Phase Training: Why it is critical to adapt your training to your needs

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    Phase Training: Why it is critical to adapt your training to your needs

    I am cutting and pasting from an article I am working on. Sorry about the font etc.

    I advocate something called“Phase Training.” Phase training is critical because people are individuals and a good training program

    must be based upon your needs, resources, and goals. Phase training must be carefully matched to your age, and where you are in

    terms of training. Your diet must also be tailored to your needs. You do not necessarily have to diet as long as you eat quality food

    and time your meals properly. If you use mild Intermittent Fasting (I do) you can stay very lean year 'round and still make progress

    on your weaker body parts. However, IF and diet are not the focus of this essay.


    This essay is about training.

    Last edited by Procard; 08-19-2019 at 09:01 AM.

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    Most of you, when hearing about phases probably think about either cutting or bulking phases. Yes, those are phases, but there are others.

    Lets look first at the ideal training phases related to age.


    An 18 year old starts weight training and does well. After a year or so he is doing what I call “power-bodybuilding.” Power bodybuilding is

    when you train as heavy and basic as possible on squats, bench, and deadlift. Your goal will be to build as much strength as you can. 5 to 7

    years of power-bodybuilding will lay a foundation for you to build upon. You will make great increases in strength if you work hard, especially

    in your tendons and ligaments.


    Last edited by Procard; 08-19-2019 at 09:05 AM.

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    However, you cannot train this way for ever. Dorian Yates and Ronnie Colemen are legendary power-bodybuilders. During his last Mr Olympia,

    Dorian started getting injured. Why? Go watch him train (it is on the Net). He lifts inhuman weights, as did Ronnie. The problem is, as

    you age, your body is going to get injured if you are constantly trying to max out your poundages. Dorian realized what was happening and

    changed histraining. Ronnie the warrior refused to back off and today needs awheel chair.

    Last edited by Procard; 08-19-2019 at 09:10 AM.

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    I trained heavy basic for morenthan 2 decades, and my body shows the damage. I also got good results from alternating a heavy day with a

    higher rep day. Today I train with lighter weight and higher reps. I also do a lot ofcardio/supersetting. I know several IFBB pros who go 20

    reps. If you have your base you will not get smaller from a more rep based pumping type workout.


    If you transition properly you will not lose any size, in fact your muscles will look more full. Don’t think high rep training is easy. Your

    muscles will bescreaming long before you get to 15 or 20 reps.





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    So, if you are a young guy, use good form and go heavy. Get those 5-7 years in. You can then transition to heavy/light. However, always be

    aware of your form and only use weights you can handle safely. Older guys need to be more careful, but even if you are older you can

    dramatically increase yourstrength.


    For the older trainee, use a 10 rep based system to build size and strength. After a warmup the goal will

    be to constantly increase the weight of an exercise for 10 reps. You want to go to failure on 2-3 sets of each exercise.



    Last edited by Procard; 08-19-2019 at 09:19 AM.

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    Beginners should start with a 3 time a week program. You can do cardio on your days off or after you weight train. Also, you can forgo cardio

    temporarily until you establish a habit of weight training 3 times a week. Most beginners start with a full/whole body workout, but soon will

    be ready to advance to a more advanced routine.

    Split your body into two parts, an A day and a B day. Train half your body one day, and the other half the other day. A common split is to

    train lower body one day and upper the next day. Try and keep your workouts to no longer than an hour.




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    As you become more experienced, you can graduate to a more advanced split, if appropriate for you. I split my body

    over 4separate workouts (A, B, C, D). In the off season (IE 90% of the time) I train 2 on one off. That way I hit a body-part once every 6

    days. I train with very high intensity so I need the full days off to recover. The off day is particularly critical to those that are training naturally.

    Last edited by Procard; 08-19-2019 at 09:32 AM.

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    There are times when you will train more than 4-5 times a week, but those times are the exception, not the rule. Overtraining is very common

    and leads to lack of progress and burnout. Remember: Training is the stimulus for growth, actual growth occurs when you are resting,

    eating, sleeping. The higher the intensity of your training, the more stimulation you provide. However, at some point you are doing to much

    and the increased volume eats into your recovery and growth.


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    That is why the most advancedathletes still take days off. For the most part, limit your trainingto no more than 5 days a week for one hour. If
    you must get in someactivity every day then lift 4 days a week for one hour, and docardio on your off days. Keep this cardio to 30 minutes.

    If you do not get enough sleep/rest/recovery do not hesitate to take a day completely off.


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    A good rule of thumb is to limit your total training to 6 hours a week including cardio. This schedule is sustainable and will reap results for

    many years. Take short breaks if needed. Keep these short breaks to less than 3 days.Unless you are injured or sick there is no need to take

    more days off. Once or twice a year you may want to take a full week off, and that is OK, as long as you get back to the gym.


    The point here is balance.Training 7 days a week is too much of a grind. Condition your mind to always want to train, but discipline it to take days off.
    Last edited by Procard; 08-19-2019 at 09:41 AM.

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    OK, so lets summarize: Your training needs are going to evolve and change. It is true that big weights produce big muscles, but there is a point when one has to shift their training into the next phase. The next phase usually means going higher reps and more advanced training splits (from whole body to 2 way split and eventually a 4 way split). A beginner starts with whole body workouts but should eventually transition to the next phase.

    More importantly, it is necessary for the advanced trainee to shift over to lighter weights and more reps, especially after the age of 35. This is a phase shift. Your diet will go through phases shifts, which will be discussed in another essay.

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    Thanks for posting procard

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    Quote Originally Posted by Doncoyote View Post
    Thanks for posting procard
    My pleasure. Just make sure to be aware of these phases. Young and healthy? That is the perfect time to train Heavy-basic. After 35 you must shift into the next phase. That phase will see you training with higher reps.

    As you get older you will have to change your training. You will switch to a higher rep program and lighter weights. However, light weight is relative. Higher reps using lighter weight is relative. This means you will cruse through your workouts w/ minimal effort. No no no. For example, you are an advance bodybuilder using higher rep training. You are able to squat 400 lbs for ten reps. You use 10 plates total on the chest pad rowing machine for 10 reps.

    For the average person these weights are very heavy. So, don't worry that you will become a Nancy boy if you train lighter. The training is brutal if you are putting 100% in. Furthermore your muscles will become much fuller, your muscle bellies will become engorged and you will look bigger.
    Last edited by Procard; 08-19-2019 at 01:01 PM.

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    Oops, I got cut off before I could edit. The above post is supposed to say "You will NOT cruse trough your workouts w/ minimal effort".

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    Riddle me this: Who is the most famous bodybuilder to do these pump oriented higher rep type work out?

    Or, what well known trainer uses "pump" style workouts?

    Hany Rambod

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