Aggressive Strength Training Programs #1

By Mike Mahler

Program #1: Cycling In And Out Of High Volume Training For Serious Size And Strength

If your goal is to increase size, strength, and power then you need to crank up the volume. However, this is easier said than done and many trainees make the mistake of jumping into high volume training too soon. A better approach is to start with a moderate volume and gradually increase the sets and reps.

Instead of starting with ten sets of ten which is known by many as German Volume Training (GVT), start with five sets of five. Start with a training weight that you could do ten reps to failure with. Each week add a set to each exercise until you are up to ten sets of five. Once you are up to ten sets, start increasing the reps. Add one rep per week until you are up to ten sets of ten. At this point increase the weight by 5% for the upper body exercises and 10% for the lower body exercises and start over again at five sets of five.

Another mistake many trainees make with high volume training is focusing on too many exercises. Pick four compound exercises and spread them out over two workouts per week. For example Monday and Thursday. Here is a sample breakdown.

Monday:

A-1: Barbell Incline Press

A-2: Weighted Pull-up

Take 90 second breaks in between each set of A-1 and A-2. Do a set of A-1, take a ninety second break and then do a set of A-2. Take another 90 second break and proceed with another set of A-1. Continue until you have completed all of the sets.

Take a five minute break and then do:

Trapbar Deadlift (or barbell deadlift if you do not have a trap bar) (90 second breaks in between each set)

Finisher: One-arm Swing 3x10 each side (60 second breaks and use kettlebells or dumbbells)

Thursday

A-1: Barbell Military Press

A-2: Barbell Bent-over Row

Take 90 second breaks in between each set of A-1 and A-2. Do a set of A-1, take a ninety second break and then do a set of A-2. Take another 90 second break and proceed with another set of A-1. Continue until you have completed all of the sets.

Take a five minute break and then do:

Barbell Squat (90 second breaks in between each set)

Finisher: One-arm Swing 3x10 each side (60 second breaks and use kettlebells or dumbbells)

Resist the urge to add anything to the program. Instead focus on a solid diet, resting adequately, and actually having a life outside of training. Feel free to do some moderate cardio work on two of the off days such as Tuesday and Friday.

Program #2: Circuit Training With Bodyweight Exercises For Fat Loss And Cardio

When people think of cardio they think of endless unproductive hours each year on an exercise bike or Stairmaster. Aerobics classes are even less motivating especially when you see the lack of results with the regulars at your gym. You get back what you put in, and boring cardio programs are not only mentally numbing but when it comes to physique composition results unproductive. High intensity cardio is the way to go and a great example is circuit training.

Pick five productive bodyweight exercises for a full body workout and you are ready to go. Start with a rep range that is 60% of your one set max. In other words if your one set max is 25 for pushups start with 15 reps per set.

Here is a sample program that you can do two to three times per week

Sample Circuit Training Program

Dive Bomber Pushup Click here for a visual

Hindu Squat click here for a visual

Explosive Pushup click here for a visual

Squat Thrust click here for a visual

Alternating Lunge Jump click here for a visual

Hindu Pushup Click here for a visual

Plank Hold (60 seconds) Click here for a visual

Start off by taking one minute breaks in between exercise and ninety second breaks in between each round. Do five rounds per workout. The long term goal is to complete five rounds with no breaks in between each exercise and no breaks in between each round. Work up to this goal by gradually reducing the time in between exercise and each round. For example, if you complete the workout with one minute exercise breaks and ninety second rounds breaks, go down to fifty second breaks and at the next workout. Keep working on reducing the exercise breaks and when you can do the workouts with no exercise breaks start working on reducing the rounds breaks.

A every effective way to ramp up the intensity of bodyweight training is to add some excellent training tools from Lifeline USA. To increase pushup intensity get the Power Pushup 2 and Jungle Gym. Both also allow you to do a variety of pulling movements such as one-arm rows and bodyweight rows. To add resistance to squats, Dive Bomber Pushups, and Hindu Pushups,, pick up Lifeline's Portable Power Jumper. These devices are also great for people that travel a lot as they are light and do not take up much space.

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