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New Strength Cycle

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Coach's Corner

With the close of max out week, we will be starting a new cycle in our strength program.  I wanted to take some time to lay out our goals for what we are doing down the road.  This style of programming is very effective, just like the other programs we have done, but it allows for a bit more flexibility week to week.  So if you aren’t able to make it in each week to squat, you won’t be falling behind like you may have in the past.  It will also require an “ego check” though – if the weights aren’t there in any given day, don’t force it.  As always, our goals are to help you succeed in gaining strength, but never at the cost of injury or degrading correct form.

We will also continue our “Gain” and “Shred” paths for most of the major strength movements.  The “Gain” path is designed for those looking to gain muscle size and put some weight on.  “Shred” is designed to increase the strength of your muscles without gaining much size.  This new program will not work off of 1-rep max percentages like our past programs – we will instead go by “feel”.  If you have followed the last program and you have logged your results, you should have a pretty good idea of where you stand in terms of “rep maxes”, since we ended each lifting session with an AMRAP at certain percentages.  Use these numbers to form an “attack plan”.  For instance, if you have a 200lbsx8 Back squat logged, you can assume a good goal for a set of 5 is at least 215lbs, probably a little higher.

A typical day will look like this:

In 20:00, work up to your daily 5 rep max Back squat, down sets – 3×5 at 90%

This doesn’t mean we are going to find an absolute max and fail on lifts, but we will be finding a heavy set of 5 for the day.  If you are feeling really good, this may be a new PR.  If you aren’t feeling so good, this could be 70% of your max.  The goal is definitely to challenge yourself, but not to the point of failure.  If you have a few off days, it is not the end of the world, there are lots of factors that can effect performance (diet, sleep, stress to name a few).

What are down sets?  As an example, let’s say you did the following sets:

95×5, 135×5, 155×5, 180×5, 200×5 (Daily max)

You would now need to find 90% of your daily max (200lbs), which is 180lbs.  Since we already did one set at 180 during our “work up” sets, we would only need to do an additional 2 sets to get to your total of 3 “down sets”.

What about if you did:
95×5, 135×5, 155×5, 175×5, 185×5, 195×5, 200×5

You would count 185 and 195 as two of our “down sets”, since they are higher than 90%.  You would then only need to do 1 set at 180lbs (90% of 200lbs).

Like before, we will continue to add in accessory movements (chin ups, pull ups, dips, push ups, stretching, etc) and those will be using given reps.  As I have always urged, don’t hold back during the skill even if that means that you do a little “worse” on the metcon.  The entire class is your workout, not just the Metcon!  It is more beneficial to become stronger, as everything will be come easier in the metcon when you do so.

Stay Strong!

Coach Krofl

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