T Nation

Make Sense Of Complexes

i like the idea of complex, yet i don’t understand something. how are you supposed to do a no-rest series of movements of varied strength requirements with the same weight (like the ones CW mentioned in a recent article, which calls for a military press and front squat in the same “exercise”)? i assume you’re supposed to you the same weights? thanks.

Yes, you use the same weight and go straight from one rep of one exercise to one rep of the other, then repeat. Good complexes are power clean, followed by front squat, followed by push press, and power snatch followed by overhead squat.

It doesn’t matter that, if you were doing the exercises separately, you would use different weights.

It’s supposed to be a combination of power-endurance and cardio training rather than a strength-building exercise, so you don’t use strength-building weights.

– ElbowStrike

[quote]russianmuscle wrote:
i like the idea of complex, yet i don’t understand something. how are you supposed to do a no-rest series of movements of varied strength requirements with the same weight (like the ones CW mentioned in a recent article, which calls for a military press and front squat in the same “exercise”)? i assume you’re supposed to you the same weights? thanks.[/quote]

Complexes are not usually based around single reps, you won’t be using enough weight for that to make sense. I tended to pick a weight based on the weakest exercise in the complex and use rep schemes as my variable as I didn’t want any of the exercises to be easier than others.

Take a look at these and you should be good to go.

Look at point 6.

http://www.T-Nation.com/findArticle.do?article=06-185-training

The whole article is relevant.

http://www.T-Nation.com/findArticle.do?article=215comp2

Look at point 8.

http://www.T-Nation.com/findArticle.do?article=07-050-training

And of course

http://www.T-Nation.com/findArticle.do?article=06-058-training

And just in case you haven’t tried complexes before they can do incredible damage to your ego so be prepared.

The big thing with complexes is that you want to do the movements with speed and explosion. Trust me, if you’ve never done these before, go light on the weight. 95 pounds is an extreme challenge if you’re doing complexes correctly.