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Welcome to Texas! Now squat!

October 7, 2009


Today is the second day in a Texas Method week. If you’re not familiar with the Texas Method, it’s a method of programming for intermediate weight lifters. Once past the novice stage, many lifter will be unable to progress linearly or they may have trouble recovering because the weights are so fucking heavy.

I’m working the Texas Method on squats but due to various setbacks, I believe I can still progress linearly in the Press and Bench Press for a while.

In the Texas Method, the week breaks down into three major workouts. The first workout is intended to be heavy and to accumulate tonnage. Five sets of five reps for the Squat is pretty standard. My last major stress day was six sets of three at 365.

The second day, for me coming on Wednesday after Monday’s volume workout, emphasizes lower volume and lower intensity. You might do 3 sets of 5 squats at 80% of Monday’s weight. Or you might do Overhead Squats and/or Front Squats, which by definition are lighter than back squats. I like doing Overhead Squats and Front Squats as I have an interest in the Olympic lifts, and I think they’re useful skill work.

The reasoning behind Wednesday’s programming is that you need to get into the gym and lift, enough to warm up and get the blood flowing. But lower volume than Monday helps you recover between Monday’s murderous sets across and the PR-fest that will be Friday.

Currently, I’m working on Overhead Press (or just “Press”) on my Wednesdays and Monday and Friday get the Bench Press. After October 12, I’ll probably switch back to Rippetoe’s preferred alternating of Press and Bench Press, but I really need to work on my Bench for an upcoming Powerlifting Meet.

Finally, Friday’s workout will generally be very heavy sets, from singles and doubles, to triples and fives. The ultimate goal of the Texas Method is to keep your 1RM moving up, and that’s why Friday’s PR day. Ultimately, total volume will be relatively low on Fridays. For me, I’ll probably also pull deadlifts on Friday while working deadlift accessory lifts on Monday and Wednesday. The combination of relatively low volume on the squats with enhanced recovery should help me progress with my deadlift even if I’m only pulling once a week.

So this was today’s workout:

Row 5k

Overhead Press 5x 95
Overhead Squat 5x 95

Overhead Press 5x 105
Overhead Squat 5x 105

Overhead Press 5x 115
Overhead Squat 5x 115

Overhead Press 5x 120

Overhead Press 3x 120, 2x 120

Front Squat 5x 135
3x 165
1x 185
1x 225

Back Squat 5x 225, 5x 225

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