Best/Worst Training Regimens

We know what the best and worst supplements are. What do you guys think are the best and worst training routines? (i.e. German Volume, 5x5, etc.)

Best routines: pretty much anything poliquin has made (except maybe the one-day arm cure…got a little boring/tiring) i’m using a shoulder and trap routine by King and they are both working well…

Worst routines: Any routine from FLEX, HIT, and my old hockey coach’s routine which didn’t include any leg work because he believed it would screw up my stride…dumbass

I believe the best training regimen is whatever helps you reach your goals. The body of a weight training individual is constantly subjected to variables and is, therefore, constantly changing. A good regimen is one that takes these changes into consideration. For example, the body can’t do high intensity EVERY workout. It isn’t made for it. So a training regimen that calls for high intensity workouts all the time is what I would call bad. In fact, it would be the worst.
Each individual should make use of every training regimen available and cycle them as he/she sees fit in order to achieve his/her goals. Having said that, I tend to stick with a Weider Principle (remember those?) called “instinctive training”. Of course ol’ Joe didn’t really create this idea but I’m sure he likes to think so. I’ll go from a GVT type workout to a powerlifting triples type depending on how my body feels. It works for me and I’m sure it would work well for anyone else.

I’ve found HIT training to be most effective. Using slower tempos as well. The problem is, once HIT trainers plateau, most of them freak out about reducing volume which should be done to a degree, but nutrition is so important so that continued progress can be made. I’ve read that Don Lemmon is going to do a project with Ironman to show the effectiveness of his nutrition(food separation) and training(HIT) strategies.

I tried both the GVT program and a program Pavel recommends. It’s similar to GVT in that you have to do alot of sets, but it seemed to work better for me. Basically →

  1. you do a 90% 1RM set, 5 reps. Wait 60 seconds.
  2. you do a 85% 1RM set, 5 reps. Wait another 60 seconds.
  3. you do a 80% 1RM set, 5 reps. Wait another 60 seconds.
  4. do 3) until you can’t do 5 reps anymore.

    For me, that usually ends up being 6-8 sets. But, I guess if I didn’t want to do 5 full reps, it works better.

    I think both GVT and Pavel’s routine are really, really dependent on your food intake. I have the Lemmon program and tried it out with both GVT and Pavel. You last longer and recover alot faster. It’s great.

Hey dudes, I know this isn’t exactly the answer to the proposed question, but I’d like to share what’s made the biggest difference in my progress.
Number 1: counting calories… you learn incredibly fast exactly how your body responds to certain diets, ratios, calorie amounts, etc… I know exactly my maintenance level, how many I need to eat to put on a pound a week, how little to take off a pound a week, etc…
Number 2: creativity in training. I know everybody’s all hyped about Ian’s 12 week program or mentzer’s retarded HIT system or whatever else, but you’ll learn a lot faster if you make your own programs. Don’t get me wrong though, Ian and Poliquin are both great. I’ve learned a lot from them, and I can see that Batchledor is gonna be pretty cool too. Take their styles, learn from them, then figure out what works best for you.

One of the best programs I have used would have to be GVT. Other good ones are the “Five Percent Solution” and WSB style training. The worst? HIT, that Bulgarian crap and anything in FLEX.

Hey Drew,
Do you do just one excercise per bodypart with the volume/drop set system? also, did it work for squats (or did the stabilizer muscles give out first). I know Lee Labrada swore by a simular system, but he only used 2 drops and more exercises.

Matt: Yeah; I just stuck with one exercise/bodypart. Pavel’s not big on “shaping” exercises, and when I try a new protocol out, I like to keep it simple.

I don’t know anything about Labrada’s system, so I’ll give you my general thoughts on it. It’s similar to drop sets, except that you try to bang out as many as sets as possible. Thus, you don’t try to go to failure (limiting yourself to only 5 reps/set) during your first 3 sets, and you wait about a minute between.

I notice on GVT, that it’s usually my stabilizer muscles that give on a set. But, on the Pavel program, because your sets are only 30 seconds, the lactic acid never gets too intense. Yet, because you’re using much heavier weight than GVT, you immediately hit the TypeIIa/TypeIIB fibers and overall for a much longer period than on GVT.

He doesn’t give alot of specifics about changing weights, so I usually increase weight when I can do at least 8 total sets for an exercise at 4-6 reps.

Drew - I think you mean 5 reps at 90% of 5RM - not 90% of 1RM. Most people can only get 3 reps at the intensity level you mentioned.

Baf: The book really does say 90% 1RM. But, you may be right. I basically use a weight that I can barely do 5 reps with. Also, there are some neuromuscular tips in there to wring out more reps. I don’t have the book with me, though so the other percentages may be wrong, but I’m fairly sure he meant 90% 1RM. If I’m wrong, I’ll let you know.

HIT, as professed by my colleagues and I, is the only training protocol scientifically proven to work! Let me prove it to you. Ayn Rand once wrote “you wouldn’t employ a plumber whose only claim to professionalism was asserting plumbing didn’t exist.” See, now you get what I’m talking about! One day all the intellectual barnicles of the bodybuilding community will grasp the true phillosophical foundations of my theory if they can ever master the tools of thought.

Man, I have sure tried a lot of programs out there! Unlike a lot of other Testosterone readers, I had great results on the Bulgarian programs as designed by Leo Costa. I used it on and off for about three years and took my bench press from 240 in bad form to 365 in great form(no bouncing, arching etc) and got my weighted dips up to 165 for a set of five. I would have to say that the “Heavy Duty” program was the worst one. Getting stronger and bigger on machines is just not going to happen. Plus, this one set to failure deal just did not work out for me. I am currently using Pavel Tsatsouline’s “Russian Bear Regimen” and Matt Furey’s combat conditioing exercises and this is a great combination. Matt’s Handstand Pushups are great for blasting your shoulders and the one arm pushups are great for the chest. Pavel’s regimen is simple and to the point and is working very well for me. Good luck everyone.

The best program I ever did was Ian’s limping program.

I don’t know if there is any “best” program. I think most any program has a place. I used HIT/SS for almost 10 years with little in the way of muscle size increase. I did get stronger, but that wasn’t my only goal. I don’t use HIT exclusively anymore. I barely use it at all. IMO, change is very necessary for getting continuous results. The human body is an adapting organism, and will adapt to stimulus in different ways. I’ll tell people: "If you doing something and it’s working for you (getting the goals you want), DON’T change it. If it’s not working for you, change it to something else. Experiment. Try different things.

What is that Bulgarian program by Costa? Where can I get it?

I am 31, 6’5", and weigh 245 lbs. I was 230 lbs back in January with lots of bodyfat. I started following the 2001 size Odyssey program in FLEX. I also started eating right (protein in adaquate amounts for my size). I started taking creatine and glutamine a month or so later. Following the program in FLEX has made me a LOT stronger and bigger. I get comments all the time now and girls are wanting to introduce me to their friends a lot. I even had a buddy that I used to look up to ask me to give him my program because he wanted to follow it. The 2001 size Odyssey program is the only one I have ever followed, but I believe in it completely because of my results. It looks like I’ve only gained 15 lbs, but actually the difference is greater because I lost lots of fat at the same time.

I was under the impression that mike mentzer was dead. I guess not huh?

The routineI had the most success with is Ian King’s “Limping” program. Great gains in strength and hypertrophy.

The best ever was my special Bill Starr meets Arnie at Vince Gironda’s place workout.

Push/Pull/Legs. Repeat. Take Sunday off. 4 exercises a day. One with a 5 set pyramid followed by a backoff (5+1), one at 4+1, and 2 at 3+1.

But the secret’s in the eating.