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  1. #1
    Registered User jburchill's Avatar
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    Looking for a 3 month peaking program

    Hello all, I'm looking for a good 3 month peaking program. I know I'm more than 3 months out, but never too early to plan. I am 39 and will be competing in a meet in October. I been searching for one and I am having no luck on finding one that I like. I seen this one that keeps popping up: Powerlifting for Mass & Hypertrophy Program by Mathias Method Strength. I don't know much about it. Right now I am just doing Wendler 531 just for some structure of a workout.

    Thanks in advance!!
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  2. #2
    Nicotaf24 Nicotaf24's Avatar
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    If you have a little more than 3 months then I highly recommend Calgary Barbell’s 16 week program. Currently running it and feeling stronger than ever. I also had a great experience with Mike T’s Generalized Intermediate Program (I think that was 9 weeks though). Look into them.
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  3. #3
    Time is Muscle ECGordyn's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Nicotaf24 View Post
    If you have a little more than 3 months then I highly recommend Calgary Barbell’s 16 week program. Currently running it and feeling stronger than ever. I also had a great experience with Mike T’s Generalized Intermediate Program (I think that was 9 weeks though). Look into them.
    ^^ Absolutely. They've also got an 8 Week program, or you could just cut the first block from the 16 Week to fit a 3 month timeline.

    Another peaking block is Candito 6 Week but that's just 5-6 weeks. Could run a development block prior to that.

    BB Medicine has some much shorter peaking blocks. Could run a development block for 8-9 weeks then run their 3-week peak.
    2020 maxes
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    Registered User Condo41's Avatar
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    I'm not even close to being a competitor but in certain with some light research into JEFF NIPPARD's program sets you'll be pleasantly accommodated.
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    Registered User jburchill's Avatar
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    I like the structure of Calgary Barbell’s 16 week program or the 8 week program. I have never done RPE's before, so kind of confuses me a little.

    Where are the assistance lifts? I don't see no triceps work, or back work like rows, pulldowns etc....
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  6. #6
    Time is Muscle ECGordyn's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by jburchill View Post
    I like the structure of Calgary Barbell’s 16 week program or the 8 week program. I have never done RPE's before, so kind of confuses me a little.

    Where are the assistance lifts? I don't see no triceps work, or back work like rows, pulldowns etc....
    The Calgary is a powerlifting program, so it emphasizes the big 3 rather than lots of isos. Will definitely increase your big 3 lifts.

    There is a fair bit of back work in the program with the cable rows and 6 sets of DB rows, and the vertical pull. With all the benching, tricep work isn't necessary.
    2020 maxes
    Squat 185
    Bench 137
    DL 205
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    Registered User jburchill's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ECGordyn View Post
    The Calgary is a powerlifting program, so it emphasizes the big 3 rather than lots of isos. Will definitely increase your big 3 lifts.

    There is a fair bit of back work in the program with the cable rows and 6 sets of DB rows, and the vertical pull. With all the benching, tricep work isn't necessary.
    I see there is a lot of back movements on this spreadsheet I found. And with the amount of benching variations the tris will get worked pretty good. Actually looking to starting this next month. I have a meet this saturday, really no peaking for it. Just doing it for fun. Then I'm gonna do a program and then see what I get in October.

    Also, being 39, I am wondering about recovery for the squats and deads. How did you do with recovery?


    How did you like the taper week leading in the competition? I kind of feel like that is too much work for the week leading into comp. I would probably modify that for myself so I'm fresh on comp day.
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    Time is Muscle ECGordyn's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by jburchill View Post
    I see there is a lot of back movements on this spreadsheet I found. And with the amount of benching variations the tris will get worked pretty good. Actually looking to starting this next month. I have a meet this saturday, really no peaking for it. Just doing it for fun. Then I'm gonna do a program and then see what I get in October.

    Also, being 39, I am wondering about recovery for the squats and deads. How did you do with recovery?


    How did you like the taper week leading in the competition? I kind of feel like that is too much work for the week leading into comp. I would probably modify that for myself so I'm fresh on comp day.
    I ran the 8 Week four times last year at age 42-43 and recovery was fine mate. I was in a hefty surplus most of the time. Just take care of your shoulders because the benching volume is high.

    Actually I felt detrained during the taper. The 2 weeks before the taper are easy for me because there's so little volume, so in the future I'll just use those for the taper. You can adjust the last part of the program for yourself depending on your body.
    2020 maxes
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    Bench 137
    DL 205
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    Registered User jburchill's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ECGordyn View Post
    I ran the 8 Week four times last year at age 42-43 and recovery was fine mate. I was in a hefty surplus most of the time. Just take care of your shoulders because the benching volume is high.

    Actually I felt detrained during the taper. The 2 weeks before the taper are easy for me because there's so little volume, so in the future I'll just use those for the taper. You can adjust the last part of the program for yourself depending on your body.
    What were your training day splits? I like to go 5 days a week just to go to the gym and get out of the house.

    Also, I like to go heavy and probably train too high in my max %. You ever deviate from the program and go heavy?
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    Originally Posted by jburchill View Post
    What were your training day splits? I like to go 5 days a week just to go to the gym and get out of the house.

    Also, I like to go heavy and probably train too high in my max %. You ever deviate from the program and go heavy?
    No I followed the program as written. Submax training accomplishes the same goal as max training like 531, but without the ego pump. The last block you have the opportunity to go heavy with triples or singles @8 RPE, but that can have a big recovery cost if you overshoot RPE.

    I'd just follow the program and do 4 days lifting and on the 5th day cardio and mobility or something.
    2020 maxes
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    Bench 137
    DL 205
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    Nicotaf24 Nicotaf24's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ECGordyn View Post
    No I followed the program as written. Submax training accomplishes the same goal as max training like 531, but without the ego pump. The last block you have the opportunity to go heavy with triples or singles @8 RPE, but that can have a big recovery cost if you overshoot RPE.

    I'd just follow the program and do 4 days lifting and on the 5th day cardio and mobility or something.
    Definitely this, and if you are going to add some vanity work do not overdo it, don’t let it affect your recovery. If you are either bulking or at least eating at maintenance you should be able to recover. And definitely make sure you do lots of stretching and taking care of your shoulders, otherwise you will regret it.
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    So far so good on the program. Only thing I couldn't get so far was the close grip bench they had laid out for me. I ended up a rep short each set. Oh well, had me doing close grip at a weight I usually never try.

    For Pin squats, where do you guys set the pins. For the weight they have me doing I feel like if I set at parallel I'm not getting back up. I tried 385 today for above parallel and that was heavy enough. But I feel like I can do the prescribed weights if above parallel.
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    Good stuff keep at it!
    Forgot to comment to just mention be sure that program has at least one deload week - 3 months is a long time to be hitting it hard - that accumulated fatigue will catch up to you!
    It's never too late!

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    Clearly Irrational blue9steel's Avatar
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    16 weeks is too long for a peaking specific program. The whole point of peaking is reducing fatigue while retaining strength and technique. With 16 weeks you're more likely looking for something that is a combination two strength mesos + a peaking meso or something along those lines.
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    Originally Posted by PhDPepper1111 View Post
    Good stuff keep at it!
    Forgot to comment to just mention be sure that program has at least one deload week - 3 months is a long time to be hitting it hard - that accumulated fatigue will catch up to you!
    im doing the last 8 weeks of the 16 program then deloading. when doing 531 i loved deload week lol
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    Registered User jburchill's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by blue9steel View Post
    16 weeks is too long for a peaking specific program. The whole point of peaking is reducing fatigue while retaining strength and technique. With 16 weeks you're more likely looking for something that is a combination two strength mesos + a peaking meso or something along those lines.
    maybe that what the calgary 16 week program is. although i am doing just the last 8 weeks. then deload and then run the 8 weeks again. hips and shoulders are kind of taking a beating. the results of the next meet will depend if i do this program again lol.
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    Originally Posted by jburchill View Post
    maybe that what the calgary 16 week program is. although i am doing just the last 8 weeks. then deload and then run the 8 weeks again. hips and shoulders are kind of taking a beating. the results of the next meet will depend if i do this program again lol.
    I think it is TBH. Calgary has 2-3 mesos. Careful with the old shoulders. Fatigue will kill your gains!

    Originally Posted by jburchill View Post
    im doing the last 8 weeks of the 16 program then deloading. when doing 531 i loved deload week lol
    I hate deload week. It just feels so... light and useless! :P
    It's never too late!

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    6/20/21 Western drug tested regionals: DQ (bombed squats) @ 192lb
    2/27/21 PNW drug tested championships 468/308/501 @ 202lb
    10/10/2020 FS meet: 407/303/474 @ 212lb

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    Originally Posted by PhDPepper1111 View Post
    I think it is TBH. Calgary has 2-3 mesos. Careful with the old shoulders. Fatigue will kill your gains!


    I hate deload week. It just feels so... light and useless! :P
    i used to just skip deload week and go to the next cycle. now on deload weeks i do more assistance work and things i usually skip. made better gains when deloading. this was for 531
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    Originally Posted by jburchill View Post
    i used to just skip deload week and go to the next cycle. now on deload weeks i do more assistance work and things i usually skip. made better gains when deloading. this was for 531
    I'd say if you can skip deload week then you likely should have either kept going or worked harder/done more, otherwise why are you deloading?
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    Originally Posted by jburchill View Post
    So far so good on the program. Only thing I couldn't get so far was the close grip bench they had laid out for me. I ended up a rep short each set. Oh well, had me doing close grip at a weight I usually never try.

    For Pin squats, where do you guys set the pins. For the weight they have me doing I feel like if I set at parallel I'm not getting back up. I tried 385 today for above parallel and that was heavy enough. But I feel like I can do the prescribed weights if above parallel.
    Set the pins where you can squat to full depth. Their purpose is to train positioning and tightness at the bottom, not cause unnecessary fatigue with excess weight and not instill bad habits by getting stronger at squatting above parallel. You need to be stronger at or below parallel.

    Pin squats should be lighter than your comp. squat.
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    Originally Posted by blue9steel View Post
    I'd say if you can skip deload week then you likely should have either kept going or worked harder/done more, otherwise why are you deloading?
    i just skipped deload in the past because i didn’t like doing light weights in the past. wasn’t about doing more or working harder. probably more ego of not wanting to do less weight. now that i do the deloads i wish i would of done more deloads and gave my body a chance to recover. now i feel stronger after deloads.
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    Pin squats went pretty well, hit my numbers. Kind of feel like these might help me get past some sticking parts of my squats. Box squats I feel like I get loose too much when i sit back. Pin squats you have to stay tight or I wasn't coming back up. Can't wait to try the 395 for three reps next week. That might break me haha.
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    Originally Posted by jburchill View Post
    Pin squats went pretty well, hit my numbers. Kind of feel like these might help me get past some sticking parts of my squats. Box squats I feel like I get loose too much when i sit back. Pin squats you have to stay tight or I wasn't coming back up. Can't wait to try the 395 for three reps next week. That might break me haha.
    I did some pin squats this week as well. I do like them - and they help you find the depth perfectly!
    Box squats are a different animal. I love box squats but it sounds like the pin squats are doing the trick for you.
    It's never too late!

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    6/20/21 Western drug tested regionals: DQ (bombed squats) @ 192lb
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  24. #24
    Registered User jburchill's Avatar
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    Did my tough pin squats today. Not sure if my program correct with it. Had me do one set at 395, then after that 1 set of 2 at 395. Oh well I got and wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be.

    Sets Reps Load
    Pin Squat 1 1 8RPE 395.0
    Pin Squat 1+1F 2 9RPE 395.0
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