T Nation

So Many Ways to Skin a Cat

Has anyone else felt that information overload feeling when it comes to lifting? So many interesting methods are out there to reach ones goals that it can almost overwhelm a person.

I posted this here because I feel I am still a beginner from a strength stand point. I can do many of the things that would qualify me as an intermediate (DL 2xBW, Squat 1.5xBW, Can do BW chins for reps) but I am not happy w/ my progress. I have been putting off changing my routine because I frankly can?t decide what the heck to choose. Too many darn things look like they could work well. I have narrowed it down to a few options and am simply looking for opinions on which option you would go with. I realize they will all work to but I have always been terrible at coming to definite decisions.

The options I have come up w/ are:

-Westside For Skinny Bastards
-Mike Robertson?s Routine
-Scrawny to Brawny (new JB book)
-Lyle McDonald?s bulking routine

I want something basic that will lead to some functional size/strength gains. I have a serious strength deficit I want to annihilate.

Any input is immensely appreciated.

Best Regards

[quote]blam wrote:
Has anyone else felt that information overload feeling when it comes to lifting? So many interesting methods are out there to reach ones goals that it can almost overwhelm a person.

I posted this here because I feel I am still a beginner from a strength stand point. I can do many of the things that would qualify me as an intermediate (DL 2xBW, Squat 1.5xBW, Can do BW chins for reps) but I am not happy w/ my progress. I have been putting off changing my routine because I frankly can?t decide what the heck to choose. Too many darn things look like they could work well. I have narrowed it down to a few options and am simply looking for opinions on which option you would go with. I realize they will all work to but I have always been terrible at coming to definite decisions.

The options I have come up w/ are:

-Westside For Skinny Bastards
-Mike Robertson?s Routine
-Scrawny to Brawny (new JB book)
-Lyle McDonald?s bulking routine

I want something basic that will lead to some functional size/strength gains. I have a serious strength deficit I want to annihilate.

Any input is immensely appreciated.

Best Regards
[/quote]

I’d say give JB’s new book a shot.

what?! no Dan John’s One Lift a Day?!

Find something heavy. Pick it up. Repeat.

Eat stuff that you know is not bad for you.

The End.

Really, when I first started. I did everything wrong. And guess what, I still got in better shape than sitting back and reading all the best moves. Just move. Extra points if you do it right and follow any plan here.

Spend more time reading the archives than posting in the forums.

This site is better than anything on the web. It is not going away. When 1 thing stops working, try the next. But everything here will work.

One Lift a Day.

Heavy.

If you’re looking for more strength, follow a Westside template. Read the articles by Dave Tate.

[quote]sugarfree wrote:
Find something heavy. Pick it up. Repeat.

Eat stuff that you know is not bad for you.

The End.

Really, when I first started. I did everything wrong. And guess what, I still got in better shape than sitting back and reading all the best moves. Just move. Extra points if you do it right and follow any plan here.

Spend more time reading the archives than posting in the forums.

This site is better than anything on the web. It is not going away. When 1 thing stops working, try the next. But everything here will work.[/quote]

FYI, i have been working out. I havent CHANGED routines because I couldnt decide. I am not one of those people who doesnt lift and just talks about it.

Sorry, it was at the end of a long day that I quickly read you post. I saw “beginner” & “Scrawny to Brawny” and did not regester “DL 2xBW, Squat 1.5xBW”

My bad. So let my comments speak to others that are looking for the perfect program to start on. And not to those of you who are looking for there next.

Good luck on your quest.

I have now reread my post. I came off a lot more hostile than I meant to. The “spend more time in the archives” comment is way too curt. This was not to be an attack on you, but a request I have for everyone, myself included.

Once again, sorry. Right message, but at the wrong target.

[quote]blam wrote:
FYI, i have been working out. I havent CHANGED routines because I couldnt decide. I am not one of those people who doesnt lift and just talks about it. [/quote]

Just pick a new one and move on…the best gains are made from switching it up.

Thats np, shutup and lift is good advice for everyone to here sometimes.

Interesting comment - and certainly true… so many routes to get to the same goal.

As for your program… why not pick them all (try each for 6 or 8 weeks) over the next year and evaluate how each works for you. This sport is so individualized it’s difficult to generalize (unless you’re talking wuss routines).

Like you said - there are many ways to skin the cat, but the ultimate goal is to find the methods that work best for you and stay consistent.

I have been doing fullbody type routines for 9 months now so perhaps it is time for a more upper/lower type split.

[quote]blam wrote:
I have been doing fullbody type routines for 9 months now so perhaps it is time for a more upper/lower type split.[/quote]

that is what i currently do. i alternate every 9 months on my routeins. i go 9 for total body and 9 of upper/lower isometric exercises. i’ve been getting gains so i haven’t really complained much

1 lift a day. westside stuff should be left for later.

If i were to go back and redo, i would get strong in the following:

dead lift
squat
bench
OH squat
Chin up
GM
Dragon flag.

Also, gain good capsular strength in my shoulders, and stay flexible.

do 1 lift a day programme, all is there if you need it, frig about and experiment with set/rep and timing.

You said full body routine for 9 months, but what about sets/rep protocols?

Try one of these:
ABBH
One Lift a Day

Bill Starr type stuff usually, did TBT for a while too.

FYI Mike’s routine looks like this:
LowerBody:
Squat 5x5
Lunges 3x6
GM 3x5
GHR 4x6
Back Extension 3x8

UpperBody:
Bench 5x5
Rows 4x8
Standing Press 3x6
ThroatCrusher 4x8
Rotator 3x12

Upper/Lower Assistance:
DeadLift 4x5
Close-Grip Bench 5x5
RDL’s 3x6
Sternum Chin’s 3x5

Seems like a solid routine but that just looks like a shit ton of volume to me. I worry about burning out.

The other one I was looking at was:

Mon-> Lower
Squat: 4X6-8/3’
SLDL: 4X6-8/3’
Leg press: 3X10-12/2’
GHR: 3X10-12/2’
Calf raise: 3X6-8/3’
Seated calf: 2X10-12/2’

Tue-> Upper
Flat bench: 4X6-8/3’
Row: 4X6-8/3’
Incline bench: 3X10-12/2’
chins: 3X10-12/2’
Triceps: 2X12-15/1.5’
Biceps: 2X12-15/1.5’

Thurs-> Lower
Dead: 4X6-8/3’
Split Squat: 4X6-8/3’
RDL: 3x10-12/2’
Calf raise: 3X6-8/3’

Friday-> Upper
Incline Bench: 4X6-8/3’
Chin: 4X6-8/3’
DB Bench: 3X10-12/2’
Row: 3X10-12/2’
Triceps: 2X12-15/1.5’
Biceps: 2X12-15/1.5’

I will definintly also give the one lift a day program a read today.

The easiest one is this realy crazy one, i heard about it a while ago form a travelling trainer. It involves some kind of heavy lifting of some kind of weighted objects :).

All jkin aside, starting out mess around with some different programs, track your gains, and do what works for you. The best workout, is the one that works.

I was going to suggest bill starr but sounds like you have allready been having success with that… He definatly has some simple and effective workouts, I plan on going back to a bill starr routine once I get over some injuries.

the best advice I can give is make sure you always keep a detailed training log. With a good training log you will be able to look back over the years and see what worked best for you and incorporate the different methods that worked best for different lifts/body parts into your own customized program.