T Nation

Low-Volume Training Qs

I have a few questions in regards to Low Volume training.

I am putting together a 12-week workout using Mike Mahler’s Russian Bear format and was wondering if anyone has suggestions for a good 4 week, Low Volume workout that I can tack onto the end of the Russian Bear.

I saw a lot of posts in the past asking what to do after finishing a high volume program, but most of the answers were simply to go to Low Volume. If someone could point me to an article or post that talks more in-depth about low volume workouts after a bout of high volume training I would be most appreciative.

Also, if a lot of my workouts are designed around CW?s TBT, QD, and ABBH philosophies, how often and for what duration do I have to throw in a ?low volume? program to avoid overtraining? Right now I usually aim for 12 weeks of lifting followed by a week off and then go right back to it. I don?t really have low volume workouts in between. For example my next three programs are as follows: ABBH and ABBH2, week off; Russian Bear and an unknown LVT program, week off; TBT followed by the ?Waterbury Method?, followed by QD, week off. Am I setting myself up for failure and overtraining by not including more Low Volume training into my workout calendar?


My understading of the Russian Bear (from Power to the People by Pavel Tsatsouline) is that you increase your weights over an 8 to 12 workout cycle, NOT a week-based cycle.
Once the 8-12 sessions are up, start a new cycle.
As I am currently limited by my time in the gym, I use the mini-bear, using the same protocols, but only doing a 5x5. This gives me enough volume to be tough, and it doesn’t take up too much time (even though I only do the squat, bench press, rows and deadlift).
As a different question, when people write down their weigts in their training log, do you add the weight of the bar, or just note the additional weight??

re-takes hijacked thread

Don’t mean to be a pain, but since this got demoted to page 2 I though a littke bump might be in order. Seriously though, any help would be appreciated.


I’ve always felt good with a HIT-like workout for low-volume periods. I’ll lay out what I’m doing right now(2-3 times per week). Bear in mind, 1 set per exercise, not counting warmups.(For warmups on each bodypart I do 3 reps of progressively heavier weights until I get to my work set and/or isometrics)

Squat or angled leg press
Leg curl
Leg extension
Stiff-legged dead lift
Seated calf raise
Bench press
Bent-over barbell row or cable row
Leg raise in captain’s chair
Machine back extension
Machine crunch
Dumbell shoulder presses
Lat pulldowns
Dumbell shrugs
Standing external rotation(I THINK that is the name of it)

My question to you is, have you found the Russian Bear program to be a good volume program? I enjoyed German Volume Training the last time I did a volume period, and was planning on doing it again, but, on the other hand, trying something new is always fun.

Thanks for the reply,

I actually haven’t tried it yet, but liked the premise behind it and I’ve had it recommended in the past. I like GVT too, but right now I am leaning more towards full body workouts, multiple times per week and the Bear fit that nicely.