T Nation

Max OT


How in the fuck do the guys at AST (Jeff Willet and Skip LaCour), train and diet the way they do without ending up in the hospital?

They prescribe 4-6 reps, always, never ever change, and so much intensity that you are supposed to mentally psych for every set!!! On top of this, they weight train 5-6 days per week, and perform any where from 5-14 super high intensity HIT cardio routines! On top of this, they usually have about a 20 week pre-contest period, living on mostly liquid protein shakes. I'd be in the fucking mental ward. Seriously, after a month of that my CNS would be soooo fried I probably wouldn't be able to verbalize a coherent sentence.

How is it possible?




Thought those guys were all natural, check their websites


I would say either steroids, regardless of their natural claims, or they are genetically gifted for that type of training, or both.

I think you could take any workout program that is put together on the basic principals of increasing load, and you will find some genetic annomaly out their that will get big.

Look at Cassey Viator. That guy was big with long full muscle bellys. All the steroids in the world would not make me look like that on the old Arthur Jones HIT programs. It worked for Casey because ALMOST ANYTHING would have worked for him.

that is one reason I find this site so helpful. there is a wide range of bodies here, all with different levels of recovery, etc. By finding out what most people are doing that is producing resutls, I can look for common principles methods that will work for me.


These are 2 guys I really believe when they say they've never done steroids.


Who doesn't psych before every working set? If it's to the point where you don't have to think about it, it's not training. That's called working out.


Hooooollldddd er there big fella!!

A good rule of thumb is that if you're doing any amount of volume at all such as Waterbury routines etc, if you have to mentally psych for ANY sets, you're using too much weight/intensity.

You should concentrate, tighten, explode out of the rack each set, but to actually need to psych up as in a 1-5 rep max attempt, that should be done sparingly, not frequently, and DEFINATELY not every set!!!!!!!!


As I understand it, 'psyching' in this context means training to failure. Every set. All the time. Not optimal for omost people.


That clears it up a little, I was about to agree with DLBoy, because I thought that you meant mentally preparing yourself to lift the weight. If I don't do that before every set I'll miss the lift entirely, or at least not get as many as I should have.


I don't agree with failure training at all, but I work out without a spotter so I have no choice but to...not fail. Heh. I know what I'm capable of, and if it turns out that the weight I decided to use is too much, then I don't try and go for the target reps.


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.


I only now this version of Max Ot (it is a combination with german Cluster HST)

First day of the week:
Take a weight train to failure.

Other days of the week:
Take the same weight but Cluster the reps and never go to failure.

Next week:
First day increase the weight and train to failure

Other days: Same weigth clustering -> fatigue manegment.


Maybe thier bodies have become adapted to this. At first it was probably really tough on the CNS, after years of doing it they just adapt.


I second the motion that max OT is better than many muscle comic routines, and it was whtopened the door for me to train smarter. I think that both Jeff and Skip are probably genetically gifted and have an endless supply of supplments.


Interesting thought. Is that possible?


I have followed this program with GREAT results both times I did it. My friend, who competed and came in the top 10, also used this program.

It isn't like you are doing squats to failure every day... It's a fairly standard bodybuilders split. You work each muscle group 1 day a week in the 4-6 rep range with 5 sets or so per body part.

Mon - Chest
Tues - Legs
Wed - Shoulders
Thurs - Back
Fri - Arms and Abs

The low rep range actually promotes a strength increase, and the author of the program (Paul Delia I believe) is a firm believer that the best way to hypertrophy is to increase your strength. It's free to "sign up" and read the program, maybe you should check it out.


Had the same good results on Max Ot.
I wouldnt recommend it to people with tendon problems and definately not something to do on lowered cals.
I wouldn't do it more than once every year at most.
The bitch of it is that it really does work and you get good gains...the thing is you really pay for them with effort.
Thats ok in my book.


There are ways around that :wink:

I'm not incinuating anything, just saying don't take everything at face value.