T Nation

Thibs New Training Questions #3

[quote]nickacc22 wrote:
for the IBB workouts. when its like a1 a2 a3 a4 a5 and in the video u do those workouts in order i cant do it like that. haha at my golds gym it would be impossible cause using that much equipment at a time the people at my gym get pissed off. is it ok to do like the 5 sets of a1 and then do the 5 sets of a2 and so on and so on instead of a set counting as a1 a2 a3 a4 a5?
hope what i said makes sense…
[/quote]

No it’s not.

[quote]pumped340 wrote:
Hey CT, any opinion on smith machine front squats for bodybuilding purposes? Unfortunately a smith machine is my only option for squatting now, unless I were to clean the weight up or something. Basically I have to do it, but I’d still be interested in your opinion.

Also, I have a front squat goal that I set, do you think there will be any significant transfer from the smith front squat to BB front squat? I would think not too much, maybe like 10lb for a 50lb smith increase or something just due to lack of practice with it. [/quote]

How much can you clean? (1RM)
How much can you front squat?

I just have a barbell and I always clean it and then front squat. Unless you’re a lot better at front squatting than cleaning, this will work fine. If it’s possible, you could also ask some people to add plates to the bar after you’ve cleaned it.

If you have a way to set up for Zercher squats (for example, put the parts of the bar where the plates are on two benches), I think you could see some transfer to your front squat (given that you’ve got the technique down).

CT, What are your thoughts on BB bent/side press?

About 5years ago I loved this exercise because it helped my bench a lot and fun. I also incorporated lots of other oldtime lifts (One arm DL, One arm DB snatch, 2hand DB push press, Anderson SQ, DB swing etc) into my routine almost just for fun however never did these kind exercise these days.
Now I’m doing kinda high frequent lower body spec routine but a little bit bored today so I did heavy singles of BB bent press after SQ and DL…Wow! what a fun! It’s been a while to do this one but really enjoyed.

You say one arm DB snatch is your favorite (I love this one, too) but how about one arm BB snatch?
Do you have any other favorite/effective/enjoyable oldtime lifts?
For now, nothing beats BB bent press for me but now I’m reading oldtime strongman books again and looking for new one.

Thanks.

CT
Veering slightly off-topic and realizing it’s not necessarily a simple question:

I was looking back on your Superhero Program from the Hollywood Muscle roundtable…
(and needing to apply this knowledge in the real world)

Knowing what you know now (and with new supps) what (if any) changes would you make to the program?

[quote]Kamikaze outcast wrote:
CT, What are your thoughts on BB bent/side press?

About 5years ago I loved this exercise because it helped my bench a lot and fun. I also incorporated lots of other oldtime lifts (One arm DL, One arm DB snatch, 2hand DB push press, Anderson SQ, DB swing etc) into my routine almost just for fun however never did these kind exercise these days.
Now I’m doing kinda high frequent lower body spec routine but a little bit bored today so I did heavy singles of BB bent press after SQ and DL…Wow! what a fun! It’s been a while to do this one but really enjoyed.

You say one arm DB snatch is your favorite (I love this one, too) but how about one arm BB snatch?
Do you have any other favorite/effective/enjoyable oldtime lifts?
For now, nothing beats BB bent press for me but now I’m reading oldtime strongman books again and looking for new one.

Thanks.[/quote]

When I was competing in olympic lifting I actually trained the 1-arm barbell snatch a lot. I actually worked up to 165lbs. I wouldn’t use it with a client, unless he is already good at the traditional olympic lifts and 1-arm DB snatch though.

I personally do not like the bent press. When you are good at it, it is amazingly impressing. And it is a good torso builder. If you enjoy it, fine. I have not problem with that. But to me it’s all about the finances of training. The time it will take for someone to learn to do it efficiently and safely is not worth the results you will get from it.

I posted this in the beginner forum this morning and its not getting much response, and I made it after reading your articles, so Ill post it here to.

Is the link where I go into actual exercises I do, but the main question is:

When training chest/tris back/bis legs/shoulders twice a week, Should I do a heavy day and light day, or should I keep doing the same weight and reps?

CT
I just want to thank you for doing what you are doing. All of your articles, videos and anwsers to questions are great and making me more interested in lifting and the sport than I have ever been. Please keep it up and I will keep following.

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:

[quote]liffy wrote:
What is the reasoning behind having facepulls etc. on push-day, and not together with pulls? [/quote]

It’s technically not called a"push day". In this split I call it the “upper body performance day”. Basically it consists of pressing for performance and the muscle directly supporting that function, specifically the shoulder girdle musculature which includes the rhomboids, traps and rotator cuffs.

And the other “upper body” day is NOT called a pulling day. It’s a “foundation day” where you train the lats, biceps, abs, calves and some forearms.

Not the same as the traditional push-pull-leg split[/quote]

Curious about this split.

  1. Do your upper body performance days follow the same format, e.g.:
  • Activation (plyo or pin press clusters), OHP, Incline bench, Bench - ramping sets of 3 + max rep circuit?
  1. I’m still into that DUP format we discussed earlier, so did you consider or try:

1st day - ramping sets of 3s + one max rep set
2nd day - high rep curcuit, eccentric-less work
3rd day - ramping sets of 3s or 5s + strength and/or isolation circuit

  1. I’m guessing option 1. above, and that this is a type of specialization training similar to training one quality 3 days in a row?

  2. Foundation training, only vertical pulling for lats, or do you also include rows?

  3. Hip dominant leg day is also pulls/rows or olympic type pulling (explosive)?

  4. What is the 2nd rule of Fight Club?

[quote]Blade_MyR wrote:
Curious about this split.

  1. Do your upper body performance days follow the same format, e.g.:
  • Activation (plyo or pin press clusters), OHP, Incline bench, Bench - ramping sets of 3 + max rep circuit? [/quote]

I just finished writing an article about this split. Once it is edited it will be available. But here is the part about how to set up the upper body performance days.

But honestly there is a lot of room for experimentation. As long as it is performance-based (more sets per exercise, lower reps, heavy or explosive) many different training techniques can be used.

Upper body performance (1 and 2)

First exercise: activation movement. Either a partial lift from pins (if you are very explosive, but lack top end strength) or an explosive movement (if you are very strong but lack explosiveness). A beginner or someone lacking in both explosiveness and strength should prioritize an explosive movement here.

Good choices: top-half shoulder press from pins, top-half bench press from pins, top-half incline press from pins, medicine ball throw from chest, medicine ball throw overhead (push press motion), plyo push-up, 1-arm DB clean and press, 1-arm DB snatch.

Second exercise: Overhead pressing movement (I have found that when I start my workouts with an overhead lift instead of a bench press variation, my shoulders are much healthier and once I get used to bench pressing after the overhead work, my bench actually increases).

Good choices: push press, military press, push jerk, seated barbell shoulder press, seated DB shoulder press, behind the neck press (if you can handle them safely)

Third exercise option A (more general focus): Incline pressing variation

Good choices: high-incline bench press, low-incline bench press, high-incline DB press, low-incline DB press

Third exercise option B (bench press performance focus): Flat pressing variation

Good choices: bench press, DB bench press, close-grip bench press, wide-grip bench press, board press, floor press, top-half bench press from pins

Fourth exercise option A (more general focus): Flat pressing variation

Good choices: see above

Fourth exercise option B (bench press performance focus): Either a second flat pressing variation or a decline exercise

Good choices: same as third exercise option B, plus decline bench press, decline DB press and dips

Exercises 5 to 7: pick one trap, one rear delt/rhomboid and one rotator cuff exercise and perform them as a max rep circuit, using a weight that would allow you to normally get 6 to 10 reps (but donâ??t count them during the set).

Training parameters: for exercises 2,3 and 4 you should train heavy. You can go with ramping sets or 2, 3, 4 or 5 reps. You can also use cluster sets, rest/pause, wave loads (e.g. 1 x 3, 1 x 2, 1 x 1, 1 x 3, 1 x 2, 1 x 1).

You perform the circuit once or twice.

NOTE: I recommend selecting different exercises for the two upper body performance days, although you can also keep the same exercises but change the training technique or sets/reps you use.

[quote]Blade_MyR wrote:
2. I’m still into that DUP format we discussed earlier, so did you consider or try:

1st day - ramping sets of 3s + one max rep set
2nd day - high rep curcuit, eccentric-less work
3rd day - ramping sets of 3s or 5s + strength and/or isolation circuit
[/quote]

Actually that is not unlike what we did with Daryl’s later specialization phases (in part because of the discussion we had). And I feel that if you decide to choose a specialization approach, this is one of the best to do it.

[quote]Blade_MyR wrote:
4. Foundation training, only vertical pulling for lats, or do you also include rows?/quote]

Rows variations can be included, as long as they are lats dominant. So it really depends on your own muscle dominance. Personally I don’t feel my lats working when doing seated rows, but I feel them fine when doing 1-arm DB rowing (especially on a slight decline, where my hips are higher than my shoulders).

[quote]Blade_MyR wrote:
5. Hip dominant leg day is also pulls/rows or olympic type pulling (explosive)?[/quote]

Actually, since I posted the split the first time, I changed it a bit after playing with different options.

It is now:

Monday: Upper body performance 1
Tuesday: Lower body performance
Wednesday: Upper body foundation
Thursday: OFF/Neural charge workout
Friday: Upper body performance 2
Saturday: Lower body work capacity
Sunday: OFF/Neural charge workout

The second lower body workout is mostly sled work (walking backwards in a crouched position for quads, prowler pushing for overall legs, sled pull-through for glutes and hams, Straight-leg walking for hamstrings, sled lunges for overall leg) but I might throw in some higher rep stuff on a few regular exercises or a circuit.

[quote]Blade_MyR wrote:
6. What is the 2nd rule of Fight Club? [/quote]

Pretty much the same as the first one.

Ct, I just finished watching the training video with Dayrl on MD…Was Dayrl usuing explosive reps on all of the exercises? And how do you determine how many reps in a set? when rep speed slows down?..cause it looked like he might have been grinding on a couple of his last reps.

Thibs, in the recent workout splits you have mentioned…

  1. why do you only recommend 1 “foundation” day compared to 2 “upper body performance” days and 2 “lower body” days?

  2. What day would you throw in exercises for back such as seated row or bent over rows?

Coach got some straps today really helped out on pulling exercises when the grip gave out. got up to max force single arm t row of 135 not including the bar felt great.

How i cant wait for tomorrows upper body push

CT
I’m an olifter and i have really weak abs. they are the first area where i really break form when i approach limit weight. do you have any suggestions on how to bring them up to where they need to be strength wise? Thanks

[quote]Costco77 wrote:
Ct, I just finished watching the training video with Dayrl on MD…Was Dayrl usuing explosive reps on all of the exercises? And how do you determine how many reps in a set? when rep speed slows down?..cause it looked like he might have been grinding on a couple of his last reps. [/quote]

This workout was his first depletion workout. The goal was simply to use as much glycogen as possible. The rules of training don’t apply fully here. For example he did 5 whole body workouts over 3 days, plus 3 whole body sled workouts.

[quote]Italiano wrote:
Thibs, in the recent workout splits you have mentioned…

  1. why do you only recommend 1 “foundation” day compared to 2 “upper body performance” days and 2 “lower body” days?

  2. What day would you throw in exercises for back such as seated row or bent over rows? [/quote]

  3. When you bake a cake do you put the same amount of all the ingredients in the recipe? When you play football do you put 3 linemen, 3 quaterbacks, 3 receivers, 3 running backs (canadian football has 12 guys on the field for you US guys)?

Not all muscle groups should be trained the same, require the same methods or frequency. And NO you will not develop an imbalance because you are working some “back” muscles during the performance (pressing emphasis) workouts.

  1. It depends on your dominance. If you tend to use the mid-back more on these exercises (like I do) then you should use them on performance days. If you are lats dominant and feel these movements more in the lats, you can use them on foundation day.

How many pulling and biceps exercises would you do to balance the shoulder.

how do feel about front box squats for athletes(i train mma)? i read you dont normally like box squats for increasing your back squat. in my case im trying to use it to icrease power, explosiveness and strength in my hips and legs for my sport. do you feel the elimination of the static reflex is beneifecial? curious as to you opinion on this.

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:

[quote]Italiano wrote:
Thibs, in the recent workout splits you have mentioned…

  1. why do you only recommend 1 “foundation” day compared to 2 “upper body performance” days and 2 “lower body” days?

  2. What day would you throw in exercises for back such as seated row or bent over rows? [/quote]

  3. When you bake a cake do you put the same amount of all the ingredients in the recipe? When you play football do you put 3 linemen, 3 quaterbacks, 3 receivers, 3 running backs (canadian football has 12 guys on the field for you US guys)?

Not all muscle groups should be trained the same, require the same methods or frequency. And NO you will not develop an imbalance because you are working some “back” muscles during the performance (pressing emphasis) workouts.

  1. It depends on your dominance. If you tend to use the mid-back more on these exercises (like I do) then you should use them on performance days. If you are lats dominant and feel these movements more in the lats, you can use them on foundation day.[/quote]

What about calves and abs they are only getting trained once per week on the foundation day. What do you think is the optimal frequency for these muscles. Can we throw in some calves/ab work on the other days?

Is the article that you wrote about the “Upper Body Performance” workouts also going to address how to set up “Foundation” workouts and “Lower Body Performance” workouts? Or will there be separate articles for each? And if so, could you briefly describe how to set up the other two types here?

I’ve been playing around with the concepts that you’ve put forth (especially like the neural charge and eccentric-less training concepts) and have been liking the results. Thanks for all the great info. :slight_smile:

hey coach,

considering that you said above that even though thats one way you set up push performance days, i was wondering if this (example workout) was an acceptable variation for someone to bring up lagging delts or triceps.

push press throws- 3-5 sets of 3-5
military press- ramping sets of 3-5
incline press- ramping sets of 3-5
bench press- ramping sets of 3-5
decline nosebreakers- 3-4 sets of 6-8

max reps circuit- military press with 70% of weight reached/ incline press with 70% of weight reached/ lateral raises/nosebreakers with 80% of weight reached/ pushups on bench

perform circuit ONCE. i say once because i think it would be overkill to do it twice after the added exercises to the cicuit and the isolation exercise.

also, for the second push performance day, i would of course change the exercises keeping the same movement progression or pattern, and i would maybe switch the isolation exercise from a tricep exercise to a delt exercise. i would also change a couple of the latter exercises within the circuit to also target the rhomboids or traps.

thanks for any feedback coach, its much appreciated. And good luck with daryl and the comp coming, im sure he’ll do great with all your help.