Here it is, the much awaited write up of Brians Linear Progression program:
In short, this rocks. I’m currently realizing that I suck at writing about programs in the middle of this, excellent. Most of us know the deal with Brians stuff by now - giant sets, big lifts for assistance, conditioning, misery.
The program calls for you to establish a baseline top set during each phase (8s, 5s, and 3s) and then try to improve upon that each workout using the rep ranges 4x8, 5x5, and 10x3 for each phase. Followed by a supplemental movement and then assistance, which are left fairly open to the lifter to decide on. Beating the rep PRs became pretty challenging, as towards the end of each phase I was hitting real or close to 8/5/3 RM. This was good, as I spent pretty much all of last year doing submax work without ever having a “realization” period.
The giant sets are an awesome way to get a good amount of work in. I probably should have used a more structured approach to the supplemental stuff, but I let my training ADD run wild there. Same with assistance for the most part. Towards the end I tried to make it specific to the contest I’ll be in, the best I could with my set up at least. We’ll see how it pays off.
I slacked on the conditioning, I came into this program in pretty solid shape and really needed to focus more on strength so it wasn’t a big priority for me. I got some sessions in on off days and doing other stuff, but I didn’t hit any metcon stuff. C’est la vie.
I ended up hitting a bunch of PRs and added about 8lbs or so. During the last phase I decided to cap the squat and deadlift top sets and focus more on trying to improve the quality of the reps. My knees were letting me know I was pushing pretty hard and they needed some time to adapt, those fickle little buggers.
This was my first go at true block periodization and I see the appeal, something I’m sure I’ll do again at some point. I think if a lifter is still in the business of adding weight to their lifts weekly, this is an excellent option for them. I wish I did this program instead of toiling away on SL5x5 when I started lifting. If were to run it again, I’d choose some kind of percentage based progression to apply to it. Just seems to be a better option than RPE or whatever for me at this point.
So in summary, it’s a Brian Alsruhe program. It’s badass and will make you better. Do it. It doesn’t make you a better writer though. I’m sure this flows like a true stream of consciousness, something else to get better at.
I’ve got the contest this Saturday, then I’ll be starting up my next program. No idea what I’m going to do but I’ve got a week to figure it out. Brian has a couple programs (Powerbuilder and 4Horsemen) high on my list, CT’s Beast Building looks cool, 5/3/1 of course if I can’t make a decision, Paul Carter has some good material out there. Time will tell.
@mortdk @losthog Figured I’d tag you fellas since you specifically asked for this haha.