T Nation

GVT Plan Critique


#1

I'm coming off of a pretty successful V-Diet (end of 4 week period, 2 weeks of transition left) and thought it'd be a good time to plan my next workout program. My training history has mostly been following total body routines or at least upper lower split types of programs (I've largely been training for performance rather than pure strength or size).

For growth I believe I respond best to high volume which is why a GVT type of plan caught my eye. Since most of my training has been about just moving the weight rather than 'feeling' it I think the high volume starting with a fairly reduced weight (I'm thinking I'll start at ~50% of 1RM) will be a good way to re-establish mind muscle connections. I think I'm largely set with this kind of plan but if anyone has strong reason to do another kind of split feel free to drop some knowledge :). As far as critique for the program itself I'm most interested in improvements to exercise selection.

Sunday -- Quads
Split Squat 10x10
Leg extension 4x12
Standing Calf 5x5
Med ball crunch 2 x 20

Monday -- Chest
Bench 10x10
DB incline 3x8
Pec deck 2x12
explosive push-up circuit (depth drop rebound type stuff, about 3/4 stations) x 2 circuits

Tuesday -- Ham
Deadlift 10x10
Ham Curls 4x12
Seated calf 4x12

Wednesday -- Shoulders
DB shoulder press 5x10
1 arm shoulder press 5x10
DB lateral raise 3x8
Post delt fly 2x12

Thursday -- Back
Cable Rows 10x10
Wide grip pull-up 3x8
DB shrugs (3 step drop sets) x 2
Inverted Rows 2 x max

Friday -- Bi/tri
a1 ez bar curls 5x10
a2 db alt curls 5x10
b1 decline narrow grip bench 5x10
b2 db kickback 5x10
c1 spider curls 3x12
c2 rope press down 3x12

As far as diet goes I was thinking about starting at 2880 kcal and aiming for ~280 grams of protein a day. I'm currently 6 feet tall and 184 lbs (fairly lean since but no idea of actual BF%). Anyway, hook me up with some suggestions as needed. Thanks!


#2

I cant speak to the plan as I've never done GVT myself, but how do your carbs look along with that diet? That much volume in a workout is gonna hit your glycogen stores, and you're gonna need the carbs to progress from week to week would be my guess. Also, I'm about the same size and 2880 is my maintenance level. If you wanna gain, add calories on lifting days at the very minimum.


#3

I hadn't decided on a breakdown for the rest of the calories but I was thinking of keeping the protein constant throughout and fluctuating fat and carbohydrate levels throughout the week. At that level of calories my protein intake is about 40% of my total caloric intake so on the biggest days (quad ham) I'd go with the highest carb:fat ratio maybe as high as 50% intake from carbohydrates (probably centered +/- 3 hours of lifting. Then on the medium muscle groups (chest back and maybe shoulders) something like 30% intake from carbs. On the bi/tri and off day I'd go with an even lower ratio, maybe 15% from carbs.

I know the total calories are fairly low but I think, at least to start, despite the high volume the intensity will be lower because of the low %RM I'm starting with. As I progress in weight (I'm hoping for at least a 2.5% increase % of 1rm used per week) I'll need to increase the calories. Of additional concern, I intend to add 2 hill sprint or car push sessions per week. This will require an increase in total intake as well... Maybe 3k kcals would be a better starting point?


#4

10x10 with split squats= 20 sets of squats when you are all done, have you ever tried split squats for near that much volume? I've done lots of split squats (bulgarian splits, back foot elavaed) and would never be able to 10x10 with them, the idea seems insane to me


#5

Hrm, you may be right. I was concerned about this as well. I was hoping that with the reduced weight it wouldn't be too terrible (I was thinking my starting weight would be ~110 lbs). I chose them because other than the reverse lunges of the V-diet program it has been a long time since I've done any unilateral leg work. Would it be more sensible to start with a 5x10 on a bilateral movement (either back squat or front squat) and follow with the splits at 5x10?


#6

your going to be very sore after squat day :slight_smile:


#7

Honestly im no authority on GVT, or any kind of training for that matter, you gotta get in the gym and experiment. The suggestion of 5x10 bileteral followed by 5x10 unilateral makes more sense to me, but like i said...you gotta experiment!


#8

I'm gonna give the split squats a shot for the first workout and see if that is too devastating. I organized my workout so I'd have a training partner on the most difficult days so I get called a girl if I don't finish the workout :slightly_smiling: (conversely I design absolutely brutal workouts when I have him so I get to call him a girl)


#9

I'd recommend a bigger compound movement for quads. Front or back squats will hit your quads harder than a split form (you'll have sore glutes believe me). Even leg press would be better for your quads. You gotta move a lot of weight combined with volume with GVT to get total work higher.

Also, you're jumping right into a 6 day/week workout schedule after the V-diet which is 3X's per week. You're going to be absolutely trashed if you aren't eating above maintenance and getting a pretty good dose of carbohydrates peri-WO. I hope you're not afraid of calories after the V, especially if you're adding in additional energy systems work.


#10

I'm not really worried about calories or anything like that, I just thought I'd start easy and work up. I used a formula I got from a Lyle Mcdonald article that put the low end of calories for growth at 16 * BW. I figured that'd be a fairly low-ball estimate for growth and is probably much more like my maint level. I'm not too worried about the workout frequency thrashing me despite jumping from 3 to 6 times a week, it should be easier than the strech of stripped down hypertropy I did (that program is a killer). But I appreciate input, what would be a better starting point for my calories? No point in murdering my muscles if I don't fuel their growth properly.

Points taken about the need for a bigger exercise. I'll do unilateral work in another program and hit front squats in this one.

How is the total volume per group as listed? I tried to follow the general idea of 10x10 on a primary followed by a couple of assistance exercises in the 8-12ish range. I'm a little worried about my shoulders (I've been having shoulder issues for a year) so I didn't use a straight bar overhead movement (normally I'd do seated or standing military)


#11

why 10x10 with bench?

flat bench is a mediocre chest builder unless you've been lifting for less than a year.

better off with incline press db or bb. given the volume id go (actually i plan to go) incline db or incline smith press.

split squats sound like a bad idea. if youre really looking to hammer your quads do narrow stance squat or sissys.

personally id go with incline curl rather than alternating curls. alternating anything on GVT takes forever.

overhead tricep press rather than kickbacks. cmon kickbacks really?

remember you're coming out of a diet, with low volume, i have a feeling explosive push ups arent gonna fly after a 10x10 chest day. maybe try walk ups or dips until you get some work capacity back.

other than that make sure youre getting plenty of mono and poly unsaturated fats, if youre lean and tight that much volume can really bring out the stretch marks, plus theyre really good for you anways.

have fun with your carbs, have fun growing. good luck.


#12

PB, Thanks for the notes, I agree with a lot of your points. Updated program:

Sunday -- Quads
Front Squat 10x10
Leg extension 4x12
Standing Calf 5x5
Med ball crunch 2 x 20

Monday -- Chest
Bench 10x10
DB incline 3x8
Dips 2x12 until I feel capable of doing push-up circuits
Pec deck 2x12

Tuesday -- Ham
Deadlift 10x10
Ham Curls 4x12
Seated calf 4x12

Wednesday -- Shoulders
DB shoulder press 10x10
DB lateral raise 3x8
Post delt fly 2x12

Thursday -- Back
Cable Rows 10x10
Wide grip pull-up 3x8
DB shrugs (3 step drop sets) x 2
Inverted Rows 2 x max (wait 2 or so weeks to add these in)

Friday -- Bi/tri
a1 ez bar curls 5x10
a2 Spider curls 5x10
b1 decline narrow grip bench 5x10
b2 tricep extension 5x10
c1 Reverse curls 3x12
c2 rope press down 3x12


#13

Mog16

I take it you've searched for Poliquin's GVT routines? Looking at your suggested programme I can state with some confidence the author wouldn't approve!

Poliquin's standard 10x10 and advanced version of GVT is widely available online and I suggest you consult them. For a start your frequency would be reduced to:

Monday - Upper body
Tuesday - Lower body
Wednesday - Off
Thursday - Arms, shoulders
Friday - Off
Saturday - repeat

I have tried both standard and advanced. I didn't enjoy the standard 10x10 and progressed much better on the advanced version for 6 weeks.


#14

Hey James, I've seen the original program and I of course would like to do it as proscribed I do not have time for sessions that long (10x10 for two exercises plus assistance work for each). Even as I wrote my proposed plan I think it may end up being a bit too lengthy for the time I have available and thus I may need to revise some of the auxiliary work.

And while I'm calling this a GVT program I know I have highly bastardized it to suit my needs. Mainly I just wanted a very high volume workout where I could focus on a mind muscle connection and 'feeling' sets rather than most of my previous programs where I tried to move as much weight as possible as quickly as possible with little regard as to what was actually making the weight move.


#15

10x10 has been around for like 50 years. Gironda first popularized it...as long with a ton of other rep/set schemes.

If you're going to do GVT...then do GVT. If you're not doing GVT, then you're just doing 10x10.

Day 1: Chest/Back
Day 2: Legs/Abs
Day 3: off
Day 4: Arms and Shoulders
Day 5: off
Repeat 6 times.

2 main lifts in which you do the 10 sets, then two supplementary lifts.

The program has three steps. First is 10x10, second is 10x5, third I believe the reps drop each week and is more advanced.

So, each stage is 30 days, then 3 weeks of easy lifting, then the 2nd stage, etc.

That being said...a program is just a program. Try it, if it ain't working..drop it.


#16

Hi! I think 10x10 with deadlifts is too much really. And it's only two days after squats. I think your lower body will be too sore to do deadlifts.


#17

I understand what you're saying but my opinion hasn't changed. (The poster Bantamrunner appears to echo these sentiments).

These programmes are tried and tested. The danger of changing them is that you risk losing what they were designed to do - build mass.
Regarding mind muscle connection, you'll find that an even greater challange on a 10x10 programme! Trust me, the biggest problem with 10x10 is not getting bored. That's one of the reasons I found 10x5 worked so much better for me.

I also completed both 10x10 and 10x5 sessions in an hour, so I didn't find them too time constraining. Given your training each body part once every five days, it's not a huge amount of time in the gym compared with some other HVT programmes.


#18

I was also thinking that your legs/glutes might still not be recovered from the squats. Could try swapping back and ham day potentially?


#19

Good post. Poliquin even talked about how he hated that everyone was trying to modify/"improve" the program. I tried poliquin's a while back and it was some tough shit, but defintely great. If you just do what he prescribes, all the targeted muscles will be hit enough. I didn't really see a need to change anything up with it.

And like BR said... it's merely just a program. If it works, great! If not, drop it!


#20

One more...

10x10 deadlift is just looking for a back injury since I can count on one hand the number of people I've seen do a deadlift properly in the gym over the past 6 months. Not saying your form is crap, but fatigue breeds inperfections and the deadlift is one of those exercises in which an imperfection can lead to a major injury. Hell, if I just look to the left while I'm deadlifting (damn girls with their asses hanging out of their shorts disrupting my concentration!) I'll get a neck cramp for the rest of the day.

PS: If I ever have my own gym/studio I won't allow girls in the gym who's ass or plastic racks are hanging...they will only wear loose sweats! Yeah I know, blasphemy!, but we're in the gym to train with intensity and the damn fuck dolls disrupt concentation!...:slightly_smiling: When you're jacked with testosterone coursing through your veins from an intense lift you don't need tight asses walking by as you'll think about plowing them instead of your workout.

Also, my gym will only play Pantera, Metallica, and Megadeth at volume 11!