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S&C UnderGround >> Beyond brawn


3/17/13 3:46 AM
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GARRA
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Anyone read it? Thoughts? Phone Post
3/17/13 7:07 AM
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banco
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Think it goes overboard on the dangers of overtraining.
3/17/13 1:21 PM
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gusto
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I loved it when i read it. it worked for me

2 workouts every 8 days full body trying to do another rep or more weight on the bar really worked for me

nothing is perfect, but as a practical matter, it worked for me
3/17/13 7:19 PM
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Jacks Wasted Life
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I read the original Brawn book but not Beyond Brawn. Brawn had some good information and realistic routines emphasizing the major lifts (Squat, Deadlift, Bench, Press, etc.).

But the author has a pretty pessimistic tone that turned me off a bit. I also found much of it to be overly conservative and think the heavy focus on very slow progression and cycling slowed my progress considerably.

I found Dinosaur Training by Brooks Kubik to be MUCH better. Similar focus on short, heavy workouts but I got much more out of it. Dinosaur Training is probably the best book I've ever read on strength training and I've made my best gains from following routines based on the ones in there. Phone Post
3/17/13 8:15 PM
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banco
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If you have the time/inclination you can progress a lot quicker than beyond brawn would have you believe.
3/17/13 9:13 PM
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banco
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newbornbabynoob - Stuart McRoberts makes it abundantly clear he's writing for the absolute hardgainers, the guys who don't make progress no matter what why do and what kind of delicate, baby-steps you need to approach weightlifting with in order to see success.

Most people could handle more taxing workouts... for awhile.

But he seems to think that applies to most non-drug using weekend warrior type lifters.
3/17/13 9:39 PM
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Taku
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Stuart McRobert is an excellent author and provides great information. I followed his magazine from the start and read a few of his books (BRAWN & Beyond BRAWN). I think his recommendations will work for just about anyone. I agree he can come across a bit heavy on the hard training issue. But hey, he speaks from the heart. 

I do think Dinosaur Training is a great book. It's hard to read that book and not feel fired up and ready to train.

TAKU

 

3/17/13 10:03 PM
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T-Man
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Original Brawn is good, Beyond Brawn is tediously repetitive.

He is a bit too scared of overtraining for sure, but otherwise a good basic book. I also find that for me, an upper/lower split (for ex: Kelly Baggett ultimate split)is better than full body.

Dino training is good too but it almost made me too pumped to train. Heavy deads everyday fuck yeah!
3/17/13 10:04 PM
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Chocolate Shatner
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I agree with TAKU. McRobert has a lot of good info in Beyond Brawn, and I think his overall focus on the major lifts without a ton of extra bullshit is something that every lifter should take to heart.

That being said, I do somewhat take issue with his tone about drugs and lifting. He does come off as overly pessimistic, honestly. As someone who has at times been accused of being either genetically blessed or on steroids, I personally take issue with McRobert's classification of these people.

For one, I count myself as neither genetically blessed or particularly built for lifting. And I will blatantly state that I have NEVER taken a performance enhancing drug/steroid in my life. Hell, I've spent most of my life so cash strapped I didn't even take any supplements. In my entire 23 years of lifting, I've only taken glucosamine, multivitamins, and for one cycle back in the late 90's, creatine (I stopped the creatine because I was getting massive headaches). Oh, and on the rare occasion I could afford it, I was able to buy protein powder (usually the cheapest, death fart inducing, clear the fucking room after I do a squat workout kind).

The rest of the time, my "supplements" consisted of milk, eggs, and other cheap protein sources. No fat burners (which shows, honestly, or perhaps it is more my hatred of cardio and my love of cheeseburgers), no off the wall shit.

That being said, I've been able to squat 500 pounds, bench 375 and deadlift 500 (my current bests are a bit lower, but still respectable I think). And these barely crack the fabled "1.5xBW, 2xBW" barrier that people yap about constantly. But, I've been accused of being both a roid user and genetically blessed.

You wanna know the truth? It's not as hard as McRobert claims. It's been 23 years of hard fucking work. And yes, it does mean pushing harder than what McRobert advocates in Beyond Brawn. I get my strongest at about 3 times a week of lifting, and yes, applying my brain to bring up weak points.

Sorry, rant off. Like I said, McRobert has a lot of good stuff, but I do have to read the book in editorial mode.
3/17/13 10:31 PM
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gusto
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Shatner,

I mean this in the most bro lovingly way possible, but im not sure what your beef is with McRobert.

You seem almost like a case study for his views. Im having a bit of a dis-connect

3/17/13 10:43 PM
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Chocolate Shatner
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gusto,

I think my main beef with McRobert is his constant harping of "you have to do this" and "the only people who can get away with it are the genetically blessed drug doped yada yada yada" bullshit that fills quite a lot of Beyond Brawn.

Listen, I understand that a lot of us struggle to add a bit more weight to the bar. And I understand that quite a few people react well to infrequent training. At the same time, I also understand that many people react well to "leaving one in the tank" on a regular basis as McRobert advocates. On the other hand, I have rarely met someone who progresses well from both.

Those who have done well on infrequent training tend to be guys like TAKU, who use HIT and basically obliterate the muscle before giving it plenty of recovery time.

Those who do well with "leaving one in the tank" or as McRobert calls it "hard" training (as opposed to very hard or extremely hard training) tend to need more frequent training than McRobert calls for.

As I said, I overall like a lot of what McRobert says. Simple, direct programs with a focus on progression. But I do think he oversimplifies, and his holier than thou attitude really isn't all that appealing to me.
3/18/13 12:53 AM
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banco
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You'd be almost doing someone under 30 a disservice if you recommended the beyond brawn programs to them. They could make a hell of a lot more progress on a 3 or 4 day a week program.
3/18/13 1:09 AM
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gusto
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banco - You'd be almost doing someone under 30 a disservice if you recommended the beyond brawn programs to them. They could make a hell of a lot more progress on a 3 or 4 day a week program.

i didnt, i dont know what to tell you. i had great success with something like this

day 1
20 rep squats
weighted chins
weighted dips

day 2
deadlifts
flat bench
military press/push press


sometimes i would add in straight bar curls and skull crushers
normally did some calf and forearm work


3/18/13 9:46 AM
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Jacks Wasted Life
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I think relatively low volume and frequency works better for most people. 2-3 workouts a week focused on the big exercises (Squat, Deads, Bench, Chins, Press, Row) should get just about anyone gaining. I can definitely see the routine listed above working well.

I think you can make good progress training to failure or to a rep goal (leaving some in the tank). The only thing that matters is gradually adding more weight to the bar in good form over time, however you get there.

I typically burn out from training to failure. I've been getting good results working to a rep goal (5) and using the same top weight for a few weeks. After a few workouts I am to the point where I feel like I can do 7-8 reps with the top weight even though I stop at 5...at that point I increase the weight and repeat the process.

Strangely enough, I've gotten more gains in size from low volume and sets of 5 than I ever did from doing more bodybuilding style routines with higher reps and higher volume. So I do think McRoberts is overall on the right path for most people despite his pessimism and tone. Phone Post
3/19/13 2:31 AM
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GARRA
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Well got the book on kindle and seems pretty good. Phone Post
3/19/13 1:21 PM
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The Gunslinger
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This style of training works very well for general strength and adding mass. It's not that you gain more by doing more sets, it clearly isn't the case. The hard part is people having the balls and work ethic to push that extra rep or add weight when it was already difficult. Most just won't put the effort in regardless of results.
3/19/13 1:48 PM
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vermonter
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Isn't Mcrobert's stuff just the 20 rep breathing squat every 10.732 weeks while adding .0137 lbs to the lift every time?

It's been a while since I've paid attention (like over a decade) but if so, come on... there's better ways to train.
3/19/13 2:03 PM
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GARRA
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Vermonter, any recommendations of good books? Phone Post
3/19/13 2:23 PM
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jeremy hamilton
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Mcrobert will talk you into expecting average results, he can turn a potential winner into a loser.

3/19/13 2:25 PM
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vermonter
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Edited: 03/19/13 2:25 PM
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Sure:



If you want something specific to training, on the other hand, you may want to indicate what your goals are, what kind of workouts you like to do, what level you're at, etc etc.
3/19/13 2:43 PM
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GARRA
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Ha ha thanks.
I'm a 38 yr old bjj brown belt, my main goal is getting as fit as I can for bjj (cardio, muscular endurance) as I'm just back from popped ribs injury....though I'm interested in reading any good strength & conditioning literature Phone Post
3/19/13 2:54 PM
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vermonter
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Edited: 03/19/13 2:55 PM
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GARRA - 

Ha ha thanks.
I'm a 38 yr old bjj brown belt, my main goal is getting as fit as I can for bjj (cardio, muscular endurance) as I'm just back from popped ribs injury....though I'm interested in reading any good strength & conditioning literature Phone Post



I'd say pick three exercises that work the whole body, say, dips, pullups and squats and work on those once or twice a week each. Then hit the road. 4 days per week of distance work at 130 - 150 bpm and a day of sprints or hills should do the trick.

If you do that every week and focus all the rest of your effort on getting better at bjj, then you will have all the strength, cardio and endurance you need with the assumption that you are still in a position to benefit from GPP. As a brown belt, if you find you're already well above average in one of the above exercises, you probably only need to maintain it, or skip it altogether.

I think that about covers it, and saves you the $20 having to read shittier advice spread out over 200 pages.
3/19/13 2:59 PM
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GARRA
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Thank you for saving me $20 Phone Post
3/19/13 3:01 PM
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vermonter
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Don't spend it all in one place.
3/19/13 3:14 PM
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gusto
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vermonter - Isn't Mcrobert's stuff just the 20 rep breathing squat every 10.732 weeks while adding .0137 lbs to the lift every time?

It's been a while since I've paid attention (like over a decade) but if so, come on... there's better ways to train.

my only critique of almost all of your S&C recs is that they are too science based. you might thing that is a silly comment so ill explain what i mean. there may absolutely be better methods as long as the trainee completes the work. so it is very important to consider "what is the best method" vs "what is the best method someone is willing and excited to do on a consistent basis"

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