham Raise / Ramp 8 / -5% / -5% / 30 sec down / 120 sec break

    Training Program B

    1 Standing Press / Ramp 8 / -5% / -5% / 120 sec break
    2 Bench Press / Ramp 8 / -5% / -5% / 120 sec break
    3 Dips / Ramp 8 / -5% / -5% / 120 sec break
    4 Glute Ham Raise / Ramp 8 / -5% / -5% / 30 sec down / 120 sec break

    Training Program C
    1 Chin Up / Ramp 8 / -5% / -5% / 120 sec break
    2 High Pull / Ramp 8 / -5% / -5% / 120 sec break
    3 Barbell Row / Ramp 8 / -5% / -5% / 120 sec break
    4 Preacher Curl / Ramp 8 / -5% / -5% / 30 sec down /120 sec break
    The final phase of the mesocycle brings normalization. There’s nothing ordinary in this. Introducing a standard makes everything go higher, not average. It means that those lifts which lack after strength attacks, will undergo an improving correction.
    It has a logical justification and is essential. The previous phases were non-stop changing. Mass/Strength/Strength/Mass. Now you have to combine, cement it and build progress. It only looks easy. In the reality you won’t be bored, I assure you.

    The processs is very demanding, so not to waste regeneration, we train only 3 times a week. Thanks to the supercompensation, you’ll still benefit from the two previous phases.

    There are no limits in ramps Gdy coś wyrównujemy paramterami, może się okazać ze niektóre lifty spełnią wymaganie już po 5 seriach, a inne będą potrzebowały tych serii 12.

    All obstacles, meaning supersets, also dissappear. Just pure basics. Every exercise is performed in the right order. Nothing will collide or clip our wings.
    Apart from the process of summing up the gains and improving the lacks, we’ve got a new very important element. Seemingly a detail but as we all know - devil is in the details. A proper implementation of that detail can give a very strong progress both in terms of mass and strength.

    In the A training day, having finished the basic ramp and two extensions, we perform an additional set. We decrease it by 5%. The trick is that we perform only 1/4 of the movement. A very short one. The peak of contraction. We’re not in the zone anymore. You’ll be probably able to do 3-6 times more reps than with a full ROM. Here, we don’t stick to the tempo rule.

    We stick to the muscle failure. We stop 1-2 reps from achieving it.

    Expect a real burning. Your body is used to work in an unlimited range. You alwas did exercises with a full ROM. Now you’re doing the easiest part. The body will try to treat it as a fill movement - because of the fact of being used to it. Effectiveness will be very high. Expect a serious burning in glutes, quads and hamstrings. The techique is an essential factor - you stop the set when you’re not able to keep the proper position.

    On the same day, you’re supposed to do glute ham raise with additional sets. In the last set you cut the load by 5% again. You can perform 1 to 8 reps - as much as you manage to. The condition is fair work. Your fair work - not your neighbour. It may turn out you’ll be able to perform only one rep, as well as it may turn out you’ll do 8. It all depends on your bones, fibres and proportion parametres. If you do this scrupulously and achieve failure - it doesn’t matter how many reps you’ve done. Remember - you fight with your body, not with the magic number.

    The exercise is based on a rapid concentric phase (in this case it means lifting up) and a controlled lowering which has to last 30 seconds! It cannot be chaotic movement where erectors work and wave. Here you work with the whole group of knee flexors.

    Beginning the negative phase, you contract hamstrings (you may not feel the remaining muscles because of your short experience) and you have to keep them that way the whole 30 seconds. You go all the way down. Of course, the last 1/5 ROM is done with the hands assistance.

    It may happen that you won’t be able to do those 30 secs for the first time. Don’t start another rep then. Leave it. The body has already got its stimulus. Improve your results in a week. Having completed 30 sec - add another rep.

    It’s worth fighting for. You’ll enormously strengthen the group of hamstrings, erectors, glutes and calves. A very stron mass and strength stimulus at one time - strength lies in negatives.
    In the B training day you perform TOP MAX meaning the last 1/4 of the movement in narrow incline bench press. You’ll feel burning in your triceps which is a good sign.
    In the C training day you get additional 30 sec in preacher curl eccentric phase. The most important thing is to squeeze bicepses during those 30 sec. Don’t let other muscle take controll. All the 30 sec. It will drag on and on. My advice - have a huge stoper in fron of you or a buddy who counts seconds. It gives motivation, you won’t surrender knowing there are 5 sec left. Performin it without measuring doesn’t really give motivation since it feels quite long.

    The important thing to remember - breath. Breathe - otherwise you’ll be puffing like a locomotive going upwards.

    In the TOP MAX, breathing is done the classical way - pressing is breathe out, lowering is breathe in. Since the ROM is short, don’t act like a sprinter cause you will puff and cause hyperventilation and that might result in fainting. We don’t need that, right? If the tempo is too rapid - do a pause at the peak of the movement. Squeeze quads in squat or tricepses in press.

    In „30 sec down“ we breathe steadily and slowly. Under no circumstances should you block the air inside you for 30 sec. Firstly, it’s very, very unhealthy, secondly, we cut off circulation which only makes things difficult. Steady breaths in and out.

    After applying those special methods, you’ll feel a real, very strong muscle pump for the first time in the annual mesocycle. A nice feeling. Even more nice taking into consideration you’ve achieved it as a result of decent training - not by accident.


    The mesocycle is based on strength. It’s bound together with it. It uses its aspect maximally for the needs of young, beginning body. The effects are quick and visible. Of course everything depends on out proportions, weight and general body frame. Whether it will be 25-40kg gain in bench press or 40-70kg in deadlift, or 50-100 in squat - everything is up to you. Remember, sometimes to achieve and keep 100kg progress in squat you have to pursue it first. There’s no use in winning the lottery in 3 weeks at the expense of technique and tempo, only to not be able to even get close to that result for the nearest 6 months. It’s better to listen to your body, do as much as it allows you to. Only then, the machinery works effectively and efficiently.

    Remember to keep calibrating the diet. It guarantees that the new stimulus (strength) will quickly transfer to mass.

    I think you see and feel more clearly why it’s worth to work on the technique and posture imbalances elimination. Healthy and strong body is able to generate very much effortlessly. Ill body works like a bundle of nerves - with unhealthy jumps which don’t bring effects. The loads get bigger, muscles decrease their size and you just deepen the imbalances. Instead of a Hercules, we’ve got Quasimodo.

    That’s why I remind you - still work hard on improving your posture.

    We’ve got only one part of the riddle left - the last mesocycle!

    Small weights, bad diet, poor technique have turned many fatties into even bigger fatties.

    Image: Idea go / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

    Image: Suat Eman / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

    Image: AKARAKINGDOMS / FreeDigitalPhotos.net