T Nation

I've Been Doing 'All Pros' Wrong. Opinions?


#1

Hey guys,
just some background information. I'm a beginner, started working out last year around end of August. Wasn't really serious back then and mucked around with some workouts and only started getting serious few months ago.

I've been CONSISTENTLY following AllPro's beginner routine for about 3-4 cycles ( 5 weeks per cycle ) and how it works is full body training for 3 days a week. Exercises look something like this: Squats, BB bench press, Rows, Shoulder Presses, Deadlifts and two isolation exercises: bicep curls and calf raises at the end. All exercises are performed for 4 sets each and reps increase from 8-12 over the span of 5 weeks.

So here's the problem. Instead of doing a heavy day, moderate and then light day, I have been clueless and doing 3 HEAVY days instead. Just wondering if this could lead to over training (since I am a beginner) or any other negative effects. And is there any point of having medium and light days?

My diet is good and I am consistent with it, slight bulk with a small surplus.


#2

No! You’re not doing the fucking program! Stop! Even if you’ve been making consistant gains, stop now or you’ll never make consistant gains!


#3

It’s REALLY hard to overtrain, most people don’t have the time; although under recovery can be an issue. Working in varying rep ranges & weights allows you to work different aspects of strength & athleticism, such as strength endurance etc, etc. MHL (or whatever) set-ups also keep you a bit fresher. I’d do the routine as written.


#4

The typical recommended routines for beginners (like starting strength, stronglifts, greyskull etc) have you lifting heavy 3 times per week and lots of people do very well on these.

If you’re making progress and you like the program, then just keep going!


#5

At this stage, no, keep going exactly as you have been because it has been working for you.

When you get stronger and this stops working, then you can start looking at heavy/medium/light days.

You aren’t going to overtrain, and as you’re progressing, you aren’t under-recovering either.


#6

[quote]skylarvanos wrote:

So here’s the problem. Instead of doing a heavy day, moderate and then light day, I have been clueless and doing 3 HEAVY days instead. Just wondering if this could lead to over training (since I am a beginner) or any other negative effects. And is there any point of having medium and light days?

My diet is good and I am consistent with it, slight bulk with a small surplus.[/quote]

Your progress will slow down eventually at which point you will want to switch to heavy/medium/light days. The point of medium/light days is to accumulate more volume throughout the week but still reinforce proper form for the big lifts with practice. On these days you’ll want to keep your form very strict even though the weight is light enough that sloppy form won’t feel like its hurting you.

Depending on how much mass you want to gain, keep in mind that your maintenance calorie requirments will keep increasing. Suppose you’re eating 100 cals above maintenance to gain, then after a while you’ve gained several pounds of muscle and using much heavier loads. All of a sudden you’re eating 100 calories below maintenance and you start to back slide. If you are still getting those fast newbie gains you will need to adjust your caloric intake a few times before you really start to stall out


#7

Good programs are written a certain way for a reason. The author would expect the trainer to follow the program and do it as written.
The program you are referring to has a built in progression plan . That is the entire purpose of the program. If you don’t follow the progression with the given intensity levels then you aren’t doing the program.

If you find it too complicated to lower intensity by 10% each day then just do another more basic program.


#8

[quote]skylarvanos wrote:
I’ve been CONSISTENTLY following AllPro’s beginner routine for about 3-4 cycles ( 5 weeks per cycle )
[…]
My diet is good and I am consistent with it, slight bulk with a small surplus.[/quote]
In these 15-20 weeks, how much has your bodyweight increased and how much has your strength improved on each of the basic lifts?


#9

Squats: 165lb from 110lbs
BP: 132lb from 88lb
DB Press: 38lb each side from 22lb each side
BB Row: 100lb from 55lb
Deadlifts: 143lb from 88lb
Curls: 44lbs
Calf raises: 94lbs

  • Dont really remember for the last two

#10

Thanks guys for the opinions! So should I start using the heavy/medium/light days regardless of the three heavy days that have been working?


#11

[quote]skylarvanos wrote:
Thanks guys for the opinions! So should I start using the heavy/medium/light days regardless of the three heavy days that have been working?[/quote]

No, keep doing what you’ve been doing because it has been working.

When it stops working, then change.

Just as an aside, good targets to aim for in the medium term are:

Squat - 2 x bodyweight
Bench press - 1.25 x bodyweight
Deadlift - 2 x bodyweight
Press - bodyweight
BB row - at least as much as you bench

Once you get to those levels, then you can work on getting strong. They are lifts pretty much everyone can get to with consistent hard work (although the press is the toughest IMO, haven’t gotten there myself yet). You’ll find some lifts progress faster than others, and it differs for everyone.


#12

[quote]skylarvanos wrote:
Squats: 165lb from 110lbs
BP: 132lb from 88lb
DB Press: 38lb each side from 22lb each side
BB Row: 100lb from 55lb
Deadlifts: 143lb from 88lb

Curls: 44lbs

Calf raises: 94lbs

  • Dont really remember for the last two[/quote]

Welcome, fellow curl bro!


#13

[quote]skylarvanos wrote:
Thanks guys for the opinions! So should I start using the heavy/medium/light days regardless of the three heavy days that have been working?[/quote]
The medium and light days are there so you don’t burn out but I guess if it’s working for you then all good. If you find yourself getting burnt out then perhaps try the recommended intensities. Worth a try.