Saturday, February 9, 2008

A question: timed sets & training for power

I'm in the midst of re-thinking my training program for 2 reasons:

1 - I've been on this program since November, and it's probably about time to mix things up a bit.

2 - I have an outside shot at being a contestant on American Gladiators (!), and if that happens, I want to be as physically prepared as possible.

I've already determined that I'm going to switch to lifting on Monday, Thursday and Saturday with conditioning work on Tuesday and Friday. What I'm thinking about now is keeping Monday and Thursday as high intensity, low volume strength days but switching Saturday to be a lower intensity, higher volume, power-based workout.

I think that timed sets might be appropriate for this power workout. I'd select a weight and amount of time for each exercise, then see how many reps I could get done with the weight in the alloted time. For example, instead of doing 5 sets of 5 reps, I'd do 4 sets of max reps in 30 seconds. I'd make progress by trying to beat my total reps from last time. Since Power = Work/Time, I'd be increasing my power output by keeping the time the same and increasing the number of reps performed from workout to workout.

So my question is this: has anybody out there had experience with timed sets? If you have advice on the best way to use them or other ideas on training for power as opposed to strength, I'd love to hear about it!

Training 2-9-08

I did sets of 10 on Squat and Press today, partially to switch things up and partially because I just wasn't really "feeling it" today.

Squat
4 x 10 x 205
4 x 205

Press
4 x 10 x 95
9 x 95

Power Clean
5 x 3 x 160

Chinups
3 x 5 x 52.5

Dips
2 x 5 x 92.5
4 x 92.5

Comments: Lack of sleep, eating like crap and stress have been screwing with my recovery lately. I went in planning to do 5x5 on Squat, but only got 2 of my first work set, so I switched to sets of 10 with less weight. They were tough! Press was supposed to be 5x10 anyway, since I'm now rotating between sets of 10, 5 and 3 as part of the Timed Total Tonnage approach. Power Cleans felt good -- I'm getting the whole jump thing down by concentrating on stomping my feet back down after the jump. Chinups were easy. Dips felt lopsided -- I need to finish the Egoscue Method and get to work fixing my posture.

2 comments:

Andrew said...

i think what you want to accomplish with timed sets will be accomplished with metcon. it sounds like you want to increase total output/work capacity and metcons will do just that. if you want explosive power i suggest sprints, olympics lifts, or plyometrics.

Ashleigh said...

Hi Lucas,

Sounds like you are familiar with the Egoscue Method and our philosophy of "get straight then strengthen". Stay focused on fixing your posture so you don't continue to workagainst your own body. Let us know if we can help you in any way. Ashleigh Roda - The Egoscue Method