Accumulation weight phase(Charlie?)

Charlie, I’ve seen in some of your work that you advocate as many as as 6 weeks for the accumulation weight training phase. I believe that this takes place in the fall and at the very least with younger athletes though possibly more mature athletes as well. During this phase is the progression totally linear or are there two peaks within the phase such as a peak at 3 weeks and another, possibly higher peak at 6 weeks? Certainly not an absolute peak but a peak as far as the accumulation weights go. How would this phase be structured?

Just trying to move it back up.

Linear. If you need a break mid way in the phase, then it is most likely that the line is too steep to begin with.

The acc phase is entirely dependant on the development stage of the athlete. I wouldn’t describe a peak in this phase as 6 weeks is about as long as it gets, and usually shorter. I’d describe it merely as preparation for the max strength phase, which is entered into as soon as possible.

6 weeks seems like a very long time to make it linear and would probably involve starting with ridiculously light weights to allow such a progression to take place. Additionally I would think that the first 3 weeks might only attain a moderate level and the second three weeks attaining a much higher level.

You would be surprised at some of the gains that are made during the Accumulation Phase, especially if this phase is short yet productive. It is of the best interest of the athlete to set this specific phase up so that gains are continously being made along with preparing the body for the demands of max strength.

I would adjust weight in a typical progression but I wouldn’t refer to it as peaking. Maybe I misunderstood what you meant. There wouldn’t be much need for a 3/1 type of approach as the time is too short for a “plateau” and the CNS demand is moderate.
With a Vertical Integration system, any 3/1 type of adjustment would be reserved for other, more demanding, training componants during this period.

Originally posted by Pioneer
6 weeks seems like a very long time to make it linear and would probably involve starting with ridiculously light weights to allow such a progression to take place.

Wouldn’t you be using different set/rep schemes in this phase? Maybe more volume initially?

Certainly the focus is on volume and not intensity but I would think if one was to spend as much as 6 weeks in such a phase then at least at some point you would want to attain a relatively high intensity(for say 10 reps) at least at some point and in order to reach such a place. A 6 week linear progession seems very slow and could be difficult to progress since you would really have to reign in the athlete(s) from going to heavy initially since they would advancing for a significant block of time. 3-4 weeks would seem to be much easier to progess. I realize that 6 weeks is probably the maximum number of weeks which one would engage in during one specific phase and was merely questioning if each week represented an intensity increase over the previous week.

In the accumulation phase you are trying to prepare the body for max loads, correct? This is usually done by using light to moderate weights and higher reps(8-12). SO how can one avoid hypertophy in this phase or is it a neccessary evil? Im already fairly large from yrs of bodybuilding methods and want to avoid any more mass at all costs. Also what type of track work is done in this phase?

Could you please give an example of an accumulation phase that you did in the past?

I have planned 3 cycles ofan accumulation phase each lasting 2 weeks prior to a 6-7 week block for maximum strength. My rep range will be 6 to 10 at 65 - 75% of 1rm (estimate) with 2 to 5 sets per bodypart.

But I guess the current phase I am in now is an accumulation phase reps ranging from 6 to 15 at 30 - 60% (under doctors orders).

Thanks diggity dog.

What is the reasoning behind the concept that higher reps will best prepare someone for max strength phases?

connective tissue strengthening

No23, do you agree with this concept? I agree with what David W once said (well I’m almost sure it was David W) in that connective tissue strengthens in response to force and not volume, therefore connective tissue is at its strongest using lower reps; higher weight.

Other concepts of a higher rep phases are to increase the SR and therefore enable sufficient energy supply during the max strength (low rep) phase, both for the actual muscular contractions and maybe also for protein synthesis post exercise.

Yes - we argued over this on another post.

I was actually just answering Jimbos question.

Do I agree with the concept?
To be honest with you I’m not so sure now.
I have always believed it up to this.
Davids posts made a good argument. I would like to hear Charlies opinion.

I do think though that the GPP phase or an AA, coming off a close season, and the effects of lifting (whether pyschological or not) lighter for more reps gives one a great opportunity to fine tune weakness and menatlly prepare for the heavier work.

I’ll have to look over Davids posts again.
Like I said I was a believer - now I’m not so sure.
But either way next GPP - there will be a 2 or 4 week phase - whether I lift heavy or light - well Charlies opinion will probably decide for me!

Richard - what is your verdict?

No23, I will be using higher reps in the GPP and shortly afterwards due to the concepts in my above post, but also to aid SE. I know David W does not agree with this but Charlie states there is a case for sprinters to use higher reps due to the special endurance nature of sprinting. See here

That’s it then - I guess I’ll probabaly go with 4-6 weeks of from 8 - 10 reps.