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ISSUE #120

Quotable Quote

"If I told you there was a million dollars under one rock out of thousands. How many rocks would you pick up?"
Louie Simmons, Westside Barbell Club

Are you learning about new methods to help you reach your training goals? No doubt you are, since youre reading this newsletter. So make sure you check out Strength Coach Jim Wendlers interview (below) on a better way to periodize your workouts. In Part II of the interview next week, Jim will tell us how to get stronger in the squat and bench press.

1 The new Get Lean newsletter

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The newsletter features new Turbulence Training routines, fat loss research reviews and interviews, and bonus offers on my Turbulence Training Special Reports and Workout Manuals. The first issue of Get Lean features fat loss advice from Southern Californias top trainer and Mens Fitness Adviser, Alwyn Cosgrove.

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2 Getting Strong: How to Improve Your Bench & Squat

Jim Wendler is a former assistant Strength and Conditioning coach at the University of Kentucky where he worked with several different teams including football and baseball. He currently works as the Senior Editor of Elite Fitness Systems and trains at Westside Barbell in Columbus, Ohio.

Jim played football and graduated from the University of Arizona where he earned three letters. Wendler helped lead the Wildcats to back-to-back bowl games, the Insight.Com Bowl in 1997 and the Holiday Bowl in 1998. Wendler was a key player in helping Arizona defeat the Nebraska Cornhuskers in the Holiday Bowl and finish with a No. 3 ranking.

Jim started training for sports at age 14 and his best lifts in competition are a 940 squat, 650 bench press and 650 deadlift and a 2225 total. He has done numerous seminars across the country to help people reach their strength and conditioning goals. You can read more about Jims training philosophy in first CB Athletics interview here: www.cbathletics.com/issues/108.htm

CB: Jim, what is the Conjugate Periodization system?

To make this as simple as possible conjugate periodization is training several different qualities and raising them (developing them) at the same time. In the case of maximal strength we use the three ways to best develop muscular tension; the dynamic method, the maximal effort method and the repeated effort method.

Think about it this way; if you were in school and took three classes, math, science and English. The conjugated schooling would have you take all three classes at the same time and have a comprehensive test on all three at the end of the semester. Most training programs (for example a traditional linear periodization model) would have you take 4 weeks of math, 4 weeks of science and 4 weeks of English followed by a test on all three at the end. If you were to take the math class during the first 4 weeks, how much would you remember at the end of the semester?

CB: How is the conjugate system superior and how does the traditional Western periodization model falter?

See the previous question, but let me state the following; most training programs can work if done in a thoughtful and well-thought way. For the most part the systems that do falter are usually because of lack of individuality. I hear all the time how one program is superior to another but I always wondered if these people have developed their own system to fit their needs.

In the sports community, conjugated periodization is usually referred to as the Westside Method; I train at Westside and am still trying to figure out what they are referring to. Everyone at Westside does something different to address their needs.

CB: Are there any articles on EFS where readers can go to learn more about the conjugate system?

I think we have well over 200 articles at EliteFTS.com and an extensive (and archived) Q/A. For starters try Dave Tates 8 Keys articles. Daves Periodization Bible Parts 1 and 2 are the ones that really hit home for me. From there we have so many great articles and advice on the Q/A. I have to emphasize that it takes time and patience to learn the ins and outs of some of the terms and how to set up a program. Dont be intimidated; things will clear up very quickly. I should probably point out that this kind of training is not for the very beginner.

CB: What lessons and tips can bodybuilders take from the conjugate system?

We get this question all of the time and to be honest I really dont know as I have never trained a bodybuilder. I think bodybuilders would probably be better off if they used some kind of periodization in their training. Remember that periodization is nothing more than a plan.

I do know that most of the guys I train with, if they were a little more careful with their diets, would certainly give some bodybuilders a run for their money. Certainly not the top level bodybuilders, though. The conjugate system was developed for athletes in mind and I doubt that anyone has really used this kind of training to competitively body build. If one has done so, its news to me.

CB: Thanks Jim. Readers can check out more Conjugate Periodization articles at www.elitefts.com. I read the QnA section of elitefts.com every day and learn new training tips with each visit. I highly recommend the site and purchasing your equipment needs from EliteFTS (Ive spend hundreds of dollars on their products and its been worth every penny). Next week: Chains, bands, sleds, and bench & squat technique pointers.

Resource Box:
The information on cbathletics.com is for education purposes only. It is not medical advice and is not intended to replace the advice or attention of health-care professionals. Consult your physician before beginning or making changes in your diet or exercise program, for diagnosis and treatment of illness and injuries, and for advice regarding medications.

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