Before i was T-Nation ‘enlightened’ i followed AST’s Max-OT. 1st, neither willet or lacour do gear as they compete in natural competitions. Also remeber since they are the poster boys for that company, they probably have near unlimited supply of goodies.
I put on about 20#s of lean body mass during my 4 month long cycle on max OT (3 months lifting, 1 month sick). Granted, i definately modded it, but it is not a worthless program. At the time, it had been years since i lifted, and the idea of leaving ‘1 or 2 reps in the tank’ would have been hard to objectively quantify, since, if you DON’T train to failure, how many do you know you really have left?
Overall, for a rank beginner, Max-OT is certainly better than muscle comic programs, as it prescribes heavy compound movements with failure attained between 4-6, forcing measurable intensity and not allowing trainers to puss out.
However i would not be able to recommend this again for a variety of reasons, most specifically finding this site and the more well rounded, periodized programs. As with any HIT program, MaxOT can lead to injuries very quickly, and training to failure every set of every session 5 days a week will leave your recovery abilities swamped and you WILL be sick. In my 4 months on MaxOT, 3 combined were spent lifting, 1 month was total sick time, and then i blew out my shoulder for a month, effectively ending the program for me.