TunnelRat's Korte Program

Discussion in 'Strength-Specific Training (SST)' started by TunnelRat, Sep 11, 2007.

  1. TunnelRat

    TunnelRat Active Member

    Korte's strength program

    When I finished my last HST – Max-Stim cycle, Dan Moore asked me to rep out my previous maxes to see what sort of SE gains I may have made. Although my results may be “good enough” for an old geezer over 60, I was still disappointed with my strength. As a result, I’ve decided to try the Korte strength program that Steve Jones and Sci Muscle wrote about earlier this year.

    Korte’s program is limited to the three competition lifts – Squat, Bench Press, and Deadlift. There are no “assistance” exercises in the program, rather squats, benches, and deads are done three times weekly with many sets. I’m not interested in competition, but I would like to improve my strength, so I thought I’d give it a try.

    The set up is done by determining the one rep max for each exercise, adding a prescribed bit to each to get a projected rep max goal, then using a high volume of fairly light percentages (58% – 64%) of those projections. During the High Volume Phase, squats and deads are done in five to eight sets of five. Bench presses are done in six to eight sets of six. Later, during the High Intensity Phase, the reps decrease significantly, and each lift gets a turn, once each week, building toward the projected rep max.

    The program is rigorous enough that I wasn’t sure I would even be able to do it. So I planned a two-week preparatory period, during which I could work my way up to meet the program requirements (or at least I would find out if I were able to do so). I quickly learned I would have to use Max-Stim in order to complete the high number of reps required. Coming off a ten day strategic deconditioning, I began at about 50% (or less) of my projected rep maxes, only gradually increasing the weight and the repetitions.

    Monday, August 27
    Squat 115 x 5 x 5
    Bench 60 x 6 x 6
    Deadlift 155 x 5 x 5

    Wednesday, August 29
    Squat 125 x 30 MS (Max-Stim here on out)
    Bench 65 x 48 MS
    Deadlift 160 x 30 MS

    Friday, August 31
    Squat 135 x 35 MS
    Bench 70 x 48 MS
    Deadlift 165 x 35 MS

    Labor Day: Off (Thank goodness!)

    Wednesday, September 5
    Squat 145 x 40 MS
    Bench 75 x 48 MS
    Deads 175 x 40 MS

    Friday, September 7
    Squat 150 x 40 MS
    Bench 80 x 48 MS
    Deads 185 x 40 MS

    A problem I ran into in planning my program is that my weak-ass projected maxes are so low that it is hard to load the bar with the odd percentages that Korte calls for. Perhaps 58% of your 500 lb. bench press is 290 lbs., but 58% of my max projected 150 lbs bench amounts to 87 lbs; 62% would be 93 lbs. How can I load such odd weights on the bar?

    Also, Korte likes to use the same weight for three consecutive workouts, only incrementing once a week. Rather than beat my brains out repeating the same weight again and again, I figured I would apply two of the fundamental principles of HST:
    1) progressive load, and
    2) you can tweak anything.

    Thus, rather than bench (an impossible) 87 lbs for three workouts, I decided to use a progression of 80, 85, 90. Rather than use (an impossible) 93 lbs for three workouts, I planned 90, 95, 100, etc. (I hope I am not being silly).

    Thus I begin.
     
  2. TunnelRat

    TunnelRat Active Member

    Proposed High Volume Phase:

    Week 1:
    Squat mwf -- 145, 150, 155 x 40 MS
    Bench mwf -- 80, 85, 90 x 48 MS
    Deads mwf -- 185, 190, 195 x 40 MS

    Week 2:
    Squat mwf -- 150, 155, 160 x 40 MS
    Bench mwf -- 85, 90, 95 x 48 MS
    Deads mwf -- 190, 195, 200 x 40 MS

    Week 3:
    Squat mwf -- 155, 160, 165 x 40 MS
    Bench mwf – 90, 95, 100 x 48 MS
    Deads mwf – 195, 200, 205 x 40 MS

    Week 4:
    Squat mwf – 160, 165, 170 x 40 MS
    Bench mwf – 95, 100, 105 x 48 MS
    Deads mwf – 200, 205, 210 x 40 MS

    Proposed High Intensity Phase:

    Week 5:
    Deads m – 260 x 2, wf – 195 x 9
    Bench w – 120 x 2, mf – 90 x 20
    Squat f – 205 x 2, mw – 155 x 9

    Week 6:
    Deads m – 275 x 2, wf – 195 x 9
    Bench w – 125 x 2, mf – 90 x 20
    Squat f – 220 x 2, mw – 155 x 9

    Week 7:
    Deads m – 295 x 2, wf – 195 x 9
    Bench w – 135 x 2, mf – 90 x 20
    Squat f – 230 x 2, mw – 155 x 9

    Week 8:
    Deads m – 315 x 2, wf – 195 x 9
    Bench w – 145 x 2, mf – 90 x 20
    Squat f – 245 x 2, mw – 155 x 9

    Projected Max:
    Deads 325
    Bench 150
    Squat 255
     
  3. TunnelRat

    TunnelRat Active Member

    Monday, September 10
    Squat 145 x 40 MS
    Bench 80 x 48 MS
    Deads 185 x 40 MS
     
  4. RUSS

    RUSS Member

    <div>
    (TunnelRat @ Sep. 11 2007,08:40)</div><div id="QUOTEHEAD">QUOTE</div><div id="QUOTE">I figured I would apply two of the fundamental principles of HST:
    1) progressive load, and
    2) you can tweak anything.</div>
    LOL! [​IMG]
     
  5. TunnelRat

    TunnelRat Active Member

    Wednesday, September 12
    Squat 150 x 40 MS
    Bench 85 x 48 MS
    Deads 190 x 40 MS

    Korte has some interesting thoughts about these 58% to 64% lifts. He recommends what he calls the 'energy saving method' (ESM):
    &quot;It simply means that you should only put in as much energy for a particular lift as you need to.&quot;

    With the deads it is apparent that I only need to use a little more than half of my strength. My back begins to ache a little, but my legs hold up just fine. It's the squats that gets to me. After about 30 or so repetitions, it surely feels like I need to use a whole lot more than 58% of my energy!
     
  6. quadancer

    quadancer New Member

    <div></div><div id="QUOTEHEAD">QUOTE</div><div id="QUOTE">How can I load such odd weights on the bar?</div> Old speaker magnets.

    You got a link for that? I may want to look at it after I get back in shape and regain some size.
     
  7. Lol

    Lol Super Moderator Staff Member

    Hey, TunnelRat, just spotted this thread. Shouldn't this be in the log section if you are going to update it regularly? Anyhow, I'll try to remember to keep checking back here on your progress. All the best.
     
  8. TunnelRat

    TunnelRat Active Member

    LOL, I agreed that it would fit well in the training log section. However, it was here in the Strength Specific Training forum that I first learned about Stephan Korte's program through the postiings of Sci Muscle and Steve Jones. So I figured I'd enter mine here as well.

    It never occurred to me to post this in the Training Log section until you brought it up. I do intend to update it regularly, so maybe a moderator might deem it necessary to move it there.

    Meanwhile I'll just keep grinding away under all that volume...!
     
  9. TunnelRat

    TunnelRat Active Member

  10. TunnelRat

    TunnelRat Active Member

    Friday, September 14
    Squat 155 x 40 MS
    Bench 90 x 48 MS
    Deads 195 x 40 MS

    Okay, my first week is over (It's not really fair to count the previous two weeks, since they only constituted a warm up). I don't really feel as though my back is fried, but I can tell I've been lifting...

    I'm really pleased that I chose to arrange the weights in a somewhat undulating (zig zag) fashion. It probably doesn't make a lot of difference physiologically -- I'm only incrementing by 5 pounds -- but it surely matters psychologically. My &quot;heavy&quot; day is over; I get two days to rest; then I start again with somewhat lighter weights. Ah, the games I play in my mind!

    I've noticed that, after about 20 or so repetitions of my squats, I seem to be able to get noticeably lower. I've always had trouble getting much below parallel, and though I say I do ATG squats, I'm usually only just below parallel. After 20 reps though, I've been getting my buttocks clear down to my heels -- which makes getting back out of the hole all the more interesting.

    Thank goodness for Max-Stim and its gracious M-time, or I'd never be able to finish this routine!
     
  11. TunnelRat

    TunnelRat Active Member

    Monday, September 17
    Squat 150 x 40 MS
    Bench 85 x 48 MS
    Deads 190 x 40 MS

    Today was my &quot;light&quot; day (and I appreciated it...). To celebrate I ran HIIT sprints for 15 minutes afterwards (though I am never sure if my intensity is high enough).

    My gym has a track that takes me about 30 seconds to run a lap. Then I can walk another lap in about 60 seconds. So I run one and walk one, constantly wishing that the wall clock would move faster...
     
  12. DairyGuy

    DairyGuy New Member

    I've recently started Korte's 3x3 program (I'm about a week in). I chose it because I wanted mainly a strength program that was quick (I'm tired of working out 45 min. to an hour). I have to say that I love this routine! It's quite easy, I'm using 58% (which is somewhere around my 15 rep max) doing sets of 5. I'm in and out in 30 minutes (I do a couple sets of abs at the end) and I feel like my entire body is being worked. If this works as well as people say it does, I'm never doing HST again. The only question I have is since the first phase is so similar to HST, should I do a brief SD between cycles? Thank you all.
     
  13. TunnelRat

    TunnelRat Active Member

    <div>
    (DairyGuy @ Sep. 17 2007,23:09)</div><div id="QUOTEHEAD">QUOTE</div><div id="QUOTE">I've recently started Korte's 3x3 program (I'm about a week in). I chose it because I wanted mainly a strength program that was quick (I'm tired of working out 45 min. to an hour). I have to say that I love this routine! It's quite easy, I'm using 58% (which is somewhere around my 15 rep max) doing sets of 5. I'm in and out in 30 minutes (I do a couple sets of abs at the end) and I feel like my entire body is being worked. If this works as well as people say it does, I'm never doing HST again. The only question I have is since the first phase is so similar to HST, should I do a brief SD between cycles? Thank you all.</div>
    Interesting... I can think of many adjectives to describe Korte's program, but &quot;easy&quot; isn't one of them. My program takes me exactly one hour to finish -- 40 squats, 40 deads, and 48 bench presses take a certain amount of time for these old bones to crank out.

    I certainly agree with you that it feels like my whole body has been worked. Heck, some days it feels like my whole body has been run over by a truck...

    I'm not sure you're making a fair comparison between HST and Korte's 3x3. HST is designed mainly for size development (hypertrophy), whereas Korte's is a strength program.
     
  14. TunnelRat

    TunnelRat Active Member

    Wednesday, September 19
    Squat 155 x 40 MS
    Bench 90 x 48 MS
    Deads 195 x 40 MS

    Still grinding this out. I vaguely seem to recall complaining about doing squats and deads in the same workout. Now I do them three times a week, 40 reps each.

    I surely hope this program produces results, because it is knocking the crap out of me (if this keeps up, there'll be nothing left but a pair of shoes...).
     
  15. _tim

    _tim Well-Known Member

    OUTSTANDING, TunnelRat! You're doing an amazing program!

    I hope it yields all kinds of strength for you!
     
  16. TunnelRat

    TunnelRat Active Member

    <div>
    (_tim @ Sep. 20 2007,15:15)</div><div id="QUOTEHEAD">QUOTE</div><div id="QUOTE">OUTSTANDING, TunnelRat! You're doing an amazing program!

    I hope it yields all kinds of strength for you!</div>
    Thanky kindly, sir! I hope it does, too.

    Friday, September 21

    Squat 160 x 40 MS
    Bench 95 x 48 MS
    Deads 200 x 40 MS

    I am halfway through Phase I of the program. Korte's 3x3 is not a program you complete -- it's a program you try to survive...! I am stiff and sore all over, but I am glad that I have been able to make it this far.

    Today was my &quot;heavy&quot; day. In theory these weights should be light, since they are only 60% of my 1 RM. In practice, however, I've never lifted my 1 rep maxes. Rather, I estimated them, based on my repping out from my last cycle. I've lifted heavier weights, but not all that much heavier, and surely not for 40 reps!

    Usually the bench presses serve as a welcome break between my squats and deads (I get to lie on the bench instead of in a heap on the floor...). Today, though, my benches really made me work. I wasn't comfortable with my lifts until about rep # 30 or so.
     
  17. TunnelRat

    TunnelRat Active Member

    Monday, September 24
    Squat 155 x 40 MS
    Bench 90 x 48 MS
    Deads 195 x 40 MS

    Today was my &quot;light&quot; day, and it felt light. The squats were not challenging at all. The bench presses started slowly, but after about 30 reps or so, they seemed to get easier. The deads were still deads, but not really heavy.

    I still had plenty of get up and go, so I did some weighted abs afterwards.
     
  18. colby2152

    colby2152 New Member

    You have some pretty strong legs TunnelRat albeit it was MaxStim.
     
  19. TunnelRat

    TunnelRat Active Member

    <div>
    (colby2152 @ Sep. 24 2007,21:09)</div><div id="QUOTEHEAD">QUOTE</div><div id="QUOTE">You have some pretty strong legs TunnelRat albeit it was MaxStim.</div>
    Without Max-Stim I could never finish this program!

    Heck, without Max-Stim I could never had made it through the first workout...!
     
  20. TunnelRat

    TunnelRat Active Member

    Wednesday, September 26
    Squat 160 x 40 MS
    Bench 95 x 48 MS
    Deads 200 x 40 MS

    I'm halfway through the third week of the program. Although the end is not in sight, at least the high volume phase is nearly over.

    I do not doubt that the heavy lifting phase will present problems of its own, but I am taking &quot;no thought for the morrow&quot;, it's bad enough today...!
     

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