Post TBT Results!

Howdy T-Nation Constituents,

Please post your results and comments from the TBT program. I designed the program specifically for T-Nation readers. In other words, it might be too advanced for some, while adequate for others; but I tried to find a relatively common ground for the majority of readers.

I know that many readers are undergoing the program and I’d appreciate any feedback for those who have tried it, or are considering trying it out. I welcome all comments; but I must state that a trainee should be sufficiently into the program (i.e., at least on weeks 3 or 4) to understand the full ramifications of the program. Fire away!

Hi Chad,

My main regret before starting the progam is not having taken any photo’s or measurements to guage progress.

That said, from a purely visual viewpoint, I am absolutely sure that although I am just about to complete my 5th week on the program, I have achieved the results that I was looking for.
I have gained size everywhere - I can see it and I can feel it - and my wife has has confirmed a difference too.

I am amazed at the difference in just a few weeks - though I should say that I only started weight training in February this year so my gains may be reflected by my inexperience.

Thanks for the program - it has been great fun to do.

Hi Chad,
Very effective program. Good legs development: I began using front squats and sumo deadlifts. Using the program you suggested in the forum I felt, in week 4, a certain pain in my right arm.
Probably sumo deadlifts + SS grip pullups (1st time in my life)+ Preacher curls is a bit too much for me. I also found difficult to perform dips, practically at the end of workout, in week 3,4 day 5. This happened probably because I’m not used to direct arm work.
Anyway great program !

I posted this elsewhere, but you are a sadistic sumbitch.

I really like the strength gains I’ve experienced. Especially the gains I’ve seen in my chest/shoulders.

Last week (week 6) I was able to do dips for both the 8 and 12 rep days. I actually added a 45# plate for my 8 rep day. I was unable to do anything but bodyweight dips (and not very many of them) prior to TBT.

Thanks again, Chad.


I am midway through week six and I’m a believer. The workout is intense and efficient, plus it’s great to have the periodization planned out since I have never been very good at incorporating that into my workouts (i.e. always linear as opposed to conjugated). Every workout feels different and challenging, so the gym drudgery that can creep up on ya never shows.

So while I also wish I had taken some kind of measurements prior to starting, I KNOW I just feel and look different. The nice part is that while I never wake up feeling sore the next day (like I would have in the past from bombing a single bodypart for an entire workout), I am definitely feeling a lot tighter/harder all over. The hardest thing to get used to on this program was trying to figure out what weight to use for 18 rep sets!

I am a full body workout believer now. I cannot imagine to going back to anything else. I am likely going to try TTT next because I would like to work more strength work in as opposed to pure hypertrophy.

Great job, CW.


I really like TBT - the changing rep schemes and set schemes made it such that I had to really think about what I was going to do each time I went to the gym.

Chad, I’ve done QD and now TBT. Both have been really incredible. What would be a good program for me to attempt next? My goal is more muscle, less fat.

If this program is supposed to be strictly for hypertrophy, why did my strength increase so much in my chest?

My back, arm, or leg strength didn’t relly improve that much, yet my chest/shoulder strength made marked gains.

Is that what they call an anomoly?


You can gain strength on any type of training program. The real question is: what type of strength? I doubt you greatly improved your maximal strength, but I’m sure you improved your strength with sub-maximal loads.

Thanks for the feedback!


Stay with the TBT for as long as you keep experiencing results. Then, switch back to TTT, followed by QD.

I am getting ready to start week 5 of the program. I’m glad that in the thread with your article you said one could space out the program if 3 total body workouts was too much. I’ve had to do that for a couple of weeks.

With a full-time job, a part-time job, night school, and 3 kids I don’t always get enough rest and sometimes need some extra recovery time. So it’s actually taken me almost 6 weeks to complete 4 weeks of the program. But the results have been great. I love working the entire body every workout. After reaching a growth plateau with traditional splits, I’ve been gaining ground again with TBT.

I’m somewhat limited in exercise selection due to the equipment I have, so I’ve had to be creative. But I’ve been able to stick pretty well to the suggested exercises.

Thanks Chad, you’re the man!

I’m on my fifth week as well. Total body training has been working well for me also. I’ve noticed strength gains more so then anything else, but I also see size difference. I was stuck at 195lbs for over 6 months, since I started this program I’ve finally reached the 200lb mark. Now that I think of it, this program has been phenomenal for me, I’m gonna stick with it for another while, thanks Chad…


I’m in the middle of Week 5 and am very happy the way things are going. I love the fact that the workouts are efficient as I have to train before work in the morning.

As for results, I’ve only been back into strength training since July after a few years of doing hardly any strength work (although I had 10 solid training years before this happened), so I guess I have to view any significant gains with this in mind i.e. I’m probably a bit like a newbie where any type of program will get results.

However I don’t think I have walked out of the gym before with such a great post-workout “buzz” that this full body training generates, and i can feel it right through the day, which I think is amazing considering you don’t go to failure during the sets. I enjoy the fact that there is reduced delayed muscle soreness the next day so that you can train heavily 48 hours after. I feel I have made some weight gains, I just wish I had taken my BF% beforehand to confirm I’m gaining LBM and not fat from increased calorie intake, I’ll have to get a set of calipers real soon!

Chad, first of all great program! I’m in week 6 and am loving it. My only complaint/problem with TBT is I’m not quite recovering fully beween workouts. I’ve had to skip a couple workouts due to being straight up too sore to come back. I’ve been doing 6 compound movements with no isos. That may be why, just too much stress for me, personaly, to recover from? Also, I find supersetting on the 18-rep days to be imposible, at least with squats. Trying to catch my breath, and deal with the intense lactic-acid burn is all I can do for those two minutes! BUT, like I said, awsome program!

I’m doing workout 2 of week 6 tonight. I’ve gained a few pounds (8lbs), mostly muscle. There has obviously been some increase in strength along with this; and I feel my recuperation time has shortened.
TBT has kicked my ass. I can’t claim to be a veteran since I’ve only been lifting effectively and with applied knowledge for close to 2 years (I exclude a couple years of poor advice I used to follow), but these are some of the most intense workouts I’ve done.
Another great benefit of the program is its brevity (45 mins in the gym) and frequency (3 days). I’ve got a scary amount of studying to do before finals in a couple of weeks. But I can definitely fit 135 minutes of gym time in per week - a short amount of time and no compromised workouts.
Thanks Chad.


I am in week 7 now and liking the program a lot (as my previous post indicated). I am thinking that once I finish up the 8th week, I would like to use a program that has more of a strength focus while not completely ignoring hypertrophy. Would TTT be a good pick to follow up TBT? Also, is there any flexibility to the exercises in TTT? Any kind of squatting is a no go for me because of my back (looking to order a hip squat belt soon).

Thanks for some great programs.


Hey Chad

I’m all over this stuff. TBT has given me a shock therapy and something I will use perhaps for the lifetime!!! It’s not just the program itself, but the principle of VARIETY. Sure, everyone knows that “you have to change things up to grow”, but to really GET it is what happened to me after trying TBT.(going on three weeks now).

The way I figure, a program such as TBT(one that constantly changes throughout each mesocycle) can have lasting gains of about two months. What then? SIMPLE - VARIETY. I keep the TBT parameters, but I change the TRAINING PRINCIPLES for the next two months! For instance, when I am running out of variables at the two-month mark of standart TBT I will still be training thrice a week and I will still be using a diffrent set of loads and rep/set variations every time(as in TBT). However I will now train using Staley’s Escalated Density Training PRINCIPLES of instinctive training using time constraints! After two months of “EDTBT” I might go with CT’s
OVT principles for the third two month cycle(a volume phase) then a very low volume strength cycle after that. The key is that I will manage my fatigue by keeping distance from failure(a fair distance when it comes to large volumes), train 3x/week(2x and 4x on occasion), never do the same workout for more than two weeks…etc In a nutshell I’ll stick with the variating and constantly changing TBT scheme, but train using drastically different principles.

So in other words, all I need for an entire year’s worth of productive training is only SIX principles and I can just switch to the next one every two months! I know that it’s recommended to change every six weeks, but having the year divided so cleanly is in my opinion worth it to add those extra two weeks to each cycle.

So what do you think Chad? Do I GET variety?

where do i start? im in week 8 of tbt and im going back to wk 1 since i havent reached any plateau. my strength and size has DRASTICALLY improved! this is the best training ive done in my 10 yrs of working out. also, i added tons of fish and flax oils, and a prohormone called md1t, and more meals around wk 3. i gained 15-17 lbs in that time and every time i weigh in heavier and heavier. frickin’ amazing! chad you rock my man! i will be taking a few pics this week so ill post em with a tbt header! take care.

hey chad,

i had a couple quick questions on TBT because i was thinking of starting it pretty soon. Heres my situation: i work out at lunch every day at school (mon-fri), but i have weight training as a class 3rd period (right after lunch) so i was thinkgin of doing a modified TBT (maybe only 3 compound and 1 or 2 iso’s?) mon tues thurs fri, with wednesday being a light day for assistance stuff (mainly iso’s). Do you think this would if not any suggestions? my regular weight training class is as follows: warm ups: stretches, jogging, backpeddaling, kareoka’s, agility ladders, wrestling, sometimes tumbling, some sprints… (not all at once, the coaches mix and match, but always stretching and jogging/backpeddaling etc drills). the wrestling and tumbling is part of the warm up tues and thurs. M/W/F we do supersquats (20 rep squats) i usually go heavy on monday, back off a little on wednesday, and try and beat monday’s weight on friday. our regular workout consists of all compound lifts (4 of them) 3 sets each. (3x10 for 2 weeks, 3x5 for 2 weeks, 3x3 for two weeks) we are currently on week two of 3x5 on our second “cycle”. after 2 weeks of 3x3 we do maxes. the workouts alternate olympic and “standard” lifts every other day, with friday being a “fitness day” with running, hihg rep plate workout, etc, basically some weighted cardio stuff. sorry this is a really long message but i figured you would need my current workout program from class etc… thanx for any help you can give



Yes, the TTT would be an excellent follow-up program. The hip belt squat is an outstanding choice. You can substitute squats with lunges and step-ups.


Good thinking, my friend! Yes, you’ve achieved a PhD in variety at my university.