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Kettlebell "Giant 1.0"

Gypsyplumber

Level 6 Valued Member
Yesterday I completed my first week of the Giant 1.0 with double 20kg. I decided to do the program as designed and not implement squats, like I asked in an earlier post. Got in a total of 201 reps for the 3 sessions. The heavy day of 6 reps got me good, but I today I feel great after the 4 rep session yesterday. My upper back feels strong and stable. Altough I must admit: Yesterday I also watched the Strong DVD for the frist time, so I got some cues for the C&P. Because of this my technique (and tension) was better in yesterdays session.
KB Strong is really great stuff. Frist I planned on doing strong as my first Doubles program, but having never practiced with doubles before I was a bit conservative and bought a 2nd 20kg, which turned out to be a 10rm instead of 4-5rm. Because of this I started the Giant. When I'm done with the Giant (I plan at least to complete 1.0, 1.1. and 1.2) I want to buy a heavier pair and stil start KB strong. But for now the explaination of the exercieses alone is worth the price of admission, even if I would never run the program.

For now I run 30 min session. On this threat I've seen people use shorter session in the 4th week. What would be best, use the 20 of 25 minutes format after 3 weeks of 30 minutes?
Typically I’ve been running it with 30 min sessions for the first 3 weeks. Trying to increase total reps each week. Then the 4th week I normally need to drop down to 20 min. Today I was only able to get 15 min on my heavy day of my 4th week.
 

Erik W

Level 4 Valued Member
I strongly recommend either waving the load, with 20/25/30/25, or using the deload week. In my first run through The Giant 1.x series, I used 30 minute sessions and neither waved nor deloaded and my body forced me to deload near the end of 1.2.
 

HUNTER1313

Level 6 Valued Member
I have a Giantish question. I was adding squats at the end of every c+p set using the prescribed reps of the day (ie, 3.0 Monday 2 reps, etc). Since I've moved from 3.0 to 1.0 my legs can't handle the bombardment of the higher reps constantly. I was thinking,
A. Switch to pyramid reps for the squat in typical m,l,h days of 1,2,3 reps and when that's doable increase to 2,3,4 reps.
B. Rerun 3.0 as I'm sure it won't negatively impact greasing the press groove and hammering technique.
 

Steve W.

Level 8 Valued Member
I have a Giantish question. I was adding squats at the end of every c+p set using the prescribed reps of the day (ie, 3.0 Monday 2 reps, etc). Since I've moved from 3.0 to 1.0 my legs can't handle the bombardment of the higher reps constantly. I was thinking,
A. Switch to pyramid reps for the squat in typical m,l,h days of 1,2,3 reps and when that's doable increase to 2,3,4 reps.
B. Rerun 3.0 as I'm sure it won't negatively impact greasing the press groove and hammering technique.
I think either way potentially could work. I've tried combining double front squats with clean and presses in various ways, and there's no one right way as much as it's just about finding the balance between the SQ volume/effort, C&P volume/effort, and overall session effort that feels good and right for you.

Just from mentioning rerunning 3.0, I'm guessing you liked that format, and feel like you could still get more out of it, so I'd lean toward that. I think the rep scheme definitely lends itself more to going rep for rep with presses and squats.

In my experience, once the reps start getting above 4 with a relatively challenging weight, a complex of C&P and FSQ gets to be a little too much. Each set just gets to be a little too much of a fight and requires a little too much recovery to get a good volume, and it just doesn't feel as good anymore. It shifts from being an autoregulated strength program toward being a tough complex program, where I feel like I should really drop down a bell size, or just switch to one of Geoff's programs of complexes.

I just did a five or six week experiment with C&P/FSQ complexes building up from sets of 2 to sets of 5. The weeks with sets of 2 and sets of 3 went really well, but I felt like I was running out of gas once I got to the first week of sets of 4, and I abandoned it in the middle of the second week of sets of 4 (I was doing the same number of reps per set in each session for the week, but varying the number of sets each day).

Alongside Giant 1.0, I've had a much better experience separating the squats and doing something like 2x5, 3x5, or 3, 5, 7 before or after the C&P sessions. Your option A of limiting the number of squats might work, but I'd consider inverting the number of squats and presses. In other words, 3 squats on low rep press day, 2 squats on medium rep press day, and 1 squat on high rep press day.
 
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HUNTER1313

Level 6 Valued Member
I think either way potentially could work. I've tried combining double front squats with clean and presses in various ways, and there's no one right way as much as it's just about finding the balance between the SQ volume/effort, C&P volume/effort, and overall session effort that feels good and right for you.

Just from mentioning rerunning 3.0, I'm guessing you liked that format, and feel like you could still get more out of it, so I'd lean toward that. I think the rep scheme definitely lends itself more to going rep for rep with presses and squats.

In my experience, once the reps start getting above 4 with a relatively challenging weight, a complex of C&P and FSQ gets to be a little too much. Each set just gets to be a little too much of a fight and requires a little too much recovery to get a good volume, and it just doesn't feel as good anymore. It shifts from being an autoregulated strength program toward being a tough complex program, where I feel like I should really drop down a bell size, or just switch to one of Geoff's programs of complexes.

I just did a five or six week experiment with C&P/FSQ complexes building up from sets of 2 to sets of 5. The weeks with sets of 2 and sets of 3 went really well, but I felt like I was running out of gas once I got to the first week of sets of 4, and I abandoned it in the middle of the second week of sets of 4 (I was doing the same number of reps per set in each session for the week, but varying the number of sets each day).

Alongside Giant 1.0, I've had a much better experience separating the squats and doing something like 2x5, 3x5, or 3, 5, 7 before or after the C&P sessions. Your option A of limiting the number of squats might work, but I'd consider inverting the number of squats and presses. In other words, 3 squats on low rep press day, 2 squats on medium rep press day, and 1 squat on high rep press day.
Yes I liked the 3.0 format. It was doable and working well I thought. The odd time I had to drop a few squat reps. The whole Giant format is great. Set your timer and here's the reps for the day. Do as many sets or as little as you feel.
 

John K

Level 7 Valued Member
Certified Instructor
I have a Giantish question. I was adding squats at the end of every c+p set using the prescribed reps of the day (ie, 3.0 Monday 2 reps, etc). Since I've moved from 3.0 to 1.0 my legs can't handle the bombardment of the higher reps constantly. I was thinking,
A. Switch to pyramid reps for the squat in typical m,l,h days of 1,2,3 reps and when that's doable increase to 2,3,4 reps.
B. Rerun 3.0 as I'm sure it won't negatively impact greasing the press groove and hammering technique.
You could also just not do a set of squats after every set of C&P - you could do every other or every third, or, depending how many sets total you do, just cap it at 2-5 sets for the day.
 

Halfakneecap

Level 5 Valued Member
You could do Dry fighting weight or strength Aerobics? Both are C&P and front squats programs.

Only thing I’ve changed now I’m halfway through 3.0 is I’ve upped my calories back to maintenance, and still dropping weight. As someone who loves to eat, it’s awesome.
 

HUNTER1313

Level 6 Valued Member
You could do Dry fighting weight or strength Aerobics? Both are C&P and front squats programs.

Only thing I’ve changed now I’m halfway through 3.0 is I’ve upped my calories back to maintenance, and still dropping weight. As someone who loves to eat, it’s awesome.
I looked at dry fighting weight. It looked alright, but to me I'd hate to look and see which rep day it was. With the Giant it's the same for four weeks. I know it's trivial and possibly a quick look, but I'm not into training logs and keeping track. I'm more of a try and lift more or try and do more than last time within reason kind of guy. Except for a little deload along the way
 

Halfakneecap

Level 5 Valued Member
I looked at dry fighting weight. It looked alright, but to me I'd hate to look and see which rep day it was. With the Giant it's the same for four weeks. I know it's trivial and possibly a quick look, but I'm not into training logs and keeping track. I'm more of a try and lift more or try and do more than last time within reason kind of guy. Except for a little deload along the way
I did strength aerobics in between S&S and giant for a week or two. Timer on and try to get more reps than last session.

I definitely like trying to beat last weeks reps in Giant. I’ll bust my arse to get to last weeks, then cruise into extras. I’m sure at some point I’ll struggle, but it’s great to look back a few weeks and see how much more you’re capable of!

My birthday today and while I was going to have a rest day, I have a croissant and rum pudding for dessert tonight so I’m getting in my sets of 3 day workout right now, so I can fully enjoy it, and a rum or two haha
 

Kev

Level 6 Valued Member
I did strength aerobics in between S&S and giant for a week or two. Timer on and try to get more reps than last session.

I definitely like trying to beat last weeks reps in Giant. I’ll bust my arse to get to last weeks, then cruise into extras. I’m sure at some point I’ll struggle, but it’s great to look back a few weeks and see how much more you’re capable of!

My birthday today and while I was going to have a rest day, I have a croissant and rum pudding for dessert tonight so I’m getting in my sets of 3 day workout right now, so I can fully enjoy it, and a rum or two haha
Happy birthday man.
 

Kev

Level 6 Valued Member
Thanks mate! Sort out the hip?
It’s getting there. I’m managing 1 arm everything with gusto. Not went near running though. I’ve had to patch the giant for the time being but that’s gave me the opportunity to try that A+A clean and jerk program. 1 arm snatch is back on the menu too. All good thanks for asking.
 

Erik W

Level 4 Valued Member
I’m doing the swing and get up protocol, but i find that power production is a better stop sign for me than breathing. Maybe it’s even a combo, the more i do it the more in tune i get. I say be conservative in your self assessment and stop early rather than late. I was a bit discouraged at being stuck at 9 minutes OT30 for two weeks (going off power production mostly) and then this week i had a big jump to 13 minutes. Just be patient.

It’s getting there. I’m managing 1 arm everything with gusto. Not went near running though. I’ve had to patch the giant for the time being but that’s gave me the opportunity to try that A+A clean and jerk program. 1 arm snatch is back on the menu too. All good thanks for asking.

Honestly, orthopedic issues are why I've done the same. I want to get back into the doubles. But, singles just feel good right now.
 
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Scrumdog

Level 2 Valued Member
Week 1 of 1.0 completed. 20 minute sessions and 118 reps completed which I'm quite pleased with.

Bizarrely I found the sets of 4 the toughest, absolutely brutal! Looking forward to two days off now.
 

Steve W.

Level 8 Valued Member
Week 1 of 1.0 completed. 20 minute sessions and 118 reps completed which I'm quite pleased with.

Bizarrely I found the sets of 4 the toughest, absolutely brutal! Looking forward to two days off now.
I don't think it's supposed to be "absolutely brutal."

It's autoregulated so you can push harder or back off, depending on how you feel on a given day. But I interpret that as just meaning you will do a little more work when you feel strong, and a little less when you don't, not that you should kill yourself at any time. Personally, I never push beyond "comfortably hard."

Another thing I do, which is my personal practice and not part of the official instructions, is to take my time with my reps and sets. I hold the lockout of each rep for a couple of breaths, and use an active negative to lower the bells to the rack. Not only do I think there's a benefit in accumulating more time in the lockout and using an active negative, but it helps me to keep my mental focus on form. I explore the lockout position and focus on stacking my alignment to support the bells, so the lockout becomes a little bit of rest, recovery and mental refocusing time between reps. No touch and go lockouts for me.

Coming from a lot of A+A style training with generous rests, over several years, I never worry about taking too much time between sets, only taking not enough.

I just don't like feeling rushed when I'm training, so I cultivate the habit of not rushing, whether that's within each rep or in terms of rest between sets.

I think being a little more relaxed and patient makes training more enjoyable (for me), and progress more sustainable. In this spirit, I also think of the Giant programs as not necessarily limited to four weeks at a time, but just as four week modules that can be continued/repeated over longer periods of time.
 
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Scrumdog

Level 2 Valued Member
I don't think it's supposed to be "absolutely brutal."

It's autoregulated so you can push harder or back off, depending on how you feel on a given day. But I interpret that as just meaning you will do a little more work when you feel strong, and a little less when you don't, not that you should kill yourself at any time. Personally, I never push beyond "comfortably hard."
I think the brutality was caused by poor sleep and general fatigue in the week's last session to be honest.

Took an extra day's rest and on my week 2 day of 5s today smashed it with 11 sets in 25 minutes.

One thing I enjoy with the Giant is the feeling of improving my form every session. Focused on my elbow position and my cleans felt spot on today and presses smoother as a result.
 

Halfakneecap

Level 5 Valued Member
I’m guilty of trying to smash last weeks reps every time. I’m heading into the last week of 3.0, and will go to 1.0. I think the higher rep sets will kill me, so I’m just going to focus on getting through them, rather than trying to rush.

It’s amazing how many more reps you can do week to week.
 

Gypsyplumber

Level 6 Valued Member
This is my rest week, but after taking 3 days off decided to check my max with double 32s. That didn’t go as well as planned lol. I only got 6, but I feel I want to re test in a few days. On the bright side I tested my 1 rep single bell Military press. I was able to press strict press the 40kg on the right side. All in all I’ll take the progress.
 

John Grahill

Level 7 Valued Member
This is my rest week, but after taking 3 days off decided to check my max with double 32s. That didn’t go as well as planned lol. I only got 6, but I feel I want to re test in a few days. On the bright side I tested my 1 rep single bell Military press. I was able to press strict press the 40kg on the right side. All in all I’ll take the progress.
That's great progress! When you do the test again, be sure to play "More than my hometown" like you did last time...it'll give ya a boost!
 
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