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Author Topic: Top-Down Programming? Thoughts? Suggestions?  (Read 2757 times)

Pimptasty

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Top-Down Programming? Thoughts? Suggestions?
« on: August 14, 2015, 02:59:16 AM »
Wondering if something like the programming below would be effective. Basically, what it does is it starts from the top, and gets more and more specific. For example, each year would be broken down into 3-4 blocks (depending on your goals). Say that you have three blocks for the year that are 4 months long each:

-Hypertrophy/Work Capacity
-Strength
-Power/GPP

Within those blocks, you have sub-blocks, which make up each month for those 4-month-long blocks. Say that you're in the strength block. You may have 3 sub-blocks that are:

-Hypertrophy/WC
-STR
-Pow/GPP

It would have blocks, just like the 4-month-long ones, but these would still be under the strength block. It would have a strength focus, and slowly increase the RI, while decreasing the volume. It would start out as more strength-oriented than, say, the Hypertrophy block, but this sub-block would still start with a hypertrophy phase, albeit one that has started with lesser volume and a higher RI than the hypertrophy block.

Within those monthly blocks, you'd have the weekly blocks. It's easy to see where I'm going. Within each month, you may have weekly blocks that are:

-Hypertrophy
-Strength
-Pow/GPP
-Strength

Say that you were working the hypertrophy block this time under the month-long strength block. This week would have a lower RI and a higher volume in comparison to the proceeding weeks, but would still have a higher RI and a lower volume than the month-long hypertrophy block.

To illustrate it better, I'll try to type it out easier:


Each year is broken down into, for example, three 4-month-long blocks. Within those 4-month long blocks, there are four 1 month-long blocks. Within those 1 month-long blocks, there are four 1 week-long blocks. Within those 1 week-long blocks, there are three 1 day-long blocks.

Basically, working from the top-down.

You may have, for example, have a hypertrophy day, while on a strength week, while on a GPP month, while on a strength 4-month block. Gradual changes, blocks within blocks within blocks.

Pimptasty

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Re: Top-Down Programming? Thoughts? Suggestions?
« Reply #1 on: August 14, 2015, 03:02:04 AM »
I probably should have used better terms.

Each day you lift would be sort of a supermicrocycle.

Each week would be your microcycle.

Each month would be your mesocycle.

Every 4 months would be your macrocycle.

kevin.cann

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Re: Top-Down Programming? Thoughts? Suggestions?
« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2015, 04:48:32 PM »
Checkout Joe Kenn's Tier System. This is more for field athletes, but could be tweaked to fit what you are talking about. In a strength block the idea is to get stronger, but maintaining other qualities. In my opinion you would always want to program this way otherwise you spend too much time training to get back to where you are.

For example, if you only focus on hypertrophy for a 4 week cycle strength numbers will begin to decrease after 2 weeks. When you enter into a strength block half of that time will be spent getting those numbers back to where they were. This does not mean you need to max out as strength increases happen between 70% and 85%.

The only way to know if it works is to try it
Kevin Cann MS PES
Director of Strength and Conditioning
www.totalperformancesports.com

Robert Frederick

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Re: Top-Down Programming? Thoughts? Suggestions?
« Reply #3 on: August 15, 2015, 08:27:04 PM »
To add to what Kevin mentioned, you should devote about 70% of your training to the quality you want to emphasize and simply maintain the other two with about 15% each. Switch you emphasis in the next block. Another thing Kevin also mentioned is the residual training effect and how long it may last. Different qualities will have different lifetimes and if you structure your training blocks correctly, you can have all qualities line up fully on a certain date. The standard hypertrophy/strength/power sequence is an example of one.

Pimptasty

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Re: Top-Down Programming? Thoughts? Suggestions?
« Reply #4 on: August 27, 2015, 04:27:27 PM »
Within the 3 blocks, how would you do you RI? I was thinking 65-70-75. I'd like 68-70-72, but not sure if that would be too low for the peaking/realization stage (I think it would be).

Additionally, how would you structure your 4-week cycles? I was thinking the old 3 weeks on, 1 off, but not sure. Maybe 3 weeks on, a mid-week mock meet, and then continue? Or maybe the week off with active recovery? Or maybe just a very light weight deload week (say 50% of your normal RI).

Robert Frederick

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Re: Top-Down Programming? Thoughts? Suggestions?
« Reply #5 on: August 28, 2015, 04:34:08 PM »
If you include warm ups, 68-72% on average is a the ideal intensity, according to Sheiko's analysis of training diaries from champions.

How would I load and unload? Just like Sheiko does too--day to day variations.