ESPN3 Case Study

I don’t want the ESPN3 workout to overshadow the great hatch program,


here is what i’m doing for specific prep:

mon- pure speed/lower body weights (90% of max)
tues- tempo/upper body work weights (mostly push)
wed-speed/conditioning + lower body weights (cluster set of squats with chains, GHR, rev. hyper, sub max DL, some upper body pull work)
thurs - big circuit work (med ball, small hurdle mob, quasi isomet contracts, bodyweight movements, quarter & 1/8 movements)
fri - same as thurs. monitor work capacity
sat - hill work (15y bursts, walk back as rest. repeat for reps & sets) + bench/squat (65%) chains
sun - off

note: on mon & wed track and weights are 3-4 hours apart.

I think I know who you are working with I have seen this style before…does anyone catch the pattern?

That microcycle is actually in 4 layers and involves parametrix fatigue principals from the soviet program (energy system work).

M-W is one segment----->R-S is another segment
Monday (Speed 1: Strength2)
Tuesday (Tempo 0: Strength 2)
Wednesday (Speed .5: Strength2)
Thursday (Circuit 3: Test Score 10)
Friday ( Circuit 3: Test Score 6)
Saturday (AREG Speed/ Strength2)

Due to the 10-15 yards of length the walkback should be fine…the drop off of speed should be minimal and steady and the circuit will monitor fatigue from Wednesday and when your Test Score reaches 2-3 you will start doing strength 4 work and make Friday your speed day and use only one circuit.

My prediction is that you will add 10-20% more lifts on Speed days but drop Strength 2 on Tuesday? Keep us up to date on changes.

Translation? How do you make everything you write cryptic?

“parametrix fatigue principals from soviet programs”…where do I read about that? I have access to alot of texts.

all this monitoring fatigue and work capacity sounds like DB…

forget texts…sometimes manuals are translated wrong or coaches spew lies to confuse others…

fatigue monitoring works from looking at fatigue rates and loads…example is depletion push ups…how many to start and what percent can you replicate. Also add when you do it in the week and macrocycle…

Sounds like DB hammer doesn’t it? yes and no…DB is not real.

Delldell, you might want to check this article by Chris T. with regards to monitoring fatigue.

Thanks, I read that awhile back but forgot about it.

Fatigue interacts with training capacity, fiber types, strength/power loads/ and the training period.

CP has some nice ideas but I don’t feel his NUMBERS are 100% -----drop of precentages of DB are not perfect but it’s not a bad concept.

instead of guessing on design and whos methods they are, what are peoples opinions? what do you like? what dont you like?

I guess nobody wants to tackle this…people are scared to piss off DB or who ever designed it. I think most posters here want to talk about theory…this is to close to reality!

I’m not sure anyone is scared to piss off anyone else (look at some of the other threads!) However, it is difficult to evaluate a program based on a single microcycle. Is this the workout you will do every week with the same %, etc? I didn’t think so! While the weekly structure is important, more important perhaps is the macro structure of training. And how the volumes/intensities are managed over the course of a (pre)season to allow for and take advantage of super compentation, etc.

I also think it is difficult to evaluate a program without knowing more about the current state of the athlete and their goals.

That said, it is an interesting microcycle setup. I’m not sure I understand enough about what “pure speed”, “speed/conditioning” entails. Could you provide more detail? Also, assuming this is for football, there seems to be very little in terms of short acceleration work (with the possible exception of the hill work) but that seems to fall more under general prep rather than specific prep…

Clemson - I saw the word “tackle” and having played and coached football for over 40 years you caught my attention. And I don’t particularly care who I piss off unless it is Charlie or Coach X, 62 or Coach H. They are big men.

Just to set this comment up, as well as coaching on the field, I have been responsible for strength and speed programs for football players for over 25 years. I have believed in the Russian approach since reading Yessis Soviet Review of Sports starting in 1979, of course Charlie our Canadian God since the 80’s and much Powerlifting and some Olympic Lifting since the late 70’s.


(1) Let me make one comment/suggestion for monitoring your training status. Here is the problem I have always had with “Autoregulating” methods. We all know that we can enter the gym with lots of sleep, well-fed, feeling great mentally giving us a score of +12 and have a terrible workout. Or we can come in with little sleep, a couple of Big-Macs and feel like crap giving us a score of -12 and have the workout of our lives. I have always found that decisions made on how hard the workout would be were made following the workout or soon after starting the Main Session.

(2) Take Charlie’s concepts and read Coach X, 62 and Coach H over at and apply them to the program you are currently using you will be fine. There are a number of excellent coaches and programs probably including the one you are using (I say probably because we don’t know who your coach is). Just remember to monitor your training, pay attention to your CNS and recovery/recuperate daily.

Nothing too earth-shaking here ESPN3, but I hope it helps a bit. And remember, when it comes to football the name of the game is - Runnin’ and Hittin’

PS - Xlr8 is right. Can’t make much of an assessment based on 1 week.

CORRECTION: Sorry boys - I made to say decisions made on the difficulty of the workout are made following the WARM-UP or early into the Main Session.

Must be getting old(er).

I just don’t understand why the cycle is organized the way it is. It’d help if he’d say what position he plays and what his training goals are…

If he’s a lineman and all he’s doing is BB type stuff on tuesday and 65% speed stuff later, it seems lacking for upper body.

Why repeat thurdays workout the next day? I see monitor work capacity, but why the same stuff

xlr8 made good points…what’s the macrocycle like and what is meant by pure speed vs. speed/conditioning. I guess maybe speed/conditioning would be like the intensive tempo that seems to be a favorite of college programs…like 10x110 etc.

I was wondering why most of the CNS intensive work occurs early in the training week. Wouldn’t it be more beneficial to space it out? Especially the speed work.

pos - safety. training goals, obviously to get stronger, faster, and into playing shape. speed conditioning 10x110? no, there is no “speed” involved in that. its mostly a normal speed day (some flying 10s added in) with lowered volume & then some basic change of direction runs at the end for repeats. pure speed on the other hand looks something like: long warm-up, dynamic work, 6x30m, 4-5min rest between sets. thats it. current state- 6’3 222lbs, target playing weight - 215 - 218lbs somewhere in that range.

you can tell a lot from a week…in fact you can tell a lot from just a warm-up.

If you are training every day for 4 weeks this program is what?

Speed Tempo Speed Tempo Tempo Speed off Speed Tempo Speed …

two days off? Why not…the workout looks fine and doing the samething is fine to monitor what you are doing…just rotate this after a few weeks if I was you.

Except that he didn’t give us the activites in the week, only general categories (e.g. ‘pure speed’ whatever that means!) And there was no info about the warmup :slight_smile:

If you are training every day for 4 weeks this program is what?

Speed Tempo Speed Tempo Tempo Speed off Speed Tempo Speed …

Is it? It wasn’t clear to me that ‘speed/conditioning’ on Wednesday wasn’t something like intensive tempo…again, not enough info.

two days off? Why not…the workout looks fine and doing the samething is fine to monitor what you are doing…

You don’t need to do the same thing for 4 weeks to monitor what you are doing.

just rotate this after a few weeks if I was you.

Oh, I think that was the point I started with! The question still remains: how do we rotate it and what do we rotate to?


Obviously we are dealing with a athlete who follows the board and uses models similar to the vertical integration model of Charlie Francis. He was very vocal about this in the hatch thread…

Pure speed/ lower body weights looks to be a split and not combination of both. I don’t think he did his speed weights! As for conditioning it doesn’t matter since he still has two days of non CNS training.

Then comes the tricky part of monitoring…I will speculate that he is using the circuit work as a way to gage recovery and use very similar means like rest intervals and hopefully slightly different movements. This would serve as a diagnostic tool (I think) because you should be feeling better the day after. Doing this three times in a row is not a bad idea and thinking that one can monitior CNS with precision is foolhardy. Training is a complex process that needs to be stable. Variety is important but if you are allways changing your program up then you have little to compare to.


I suggest you alter a few things such as length of runs and order of exercise…too much change risk DOMS from too much stimuli.

Tell us about your progression…is this the first week of training your have started…tell us about your past and hint to us your future.

Share as much as the readers want…since I would like to write a program for your next phase (too late now) and see how close it is to your next cycle.

why tempo and weights on tue…why not just combine upper and lower on mon or wed?

better yet why do you combine it Saturday but not during the first part of the week? Strange…

I think it’s because tuesday’s weights are more structural (not so CNS intensive) and saturday is an “explosive” day.
Definitely an interesting split…
It does seem like it’s two separate entities with M-W and R-S.
Don’t get why M&W are so close together