T Nation

Specialization Programs

I’m in no way trying to belittle the expertise from CT and CW, but I’ve found in the past that following their programs to the T just hasnt worked for me.

If anyone remembers Charles Polquin’s semi-recent article about the different types people are like Fire, Wood, and so on… I firmly believe I’m a Fire type and with that, I just dont think T-Nations programs for the masses are challenging enough to produce optimal results for me personally.

So basically what I’m trying to accomplish with this post is to maybe help out others in the same boat I was in, following some of the T-Nation programs perfectly and seeing small results.

Being frustrated, I put together a program using CT’s Pillars of Strength and Eastern European Bodybuilders idea and saw great results, 10lb gain over the 6-7 week program.

This is a Leg specialization program. The split I followed went like this:

WEEK1
Mon- LEGS:PROGRAM A
Tue- DAY1
Wed- DAY2
Thu- LEGS:PROGRAM B
Fri- OFF
Sat- DAY3
Sun- LEGS:PROGRAM C

WEEK2
Mon- OFF
Tue- DAY1
Wed- LEGS:PROGRAM A
Thu- DAY2
Fri- OFF
Sat- LEGS:PROGRAM B
Sun- DAY3

Every 2 days I’de train legs and throw in another training day inbetween the leg days or sometimes 2 between the leg days, depending on how I felt or time available. Heres the Workout I followed:

LEGS: PROGRAM A
A. Full back squat
Sets: 5
Reps: 7/5/3/5/7
Tempo: Control during the eccentric (lowering)
Rest intervals: 2 minutes

B. Romanian deadlift
Sets: 5
Reps: 7/5/3/5/7
Tempo: Control during the eccentric
Rest intervals: 2 minutes

C. Hack squat with a calf raise at the end
Sets: 5
Reps: 7/5/3/5/7
Tempo: Control during the eccentric. At the end of each repetition, go up on your toes and hold for 2 seconds.
Rest intervals: 2 minutes

LEGS: PROGRAM B
A. Standing leg curl (1-leg)
Sets: 4
Reps: 5 + 5 + 5 + 5 + 5
Rest intervals: 90 seconds between sets

B. Single-Leg Extension
Sets: 4
Reps: 5 + 5 + 5 + 5 + 5
Rest intervals: 90 seconds between sets

C. Bulgarian Squat
Sets: 4
Reps: 5 + 5 + 5 + 5 + 5
Rest intervals: 90 seconds between sets

LEGS: PROGRAM C
A1. Front squat
Sets: 3
Reps: 6 to 8
Tempo: Control the eccentric or lowering portion (2-4 seconds), lift explosively
Rest: None
A2. Leg extension
Sets: 3
Reps: 15 to 20
Tempo: Include a 1-2 second hold at the peak contraction
Rest: 2 minutes

B1. Sumo deadlift
Sets: 3
Reps: 6 to 8
Tempo: Control the eccentric (2-4 seconds), lift explosively
Rest: None
B2. Leg curl
Sets: 3
Reps: 15 to 20
Tempo: Include a 1-2 second hold at the peak contraction
Rest: 2 minutes

C1. Standing calf raise
Sets: 3
Reps: 6 to 8
Tempo: Control the eccentric (2-4 seconds), lift explosively
Rest: None
C2. Seated calf raise
Sets: 3
Reps: 15 to 20
Tempo: Include 2 second hold in the stretched and peak contraction positions
Rest: 2 minutes

DAY 1
A. Bench press
Week 1: 7 x 4
Week 2: 5/4/3/5/4/3
Week 3: 3/2/1/3/2/1
3 minutes of rest between sets

B. Close-grip bench press
Week 1: 7 x 4
Week 2: 5/4/3/5/4/3
Week 3: 3/2/1/3/2/1
3 minutes of rest between sets

A1. Incline bench press
1 x 10, 1 x 8, 1 x 6, 1 x 20
Post-fatigue method
No rest

A2. Incline cable flies
4 x 12-15
Hold a 3 second peak contraction on each rep
2 minutes of rest

B1. Lying barbell triceps extension
1 x 10, 1 x 8, 1 x 6, 1 x 20
Post-fatigue method
No rest
B2. Standing db triceps extension
4 x 12-15
Hold a 3 second peak contraction on each rep
2 minutes of rest

Day 2
A. Barbell rowing
Week 1: 7 x 4
Week 2: 5/4/3/5/4/3
Week 3: 3/2/1/3/2/1
3 minutes of rest between sets

B. Barbell curl
Week 1: 7 x 4
Week 2: 5/4/3/5/4/3
Week 3: 3/2/1/3/2/1
3 minutes of rest between sets

A1. Lat pulldown
4 x 8-10
Hold a 3 second peak contraction on each rep
No rest
A2. Seated rowing
4 x 12-15
Hold a 3 second peak contraction on each rep
2 minutes of rest

B1. Preacher straight-bar curl
4 x 12-15
Use the double contraction (11/2) technique: go down until the arms are fully extended, get halfway up, go back down, then curl the bar completely. That?s one rep.
No rest
B2. Reverse grip barbell curl
4 x 8-10 + max iso
Perform 8 to 10 reps then hold the bar in the mid-range portion of the movement for as long as possible.
2 minutes of rest

Day 3
A. Push press
Week 1: 7 x 4
Week 2: 5/4/3/5/4/3
Week 3: 3/2/1/3/2/1
3 minutes of rest between sets

B. Upright rowing (shoulder width grip)
Week 1: 7 x 4
Week 2: 5/4/3/5/4/3
Week 3: 3/2/1/3/2/1
3 minutes of rest between sets

A. Seated dumbbell press
4 x 12-15
Use the double contraction (1 1/2) technique: go halfway up, go back down, then lift the dumbbells completely. That?s one rep.
2 minutes of rest

B1. Lateral raise
3 x 21s: 7 full reps, 7 top range reps, 7 low range reps
No rest
B2. Bent over lateral raise
4 x 12-15
Hold a 3 second peak contraction on each rep
2 minutes of rest

C. Power shrugs
4 x 8-10
1 minute of rest

And thats it. I hope I can help the other Fire types out there to grow a little faster.

That seems great. I’m not sure about the different elements, but I have also tried periodization programs. I can’t stay on them for more than 2 weeks. I’m sure they work very well though.