T Nation

Bulgarian Secrets

Hey everyone has anyone read the book Serious growth 3,by Leo Costa .If anyone has tried its training regimen i would greatly appreciate their comments.Thanks!

I tried the original Serious Growth program and I gained a tremendous amount of strength during the first 6 weeks. I was skeptical that lifting 6 days a week, each muscle group 3 times a week would work, but it worked well. My joints had trouble handling the later phases as you are doing each muscle group up to 5 times a week. I definitely recommend it to get yourself out of a rut.

Just remember, the “Bulgarians” were using a shitload of steroids.

Dave, I doubt they were using anymore than the US.

Ive been working side by side with a bulgarian coach for the last 4 years,and holy shit did they really juice it!!!

Uh, the bulgarians in question were state sponsered olympic lifters with all of the amenities. How can that trasfer to people with regular jobs and no steroids and regular genetics?

In the mid 90’s my work situation was flexible enough to allow me to use the 6-day-a-week, twice-a-day routine in Serious Growth 3,and I truly achieved the best gains size gains ever. As far as the inference that you will need a ‘shitload of steroids’ to succeed with such a routine, I was taking nothing stronger than antioxidants,BCAA’s and caffeine…Give it a shot,just be sure to eat and sleep well on this routine.

I used Big Beyond Belief in the mid 90’s, the once a day, 6 day a week routine. I gained an ungodly amount of mass and strength. I’ve still got stretch marks from it. I went from, no joke, 165 to about 240 in a little over a year. Bench went from oh, 295 I think, to 465.Squat went to 605 off the top of my head. All of this was natural, I was 20 years old at the time, and had no means or desire to use drugs, and still don’t. This program did work, BIG TIME. I have always wondereed if anyone else had results on it, or if I was just a rare case! I would really enjoy hearing from anyone else who has been on it! IT was very systemically taxing though; you have to make sure and eat over maintainence to be sure and rest PLENTY. You’ll need it!

I bought that book(Big Beyond Belief),only I thought it was about making your unit larger.Not a friggin’ inch,what a rip.I followed the program to the letter,18 weeks.Never missed a workout.I also had a very physically demanding job at the time and I think that resulted in my modest gains.

Maybe it was because of the Bowflex! HA HA HA HA HA !!!

Maybe there was something to the Bulgarians’ training & it wasn’t just ‘buckets’ of drugs. (sarcasm if it’s not real obvious)

I bought the big beyond belief book and lost it in a college move. I never looked into buying it again because my college football coach demanded (justifyably so)we follow the team program. Now that I am out of school I would love to see some of the workouts again. If anyone is willing to share any of these books, please let me know. Thanks!

Boman, did you gain much body fat on this program and have you since tried it if you were so successful on it?

When I finished the program, my bodyfat was 15%; I starteed the program at about 12.5%. I have been wanting to get back on the program for some time, but I suffered a pretty bad shoulder dislocation in june of 2000, had to have it repaired, and only in the last 6 months have i been able to start lifting semi-heavy again. I hope I’ll be able to get back to the kind of weights that will let me use this program again…

Serious Growth 3 is a well-written book. I tried the program with success.

Would any of you care to post an example of what this workout looks like? I ran a search for “Leo Costa” and found his home page, OTS. Is the new OTS program that he is pushing (complete with training manual and video) comparable to the aforementioned Serious Growth 3? Has anyone tried the new version?

The workout is divided into phases. At the beginning, you are looking at Mon, Wed, Fri 5 sets of back, chest, bicep, calf doing reps of 13-15, 10-12, 8-10 respectively with 90 seconds between each set. On Tue, Thur, Sat it’s delts, tris, thighs, and abs for the same number of sets and same time between each set. This phase lasts for 3 weeks. The next 3 weeks you drop the sets to 4, rep ranges by around 3 reps each day and add 30 seconds to rest period. After that, it’s more complex doing each bodypart up to 5 times per week, and varying rep ranges/rest time each day.

Sounds interesting. I’ve been thinking(can you feel the heat?) most periodized full body plans have you working out each muscle 3 times a week or more. Then I can’t see why this wouldn’t work. Plus you get that many more postworkout feedings. Never close your mind. :slight_smile:

Thanks for the input!