Intensification, Deload, & Looking Ahead to an Accumulation Block
After building our foundation with volume accumulation in Block I, our 13-week phase shifts to Block II running from January 23 – February 10. This block consists of a 50% decrease in volume for our main movements, from week 3, while increasing intensity, or load. This approach allows us to continue stressing the body and shift focus to an increase in strength, speed, and max strength, from a load perspective. Volume for accessory movements will remain the same as the intensity, or weight, increases weekly.
Most exercises have remained the same to practice consistency and to master those movements, while some movements have become more complex. It is key to continue with the same technique and full range of motion as we increase weight. Be cognizant of how your body is feeling throughout the week and adjust your weight choices accordingly.
During the week of February 13th, we will decrease overall volume, intensity, and range of motion. After two intense blocks, we will take this week to deload the spine. Deload week allows our body to adapt to the previous block’s stressors, recover, and prepare for the next block of training.
Looking ahead to Block III, beginning February 20th, we will move back to a focus on accumulation with new, more complex exercises. This block will follow a similar ideology as the first accumulation block. Volume will increase weekly and intensity, or load, will remain the same or slightly increase for accessory movements. This allows the body to adapt to the previous week’s intensity, at a specific volume, then execute at an increased volume the following week. During Block I, we saw an increase in time under tension by increasing the eccentric phase of the lift (think counting while slowly lowering weight). During Block III, we will increase time under tension by increasing the number of sets on our main movements, weekly.
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