T Nation

Smolov Squat Nutrition


#1

Hi I finished the 5x5 stronglifts with good results and I’m now running the smolov squat programme and was wondering what everyone’s day of eatings/nutrition/supplements looks like.

Andy


#2

Sorry to ask, but just come to my mind since you’ve just only stopped doing 5x5:

How experienced are you? The 13 weeks Smolov is pretty hard program. You should preferably have some years behind you or a good coach before embarking to something like this.

To the subject:
I know a couple guys who had done a Smolov (other with FS - sick bastard), they both ate a LOT, but did not use any special supplements (whey and creatine maybe?). They did a ton of recovery stuff too.


#3

I have done 5x5 twice now and also done the 20 rep squat programme. I got to 120kg 5x5 and was finding it hard to keep progressing so I read a lot into the different programmes and smolov was the one that I chose. How did they programme in the other lifts?


#4

I don’t think smolov is the best program for someone at your level. From what I’ve read it’s more of a peaking program and a lot of the strength gains are short lived. You’d be better with something like 5/3/1.


#5

I’ve done Smolov twice at ages 14 and 15. It’s quite hard but I did it the intense phase on top of extreme basketball conditioning. Your mind needs to be strong. I was on a caloric deficit some days. Eating a lot isn’t necessary. What’s more necessary is a good night’s sleep. I wasn’t even counting macrosl on any day nor did I take supplements.

Sleep + willpower.

First time squat jumped 60lbs through the whole thing. The second time I only did the base because I wanted to immediately jump to a different kind of training. The second time my squat jumped from me able to do 325lbs for one rep to being able to 315lbs for 7 reps ATG.

The strength is definitely maintainable as long as you don’t take a break. I was able to maintain my gains with only one heavy set of 85% for 6-7 reps. You just need to keep the body’s memory.


#6

If your goal is to overcome something difficult, I agree.

This program, however, was written for peaking for a powerlifting meet. If your goal isn’t to peak for a meet, your using the wrong tool for the job.


#7

If you have a natural appetite for food, nutrition shouldn’t be a problem. Smolov will cause you to stay hungry pretty much the whole time you’re doing it, so if you like to eat, enjoy it.

If you don’t have a good appetite for food, just discipline yourself to eat 4 whole food meals per day.

I wouldn’t deadlift or do any additional lower body stuff during the base meso cycle or the intense cycle. As far as upper body lifts, just do your normal thing. If you’re too wasted after your squats, which you probably will be, just do your main lift and an antagonist (for example, Bench Press with Rows) and be done with it.

Just keep in mind, it is a squat specialization program and you will not keep 100% of the progress you make after you go back to normal training. Plan ahead for that and don’t be frustrated when those heavy weights don’t move so fast or you can’t even lift your new PR a few weeks after Smolov.

Smolov can be a great learning experience if you enjoy working hard in the gym. I think it is a great way to learn how to work REALLY hard in the gym. Smolov does make you a better squatter, not doubt, and you get a lot of practice with the lift in a short amount of time and it helps develop a bigger work capacity. However, I would agree, it isn’t the best thing to use if you’re looking to move your numbers up over the long term-- simply because you will still have to train to get back to that same PR over the next year or however long it takes you under normal training conditions.


#8

Yeah. Like others have said. If you want challenge and your form/recovery are solid this is okay. But you don’t need to do this level specialization/peak just now if you don’t want to.

Some light submaximal pressing or benching (3-5x5x65-70%) with easy upper back work is plenty after the squats. And it is alright if you don’t feel doing anything after the squats. I would take some kind of light/recovery conditioning 3-4 times/week as a mandatory thought.