Doubling up

24 Mar

As part of my training for Tough Mudder in June I’m looking to double a few things. First, a double body weight squat. Second, a double body weight deadlift. Third, double my number of continous dips. Fourth, double my continous closed grip pull ups…..and here’s how I intend to do it.

Squats and deadlits

This is split into two weekly workouts, one where I use the 10 rep protocol in Tim Ferriss’ ‘4 hour body’ and the second workout with a combination of exercises using a limited range of motion, smaller movements and lower weight squats focusing on form.

Workout 1 (peformed once/week)

  • Squats working up to a total of 10 reps – A weekly progression could look like this, 5 sets of 2 reps, then next week 3 sets of 3 reps and then 2 sets of 5 reps in week three. Once you can do 2 sets of 5, add more weight the following week. I find a 5% increase is good rule of thumb here.
  • Deadlifts – as above

So in one week, you could as little as four sets across the two exercises.

Workout 2 (performed once/week, at least two days rest from workout 1)
This second workout is based on exercises I’ve picked up over the last year or so. Rather than trying to just push heavier each workout, I also want to ensure I’m focusing on good form and balanced strength throughout my lower body.

  • Pin pull deadlifts – this involves deadlifting a weight 20% heavier than your current full range deadlift from workout 1, from the safety pins on a squat rack at about knee height. The idea here is to the get body (particularly hands and hips) used to pulling a heavier weight, while reducing the stress on your body.
  • Split box lunge – holding two dumb bells on top of a stable platform about knee height and stepping backwards in a controlled motion with one leg and then back up with the same leg. Aim for 2 sets of 5 reps on each leg. I’m using this for good balance and stability in the legs.
  • Hamstring raises – these are killers, although I want to ensure I have good balance in strength between my quads and hamstrings. I currently do 2 sets of 10 negative reps, hoping to build up to full reps soon.
  • Squat with body weight – I got this idea from a personal trainer friend, who calls them breathing squats. The idea is to reach 20 continuous reps while doing a squat equal to your body weight. I just do 1 set increasing the number of reps each week. I find this is a great way to ensure you focus on good squat form without putting too much pressure on the body.

Dips and close grip pull ups

I add these dip and pull up exercises to the end of both workout 1 and 2, for which I’ve taken from the ‘Greasing the Groove’ concept from Pavel Tsatsouline.

Peform 1 dip, rest for the time taken to perform 1 dip. Perform 2 dips, rest for time taken to perform 2 dips. Perform 3, rest 3, etc, etc. Then you keep going until you no longer comfortably increase your number of reps by one. For example, if you just completed 6 reps and then your next set you only complete 4, stop. I aim to increase my highest rep set by one each week. The idea is that you will do a high volume of reps in one workout, without working to failure and running this risk of overtraining. If you were to reach a final set of 10 reps using this pattern, you will have done a total of 55 reps.


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