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FEAST: Workouts (First 5)

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WARMING UP

What you see below is the right way to “work up” to the weight that you’ll be using for the specified work sets. Let’s say for your work set, it’s calling for you getting anywhere between 8-10 reps, and you know, or guessing through experience, that the weight you should be using is 300 lbs.  You should warm up  with very LOW reps and progressively longer rest periods to get to that number. Ultimately, coming within 5–10 lbs of the 300lbs.

In our example, you would start out warming up with

185 lbs x 3 (resting for  3 minutes)
200 lbs x 1 (resting 3 minutes)
225 lbs x 1 (resting 5 minutes)
250 lbs x 1 (resting 5 minutes)
275 lbs x 1 (resting 10 minutes)
290 lbs x 1

Now your central nervous system has seen a weight within 10 lbs of your target weight so it will be a snap when you go out to perform it.

You do want to rest a good 10-15 minutes, after your 290 for a single, before beginning your work set with 300 lbs.

Note the lower reps and longer rest periods in between warmups.

This model is superior, because you really just want to get your nervous system ready for the big weights to come.  Once your Central Nervous System has “seen” 290 lbs, working with 300 lbs for your work set should be a snap. To burn yourself out using warm up sets of 10 reps, 8 reps or even 5 reps or more is a major mistake. Just get close to your target weight with minimal reps.

You’ll thank me for it when you’re working with 300 pounds and it feels like feathers.

Workout #1

You’re going to work up to a weight that you handle anywhere between 8 to 10 reps in the bench press.

You’re going to do one, all out, set so in other words, you should fail somewhere between 8 to 10 reps.

Immediately after that, I want you to perform a set of heavy dumbbell pullovers* (8–10 reps range).

  • Bench press for as .
  • Immediately perform a set of heavy dumbbell pullovers* (8–10 reps).
  • Focus on maximally stretching the muscle at the bottom of the movement.
    (You can perform that on a SLIGHT incline bench, if you have one. It does increase the intensity of the exercise. Very important that you go slow on that movement. Do not drop the weight. Do not jerk the weight.It has high injury potential if you perform it in that fashion.)
  • Once the bench press max is done, head on over to the squat rack
  • Squats: Shoot for as many reps as possible you can get in the 8–10 rep range.

That is your whole workout #1, so put 100% into your work sets!

Workout #2

  • Dips for as many as you can get in the 4–6 rep range.
  • Warm up to the same fashion that I espoused earlier.
  • Immediately perform a set of heavy dumbbell pullovers (in the 4–6 rep range).
  • To finish your workout, perform the deadlift for as many reps as you can get in the 4–6 rep range.
  • Unlike the other lifts in this series, do not go to failure on the deadlift. But rather, leave a lift or two in the tank. The lift, unfortunately, has a higher injury potential than others, so we got to play it safe.
  • (Focus on maximally stretching the muscle at the bottom of the movement.)

Workout #3

  • Bench Press: For as many as you can get in the 2–3 rep range.
  • Immediately perform a set of heavy dumbbell pullovers (enough weight to get at least 2–3 good reps).
  • (Focus on maximally stretching the muscle at the bottom of the movement.)
  • Squats: Shoot for as many reps as you can get in the 2–3 rep range. Like the deadlifts, leave one rep in the tank. It’s just good insurance.

Workout #4—Deload!

It’s unique, insofar as it’s a deload. So take note. We’re going back to the 6-8 rep range on this one.

Your first exercise of that day should be:

  • Bench press for as many as you can get within 6–8 reps.
  • Pullovers: right after. Perform a set of heavy dumbbell  (enough weight to get at least 6–8 good reps).
  • Take whatever time you need that is necessary to cut that workout short. You’re not going to be deadlifting or squatting on that day. That, in and of itself is a deload.

Workout #5—Max Day

It is important to take at least two full days after the deload workout off. before maxing out. 3, in my opinion, is even better.

Notes:

  • Shoot for a new One Rep Max on Bench Press!
  • Pullovers: You can perform those afterwards although for this workout, they’re optional. Some people like to do them, some people don’t.
  • To finish this max day, shoot for a new 1 Rep Max on your Squat OR Deadlift!

 

You should have a pretty good idea of where you’re going to be on these lifts. Insofar as your workouts that you had 2-3 rep ranges with. You’ll get a fairly good idea on your one rep max.

One final word, Insofar as bench pressing and squatting, but especially in the bench press. Either perform it inside a power rack where the safeties will save you if you can’t get it up. Or perform the lifts with a competent spotter. It happens every year in this country, unfortunately, someone dies benching alone. Please don’t let that be you.