Rate of progress

3.11 When I first started weight training, age 15, I used about 50 pounds in the squat and bench press. (In my ignorance I never deadlifted regularly until many years later.) Moving to close to 100 pounds in the squat and bench press was straight-forward and linear, but then it started getting difficult.

3.12 With 100 pounds reached in the squat and bench press—and more in the deadlift, which I ought to have included—I should have focused on adding the next 10% (i.e., 10 pounds). Once I got to 110 pounds, I should have lived for the next 10% gain. When there I should have focused on the next 10% gain, and so on. Once I got to 200 pounds for reps in the squat I should have switched from targeting the next 10% gain, to the next 5%.

3.13 Going from 100 x 6 in the bench press, 100 x 20 in the squat and 135 x 20 in the deadlift (with the other members of the mighty fivesome progressing in proportion) to 150 x 6, 150 x 20 and 200 x 20 respectively (moving there in 10% shots) would have made a big difference to my physique. Spending the next 6-12 months moving to 200 x 6, 200 x 20, and 250 x 20 would have made another big difference.

3.14 Investing obsessive focus over the next 6-12 months, and using the 5% mentality to build up to 240 x 6, 245 x 20 and 300 x 20, would have built quite a fine physique. After investing another 6-12 months to work slowly up to 265 x 6, 275 x 20 and 340 x 20, I would have been going places for a hard gainer. ^en, still centering on the same mentality and the same key exercises, had I concentrated myself with nothing other than getting to 285 x 6, 300 x 20 and 365 x 20, I would have experienced another important step forward. I would have become bigger and stronger than nearly all drug-free trainees in any gym of the world, and all before my twentieth birthday. And if I had wanted to get bigger still, I would have kept the poundage-gain mentality going and going and going.

I should have stayed with the same exercises for year after year, and persisted with the same productive formula. My wise dictator would have shielded me from anyone who might have offered negative comments on my training.

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