T Nation

Old Intensity Isn't as Intense Anymore

Not too long ago I posted a workout courtesy of Bodybuilding.com that was a mixture of a split and Full Body. Needless to say, it sucked ass. Now I’m back to where I started from and I feel like there are limited ways to push myself. I have read numerous articles on this site on ways to increase intensity and I feel like I can count all of the ways on my fingers.

SuperSet
DROPset
Rest Pause
Time Under tension

I’m sure there are some I’m missing, but does any one else have something that will just kick my ass?

Whats wrong with picking (or putting together) a simple lifting routine where you can make steady progress on?

That’s a good question. Honestly, there isn’t anything wrong. I just feel like I can be doing something more.

Always trying to beat your previous workout some way by more weight, sets, or reps is intense enough for me right now.

going as heavy as possible for reps should be enough intensity. doing insane intensity every workout is just slamming your foot on the gas. you’ll crash into a wall.

[quote]elusive wrote:
Always trying to beat your previous workout some way by more weight, sets, or reps is intense enough for me right now.[/quote]

that should be enough for anybody at any point of their training…it’s really THAT simple.

DG

[quote]Stength4life wrote:
Not too long ago I posted a workout courtesy of Bodybuilding.com that was a mixture of a split and Full Body. Needless to say, it sucked ass. Now I’m back to where I started from and I feel like there are limited ways to push myself. I have read numerous articles on this site on ways to increase intensity and I feel like I can count all of the ways on my fingers.

SuperSet
DROPset
Rest Pause
Time Under tension

I’m sure there are some I’m missing, but does any one else have something that will just kick my ass? [/quote]

strengthforlife, what are your goals?

My squat has been stalled so I’ve started something similar to how Paul Anderson trained squats. He would dig a hole and gradually fill it in until he was doing a full squat.

I picked a weight about 10% higher than my previous working weight (arbitrary % increase but seems to be working out OK) and train partials in a power rack. Each week I try to drop the pins a notch with the goal of being below parallel in a number of weeks. Sets of 3-5. It has been kicking my ass but it is working.

You can similar for rack pulls and bench (board presses).

Whether a set kicks one’s ass or not depends more on mindset, will, and planning than on any “intensification method” being added.

If anything, intensification methods are often in practice anything but.

If you know that after completing what one might call the straight reps – the initial series of reps done the ordinary way – that there is ALSO going to be X or X, Y, and Z done within seconds after that, this tends to reduce drive in the straight sets. Rather similarly to the argument HIT’ers make against doing a large number of sets per workout, that if one is going to do that, this holds back “intensity” on the individual sets because the body or brain knows that a great deal more work is coming and therefore more has to be kept in reserve.

I’m not saying “intensification methods” are always counterproductive, not so, but also they are not the be-all and end-all and if you can’t kick your ass without them, the problem is not lack of these methods.

[quote]alit4 wrote:
Stength4life wrote:
Not too long ago I posted a workout courtesy of Bodybuilding.com that was a mixture of a split and Full Body. Needless to say, it sucked ass. Now I’m back to where I started from and I feel like there are limited ways to push myself. I have read numerous articles on this site on ways to increase intensity and I feel like I can count all of the ways on my fingers.

SuperSet
DROPset
Rest Pause
Time Under tension

I’m sure there are some I’m missing, but does any one else have something that will just kick my ass?

strengthforlife, what are your goals?[/quote]

Strength… For now anyways. I plan on beginning a mass phase in March. I want to get as much Strength as I can at my weight right now.

then pick a powerlifting program,
and if you are switching to a hypertrophy goal in march, start eating for it now while doing your powerlifting program and give yourself a headstart, unless it is important to stay at your current weight due to some other sport/competition whatever.

[quote]Stength4life wrote:
I just feel like I can be doing something more. [/quote]

Less is usually more. Enthusiasm is good, but don’t be in too much of a rush to jump on advanced techniques like drop sets. Try to up your intensity on the straight sets and the gains should keep coming.

Then, later on you will be able to apply that intensity to the advanced techniques and get more out of them.

[quote]Bill Roberts wrote:
Whether a set kicks one’s ass or not depends more on mindset, will, and planning than on any “intensification method” being added.

If anything, intensification methods are often in practice anything but.

If you know that after completing what one might call the straight reps – the initial series of reps done the ordinary way – that there is ALSO going to be X or X, Y, and Z done within seconds after that, this tends to reduce drive in the straight sets. Rather similarly to the argument HIT’ers make against doing a large number of sets per workout, that if one is going to do that, this holds back “intensity” on the individual sets because the body or brain knows that a great deal more work is coming and therefore more has to be kept in reserve.

I’m not saying “intensification methods” are always counterproductive, not so, but also they are not the be-all and end-all and if you can’t kick your ass without them, the problem is not lack of these methods.[/quote]

This is what I’m recieving from most posters… So basically, focus on making each set and rep more intense?

[quote]giterdone wrote:
My squat has been stalled so I’ve started something similar to how Paul Anderson trained squats. He would dig a hole and gradually fill it in until he was doing a full squat.

I picked a weight about 10% higher than my previous working weight (arbitrary % increase but seems to be working out OK) and train partials in a power rack. Each week I try to drop the pins a notch with the goal of being below parallel in a number of weeks. Sets of 3-5. It has been kicking my ass but it is working.

You can similar for rack pulls and bench (board presses).[/quote]

And now that you mentioned it, I don’t think I have ever even tried rack pulls. What exactly is a board press?

[quote]Stength4life wrote:
Bill Roberts wrote:
Whether a set kicks one’s ass or not depends more on mindset, will, and planning than on any “intensification method” being added.

If anything, intensification methods are often in practice anything but.

If you know that after completing what one might call the straight reps – the initial series of reps done the ordinary way – that there is ALSO going to be X or X, Y, and Z done within seconds after that, this tends to reduce drive in the straight sets. Rather similarly to the argument HIT’ers make against doing a large number of sets per workout, that if one is going to do that, this holds back “intensity” on the individual sets because the body or brain knows that a great deal more work is coming and therefore more has to be kept in reserve.

I’m not saying “intensification methods” are always counterproductive, not so, but also they are not the be-all and end-all and if you can’t kick your ass without them, the problem is not lack of these methods.

This is what I’m recieving from most posters… So basically, focus on making each set and rep more intense?
[/quote]

Yes, focus that intensity on doing more each time…what you listed are intensity TECHNIQUES, but don’t think you have to be using an intensity technique to be intense.

There are generally 3 components to training- intensity, volume and frequency. How you mix these features is a key to programming. Typically, the volume and frequency components figure most prominently in beginner/intemediate programs. Intensity make take precedence when you are advanced. I’m not saying don’t train hard or intense, but you don’t need to utilize those techniques if you aren’t moving a lot of poundage (they are used usually because the trainee “has no more worlds to conquer” and must do more to really stimulate new growth). Just beating the log book should be intensity enough for now.

Just my 0.02.

Just out of curiosity, what are your current maxes on the big three?

[quote]ninjaboy wrote:
Just out of curiosity, what are your current maxes on the big three?[/quote]

A good way to push yourself to the max is to find a training partner who is a little stronger than you then have your partner do as many reps in the exercise as possible then you immediately do the same exercise and try to beat his reps and continue this cycle until one of you cannot go any more. This will give an incredible burn and will force you to go to the max.

Gah i WAS going to write an essay but i couldn’t be assed…

Pick ONE program JUST ONE and stick with it for 6 MONTHS

Bill Starrs 55
Or Ripptoes 5
5

One of those 2… would be perfect !

I stayed on Starrs 5*5 for 18 months !

Stop worrying about ADVANCED excercises… even i dont and im just a little bit bigger.

[quote]Stength4life wrote:
alit4 wrote:
strengthforlife, what are your goals?

Strength… For now anyways. I plan on beginning a mass phase in March. I want to get as much Strength as I can at my weight right now.[/quote]

Following up on alit4’s suggestion that powerlifting type training techniques can then be beneficial to you, it’s worth noting that it would be hard to name a successful powerlifter – or strongman competitor, for that matter – whose training relies much if any on SuperSets, Dropsets, Rest Pause, or any particular focus on Time Under tension.

I do see that you’ve already grasped from other posts that such things need not be your emphasis, but it’s worth pointing out, to help support that, that strength athletes generally don’t focus on such.