The purpose of Medium days in HLM? The purpose of Medium days in HLM?

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Thread: The purpose of Medium days in HLM?

  1. #1
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    Default The purpose of Medium days in HLM?

    Andy -

    First - I am really looking forward to your upcoming book with Dr. Sullivan. If you put that on Kickstarter I would definitely be an early backer. Please, take my money!


    I am doing the no- Olympic-lifts HLM routine from Practical Programming that is targeted at older lifters, or those training for physique. For squats, my week looks like:

    Sat (Heavy) 5x5
    Monday (Light) 3x5 @80% (this is also 1x5 deadlift day)
    Wed (Medium) 3x5 @90%

    My understanding from SS and PP is that all of my adaptation is being driven by the heavy day, and that the light day is meant to drive active recovery.

    So, I don't understand what medium day is for. Since, as you recently wrote "old dudes are VOLUME SENSITIVE and INTENSITY DEPENDENT", is medium day adding volume that is neither driving adaptation nor assisting recovery?

    At 49, could I potentially do better by just alternating heavy and light (so, keeping a Sat-Mon-Wed schedule would mean lifting heavy twice every other week, and lifting light twice in the alternating weeks).

    Thanks for your time.

  2. #2
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    Medium days are there to prevent a detraining effect from creeping in. The lifter is not yet ready to display a new performance increase, but enough time has elapsed since the heavy day that if he does not train, he could detrain a bit. The light day is not high enough in intensity to preserve strength gains, but the medium day should be. It's likely that for an old guy, 1-3 sets would be the maximum amount needed to preserve strength, with perhaps as little as a 5% offset from the heavy day.

    Its a fine line and not everyone needs a medium day, but many respond much better to the higher frequency of squatting than to just a Heavy/Light set up.

    Its funny you asked this, since I just got done with the HLM chapter for old guys in the new book.

  3. #3
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    I know that you give the example of the one lift per day program in PPST3 but hypothetically could another approach be to combing your heavy and medium day if you found that just doing the heavy sets was not enough volume on a heavy/light schedule? I mean isnt the medium day also adding to the stress by simply increasing the volume? The reason i ask and this is directly from Rip when asked what the medium day is for...
    1. "It adds to the general workload (for hormonal purposes), aids in directing the remodeling of the tissue stressed during the heavy day, and reinforces the motor pathways used in the primary movement without the same level of stress as a heavy day."

  4. #4
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    Hi Andy, just to tag along here…

    Does an older lifter need to be doing 5x5 to be driving adaptation? I find that 5x5 on heavy day can crush me for the rest of the week, so either I am soft or perhaps using too much weight. But I want to squat 3 days per week as it is my weak lift (and I enjoy it).
    What if, considering the concept of volume sensitive, intensity dependent, the heavy day was used to work up and hit a new 5RM each week and the light and medium days used that new 5RM as the basis for the weight used on those days. Like the Starr system on page 158 PPST.

    Is just one set at a new 5RM each week enough to drive adaptation for an older lifter?

    Many thanks

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Larousse View Post
    I know that you give the example of the one lift per day program in PPST3 but hypothetically could another approach be to combing your heavy and medium day if you found that just doing the heavy sets was not enough volume on a heavy/light schedule? I mean isnt the medium day also adding to the stress by simply increasing the volume? The reason i ask and this is directly from Rip when asked what the medium day is for...
    1. "It adds to the general workload (for hormonal purposes), aids in directing the remodeling of the tissue stressed during the heavy day, and reinforces the motor pathways used in the primary movement without the same level of stress as a heavy day."
    Which is Rip's way of saying "it prevents detaining from occuring and further facilitates recovery."

    Yes, you could do that. Again, there are 9,985,653 ways to arrange a program. Some guys like high volume, low volume, high frequency, low frequency, lots of assistance, no assistance, etc, etc.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by downunder4 View Post
    Hi Andy, just to tag along here…

    Does an older lifter need to be doing 5x5 to be driving adaptation? I find that 5x5 on heavy day can crush me for the rest of the week, so either I am soft or perhaps using too much weight. But I want to squat 3 days per week as it is my weak lift (and I enjoy it).
    What if, considering the concept of volume sensitive, intensity dependent, the heavy day was used to work up and hit a new 5RM each week and the light and medium days used that new 5RM as the basis for the weight used on those days. Like the Starr system on page 158 PPST.

    Is just one set at a new 5RM each week enough to drive adaptation for an older lifter?

    Many thanks
    Yes, it may well be enough. Reducing sets is fine for an old guy

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy Baker (KSC) View Post
    Its funny you asked this, since I just got done with the HLM chapter for old guys in the new book.
    Did I miss something? New book? Tell us more!

  8. #8
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    Joint project between myself and Dr. Sullivan. Sully's introduction alone is worth 10x what the book will cost. He's really a damn genius and it's quite humbling to be doing a project with him of this nature. Basically he is doing probably 2/3 of the book including all the science stuff and all the intro stuff that needs to be written better than I can do it. Like with PPST3, I am hammering out most of the programming stuff. Some of the material will be repetitive from PPST3 but its all tailored to lifters over 40.

    We have stuff in there that is very small alterations, say for a guy that is 45 and struggling just a bit with recovery, and we have stuff in there for someone who is 80 and can't do anything as it's written. Nothing like it of its kind currently exists.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy Baker (KSC) View Post
    Joint project between myself and Dr. Sullivan. Sully's introduction alone is worth 10x what the book will cost. He's really a damn genius and it's quite humbling to be doing a project with him of this nature. Basically he is doing probably 2/3 of the book including all the science stuff and all the intro stuff that needs to be written better than I can do it. Like with PPST3, I am hammering out most of the programming stuff. Some of the material will be repetitive from PPST3 but its all tailored to lifters over 40.

    We have stuff in there that is very small alterations, say for a guy that is 45 and struggling just a bit with recovery, and we have stuff in there for someone who is 80 and can't do anything as it's written. Nothing like it of its kind currently exists.
    Is any of that going to be specific to women? I'd buy the book just to have Sully's intro but I'd doubly buy it if it had stuff in there for older women who aren't totally detrained.

  10. #10
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    will it be advertised on here as a 48 year old I'd be interested.

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