T Nation

Need Program Pointers


#1

I'll try to make this as short as I can in order to avoid posting an essay.

Age 28 and I've been working out for 2 years now. I've put a lot of effort into researching what works the best for me and my overall goal of muscle gain. I've gained about 30LBS of muscle in that time, so things are going good thus far.

I've been following a program found on bb.com for the past 6 months.

Aka the Dorian Yates program with a few tweaks every now and then. Now over the past 6 months I find myself "half injured" all the time. Shins feel tender to the touch, Icy feeling in both my forearms, triceps pains, glut pains and so on.

After the last 6 week session I decided to take one week off, then 3 weeks where I did only 80% of the weight in every exercise that I did in week 6. (This was recommended by Yates, but promptly ignored by me up to this point)

Im at the end of the 3rd "80% week" right now

Now here is the "weird" thing. Now that I've droped 20% in weights I find myself ending the workout 10-15 min faster and it feels as if I get a better workout.

Could this be because I've been lifting with to much weight earlier or because my intensity have increased and thus adds to the "change effect" that would give me a slight boost in gains for a short period of time?

And as Ive never done this before I'm unsure where I should start out at the next 6 week session. Should I start out where I ended the last 6th week?

Or am I way off in general?

Any pointers/tips would be very welcome.


#2

I'd say go with this......

Strong first post


#3

You may be getting a better workout because these lighter/more explosive workouts have been allowing your muscles/CNS to recover at a faster rate. Like they are probably suppose to be doing during those 3 weeks of 80%. After the 3 week "deload" you may come back in stronger than you thought you would (just make sure you are continuing to eat and sleep plenty).

I guess to answer your question I would just gradually move up in weight from what you are using right now. No need to get antsy and think you have to hit a certain poundage right away. Set some goals that are higher than the weight you hit the last 6 weeks, and in the following weeks slowly go from the 80% you are using now to 90%, 100%, next thing you know you are stronger and using more weight, etc.

If you are feeling beat up/sore, it doesn't hurt to take a light day or two here and there. Get plenty of food, sleep, epsom salt baths, plenty of healthy fats, ice if you need to, tons of protein, clean carbs, etc. Even try things such as deep tissue massage/chiro/acupuncture/etc. For me, the biggest part of weight lifting is making sure that I give LOTS of attention to recovery.


#4

when you say that you feel like you're getting a better workout, what exactly do you mean?

some tips:

  • progress is good.
  • injuries slow or halt progress. injuries are bad.
  • train with as little effort as possible to achieve the most results. efficiency allows you to distribute your energy in the best way possible to achieve the most growth.
  • this is bodybuilding, if you can feel the target muscle working better using a different weight, movement, angle, intensity etc. and you are making better gains more efficiently, this is good.

#5

Thanks for the advice.

Prior to posting here I've put countless hours into online research and I've tested 4 workout programs to see what suited me the best. It really comes down to knowing how to spot what is BS and ignore it so that you can ask a relevant question. Also I'm not afraid to try new things, but at the same time if it works and gives me consistent progress then I'm not messing with it. Technique is another thing I put a lot of effort into.

Its sad when you go to the gym and see most of the people doing what they do wrong in one way or another. Especially with pulldowns for some reason.

I get enough sleep, restitution and food.

But how much should you push it in general? I have a really high threshold against pain so I can push myself like there is no tomorrow. And I can call upon anger at will to get that extra boost too. But as I have half a dousin minor issues going on at the same time I'm probably going a bit to hard.

Further ideas/suggestions are very welcome.

-

As for "feels like a better workout". It feels as if I hit the muscles in a better way. Normally I flex everything there is in order to squeeze out the extra reps, but while doing it at 80% I have time to mentally focus on the muscle I'm working out and make sure that I work it "correctly". Its a bit hard to explain, but I hope it makes sense.

Mind you that does not mean that I in example use all back when I do bicep, I still focus technique.


#6

IMO you should go as hard as your recovery dictates without incurring injury and still making progress. my schedule allows me to hit muscle groups once a week and I am still growing most body parts at that frequency, so that works for me. however, YMMV.

keep using the lighter weight as long as you are getting results and work up from there while trying to maintain the same feeling per rep at higher weights that you do at the lighter weight.