Does Easy Strength make all other programs obsolete??

vegpedlr

More than 500 posts
Dan's experience and from observing others is that, for some reason, the benefits seem to drop off noticeably when going beyond forty days. Since everyone is different YMMV. I have stopped after forty days each time, but if you are deriving improvement past that point I see no reason to stop.
Interesting. I sorta vaguely recall this, in addition to the common experience of marked improvement around 20 days. For me, I’m looking for a balance between endurance and strength training that favors endurance a little bit more. I don’t want the strength work to interfere with aerobic function as per Maffetone, so Easy Strength is the call. Four days per week seems ideal for allowing enough time to get everything in, and the 50 sessions is because I want to spend 3 mos. at it, Sep. Oct. and Nov. before changing programs for the winter. A plateau is fine, I call that maintenance. I’m curious to see what happens, I’ve never done ES for so long. Someday I would also like to try alternating shorter 20 day periods with other stuff.

In this case I’m base building. Building an aerobic base and a strength base. Easy Strength and Easy Endurance.
 

Sean M

Quadruple-Digit Post Count
Found the quote, it is location 4456 in Kindle and the quote is from Vladimir Issurin. The recommendation is +6 or less indicates good recovery, 11+ is accumulated fatigue and 16+ is "alarm bells". I believe it is in the context of aerobic exercise, because the next paragraph talks about RPE in the context of explosive and nonoxidative activities.
 

vegpedlr

More than 500 posts
Word play. If it is not easy, it must be difficult, right? Why choose “difficult strength” when you you could do Easy Strength?
 
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GeoffreyLevens

Quadruple-Digit Post Count
after the last rep I lower the bar to the ground under control- you could make up some padding and plywood if you wanted to drop the weights?
Thanks KIWI5. I do have padding down already, just not sure of tech for getting a zercher held bar all the way to the floor. Do you just reverse path i.e. rest it briefly on your knees, switch to DL grip, raise hips and complete the bottom of a DL? Or is there some other, easier way? The one time I have tried zercher's in a gym I was not fond of the feeling of bar resting on my legs, less "comfortable" than in my elbow pit, so after one set, went to standing between low spotting pins and racking it at the bottom.
 

KIWI5

More than 300 posts
GeoffreyLevens; yes- I place the bar down exactly how you noted- with one exception. I perform block pulls for my deadlift- and start my Zercher squat from the blocks. So the bar is lowered to the home made blocks when the set is complete. The blocks are about 2.5" below my knee caps. I found the elbow hold to be uncomfortable at first- but I got used to it and the same with the bar on the knees. I have the bar resting about just off my knee caps when in the lower position- and I feel almost zero discomfort, maybe you should try some different locations and see if there is a more comfortable zone? Go with a light weight at first and just practice with getting into the lower position, that's what I did and I am slowly finding the 'sweet spot' for my foot placement etc. Keep at it- your nerve endings will get used to it and the 'monster gainz' that follow will make the all the suffering well worth it....;)
 

kennycro@@aol.com

Quadruple-Digit Post Count
I'm halfway through my first Even Easier Strength cycle and I can't believe the results. It really is magical to hit targets this....easily. But why bother with any other programs seeing as this style of submaximal daily lifting works so well?
"Everything Works But Nothing Works Forever."

Any new training program or method initially elicit results. However, at some point, whatever program your are following will stop working.

The Magic

The magic of a new program has to do with Hans Selye's "General Adaptation Syndrome", circa 1923.

It was dumbbed down by Joe Weider, who tattooed his name on the methods that other came up with.

My philosophy, "If you want to be good at something, borrow their ideas. If you want to be great, steal them." However, I give credit to those that I steal from; Weider didn't, he took full credit. I have issues with people like that.

Thus, the "General Adaptation Syndrome" became "The Weider Method of Muscle Confusion".

The "General Adaptation Syndrome"

This simply means that body will eventually adapt to new stress place on it, under the right conditions.

Thus, when you are "Exposed" to a new training program, under the right conditions, your body becomes stronger. However, once adapted to the new program, progress stops.

That is the primary reason the drives...

Periodization Training

The foundation Periodization Training is built on constantly changing (varying) something in your program and providing "Active Recovery".

Varied Exercises

Research had demonstrated that varying exercise in your program, in the long run, evokes a greater increase in Strength. Source: "Changes in exercises are more effective than in loading schemes to improve muscle strength." Changes in exercises are more effective than in loading schemes to improve muscle strength. - PubMed - NCBI

Active Recovery

Increases in strength and muscle mass occur during recovery; training is employed as a stress mechanism that encourage adaptation.

Periodization Training plans "Active Recovery" periods; allowing an increase in strength and muscle mass.

Periodization Training means you progressively overload for a number of weeks. In the final week, you max out in your program, reps/weight in your program.

You then, dramatically decrease the load to something that is light and easy. Then over the next few weeks progressively overload until you max out again with in the new cycle.

Cycle Length

The length of a Periodization Training Cycle is dependent on if you are novice, intermediate or advance.

Novice Lifer adapt slowly; their program can last from 8 - 12 weeks.

Intermediate Lifter adapt faster; their program can last around 8 weeks.

Advance Lifter adapt quickly; their program can last 3 - 4 weeks.

Short Term Deloads

Short Term Deloads of one training session or one week before going full tilt back into the same program or full tilt into a new program, aren't as effect as a well written and executed Periodization Training Program.

The dogma of Short Term Deloads continues to be perpetuated on message board and in gyms. It falls into the same category as: doing Sit Ups to decrease your waste/abdominal body fat, consuming 6 meals a day to increase your metabolism/burn fat, etc.

While some results will occur with Short Term Deloads, a greater training effect is elicited with a well written, executed Periodization.

Kenny Croxdale
 
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KIWI5

More than 300 posts
Yes, nothing lasts forever! So yesterday I followed the Easy Strength advice and shifted my block pull to snatch grip block pull, incline bench to close grip incline bench and I'm staying with the Zercher Squat as I am still experimenting with different positions. I vary my chin up grips and the loaded carries change daily. The only constant is the ab wheel x 5- i will try to vary the direction, so do curved path instead of straight. Two days into the snatch grip block pulls and I love this variation! By continuously cycling in new movements I should be able to continue the gains for a good while I imagine- my strength standards fall into the area of mostly intermediate.
 

Bill Been

More than 500 posts
I would definitely like to see the actual methodology used in the study Mr. Croxdale referenced. “Constant Exercise Varied Intensity” could describe anything from Simple & Sinister to a Starting Strength Novice Linear Progression. Both fit the category but I doubt anyone would argue they’re very similar in effect.

As is always the case when examining ExSci studies - the devil is in the details - like very small groups (n=<10) and very short time spans (12 weeks) and very low frequency (2x/week) off the top of my head.
 

KIWI5

More than 300 posts
When I think about the daily training programming of Easy Strength- my thoughts turn to some of the strongest and best conditioned guys I meet. I am referring to some of the guys I know who work in forestry and fencing jobs (this would apply to many other physical professions as well!). They engage in daily, sub maximal lifting. Their strength training varies through the loaded carries, low rep heavy lifting, explosive movements and constant aerobic activity- rarely going into the Crossfit 'MetCon' zone. Zero 'gym' time, and yet their strength and conditioning is outstanding. My job does not provide this sort of training so 'Easy Strength' programming is the next best thing. Funny thing- all the aforementioned lads never seem to get 'weaker' despite 'lifting' the same weights year in and year out.....I loved reading 'Rock Iron Steel', there were many fantastic tales of some seriously tough hombres- all who worked at heavy lifting activities on a daily basis. Great stuff.
 

Denny Phillips

Triple-Digit Post Count
When I think about the daily training programming of Easy Strength- my thoughts turn to some of the strongest and best conditioned guys I meet. I am referring to some of the guys I know who work in forestry and fencing jobs (this would apply to many other physical professions as well!). They engage in daily, sub maximal lifting. Their strength training varies through the loaded carries, low rep heavy lifting, explosive movements and constant aerobic activity- rarely going into the Crossfit 'MetCon' zone. Zero 'gym' time, and yet their strength and conditioning is outstanding."
 

Denny Phillips

Triple-Digit Post Count
Oops!

I wanted to add that a couple guys I knew in high school went on to became bricklayers and are impressive physical specimens. Both around 6'4" and men you can tell are not to be trifled with.
 

kennycro@@aol.com

Quadruple-Digit Post Count
I would definitely like to see the actual methodology used in the study Mr. Croxdale referenced. “Constant Exercise Varied Intensity” could describe anything from Simple & Sinister to a Starting Strength Novice Linear Progression. Both fit the category but I doubt anyone would argue they’re very similar in effect.
Research Article

Check your "Start A Conversation" Box. I posted my email address. Give me your and I will email you the research article.

As is always the case when examining ExSci studies - the devil is in the details - like very small groups (n=<10) and very short time spans (12 weeks) and very low frequency (2x/week) off the top of my head.
Yes, those are some of the issues with research studies.

Now let look at...

Long Term Anecdotal Data

The foundation of the Westside Powerlifting Program (stared circa early 1980's) is based on constantly changing Auxiliary Exercise as a means of increasing strength. So, the Anecdotal Data demonstrating the effective of this protocol as been in use for approximately 38 years for hundreds of individuals.

Dr Tom McLaughlin's book, Bench Press More Now, which came our in the 1980's is based on his research on the Bench Press; the same principles apply to the other Powerlifts and other exercises, as well. Bench Press More Now is based on his research; Mike Bridges, Bill Kazmaier, etc.

McLaughlin (PhD Exercise Biomechanics), as is Simmons Westside Training Protocol, promoted frequently changing Auxiliary Exercise to optimize strength.

Charles Poliquin (who recently passed away) was one of the first write about the benefits of Undulating/Non-Linear Periodization Training (circa 1989) as a more effective method for increasing strength, in the National Strength and Conditioning Research Journal. I can also send you that article.

Cross Fit is one group that promotes Undulating/Non-Linear Periodization Training. However, they maintain a hyperbolic state of Muscle Confusion. In other word chaos.

Bodybuilding/Hypertrophy Training

Bodybuilders constantly change exercises as a means of increasing muscle mass; hitting the muscles from a different angle and for the General Adaptation/Muscle Confusion factor.

Changing The Exercise

Changing the angle, your grip, foot spacing, bar position, etc are effective changing the exercise.

Wide Stance Squats to High Bar Squats, Narrow Grip Bench Press To Wide Grip To Incline Press, Sumo Deadlift to Conventional.

Kenny Croxdale
 
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Bauer

More than 500 posts
For all of those that like combining OS with Easy Strength:

Tim Anderson has a new book and here is a great excerpt coupling resets with lifts:
https://originalstrength.net/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/OSR-TraditionalLifts-final.pdf

And he has a blog article about coupling ES with OS:
The Easiest Strength Program | Original Strength

If a person Pressed RESET for 40 days for 10 minutes a day AND stacked Easy Strength on top of that for 40 days, they would create a major change, or a new beginning, and discover amazing strength potential.

It’s The Easiest Strength program. Period… And, it’s crazy enough to work.

Here is an example of what it might look like:

1) Press RESET x 10 minutes (breathe with diaphragm, nod head, roll around, rock back and forth, crawl a bit).

2) Then pick 3 movements like a deadlift, a pull-up, and an overhead press, OR
Like a Romanian deadlift, a bench press, and a dumbbell row, OR
Like a Squat (keep it light), a pushup, and a TRX row, OR whatever you want to train….
Perform no more than 10 GOOD reps of each exercise, broken up however you want, and “toyed” with. Toyed with? Yes, play with speeds, vary loads, and explore. Be curious and have fun.

3) Oh, AND, in the vein of my book, Habitual Strength, if you wanted to supercharge this, add in 10 minutes of carries every day too.
 

KIWI5

More than 300 posts
TIM ANDERSON HAS A NEW BOOK!!!! Awesome news!! I've been on the OS resets for some time now. OS resets in the am Easy Strength in the pm. 5-3-2 tonight, but time now to throw on a 20kg pack and mow the lawn.....
 

vegpedlr

More than 500 posts
I got my 77 yo dad into ES, and he's finally getting into it. He's long been of the mindset that if it doesn't hurt, it's not doing anything. That, coupled with the mainstream mentality of isolating muscles, using machines, maybe even splits derived from BB has left him sore and missing training days. He's also a fidgety sort who likes to be involved every day. So ES works great. It gives something to do nearly every day, but he can take a day off as needed or if something else comes up. But he stays fresh and ready to go again.

For most people, most of the time, Easy Strength is hard to beat.
 

GeoffreyLevens

Quadruple-Digit Post Count
It is brilliant! Breaks the old mind set for sure. Funny-isolating muscles...one of the vids I saw the other day, end of the day in a powerlifter gym, last guys finishing up. The owner went around and asked "If you could only do one exercise for the rest of your life what would it be?" One said DL, owner said Atlas stones, pretty much everyone else said farmer's carry. BUT one clown said biceps curls and another said Shake Weight.
 

KIWI5

More than 300 posts
The week of testing continues- I'm spending a week testing the different lifts I've been using in Easy Strength. I've put an 'easy' 15kg on my Zercher Squat- up to my bodyweight 83kg for a solid triple , and I had more reps in the bank, and .I'm performing the Zercher Squat from the dead stop on every rep. Wow. From the initial testing I already did on a 5-3-2 day around day 20, I can easily say that I will pull triple of 130-135kg deadlift, but I need to buy more plates! I have only 120kg.....I will test my incline bench tomorrow and I know I'll smash out my bodyweight for a triple as I've already done a medium hard double with 80kg. That will be around 10kg increase, at the very least. But that all pales in comparison to the increase in a lift I HAVE NOT been training , The Kb press. I have never been able to press my 'monster bell', a 24kg bad boy that I call 'Ivan'. After testing the Dead Stop Zercher, I wanted to do some Kb pressing as it has been several months now without any Kb pressing. So I did 2x 1-2-3 reps each arm with my 20kg KB (aka 'Mike'). I thought afterwards ......that was easy- way easier than ever before..and after a few minutes I proceeded to press my 24kg KB 3 TIMES EACH ARM. I was absolutely stunned with this achievement. Talk about WTH effect.
 
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