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Meltdown

I am about to start meltdown training after 6 weeks of 5*5 training. I was using the dont diet but I have now switched to the T-dawg v2. I have a few questions regarding meltdown training that I couldnt find the answers to.

Firstly, the program has two days which are each preformed twice a week. This means that on at least one occasion the days have to be preformed back to back. Is this ok since both days have some movements that work the same body part eg. chins and rows etc.

When I did a search someone had written that the program goes for four weeks but in the article it only has three weeks. Also, am I correct in assuming that you dont do any skipping/rowing in the first two weeks.

With the push ups on day one, are these done with body weight only. If so that seems like it would be a bit easy. If not how would you attach extra weight. Also should I use one of those bars that allows your body to be lowered past the level of your hands. Another question I just thought of, are the hanging leg rasies done with straight legs.

Thanx for any input

Waggat, I attempted Meltdown not to long ago…be ready to puke! and I have to admit that I was unable to finish the program…as far as I know it is alright to train back to back, the split I believe Alessi recommends is a M/T, Th/Fri split…and your correct in that you don’t do the intervals (rope work) in the begining…also the push-ups are bodyweight but believe me if you have never done Meltdown - it ain’t easy, that’s exactly what I thought the first time I attempted it and then almost puked before I was done…Alessi’s has stated elsewhere that each exercise should represent a 15-17 RM (a weight you can lift 15-17 times)…I actually substituted the bench press for push-ups…

The program is three weeks and Alessi states it only has about a four week life before it loses effectiveness - unless you change up exercises, but hell after three weeks if your hungry for more then I’d say move on to Meltdown II…oh, and the leg raises are done straight…

Actually both two-day workouts are back to back. While the program is extremely taxing, don’t worry about the back to back sessions. I was mainly concerned about squats and deads on the same day but had no problem other than having to drop the dead weight considerably.

The push-ups aren’t as easy as you might think…it’s a whole new ball game with the slow concentrics. If you are pulling them off rather easily then either use the bars or elevate your feet. You could always do a bench movement but make sure a spotter is nearby if you’re doing barbell.

Definitely don’t do the rope intervals until week 3.

Meltdown is a lot of fun, but very difficult. Just push yourself to finish – the rest times will obviously not be enough to catch your breath, but once the time’s up, you just have to go.

The push-ups are difficult. I’d stick with it as it is. When I did Meltdown, I was benching 250 (weighed about 170), but the push-ups were tough (slow concentrics make it tough). Although, they were the easiest of the 4 exercises. On day 2, the dips are the easiest of the 4. I treated the push-ups and dips as a “rest time” – where you catch some of your breath back.

I had some problems with meltdown training. Firstly, doing pullups and deadlifts in the same circuit caused my grip to give out. Secondly, doing squats and deadlifts in the same circuit was too much overlap- the DL killed my squat performance. Thirdly, circuits are really hard to perform in commercial gyms because somebody always steals your squat rack to do bicep curls or something dumb… go figure

Thanx everyone for the great replies. I did the first day today and just barely made it through. My rest intervals were good except between the 2nd and 3rd round where I took about 3 minutes. After the third round I had to sit down for about 5-10 minutes because I was scared I would pass out.

I see what everyone means about the push-ups. For the first 2 sets I used the bar and struggled big time. Even on the third set just doing them normally I just made 10. The 3 second concentrics are a killer.

If I cant get 3 sets of 10 on dips would it be ok to do assisted dips.

i am meltdown veteran and it just sucks the air out of you. it’s like doing a 800meter sprint! my poundages for the squats and deads were pathetic. i guess the strength is an after thought in meltdown. people doing the usual 3 sets of 10 reps for 1 body part at a time thought i was crazy doing so many compound movements at a time. and yeah, it’s hard to reserve 3-4 exercise stations in a commerical gym

Gotta love the meltdown. I found that keeping all of the necessary equipment available wasn’t a problem. Everyone thinks if you’re crazy enough to be working out like that, you’re too crazy to mess with!

I never had problems doing Meltdown in a commercial gym, even during prime time. I just keep the workouts to a single station.

First workout, just stay in a power rack. Have two olympic bars set up (one for squatting, one for deadlifting). Do your chin-ups by jumping up and grabbing the top of the power rack, do your squats in the rack, push-ups on the ground, then grab the other bar and do your deads.

Second workout, just stay by the dip station, and bring an olympic bar over (along with a couple of dumbbells). Do your push-presses by cleaning the bar up, then rep out your presses, drop the bar. Grab the bells and take a walk. Do your dips, then grab the bar (adding weight if necessary) and do your rows.

Simple and easy. Even if you can’t finish out the chins you can do “assisted chins” by helping yourself up by using the pins in the rack, or using the racked bar (pushing with your legs).

Ya I was able to do it mostly at one station.

Make sure you use enough weight. I was a little light and wasted about a week of training.

OK how about the problem of combining the squat and DL into the same circuit? I know the DL is mostly a back exercise but it does hit the hip extensors pretty hard, as well as the quads… Isn’t that too much??

Meltdown, particularly when hypocaloric, sucks.

Belligerent-No, I don’t think that the deads and squats in the same workout negate each other. Remember, the point of Meltdown isn’t to get stronger, but to cut fat. I emailed Don Alessi about the two parts to Meltdown, and he said that the 2nd part of Meltdown was geared towards strength. He also suggested that after finishing the first cycle of Meltdown, to try 1 week of the same exercises, for 1 set of 25 reps, then going back to the original Meltdown protocols.

Why are the concentric phases performed so slowly (3 sec) in meltdown training? With German Body Comp. it’s exactly the opposite (slow eccentric)… what advantage does lifting slowly confer? And please don’t give me that “momentum takes tension off the muscles” crap

Beligerent, don’t take this the wrong way but judging your last question I’m guessing you haven’t actually read the Meltdown article.

If so, check it out a little closer and you’ll find your answer. Peace.

Actually, I cannot find any explanation in the Meltdown articlefor the slow concentric phase… it simply says:

“Exercise selection must also include multiple joint compound movements that emphasize the leg muscles with a slow concentric (lifting) component.”

There is no other mention of the slow concentric phase anywhere else in the article. Furthermore, it also says:

"This anabolic condition is the foundation for many of the effective training programs such as the “10 x 10” method or German Volume Training popularized by Charles Poliquin. "

…which isn’t true at all. Poliquin reccommends 3-5 sec for the eccentric and 1-2 sec for the concentric with GVT

My bad, bro…it was actually in the Don Alessi interview as far as getting more specific. Here’s what it said:

T: Let?s talk about Meltdown Training, which has received a lot of attention. Why the heck are we using slow concentrics (the lifting portion of the exercise) in this program instead of slow eccentrics (negatives) like we?re used to?

DA: We do that for two reasons. Number one, the average person doesn?t lift slowly concentrically, so it does create intermuscular tension and gives a unique adaptation so that your body is going to get better at controlling that positive motion.

Number two, the research indicates that more growth hormone is released via the concentric portion of the lift. So the concentric seems to stimulate more lactate, which in turn fosters higher levels of GH.

T: Does a GH burst during training really make a difference?

DA: Oh, hell yeah!

T: Really? Because there?s some controversy about what effect, if any, these natural GH fluctuations have on a person?s physique.

DA: There?s no controversy as far as I?m concerned or from anyone who?s actually worked with it because we?ve seen results. I think some of the controversy is because exogenous or synthetic growth hormone doesn?t necessarily have a good effect on muscle growth without combining it with Testosterone and insulin like the pro bodybuilders are doing.

But I just looked at a research article last night that suggested that growth hormone stimulates the synthesis and secretion of IGF-1 in the muscle which then acts on the muscle itself to promote growth. So in short, internal growth hormone may be better than the drugs if you know how to manipulate it. This is one thing that Meltdown does through the slow lifts.

T: I can?t believe I?m saying this, but is it then possible to gain muscle and lose fat at the same time with something like Meltdown Training?

DA: It?s not only possible, it?s likely. If people do Meltdown Training as I?ve described it, their lactate levels are going to go to the point where if they bled, their blood would burn a hole in the sidewalk. Their lactate and acidity levels are going to change and GH is going to be released.

GH has always been talked about as being lipolytic, a good fat burner. But in real life I?ve seen the opposite. I?ve seen more hypertrophy from naturally occurring GH than accelerated weight loss. When I was getting ready for a photo shoot a while back, I was doing this type of training twice per day and my nervous system was so hyped up I could hardly eat anyway! The results were just so powerful I was motivated to continue with it. There?s no doubt that you can use Meltdown to gain size and lose fat at the same time.

I would like to try this again, but the last time I attempted it I had a major problem with my grip giving out on the deadlifts… any advice? What if I scratched the DL and just did squats, pushups, and pullups?

Why not get rid of squats, pushups, and pullups as well? That way you won’t have to worry about your grip at all.

B…personally I would keep doing them. I had the same problem with mine, but you’ll get better and better. I also wouldn’t be overly concerned with weight. Remember, it’s a fat-loss workout first and foremost, but I would treat it like EDT and always try to beat your reps from the previous session. You’ll probably lose a little off some of your 1RM’s, but you’re only doing the program for 4 weeks so it doesn’t take long to get it back. Just be strict with those 3-sec concentrics as this is the critical factor. And if grip is really a problem on the deads, consider some added grip work possibly on a couple off days like Waterbury’s routine.

Good luck!