T Nation

Exploding Squats

About a month and a half ago, two of us decided that we were going to reach 405x20 for back squat. We took different approaches to reach this. My goal was to do crazy volume initially, like 5x20 at 225 for a week, then 275 for a week, and then i progressed to around 3x20 at 315 for about a week. After that hell, i began to start moving up. I was squatting 3 times weekly, and deadlifting occasionally. I easily hit 335x20, then i hit 365x20.

A couple weeks ago, i made my first crack at it. I hit 405x13, which was disappointing, but im not going to give up on the goal, and in my most recent workout i hit 15 reps. I was advised to also do some 5 rep maxes after, at maybe 455 after. Up until that point, i had never even hit 455x5, so i hit it for a grindy set and was happy. Last monday, i proceeded to hit 465x5, wednesday 475x5, friday 485x5, and today i hit 495x6! 40 lbs on my 5 rep max in over a week! and not only that, but all of these sets were performed after doing 405x15 reps.

Although i still haven’t hit my goal of 20 reps, everything else is having great carryover and training is going better than ever. Coming to the realization, that for me at least, the reps/practice are everything. I’m hoping to hit over 610 within the year at 181. Also, have added about 3 inches to the thigh measurement in the past month with this extra volume. Started benching again, went from 185x10 to 275x10 paused. Sorry for the excessive use of “I” in my post!

Holy shit man that’s some crazy crazy stuff. Goes to show what some hard work and serious determination can do. Keep at it buddy

Chad Waterbury I think is always talking about how huge reps are the best things for your legs. Nice progress.

I like his stuff, it’s good. and thank you

Inspiring.

[quote]csulli wrote:
Chad Waterbury I think is always talking about how huge reps are the best things for your legs. Nice progress.[/quote]
I think I agree with him on that. When I was at my strongest I did crazy high reps all the time… I am working on building my capacity back but I am very out of shape…

Man that is so crazy man seem that your doing something kind of similar to Smolov, just a ton of volume. Can wait to see you hit 405 for 20 man!!

Hmmmm intriguing. That is some serious progress.

yeah, i have run smolov a couple times in the past calendar year. I feel like i get better results when i go in and just lift though, i dont feel as trapped by a program. The percents and sets just build on me mentally

Wasn’t this a Dan John article?

That is really great progress! What were your squat numbers like beforehand?

well just before i started this, i would say i could hit around 455 for a couple ugly ones. But that was not my lifetime pr or anything. I was not in great “shape” before this little training block

[quote]joebrandenburg wrote:
well just before i started this, i would say i could hit around 455 for a couple ugly ones. But that was not my lifetime pr or anything. I was not in great “shape” before this little training block[/quote]
From 455x2 to 495x6 in 2 months? Yikes. That’s awesome man, nice work.

That reminds me of a workout I did in high school. We called it “aerobic squats” not sure why but that is what coach called it. Basically it was 20 sets of 10 in 20 min with about 135 pounds. You start a set at the beginning of each min and after you squat you rest for the rest of the min. That was our “change of pace” workout we did about once a month…

Just got done with my workout, but no vids unfortunately. I hit 545x1, and 505x4, nearly hit the fifth one. Time for a light week though. Felt flat as hell in my workout.

So more or less 80ish pounds on your squat max in 2 months? Holy shit.

[quote]joebrandenburg wrote:
Just got done with my workout, but no vids unfortunately. I hit 545x1, and 505x4, nearly hit the fifth one. Time for a light week though. Felt flat as hell in my workout.[/quote]
I am thinking about upping my reps on the squat after reading this post. Maybe try a 5 X 20 or something like that!! But with MUCH less than the insane weights your doing it with LOL

yeah start with less than you think you’re capable of for sure, its always good to start low and build up. Those lower weight sets will pay off even if they aren’t truly max effort. Think of it as building a pyramid, and this is the first course. You want it very wide and solid, so as to ensure that you wont crumble later on!

[quote]krummdiddy wrote:
That reminds me of a workout I did in high school. We called it “aerobic squats” not sure why but that is what coach called it. Basically it was 20 sets of 10 in 20 min with about 135 pounds. You start a set at the beginning of each min and after you squat you rest for the rest of the min. That was our “change of pace” workout we did about once a month…[/quote]

I wanna ralph just thinking of trying that.