1. Maximal Strength – moving the most weight possible
2. Strength-power – moving heavy weights with power
3. Muscular Size – building muscle to support the force you exert with maximal and strength-speed
The third, muscular size, is tougher especially if you are set in a particular weight class and do not wish to move up. The relationship of muscle size to strength is less apparent in novice lifters than it is in more experienced lifters; meaning that hypertrophy is crucial to muscular size (Size vs. Strength: How Important is Muscle Growth For Strength Gains? • Stronger by Science)
These three components need to be trained consistently enough to warrant improvements in all areas with phases devoted to focus on one over the other.
The Behemoth Strong Method (BSM) effectively combines the 3 critical parameters of strength development into a block program with each phase having it’s own main focus with the other two being parameters being a sub-focus.
The Foundations block, which is the start of your BSM plan, focuses on muscular size first, with strength-power being a minor focus, and maximal strength lagging far behind to be used later.
The submax rep work lends itself to putting on quality mass, building your work capacity, and using the CAT method (compensatory acceleration training) you will be able to improve strength-power on your main lifts.
The critical goals of the foundations phase are to build your base in order to move forward with the specificity phase prepared to handle the inevitable heavy weights.
The specificity phase focuses mainly on strength-power with a minor in maximal strength. The loads will be heavier this phase and towards the latter part of this phase strength-power will be side by side with maximal strength. You will continue to utilize CAT with your main lifts, generating as much power as possible with all of your reps to properly train the body to be powerful, strong, and tight. Muscular strength is a sub-focus during this phase as the overall volume of reps is lowered in lieu of sculpting that base into it’s masterpiece.
The final phase is the peak. This is a five week peak that takes the work you have built from Foundations and Specificity in order to focus solely on moving the most weight possible for your meet day.
In the Specificity phase we slightly overlap strength-power and maximal strength towards the end which makes the transition into maximal strength as seamless as possible. The goal isn’t to move you from 6-7 rep sets into one rep sets, the shock to your system would be more than necessary to bring forth the greatest demonstration of strength. The cumulative volume of work with a heavier load prepares you for peaking.
The volume in this phase is dramatically lowered so you can focus fully on maximal strength expression. I have found people under fatigue during the latter phases of Specificity who, upon moving to the peaking phase, pulled out numbers they didn’t expect to get.
Recently I had a lifter pull 766 at a deadlift exhibition which was a 60 pound PR. A lifter at my gym benched 335, which is a 20 pound PR, and his last working sets were no more than 285. The same lifter pulled 520, a huge 65 pound PR after his last working sets being no more than 420. This weekend I had a lifter smash a 60 pound total PR since March, plus hitting a lifetime PR on his bench press at 360.
The peak is designed to bring you up to a gym max, and taper you down with a concrete structure in order for you to rest for your meet.
Supercompensation should happen if you follow the plan, meaning you should recover stronger than you were before the taper. All the available data I have to this point shows this to be true.
Powerlifting requires you to be focused on a plan that is designed to maximize key areas of improvement at particular times in your program. It’s not feasible for everyone to be ready within 2 weeks at any given moment. Longevity requires planning, phases, periods of rests, periods of easier work, and attention to detail.
The BSM addresses these variables and ends with you on the platform breaking your old numbers.
If you want personal coaching e-mail me. If you are local to KC and want to utilize this method to improve your lifts, come to KC Barbell and let’s get you started.
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