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How Do You Guys Feel About Specialization Programs?

I was just curious on the viewpoints of you other T-Nation fellas. Are they worth trying, or should I just keep at my split routine? Obviously that would depend on my goals, but anyways how do you guys feel about these types of routines?

Specify.

Ill be done with my first run at a spec routine this week. I guess you are talking about JR’s article?

My arms feel/look great. Definitely some new size in my forearms and bis, not much but its noticeable. Really liked it.

Didnt notice any loss of size in any body parts but I did maintence kind of different I just picked 3 heavy exercises for two different days: 1. Shoulders/posterior chain 2. Quads, Chest, back width. And did 3-4 heavy sets with them. Plus a strongman workout or two every week and I felt pretty good.

Ill be repeating it with shoulders/legs after I finish this up.

I too did the arm spec. I feel like I gained an inch in four weeks. I followed JR’s protocol and finally got what Thib has been telling us for ages. If you do a spec program for 1-2 muscles, make sure to reduce the volume for the rest of the body. Read the article by John Roman or go to his website romanfitnesssytems.com Great read. It compliments what Thib’s articles say. Good luck

I read up on John Roman’s specialization article and it sounds like it would probably work really good. Was just curious what you other guys have experienced. I may try the arm routine as well.

[quote]howie424 wrote:
I may try the arm routine as well.[/quote]

I was waiting for this to turn into a “How do I get huge gunz?” thread.

How many people do you need to respond to realize Roman’s program is solid? Just do it for 4 weeks and find out. There is no better study than doing it yourself.

Well I was actually just wondering what other people thought of it? No need to be a jackass.

In terms of bodybuiding it was one of the best decisions I did.

I only feel specialization (in terms of bodypart, NOT lifts) is only acceptable if you have a structural flaw and a VERY lagging muscle.

WHen i’m talking aout specialization i’m saying training the target muscle 3 times a week and the rest at maintenance.

My shoulders are SO MUCH better now because of it!

[quote]howie424 wrote:
Well I was actually just wondering what other people thought of it? No need to be a jackass.[/quote]

Sorry to fire you up. People tend to keep asking the same question until they hear what they want to hear. However, the best scientific study is still the one you do on yourself. You could get 75 positives and 25 negatives. It all amounts to what you put in it is what you get out of it. Good luck, no hard feelings?

No hard feelings. I apologize for snapping back at you like that.

I started my own spec routine today, so in about 4 weeks I shall see the answers I am asking for!

[quote]Kal-El wrote:
I too did the arm spec. I feel like I gained an inch in four weeks. I followed JR’s protocol and finally got what Thib has been telling us for ages. If you do a spec program for 1-2 muscles, make sure to reduce the volume for the rest of the body. Read the article by John Roman or go to his website romanfitnesssytems.com Great read. It compliments what Thib’s articles say. Good luck[/quote]

Not trying to be a dick, but, what do you mean when you say “I feel like I gained an inch in four weeks”?

Do you mean that your arm circumference (measured by a tape measure) actually increased by 1 inch in 4 weeks? If so, that’s great progress in such a time frame and worthy of mention.

But, if by that you mean that your arms just “feel” bigger, but aren’t actually much, if any, bigger when actually measured, that’s a lot more subjective.

[quote]howie424 wrote:
I was just curious on the viewpoints of you other T-Nation fellas. Are they worth trying, or should I just keep at my split routine? Obviously that would depend on my goals, but anyways how do you guys feel about these types of routines?[/quote]

You answered your own question really - “that would depend on my goals”

If you still have plenty strength to gain, then your recovery ability will probably still be quite quick right now…hence, keep up with your split. It’s when the gains start to really slow down (at advanced stages) when a more specialised routine can be good.

However, like you said, you may need to specialise since your goals may be slightly different. When I say different, I mean that you may want to get bigger, but you may have lagging body-parts. In which case if you do (e.g. flat upper chest, small shoulders etc), it would be wise to “steal” a few sets from other body parts and devote them to the lagging ones. This is just something that you would alter as you grow to ensure that your physique builds up with balance…it doesn’t have to be a separate, special routine.

I should just keep at my split probably then as I wouldn’t consider myself advanced and my arms aren’t really lagging. I just started the specialization routine yesterday thought so I may as well finish it out.

[quote]Sentoguy wrote:

[quote]Kal-El wrote:
I too did the arm spec. I feel like I gained an inch in four weeks. I followed JR’s protocol and finally got what Thib has been telling us for ages. If you do a spec program for 1-2 muscles, make sure to reduce the volume for the rest of the body. Read the article by John Roman or go to his website romanfitnesssytems.com Great read. It compliments what Thib’s articles say. Good luck[/quote]

Not trying to be a dick, but, what do you mean when you say “I feel like I gained an inch in four weeks”?

Do you mean that your arm circumference (measured by a tape measure) actually increased by 1 inch in 4 weeks? If so, that’s great progress in such a time frame and worthy of mention.

But, if by that you mean that your arms just “feel” bigger, but aren’t actually much, if any, bigger when actually measured, that’s a lot more subjective.[/quote]

The tape says I gained a little over 1/2 inch. I feel as if it were more. My arms feel fuller. While I did the spec program I continued to eat the same as before. So some of the new growth may be a little water and fat. In my opinion though, my arms look and feel fuller. It may be the added frequency. I usually only hit arms once a week. I now do them at least twice. So far I have continued to grow. My forearms are also getting bigger.

I actually haven’t lifted for quite some time due to working out in the middle of fucking no where for a while. Maybe I should actually just go back into my split routine, instead of starting back off with a spec routine, seeings as I lost some size all around.

Stick with the specialized training for just 4 weeks. Most people bail on a program within the first week or two, just as their body is being to grow… You can go back to your split in 4 weeks…

I guess it can’t hurt. I guess the maintenance days will give the rest of my body a chance to get back into pushing some weight (that’s how I’m gonna look at it until my split begins :D)

I haven’t tried any of JR’s stuff, but Smolov is a specialization program, and it definitely paid off. About 15 lbs. more body mass, 75 lbs. on my squat, noticeably bigger legs and glutes. No losses elsewhere, though no gains either.

I just finished yesterday Thib’s Shoulder Overhaul program, which obviously specializes in shoulders, and had great results with it.
Now I need to find a good chest specialization program, or at least some guidelines, because it is my most lagging part