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Determine the Length of Your Workouts

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"Doing more exercise with less intensity,"
Arthur Jones believes, "has all but
destroyed the actual great value
of weight training. Something
must be done . . . and quickly."
The New Bodybuilding for
Old-School Results supplies
MUCH of that "something."

 

This is one of 93 photos of Andy McCutcheon that are used in The New High-Intensity Training to illustrate the recommended exercises.

To find out more about McCutcheon and his training, click here.

 

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Bill De Simone

New Jersey, USA

In my first few X-Force workouts, as I was moving up the learning curve, my weight selections were too light, and I was stopping the sets because of the intense, immediate burn. Last week, I increased all the weights, less burn during the set, shorter sets to failure, and was wiped out for two days afterward. I figured 13 sets was too much, and decided to keep it to 10 going forward.

This past Saturday, in a remarkable show of discipline and self-restraint, I did another 14 sets. Although in fairness, 2 of the them were repeats, as I'm trying to master a couple of the moves.

All on X-Force except*: Medx* LX, Horizontal LC 180, Leg quad (ext) 160, LP 400, Lat Back Circular (pullover) 180, Lat Back Row 120, Deltoid Lift (side raise) 140, Deltoid Press 120, Curl 160, Lat Back Pull 140, Triceps 2x, 60, Ab Crunch, 2x,100. All sets between 50 and 70 seconds until stalling on the positive. All ranges "user selected", i.e. consistent with MAEX and CE. Rest between sets, enough to set range limiters, seats, and stack; about one minute, which feels a bit too short near the end.

Again, I'm having none of the negative experiences reported by others. The "cam effects" all feel right to me: no sticking point or drop off, which tells me the resistance torque is varying to match the changes in muscle torque through the range. Even with the heavier weights, the "extra negative" is there but not overpowering.

I have no problem with the set up time. Training with zero rest is obviously a way to train, but not the only way. I find that without the joint discomfort, I'm pushing so hard, that if I didn't have the rest, the later exercises would definitely suffer. Or I'd mess up Roger's carpet.

The Medx LX was interesting with the anti-shear shin pad instead of a roller by the ankles.

I was most curious about the Lat Back Circular aka Pullover, which took away one of the distinguishing features of the old Nautilus Pullover, the elbow pads.
I think the old rationale for the pads is faulty. While I can see your grip giving out prematurely on conventional chins, rows, etc. was the biceps really a weak link for the lats? What about the rear deltoid, the teres major, the pecs; all of which are smaller than the lats, but unavoidably in the chain of the pullover. Brunnstrom's (and other texts) say that the largest muscle in the chain takes the brunt of the effort, as an energy saving tactic; so the lats are the prime mover in shoulder extension anyway.
I also think that using hands on the bar helps stabilize the shoulder more than the elbow pads. For those of you with intact biceps and triceps running through your shoulder, hands on the bar is more likely to engage the biceps and triceps statically, providing more shoulder stability.
In my case, without those attachments, I make use of the range limiter to not go too far overhead, which I would probably suggest anyone use for the same reason. Lats' peak torque is at 90 degrees of shoulder flexion, so as long as you load through that angle, extreme end ranges are only so useful.
The Cam effect is similar to my previous exercise, the straight elbow pulldown with an overhead cable (as in CE and MAEX). Given a choice of the 2, I'd choose the XForce, because of the 'extra negative', but those would still be my two choices. Both are safer on the shoulders and match the lats' torque better than the heavy-db-over-bench pullover.

With lighter weights, the burning went from back shoulder to hips and back up again, so I'm pretty convinced the lats were working.

Next time, I keep the same weights, but limit the number of sets to 10. This time I mean it.
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Hitit

14 or 10 exercises seems like allot! Why so much?

You are getting allot of crossover, yes?

I thought with especially these machines doing less was more productive due to the deeper fatigue?

Even 10 movements using non-X-FOrce machines is really pushing it IMO. Unless you're a beginner (maybe you consider a beginner with X-FOrce finding your weight/rep nitch on these) or MAYBE if you are a 25 year old or on enhancements.

What are your thoughts?

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Bill De Simone

New Jersey, USA

Hitit wrote:
14 or 10 exercises seems like allot! Why so much?

You are getting allot of crossover, yes?

I thought with especially these machines doing less was more productive due to the deeper fatigue?

Even 10 movements using non-X-FOrce machines is really pushing it IMO. Unless you're a beginner (maybe you consider a beginner with X-FOrce finding your weight/rep nitch on these) or MAYBE if you are a 25 year old or on enhancements.

What are your thoughts?



Not on enhancements, not 25, maybe finding weight/rep niche.

After that, I'm not necessarily committed to "no overlap". I'm going to use Roger's standard, which is, if you maintain or improve on the weight performance, stay the course, if not, correct something.

But the real reason is that Roger has the coolest collection of machines. Period. The computerized Medx and X-Force in one room, Superslow in another, and a museum quality collection of vintage Nautilus. Omni chest press, hip and back of various designs, pullovers, duo squat, super forearm, Medx selectorized, I haven't begun to catalog them all.

If ever in the Pa area, well worth a visit.
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fbcoach

Nice. I am very interested in hearing about your progress.


I don't want to hyjack your thread, so I will share my yesterday's experiment on the Cirulli X-Force thread. Good luck and hope your experience is a positive one.
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simon-hecubus

Texas, USA

Hitit wrote:
14 or 10 exercises seems like allot! Why so much?


Agreed, especially for NA movements!

Was it MM that said: "Do what you need, not how 'much you can take'"?

Also, I'd point to the notion that overtraining is a process, not an event --- this volume of NA may be fine for a few workouts, but how sustainable is this?

Scott
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Bill De Simone

New Jersey, USA

simon-hecubus wrote:
Hitit wrote:
14 or 10 exercises seems like allot! Why so much?

Agreed, especially for NA movements!

Do what you need, not how 'much you can take' --- this may be fine for a few workouts, but how sustainable is this?

So Bill, how many of these movements are compound and how mani iso?

Scott



We'll find out how sustainable it is. As I said, I'm going to follow Roger's guideline, as long as the weight performance maintains or gets better, stay the course.

For now, once/week, 10-14 exercises on X-Force, to failure, rest as long as needed between sets. Not a couch potato the other days, but active.

I'm a lot more interested in actual exercise and it's results/consequences than in a philosophic approach for its own sake.

I listed the exercises above, slightly more single joint than multiple joint.
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Hitit

Bill De Simone wrote:
Hitit wrote:
14 or 10 exercises seems like allot! Why so much?

You are getting allot of crossover, yes?

I thought with especially these machines doing less was more productive due to the deeper fatigue?

Even 10 movements using non-X-FOrce machines is really pushing it IMO. Unless you're a beginner (maybe you consider a beginner with X-FOrce finding your weight/rep nitch on these) or MAYBE if you are a 25 year old or on enhancements.

What are your thoughts?



Not on enhancements, not 25, maybe finding weight/rep niche.

After that, I'm not necessarily committed to "no overlap". I'm going to use Roger's standard, which is, if you maintain or improve on the weight performance, stay the course, if not, correct something.

But the real reason is that Roger has the coolest collection of machines. Period. The computerized Medx and X-Force in one room, Superslow in another, and a museum quality collection of vintage Nautilus. Omni chest press, hip and back of various designs, pullovers, duo squat, super forearm, Medx selectorized, I haven't begun to catalog them all.

If ever in the Pa area, well worth a visit.


I'm just surprised someone as experienced as you would go this route. Like Scott said maybe a few workouts, especially when your finding your weights/reps nitch. But to do this much with N/A X-Force at your age, I just can't imagine is will be very productive when going TTF.

We've seen quite a few people already including Joe who was doing more than he was fully recovering from. I think he started out with the same number of exercises as you and going once/week.

I respect you and of course I can't tell you what to do, you do know much more than I about exercise science.

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SanSooMan

Hi Bill, wasn't until I started doing NO that my arms "exploded" from little over 15" to 16.5" These Jive Turkeys who knock NO or NA just don't know what the hell they talkin about. Or they are trying to sell something.
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Hitit

SanSooMan wrote:
Hi Bill, wasn't until I started doing NO that my arms "exploded" from little over 15" to 16.5" These Jive Turkeys who knock NO or NA just don't know what the hell they talkin about. Or they are trying to sell something.


WTF are you talking about? Who is knocking NO or NA?

Please read before you squawk.
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Bill De Simone

New Jersey, USA

Hitit wrote:
SanSooMan wrote:
Hi Bill, wasn't until I started doing NO that my arms "exploded" from little over 15" to 16.5" These Jive Turkeys who knock NO or NA just don't know what the hell they talkin about. Or they are trying to sell something.

WTF are you talking about? Who is knocking NO or NA?

Please read before you squawk.



Easy, gentlemen.
How much exercise science we each know isn't the point. I'm doing an experiment on myself. Or maybe I'm pushing it out for a finite time to see how well it works, and then I drop back to a more moderate program.
That's it; nothing more grandiose than that.
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Hitit

Bill De Simone wrote:
Hitit wrote:
SanSooMan wrote:
Hi Bill, wasn't until I started doing NO that my arms "exploded" from little over 15" to 16.5" These Jive Turkeys who knock NO or NA just don't know what the hell they talkin about. Or they are trying to sell something.

WTF are you talking about? Who is knocking NO or NA?

Please read before you squawk.


Easy, gentlemen.
How much exercise science we each know isn't the point. I'm doing an experiment on myself. Or maybe I'm pushing it out for a finite time to see how well it works, and then I drop back to a more moderate program.
That's it; nothing more grandiose than that.


I can appreciate finding one's limits by whatever means I guess. Be interesting to see where you'll be.

I only wish I could be there to train on X-Force as well.
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DSears

Bill,

I'd love to get your opinion on the 30-30-30 method that Dr. Darden discussed if you get a chance to experiment with it. He reported that his trainees were getting equal results using that method on Med-X as they were on the X-Force machines.

Thanks,

David
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fbcoach

Hey Bill,
I can appreciate the self-experimentation. Keep us posted on your progress. I am sort of going the other route. Training a few compounds each workout, but training a bit more often. Just a different self-exploration. I am interested in anyone that is willing to push the boundaries of human performance. I have found that the body is capable of adapting to much more than we believe, as long as it is given what it needs to adapt (rest, work, nutrients, or whatever it may need).

You have a really good reputation as an HIT Trainer, so take my 2cents for what it's worth. Distance yourself from the cult-like bandwagon posters. They come across as uninformed instigators just looking for a platform to spew silliness.

Again, keep us informed on your progress and your observations. I am really interested in learning about NA exercise in a HIT fashion. I train my team on a more PowerLifting-type format, and I have seriously gave some thought to changing it.
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Bill De Simone

New Jersey, USA

DSears wrote:
Bill,

I'd love to get your opinion on the 30-30-30 method that Dr. Darden discussed if you get a chance to experiment with it. He reported that his trainees were getting equal results using that method on Med-X as they were on the X-Force machines.

Thanks,

David


I've been trying to not mix techniques, so I haven't used it since you mentioned it recently. But prior to starting XForce I tried it on a chin up.
If I didn't have access to XForce, I could definitely see pursuing it. Certainly allows for perfect form. The first 30 seconds is a warm up, then the positive is harder, and the last 30 negative is very tough.
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Bill De Simone

New Jersey, USA

fbcoach wrote:
Hey Bill,
I can appreciate the self-experimentation. Keep us posted on your progress. I am sort of going the other route. Training a few compounds each workout, but training a bit more often. Just a different self-exploration. I am interested in anyone that is willing to push the boundaries of human performance. I have found that the body is capable of adapting to much more than we believe, as long as it is given what it needs to adapt (rest, work, nutrients, or whatever it may need).

You have a really good reputation as an HIT Trainer, so take my 2cents for what it's worth. Distance yourself from the cult-like bandwagon posters. They come across as uninformed instigators just looking for a platform to spew silliness.

Again, keep us informed on your progress and your observations. I am really interested in learning about NA exercise in a HIT fashion. I train my team on a more PowerLifting-type format, and I have seriously gave some thought to changing it.


Best of luck with what you mentioned in the other post.
A lot of ways work. Prior to this, I was splitting an overall workout over 3 days, and no one accused me of looking sickly then either.
With the once/week training, I'm still doing other things (jiu jitsu, yoga, walk/run with the dog) the other days, but not to the point of interfering with the X-force session.
Cult-like bandwagon posters? Where?
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jastrain

Bill De Simone wrote:
Hitit wrote:
14 or 10 exercises seems like allot! Why so much?

You are getting allot of crossover, yes?

I thought with especially these machines doing less was more productive due to the deeper fatigue?

Even 10 movements using non-X-FOrce machines is really pushing it IMO. Unless you're a beginner (maybe you consider a beginner with X-FOrce finding your weight/rep nitch on these) or MAYBE if you are a 25 year old or on enhancements.

What are your thoughts?



Not on enhancements, not 25, maybe finding weight/rep niche.

After that, I'm not necessarily committed to "no overlap". I'm going to use Roger's standard, which is, if you maintain or improve on the weight performance, stay the course, if not, correct something.

But the real reason is that Roger has the coolest collection of machines. Period. The computerized Medx and X-Force in one room, Superslow in another, and a museum quality collection of vintage Nautilus. Omni chest press, hip and back of various designs, pullovers, duo squat, super forearm, Medx selectorized, I haven't begun to catalog them all.

If ever in the Pa area, well worth a visit.


Agreed, mainline is the best gym on the planet....Bar none!!!!!! I wish other gyms would try to copy at least some of what mainline has done. They would do very well if they did. That gym is extremely successful ...

It would be impossible to recreate what he has assembled over the years but even if a gym owner were to get all of the medx and xforce and several lines of the old nautilus they would do very well they would attract the serious body builders.i see you are from nj...that is a long ride to pa!!!! But worth it once a week.

I would love for someone to install the xforce in NYC or in proximity...I used to drive from NYC to Philly to visit a good friend every month or so..and I did check mainline out...but for me to do that treck once a week is too much for me...plus my. Friend moved from Philly so I haven't been there in a year or so,...

We should get as many people in the ny nj area to chip in and buy a line of these things get 1000 people to put up $100.00 ....but then again we would still need to rent a space to use them so I guess that is not feasible!!!!keep us up to date on your opinions and progress with the xforce....this has been a very interesting and informative read!!!! Thanks....for the reporting and the long drive.....get that 10 or more extra pounds of muscle!!! That will be astounding to see at your level..to add anything at this stage would be a true testament as to the effectiveness of this equipment....keep it up..keep us posted..you should also take measurements and pics ...before/after
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SanSooMan

Hitit wrote:
SanSooMan wrote:
Hi Bill, wasn't until I started doing NO that my arms "exploded" from little over 15" to 16.5" These Jive Turkeys who knock NO or NA just don't know what the hell they talkin about. Or they are trying to sell something.

WTF are you talking about? Who is knocking NO or NA?

Please read before you squawk.


Sorry bud, wasn't really talking about you. Others on this board seem to think NO, NA isn't very effective which is their right, they just don't know what the hell they are talking about.
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Hitit

SanSooMan wrote:
Hitit wrote:
SanSooMan wrote:
Hi Bill, wasn't until I started doing NO that my arms "exploded" from little over 15" to 16.5" These Jive Turkeys who knock NO or NA just don't know what the hell they talkin about. Or they are trying to sell something.

WTF are you talking about? Who is knocking NO or NA?

Please read before you squawk.

Sorry bud, wasn't really talking about you. Others on this board seem to think NO, NA isn't very effective which is their right, they just don't know what the hell they are talking about.


Thanks, but no need for an apology. I bark more than I bite just for effect...

Sometimes it sounds louder than I actually intended it to via typing.

;)
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Marc1000

Bill De Simone wrote:
Best of luck with what you mentioned in the other post.
A lot of ways work. Prior to this, I was splitting an overall workout over 3 days, and no one accused me of looking sickly then either.
With the once/week training, I'm still doing other things (jiu jitsu, yoga, walk/run with the dog) the other days, but not to the point of interfering with the X-force session.
Cult-like bandwagon posters? Where?


Bill,

It sounds like the full-body routine with this many demanding exercises can induce quite a bit of fatigue and really drain you. However, since it's an hours drive to Roger's facility, you pretty much have to get everything done in one session.

If you had more convenient access to the xforce machines, for example at your own facility, would you split this workout into 3 days?

Thanks,

Marc

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Bill De Simone

New Jersey, USA

Marc1000 wrote:
Bill De Simone wrote:
Best of luck with what you mentioned in the other post.
A lot of ways work. Prior to this, I was splitting an overall workout over 3 days, and no one accused me of looking sickly then either.
With the once/week training, I'm still doing other things (jiu jitsu, yoga, walk/run with the dog) the other days, but not to the point of interfering with the X-force session.
Cult-like bandwagon posters? Where?


Bill,

It sounds like the full-body routine with this many demanding exercises can induce quite a bit of fatigue and really drain you. However, since it's an hours drive to Roger's facility, you pretty much have to get everything done in one session.

If you had more convenient access to the xforce machines, for example at your own facility, would you split this workout into 3 days?

Thanks,

Marc



Knowing me, probably, because in my own studio, I've gone between one full body workout/week and splitting the same workout over several days.
But the fatigue from the 14 exercises was noticeably less this week, so I'm going to stick with it. It may be something you adapt too, but if you always limit your sets to five, say, you never have to. We'll see.
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STanner

Texas, USA

SanSooMan wrote:
Sorry bud, wasn't really talking about you. Others on this board seem to think NO, NA isn't very effective which is their right, they just don't know what the hell they are talking about.

Hey Sansoo,

What sort of rep/cadence were you and Matt using during your NO training experience?
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SanSooMan

STanner wrote:
SanSooMan wrote:
Sorry bud, wasn't really talking about you. Others on this board seem to think NO, NA isn't very effective which is their right, they just don't know what the hell they are talking about.
Hey Sansoo,

What sort of rep/cadence were you and Matt using during your NO training experience?


About 8 to 10 seconds.
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SanSooMan

STanner wrote:
SanSooMan wrote:
Sorry bud, wasn't really talking about you. Others on this board seem to think NO, NA isn't very effective which is their right, they just don't know what the hell they are talking about.
Hey Sansoo,

What sort of rep/cadence were you and Matt using during your NO training experience?


I remember measuring Matt's arm right after a set of NO preacher curls. It measured 18". Not bad for a 6'3" 200lbs with a 32" waist who never took drugs.
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Ellington Darden

Bill,

I'm curious: Which X-Force machine do you do first and which one do you do last?

Do you ever change the order?

Ellington
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Bill De Simone

New Jersey, USA

Ellington Darden wrote:
Bill,

I'm curious: Which X-Force machine do you do first and which one do you do last?

Do you ever change the order?

Ellington


Ell, I'm following Roger's lead, and he has me doing a Darden-esq pre-exhaust order. Generally starting with leg curl-extension-press, and finishing with the triceps. Not particularly stressing over the exact order, and sometimes trading exercises, eg. alternating overhead press with angle press wo to wo.

Not purely a classic pre-exhaust, because of the set up time, but mainly because I take as much rest as I want to give an all-out effort on the next set. We haven't tracked it meticulously, but the 12 exercise yesterday took about 30 minutes.

When the weight progressions stall, I'll probably push the rest times to be shorter.
Personally, I'm trying to find the "sweet spot" between load, time of the set, and rest between sets. With "too light" a load, the set lasts longer and I stop because of the intense burning. "Too heavy" and I stall at the 2rd or 3rd rep with no burning. Too little rest between and the effort on the latter sets suffers; plus I tend to want to fall down.
In the meantime, though, the joints feel fine, which allows me to push harder than I have in years.
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