Monday, March 31, 2014

PRs and Periodization

I just competed in a tournament the Brass Frog Assault of Arms in Easthampton, CT. I took 3rd place in the Broadsword. And as such my strength training program was designed to peak a few days before.

Below are the Personal Records (PR) that I set in training for this event. I was not doing 1RM testing, so the results are simply the peaks I hit in my training. It is possible that I would have be able to hit higher numbers with a 1RM testing scheme that has longer rest periods.

Hang Power Clean - 160 lbs
Hang Power Snatch - 120 lbs
Front Squat - 245 x2
Bench Press - 180 lbs
Pull-ups - 1 rep with +10 lbs (my first ever pull-ups with extra weight!)

Bodyweight ~193 lbs

Doing actual 1RM testing would have taken more time out of my training schedule. Which I didn't feel like doing.


Previously I've outlined a beginner program. However, improvement and progression demand that such a program evolve over time. A program will normally be divided into several cycles. I generally work with cycles of about 1 month, though larger and smaller scale cycles are useful as well.

Periodization normally involves manipulating three variables: intensity, volume and exercise selection. These variables will be changed from one cycle to the next in a way that leads to a peak at some selected time. I normally build programs to peak for an event or competition because that gives me the mental drive I need.

The basic periodization model is linear. The early phase of the program will be relatively high volume and lower intensity. As the program moves from one cycle to the next the volume of exercise decreases while the intensity of exercise increases. Additionally, the exercises selected will increase in specificity as the peak approaches, though one day a week will remain the foundation, basic exercises.


My next cycle will peak at Longpoint in mid-July. It will be interesting to see which of these numbers I can move up and by how much.

No comments:

Post a Comment