The Super Accumulation Training program is a radical approach to achieving unparalleled gains in size and strength.
But there’s a catch – this workout is hardcore. Your body will scream. Your mind will rebel. You will want to make changes, thus compromising its effectiveness – but don’t. You must follow the program “as is” to achieve maximum benefits.
Super accumulation training was developed by Canadian weightlifting coach Pierre Roy based on the General Adaptation Syndrome (GAS). Roy once joked that unless athletes start complaining of tendonitis, they’re not training hard enough. He believes that to reach the highest levels of physical development you should train until you are, literally, depressed. Only then do you back off. And when you come back after that rest period, you’ll shatter your personal records.
The General Adaptation Syndrome
Super accumulation training is based on the GAS theory about how the body responds to stress. It was introduced in 1946 by endocrinologist Hans Selye. Selye proposed that when subjected to stress, the body goes through several phases to adapt to that stress. The result is that the harder you stress the body, provided you rest long enough, the higher the peak of adaptation – and the highest peak of adaptation is called supercompensation. The downside of supercompensation is that at first you will feel like a zombie in a horror movie, but at the end of the cycle you feel like the Incredible Hulk.
The goal of this workout is simple: Brutally train yourself into the ground for two weeks, take five days off, and come back to rebound and break your size and strength plateaus. But here’s the catch: During the two weeks of loading/forced overtraining, your goal is to lose strength – then keep right on training. To quote an Ayurvedic medicine paradigm, “You have to be weak to be strong.”
Be Weak To Be Strong
You have to be very clear when you embark on super accumulation training that you won’t quit for two weeks. You’ll get to a state where every joint hurts, and you’ll see your weights tank. You may start your squats with 300 pounds on Monday, and by the next Friday only be able to use 240. But if you recover correctly, you'll recover your strength and slingshot to new PRs. That is, of course, if you follow the program and if have the fortitude to accept the initial losses.
Let’s review: By the end of the first two weeks of this program, if you’re doing it right, you will . . .
- Lose strength
- Lose muscle
- Be chronically overtrained
- Experience aching tendons and joints
- Be brutally sore
- Experience depression
But let’s keep our eyes on the prize here. If you can get through the two weeks of loading and then properly execute the five-day recovery period, you will blast though your previous strength and hypertrophy goals. Your mouth will literally drop as the recovery process begins. You’ll feel like your muscles are about to burst through your skin, and your friends will accuse you of being chemically enhanced. Now let’s get to the details.
Super Accumulation Training
The workout requires you to train nine times a week for two weeks. You train twice a day on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday; and once a day on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday morning. Sunday you rest. If you can’t make it to the gym this frequently, this program is not for you. Here is the workout:
Monday, Wednesday, Friday
A1. Back Squat, 5 x 4-6, 40X0, rest 100 seconds
A2. Leg Curl, 5 x 4-6, 40X0, rest 100 seconds
B1. Lean-Away Chin-Ups, 5 x 4-6, 4010, rest 100 seconds
B2. Dips, 4010, 5 x 4-6, rest 100 seconds
A. Snatch Deadlift on Podium, 10 x 6, 5010, 180 seconds
B1. Seated Dumbbell Press, Semi-Supinated Grip, 5 x 6-8, 4010, rest 100 seconds
B2. One-Arm Dumbbell Row, 5 x 6-8, 2011, rest 100 seconds
Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday
A1. Front Squat, 5 x 4-6, 40X0, rest 100 seconds
A2. Kneeling Leg Curl, 5 x 4-6, 40X0, rest 100 seconds
B1. Close-Grip Pronated Pull-Up, 5 x 6-8, 3011, rest 100 seconds
B2. Incline Dumbbell Press 5 x 6-8, 3110, rest 100 seconds
Tips For Success With Super Accumulation Training
Not counting warm-ups, take each set to concentric failure. In other words, don’t do a set of 8 with a weight you can rep to 15. Perform sets of 8 with a weight you can only lift 8 times.
If you have to decrease the weight every set to get the required number of reps, do so by no more than 5 percent.
Your appetite will increase at first during the end of the two weeks of loading, and then it will begin to decrease. That’s the first sign of overtraining by volume. The second sign is that you find you can’t get enough sleep. Sneak in a nap anytime you can; the more sleep you can get, the better.
If you choose your own exercises, remember that all the movements you use have to be “most bang for your buck” exercises. That means every exercise should involve at least two joints. If you want to use different exercises, you could do back squats in the morning, heels-elevated squats at night, front squats the next day, and cyclist squats next day after that. It doesn’t matter. But, week one and week two should look the same to make certain you got 20 percent weaker on those same exercises.
Don’t worry about direct arm work. You’ll gain plenty of arm size without direct biceps and triceps work during this program if you choose to use dips, chins, and presses.
You have to make a contract with yourself to do the work. Reward yourself with a big dinner on the last Saturday night.
Tips For Recovery From Super Accumulation Training
It’s important to recover completely from this workout. Off means off. No “recovery work.” Besides, if you squat five times in three days, do you think you’re going to want to run around a parking lot dragging a sled?
If you don’t adopt a philosophy of “eat and eat and eat,” this program is not going to work. High-quality calories are the focus.
Accelerate your progress with massage and other recovery modalities.
If you want to blast through your training plateaus, sometimes you have to pull out the big guns. The Super Accumulation Training program is a great gun to pull!