I have always wanted to be strong. When I was a kid I used to look at the accomplishments of my brothers and think” if I only could be that strong.” Especially my oldest brother- he has the body type that just responds to strength training in an amazing way. You know what I am talking about- the type of guy that seems to just look at weights and gets more muscular, stronger and leaner. This was very frustrating to me because early on in my training it seemed like I wasn’t getting any results and my brother was easily. Have you ever been there? Do you want to get stronger and leaner from your training?  Then keep reading because I am going to share with you a program that is easy to follow that along with a good nutrition program will make you both of those things.

                                              (I am on the right at fifteen years old and about 130 lbs.)

As you may be aware , I like to train a lot with kettlebells. I have found that training with them in the context of an intelligent program brings tremendous results in my fitness.  Yet, I want you to be aware that kettlebells are not the only tool that I use. I also am a big fan of barbell lifting- maybe even more than with kettlebells. In fact, lately I have been training  mostly with barbells and doing some conditioning with KBs. That is what today’s post is about- my present program and how you can implement it and get seriously strong as a result!

(This is me now a days and many training sessions later.)

(I am no longer the little, little brother!)

This barbell program is based on a wave cycle, however it is not your normal 4,3,2,1 cycle, it is in reverse. (1,2,3,4) There are many reasons why you will want to do this program like this.

First: It gives you the ability to keep good form Quality reps are not only good but are essential to being truly strong. The people who lift right can cheat a move but the ones that cheat mostly cannot do it properly. In addition to this if you lift with poor form you will end up with movement dysfunction and eventually an injury. It may not be super serious it may only be that you gave your self tendentious in a joint and so on.

Second: This cycling enables you to lift heavier loads without cycling up in weight in your session. In other words, in a deadlifting session you may warm up with 225 for 5 reps and then go to 255 for 3 to 5 and then finally up to your 80% loading. This is not a wrong way to lift and I do it myself at times. However, it does lead to fatigue and sometimes not getting your planned reps or weights done. (raise your hand if that has happened to you) This type of cycle eliminates most of the potential for that to happen and places you in the place of success and a more effective strength session.

Third: You are preparing your body for the next set and one more rep than you just did. In my experience this makes the next set feel easier than it would if you did the conventional climb that I spoke of earlier.

Now that you know some of the reasons why this program is so great, I will show you how to do it.

First thing is that you will have to decide how much weight you will want to use. 80% of your 1 rep max is a good training percentage to go by. It will keep you progressing in strength and it’s safer than training with 100% of your max. So pick your poison(load) simply multiply your one rep max by 80% and there it is. Just make sure that you do this for all of your lifts. Then pick how many days you want to train a week and how many weeks or months it will take you to get to the personal best that you want to achieve in the increments that your body can handle. Lastly, pick your exercises such as The power lifts ( bench, squat and deadlifts.) Or, if like me, you have something that you need to get stronger in like the overhead press  then do that and so on.

Your program will look like this,

Day one: Deadlift (sumo or conventional) 80% to 85% of your one rep max for 1, ( take a5 min rest) 2 reps (same rest) 3 reps (same rest) 4 reps, done ( you just did ten reps with your heavier weight, so for example if you used 315  then you just moved 3,150 pounds by volume!)

Turkish get ups 1r 1l then rest for a minute, do this for 5 reps each side.

Farmers walks- use kettlebells or dumbells go pretty heavy and take 50 steps. Then rest 1 minute to 2 minutes in between sets. Do up to 4 sets with good form.

Day two: Bench or over head presses.  Follow the same rep and loading as with your deadlifts.

Pullups- (weighted) pick a challenging weight that you could do three times on your foot. Do 1,1  a side and rest 5 minutes in between sets. Do two sets of these and then one  set of 5 with just body weight.

Hanging leg raises do 1,2,3 times 3 sets

Two handed kettlebell swings use at least your snatch size weight  24 kg for most men and 12 to 16 for the ladies do 10 on the minute for 10 minutes.

Day Three: Front or back squats, follow the same loading and reps as the other two days.

Over head press use a barbell or kettlebell for 2 sets of 5 with a challenging load.

Pull ups (body weight and palms down with the thumb less grip) do 3 to 5 sets of 5.

Windshield wipers or front levers 1,2,3 times 3

Two handed swings (heavy) 2 sets of 20 reps with three-minute rest in between

If you choose to do four days then you can do your overhead presses on that day with all of your hanging leg raises and wind shield wipers. Also if you feel strong do some two-handed swings as you did on day 2.

So there it is ladies and gentlemen a program that is simple to follow. Take the time to pick the right loads for you and keep them at 80% to 85%. Make sure to get your sleep, eat properly, wave your loads, take rest days and most of all listen to your body as you are training. Everyone is different, so if one of these days is too much volume then lighten up your loads or add another day to put the stuff in that you couldn’t get to.

Getting stronger and leaner is a process and requires patience and intelligent choices while training, So be smart!  Get out there,  get to it and through training surprise yourself and friends with how strong you will be and are getting!

If you need even more help programming and or learning these movements or any other areas  you want to improve, You can e-mail me at moses@mosescorrea.com and we can chat about your goals and see if I can help you achieve them or if you just want to say hi! Happy training friends.

  1. […] a bonus click here for a sample strength program. You can use it as a template or follow it to the […]


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