PA Strength & Conditioning Program Overview

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Our S&C Program is Best for people who are seeking overall improvements in body composition with no injuries, good training background, and 4+ days per week to work out.


Not suited for people who would struggle to recover from multiple intense, high-volume workouts each week, those with movement quality issues or limited time to train. Like all of our programs, our S&C Program starts out with a foundation building phase focused on movement quality and resilience.


Phase 1: Focuses on practicing the basic movements that you’ll be training throughout the year such as squats, presses, lunges, and pulling movements.


Phase 2: Builds on movement quality by adding increased workout density and intensity to the same basic movement patterns. Basically, now that you’ve learned to do these movements well, you’re practicing your ability to do them a lot.


Phase 3-5: You’ll start focusing on adding strength to the basic patterns as well as practicing new movements. Like the earlier months, these phases are designed so that you can both mindfully practice great movement quality and work out hard enough to get a good training effect at the same time. Rather than doing complicated things with a light-weight, you can use these phases to practice relatively simple things with heavy-weights. By month five you’ve got a strong foundation and will start practicing some new basic movement patterns like hip-hinging (deadlifting) and overhead pulling (assisted or unassisted pull-ups) in a special protocol called eustress volume training, which is designed to both alter the way your brain perceives physical work and create a host of metabolic, neural and structural adaptations. After this phase, you’ll switch gears and go from a lot of total reps with a moderate weight down to low total repetitions while experimenting with heavier weights in the patterns you’ve been practicing for the past six months. Many people set new personal records for strength in this phase 3.


Phase 6 and onward: From here, with a foundation of great movement quality and new levels of strength and work capacity, you’ve got another six months of advanced training protocols that each build upon one another. You’ll practice things like breathing ladders, high-intensity continuous training, and open-ended sets in which you’ll test yourself by doing as many high-quality reps as possible in one set with a well-practiced movement. As you transition from the foundational phases into the more advanced phases, you’ll also have more options for periodized energy systems work on your off days. Your workouts can include a range of interval sprints and aerobic capacity workouts, as well as weighted carry circuits and active recovery sessions.

Phase by Phase

Note: These summaries are for the gym-based variants. At-home versions follow a similar conceptual theme but often use slightly different methods to account for equipment restrictions. Keep in mind that every exercise is modifiable, so these are all just a starting point.


Phase 1: Foundation building focused on movement quality. 3-5 rep sets of basic movements like goblet squats, reverse lunges, dumbbell rows, and pushups for up to 8 sets. Minimal rest between sets to encourage sub-max aerobic development.


Phase 2: Foundation building focused on work capacity using movement patterns developed in the previous phase. Escalating Density Training (EDT) sessions using as many sets of 3-5 reps as possible in 10-minute blocks of movements like goblet squats and dumbbell rows.


Phase 3: Squat pattern development focused on starting strength and stability in the bottom position using Anderson front squats. Hip extension strength focus using barbell hip thrusts.Work capacity development using breathing ladders and AMRAP (As Many Reps As Possible) sets.


Phase 4: Heavy, low-volume (3×3, 4×5, 8×3, etc) barbell front squats, rows, split squats, and dumbbell bench presses with AMRAP sets. 15-rep sets of ancillary movements like lunges and rows. Optional conditioning circuits and cardio sessions on non-strength days.


Phase 5: Eustress volume using 1-2 reps at a time for 30-50 total reps of trap bar deadlifts, pullup variations, dumbbell rows, and box squats. High-volume, low to moderate intensity phase. Energy systems work includes LSD cardio and High-Resistance Interval sprints.


Phase 6: Focus on maximal strength and low-volume, high-intensity workouts. Sessions revolve around Gym PR lifts to safely test daily max strength in lifts like trap bar deadlift, bench press, and box squat. Anaerobic energy system workouts such as interval sprints with one sub-max aerobic cardio option.


Phase 7: 5/3/2 sets (5 reps, rest, 3 reps, rest, 2 reps, rest – all same weight) on big lifts like barbell back squat, deadlift, split squat, pull-up, and push press. Ancillary work mainly in the 4×8 range. Energy systems work is alactic/aerobic with High Resistance Intervals, short weighted carry circuits, and Dynamic Effort Repeats.


Phase 8: Anaerobic phase with 8,7,6,5 supersets (sets of 8 reps, then 7 reps, then 6, then 5 while going back and forth between two movements with minimal rest) using big compound lifts like deadlifts, squats, rows, and presses. One weekly AMRAP set with barbell front squats. Energy system work includes 30:30 intervals, weighted carries, sub max aerobic cardio, and aerobic recovery.


Phase 9: Low-volume, high-intensity strength. Workouts start with 3×5 of heavy compound lifts like box squats, bench press, and deadlift. This is followed by HICT (High-Intensity Continuous Training) blocks of rows, step-ups, push-ups, or goblet squats. Energy systems work is alactic/aerobic with Dynamic Effort Repeats, High-Resistance Intervals, 15:30 weighted carries, and sub-max aerobic cardio.


Phase 10: Challenging high-volume, moderate-intensity strength workouts that call upon the strength, work capacity, and resiliency built in prior phases. The main strength portion of workouts is 5×10 with heavy compound lifts with AMRAP sets or EDT (Escalating Density Training) blocks. Energy systems work is anaerobic with 30:30 sprints and weighted carries along with aerobic recovery.


Phase 11: A continuation of phase 10, with different movements and slightly longer EDT blocks. Another highly challenging phase designed for body comp changes timed to coincide with final photo-shoots (for those who opt to do them).


Phase 12: A hybrid training phase with a wide range of novel training protocols. Incorporates eustress volume work, HICT, Gym PR sessions, AMRAP sets, and breathing ladders. Energy systems work is aerobic/alactic with weighted carries, high-resistance intervals, and dynamic effort repeats.


If you want to learn more about the S&C program and want to join us, then click below:


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