T Nation

Simple Training System


You have three templates to choose from, then a list of mostly compound exercises to provide sufficient variety.

Full body Program: (Power training by Robert Dos Remedios inspired)

A. Explosive Movement (You perform either Hang Power Clean or Hang Power Snatch 5x5, or any other SIMPLE Olympic variation of your liking)
B. Quad Dominant
C. Hip Dominant
D. Horizontal Push
E. Horizontal Pull
F. Vertical Push
G. Vertical Pull
*Rotational/Bridge Core (3x35s on static exercises and 2x10 on dynamic)

Periodization for the above program:
Undulating Parameters:
Phase 1
Workout 1, 4, 7, 10
5x5 Rest: 90 s
Workout 2, 5, 8, 11
3x15 Rest: 30 s
Workout 3, 6, 9, 12
4x10 Rest: 60 s

Phase 2
Workout 1, 4, 7, 10
8x3 Rest: 90 s
2, 5, 8, 11
4x8 Rest: 60 s
3, 6, 9, 12
3x12 Rest: 30 s

Push/Pull Program (Caveman 'member on T-Nation' inspired)

Workout A
A1. Squat
A2. Vertical Push
B1. Quad Secondary
B2. Horizontal Push
C1. Unilateral Quad Exercise
C2. Vertical Push
D1. Calf Exercise
D2. Horizontal Push

Workout B
A1. Deadlift
A2. Vertical Pull
B1. Hip Secondary
B2. Horizontal Pull
C1. Unilateral Hip Exercise
C2. Vertical Pull
D1. Forearm Exercise
D2. Horizontal Pull

Periodization for the above program:
EDT Style:
Do as many sets/reps as possible on supersets.
On A1/A2, B1/B2 you work 15 minutes each
On C1/C2, D1/D2 you work 10 minutes each

Charles Staley recommends this approach for progression:
"Each time you repeat the workout; your objective is to simply perform more total repetitions in the same time frame. Apply the 20/5 rule: as soon as you can increase the total number of reps by 20% or more, start the next workout withy 5% more weight and start over."

*I recommend either a deload week or some type of linear periodization after 2-4 weeks on the EDT Style of training.

Upper/Lower Program (Nate Green - Built for show inspired)

Workout A:
A.Quad dominant
B.Quad secondary
C.Hip dominant
D.Hip secondary
E.Unilateral Leg Work
*Rotational/Bridge Core (3x35s on static exercises and 2x10 on dynamic)

Workout B:
A.Horizontal Push
B.Horizontal Pull
C.Vertical Push
D.Vertical Pull

Periodization for the above program:
For weekend warriors I suggest the undulating periodization that's written above. For Athletes I suggest this approach:

MONDAY: Max-Effort Lower Body (Workout A)
WEDNESDAY: Max-Effort Upper Body (Workout B)
FRIDAY: Dynamic-Effort Lower Body (Workout A)
SUNDAY: Repetition Upper Body (Workout B)

Max Effort Parameters:
Load (Intensity): 90 to 100 %
Set/reps: 1-4x1-3
Rest Interval: 2 to 5 minutes

Repetition Effort Parameters:
Load (Intensity): 60 to 80 %
Set/reps: 5-8x6-15
Rest Interval: 1 to 3 minutes

Dynamic Effort Parameters: (Here you want to concentrate on speed without sacrifice of good form of course!)
Load (Intensity): 50 to 75 %
Set/reps: 8-10x3-6
Rest Interval: 1 minute

List of exercises:
Quad dominant: Back Squat, Front Squat, Box Squat

Hip dominant: Barbell Deadlift, Sumo Deadlift, Romanian Deadlift, Snatch-Grip Deadlift

Horizontal Push: F/D/I Barbell or Dumbbell Bench Press, Dumbbell Flyes, Floor press

Horizontal Pull: Barbell or Dumbbell Rows, Seated Rows, Pendlay Rows, Rear Delt Raises

Vertical Push: Military Press, Push Pull, Shoulder Press, Push Jerk, Dumbbell Lateral Raises

Vertical Pull: Deadlift, Pull-up, Chin-up, Pulldown, Shrug variations.

Quad secondary: Hack Squat, Leg Press, Step-up, Zercher Squat, Overhead Squat

Hip secondary: Good mornings, Hyperextensions, Glute ham raises, Reverse Hypers, Rack Pulls

Unilateral: Bulgarian Split Squat, Barbell or Dumbbell Lunge, Single-leg Romanian Deadlift Stepups

Triceps: Close-grip Press, Triceps Extensions, Dips, Skullcrushers, Pressdowns

Biceps: Barbell or Dumbbell Curls, Preacher Curls, Cable Curls

*Rotational/Bridge Core: Leg Raises, Sit-ups, Crunch variations, Planks, Ab Rolls, Bridges, Cable variations, Corkscrew



Please feel free to ask any questions.


It's not the clarity, it was (IMO) that all the "extra fluff" was included thus turning the whole thing into far-from-simple.

A key part of effectively presenting something (by "effectively," I mean where there there is an actual resulting effect on how many people think or on what they subsequently do) is avoiding bringing in things that didn't need to be there.

Seriously: if you would like for your post to potentially have considerable effect -- and there are good things in there -- if it were me, myself I'd certainly go back and remove more than half of it. And yes that would include getting rid of the mobility part. You may not call it fluff, but it is extra detail and length going far past the point of breaking the camel's back, IMO.

Presently (this will vary according to people's monitors and how they have them set up) your post is 8 screens long. In other words, I have to "page down" 7 additional times past the first screen that I read.

That's way, way, way past simple, as is the absolutely vast number of details presented.

Two or three screens would be far better for a presentation of this sort.

Also there are actually a couple of things at least where clarity could probably be better.

What I particularly noticed was right at the start of it:

You explain most or all of the other terms but what is "knee dominant?" I dunno and I've been lifting for 16 years. It makes as much sense to me as "elbow dominant." I suppose you mean leg extensions and leg curls but really do not know what you mean, and it seems to me in a Beginner's forum there will be others who do not know what you mean.

And what does Explosive Movement mean? You pick one thing that is explosive? Or how many things?

Is Louie-Simmons style speed benching an "explosive movement?" Well yes of course, but is your template calling for ANY sort of explosive movement? Or a whole-body explosive movement? I don't know, can't tell.

I am just saying these things as a writer, who has benefited from learning from some fine editors over the years, to try to help. I wouldn't have said anything but for your latest post sounding as if you recognize yourself that people are not "getting it" for some reason and perhaps feeling somewhat frustrated that they are not and not sure why.


over complicated by lack of good explanation


Bill Roberts: Thanks for the comment. Really appreciate your feedback. I ignorantly thought that people would understand everything the way I see it. I'm still in the learning phase myself.

As for Knee dominant: The author of Men's Health Power Training refers Quad dominant exercises such as Squats and Front Squats as Knee dominant.

Explosive movement: a simpler Olympic lift variation, such as the hang clean or hang snatch performed explosively, done at the beginning of the workout to get you primed and ready.


It's looking good now! :slight_smile:


"As for set/rep scheme: There are a bunch of good articles written here on T-Nation so I recommend you choose something that is suitable for your own goals."


After such good examples and such this is such a cop out. And also quite an annoyingly bad one to do.

I am average newbie I see that 3x10 is an awesome way to work. I do:

A1. Squat
A2. Vertical Push
B1. Quad Secondary
B2. Horizontal Push
C1. Unilateral Quad Exercise
C2. Vertical Push
D1. Calf Exercise
D2. Horizontal Push

3x10 for all of them
= 24 sets.

I am now dead.

Also the set/rep schemes within T-Nation articles are SPECIFIC to the routine that they are applied to.


24 hard sets three times per week is a reasonable maximum for most not enjoying pharmaceutical assistance.

There are training protocols that allow more sets still, but in reference to more ordinary protocols such as you are describing, which indeed is a solid workout.

I don't think it's at all fair to say the OP "copped out" by not going into set/rep schemes. Just one given scheme is easily an entire article by itself, not one post... Or giving a quick review/outline of the many schemes out there also would be a full article in itself.


Bill: I'd really appreciate some feedback on my latest change (the periodization programs)

Thanks in advance!


Clear enough though it would be better if the example exercises for the categories given near the beginning (Quad Dominant, Hip Dominant, Horizontal Push, Horizontal Pull, etc) appeared immediately after that rather than way at the end.

As for whether the suggested periodization methods should be preferred to another or that sort of thing, can't comment really. Looks like a generally sound set of methods, though.


On it! Thanks=)


Sure thing! You have a good summary/outline that I'm sure many can use to good effect.