T Nation

20 Rep Squat Program Advice

Ok, so I have come to a point where I think it would be beneficial for me to start considering something different than my current 5’s based LP. I just reset my squat about a month ago (@270) and am at a point now where I am sitting at 285 (Wednesday session went 5,5,4 and Friday repeated weight I missed a rep on set 1). This typically indicates a time for a backoff period but I think some technique issues are present as well. Right not I am pondering two or three things:

Drop from Squatting 3 times a week to a Squat-Front Squat-Squat week- Have done this once before and had a fair amount of success.

Drop the weight way back and try a 20 rep squat program (The volume practice really wouldn’t hurt and who doesn’t like a little extra hypertrophy for the summer)

Stats: 5’11" 205 lbs

Recent Maxes Squat-335 Bench-275 Dead-405

For the 20 rep Squats I was thinking:

Squat-1x20
Pullover-1x20

Alternate A and B in ABA BAB format:

A)Bench- 3x10
BB Row- 3x10
Press- 3x12 (haven’t decided it Smith, DB, or BB; Front or BTN)
Chinup-3xfailure
Rom Dead- 1x15

B)Inc Bench-3x10
Lat Pulldown-3x10
Dips- 3x12
DB Row-3x12
Leg Curls- 3x15

Maybe throw in some curls if I feel like it on Friday but nothing strenuous.
I would run that for 9 weeks (give or take) to try to 20 rep 285 before either going back to the LP or moving into the TM

Link to my log if that helps.

I’d move on from full body to something like ws4sb /3 way split etc

[quote]RampantBadger wrote:
I’d move on from full body to something like ws4sb /3 way split etc[/quote]

So something more along the line of an upper/lower split type thing. I looked at WS4SB but thought it wasn’t ideal for me since most of my goals are more strength (with a secondary goal in muscle mass) centered. Will have to give WS4SB a second look though

Your goal and the program in your OP are contradictory. I would have recommended the same as bagder…

If strength is your goal, move to madcow or texas method. Or one of the multitude 5/3/1 that would meet your goal. you have a very good base, time to step it up and challenge yourself with a smart program.

cheers and have fun.

[quote]JFG wrote:
Your goal and the program in your OP are contradictory. I would have recommended the same as bagder…

If strength is your goal, move to madcow or texas method. Or one of the multitude 5/3/1 that would meet your goal. you have a very good base, time to step it up and challenge yourself with a smart program.

cheers and have fun.[/quote]

Yeah, I have always kind of planned to run the TM when my LP ran out but recently I started to think that maybe I should scale the weight way back and work on technique for a short cycle to try and boost my squat because I thought my squat numbers seem to be lagging compared to my other lifts. Plus, I am getting way to much lower back involvement in my squat which I think is hurting my performance.

I am almost loading up at the bottom and using my lower back to pop the weight up out of the hole to give my legs an easier time getting started. Thought this may be a hamstring issue which could use some individual attention.

I have a bad habit of getting in my own head sometimes though and really needed some direction to try and wrangle my thoughts. Thanks by the way.

No worries.

I did something similar a few years back. I reworked my squat (wider stance). I did SL 5x5 and started with the bar. I mean, I just dropped everything. Worked on form only. Did two 10 weeks cycles and moved to 5/3/1. Within a year, I was back to “normal” with better form.

Best thing I ever did.

Cheers

[quote]jbpick86 wrote:

[quote]RampantBadger wrote:
I’d move on from full body to something like ws4sb /3 way split etc[/quote]

So something more along the line of an upper/lower split type thing. I looked at WS4SB but thought it wasn’t ideal for me since most of my goals are more strength (with a secondary goal in muscle mass) centered. Will have to give WS4SB a second look though[/quote]

yes upper/lower is fine and your lower back will feel much better. ws4sb is pretty much exactly strength/athletic performance with a secondary goal of muscle mass

I have to agree with everything expressed so far. 20 rep squats is an awesome program, and I think everyone, regardless of goals, should run it for 6 weeks at least once in their lives, but it is not a good choice for getting physically stronger. You will develop some great mental fortitude while running it, which can be a huge asset later in training, but my squat max barely moved while I ran it.

I think for your current goals, 5/3/1 or WS4SB would be great choices. Good chance to build strength, size, and bring up weak points.

Any preference on which version I, II, or III of WS4SB?

[quote]jbpick86 wrote:
Any preference on which version I, II, or III of WS4SB?[/quote]

Doesnt matter too much just read all 3 articles and see which variation resonates /is most practical for you. I would also check out ‘Built like a badass’ which is basically version 4 and a hybrid of 5/3/1

The main thing is that on the ME day you go heavy and really push it on the main lift and RE day you do plenty of high rep work and volume.

20 rep breathing squats are an awesome gut check, but I had to stop doing them as I am much more prone to injuring my back when doing them instead of “normal” sets. For me the costs exceeded the benefits, and I would not reccomend them except for an occasional challenge.