Deload Week and The Seesaw Method
As our current training phase ends, it’s time to deload (April 4-8). Throughout the deload week, volume and intensity will decrease allowing the body to recover and adapt to the previous block while preparing for the next block of training. It is crucial during deload week to take a step back and ensure other training variables outside of the weight room are being prioritized, including quality sleep throughout the night, hydration, and diet.
The next training block, lasting three weeks (April 11-29), will utilize what I call the seesaw method. During this block, you’ll see increases and decreases in intensity/load throughout a single training session. This increase and decrease in intensity and volume will acutely increase mitochondrial density in the working muscles, leading to an increase in the amount of ATP (energy) that can be produced as well as how efficiently it can be used. For example, we’ll have six total sets of front squat in the first week structured as shown below:
Set 1: 5 @ 80% Set 2: 3 @ 50% Set 3: 5 @ 80%
Set 4: 3 @ 50% Set 5: 5 @ 80% Set 6: 3 @ 50%
Accessory movements throughout this block will continue with moderate volume for a hypertrophic effect to work on and strengthen weaknesses observed by your coaches throughout the previous phase.
The main idea behind this block is to further prepare the body for the following block (May 2-20) which will use the principle of post-activation potentiation (PAP) by utilizing higher intensity exercises followed by bodyweight or low-intensity movements to increase performance.
Porter, C., Reidy, P. T., Bhattarai, N., Sidossis, L. S., & Rasmussen, B. B. (2015). Resistance Exercise Training Alters Mitochondrial Function in Human Skeletal Muscle. Medicine and science in sports and exercise, 47(9), 1922–1931. https://doi.org/10.1249/MSS.0000000000000605
Scott, David J.1; Ditroilo, Massimiliano2; Marshall, Phil1 Effect of Accommodating Resistance on the Postactivation Potentiation Response in Rugby League Players, Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research: September 2018 – Volume 32 – Issue 9 – p 2510-2520
Wyland, Timothy P.1; Van Dorin, Joshua D.2; Reyes, G. Francis Cisco1 Postactivation Potentation Effects From Accommodating Resistance Combined With Heavy Back Squats on Short Sprint Performance, Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research: November 2015 – Volume 29 – Issue 11 – p 3115-3123