address: 151 Surbray Grove
Mississauga, Ontario
L5B 2E2 Canada

cell : 416.627.2132

Demystifying Strength Programming: 1RM + The Rule of 10s

posted by coach Jay D

Training for Strength and High Force Development can get pretty confusing.
If we recall, Strength is Force Development.

Some produce high amounts of Force over a short period of time.
Some produce moderate amounts of force over moderate periods of time.
Some produce low amounts of force over long periods of time.

This is about the point where you can think of “1RM” or the “1 Repetition Max”.
The 1RM is used by strength coaches to asses and project the max load/weight you can move maximally, for 1 repetition (without dying, please).

Projecting the 1RM is a tedious task, walking the fine line between burning out during warm up sets leading up to the 1RM or not.
This is why we can project a 5RM or a 3RM or a 10RM using a 1 REP MAX CALCULATOR, without having to actually test our 1RM when Coach JD or any other CSCS or Professional isn’t around to set the parameters or spot you/prevent death by barbell.

Based on our Baseline (1RM, 3RM, 5RM or 10RM), we can then start projecting percentages and loading schemes.
But I’m not here to lecture on all of the great literature of the Eastern European and Russian Sport Scientists who dedicated their entire lives to the physiology behind this training.
There are great books that you can and should read here and here.

I’m here to Simplify, in laymen’s terms, how to add a Myofibrillar & High/Max Force Development (Strength) element to your training program.
The following is pretty much a simple template guideline for general populations seeking strength:

*USE: Full Body Lifts: Squats, Deadlifts, Bench, Overhead Press, C&J, Snatch*

(i.e. 10 sets of 1 rep)


5/3/2 (set 1 = 5reps; set 2 = 3reps; set 3 = 2reps)

You’d choose one of the full body lifts/compounds as mentioned above and perform the desired set/rep scheme based on the 85%-95% of your 1RM.

You have options:
(A) Work UP TO 85%/95% of 1RM in 1 session within a set scheme of: 10×1, 2×5, 5×2 or 5/3/2
(re-establish/test 1RM, then increase weight every 4-6 weeks, accordingly)

(B) Work AT 85% for entire session; OR 90% for entire session; OR 95% entire session within a set scheme of 10×1, 2×5, 5×2 or 5/3/2
Then work at 90% the next entire session and 95% the following entire session
(re-establish/test 1RM, then increase weight every 4-6 weeks, accordingly)

- Choose 1 or 2 lifts Max to work on per training session (this is hard on the body, so don’t be too ambitious)
- Rest 90s to 3minutes between sets (higher loads require higher efforts/strain on the nervous + muscular system)
- Train Strength 1-3x per week on non-consecutive days
- LOG your loads/weights every session.
- De-load after every 4-6 weeks, working entire week at 65%-75% of your original 1RM (your body needs rest and time to adapt and be stronger than an ox for the next block of training).

Again, these are very basic guidelines so that you can pen your own journey/history towards becoming legendary and doing the epic.

Of course there are other great training programs out there like 5×5, 3×6 or 6×3…etc., but the RULE OF 10s is something you’ll remember and be consistent in working on for life.
You’ll find yourself saying excitedly, “JD mentioned “10s”….ok…10×1, This month!!! 2×5 next month!!! Then 5×2 The following month!!”

This is for Max Strength/Force Development and not to be confused with your General Physical Preparedness/Work Capacity, Hypertrophy/Axillary/Assistance work.

Feel free to add those to the mix AFTER your Strength Training Portion of training…I might even have a little dialogue in the near future for those, too. Who knows?

Have a Strong Day.
Evolve or Die.

read more


posted by coach Jay D

WTF is a BAM, JD?

When I used to work at Goodlife, as a personal trainer, we had sales goals to achieve.
I sucked. I was a great trainer, but my sales skills, sucked.
I enjoy selling as much as I’d enjoy sticking a rusty needle in my eye.

Anyhow, we used to have these “Bare Ass Minimum” sales goals that my Fitness Manager and myself would collaborate to set, monthly.
You’d have to hit your BAM if you wanted to see the next month of employment and or even achieve a bonus (sweet).

Today, I’ve stolen a page from my FM’s playbook and set up the concept of a BAM in training; a Bare Ass Minimum to achieve as part of a training program.

All of us, myself included, sometimes get caught up in life.
Time constraints suck balls when you’re trying to prep food or train for sexy bikini season or simply to get all those likes on Instagram (Just kidding, I know you’re all Strength and Movement Heads; your goals are much more intrinsic in value).

A ‘BARE ASS MINIMUM’ is a habit/action goal to achieve that’s not only part of your program as a whole, but a small chunk of the puzzle.
When strung together, all these small chunks of important puzzle comprise the grand scheme of things – your GOAL, your LONG-TERM ULTIMATE GOAL; the END-GAME.

Programs can be pretty grand in their own right and when you have kids to pick up from school, meetings to get to, vacations to bask in etc., you need a BAM when life happens.

BAMs are no longer than 10 minutes and can be something as simple as:
- 3×3 on a Strength Lift (Squat/Weighted Pullups/L-Sits for 30s Holds)
- 4×2 in a Power Movement (BB Cleans/Box Jumps)
…for you High Force Development Heads

- 200 KB Swings in 10mins (any which way divided)
- 2x200m Sled Push (65% RM)
…for your glycolytic and anaerobic heads

- 1 mile run
- 3x60s Jump Rope
…for you aerobic heads

- 3×10-12 on Bicep Hammer Curls + Tricep Dips
…for all you hypertrophy heads

The parameters can be whatever you want them to be, but they are simply PART of a bigger program; again – THE END GAME (Goal).
BAMS are not to replace entire training sessions/days, but rather to provide you with some form of movement/training alternative when Life Happens.

Point is, it’s the little steps that add up together that’ll get your ass where you need to be. These little steps need to be stepped consistently and BAMS, in my opinion, are a safety mechanism that will keep your momentum going when life gets you caught up.

So now you know….WTF is a BAM (JD).

Create your own or steal one from above.

Have A Strong Day.

read more

Heroes: The Loss of Tommy Kono

posted by coach Jay D

[Tommy Clean and Press (O.G. precursor to Jerk Lifts)]

A few weeks back, the world lost Tommy Kono.
At the time of his death, he was an 85 year old American Weightlifting legend dedicated to leading the American Weightlifting Movement and demystifying weightlifting through his simple and encouraging coaching methodology.

Studying and Training in the sport of weightlifting under a coach, I NOW understand FULLY how technical this sport and its lifts are.
Tommy was one of the few coaches (along with a compelling life story) that I look up to.
Like Dan John, he makes something so complex into something simplified through his instruction.

Beyond that, as with most weightlifters that I’ve met, there’s this common respect for fellow lifters, the bar and the platform.
Tommy pushed everyone to treat their gym like their Dojo; to treat their place of training – sacredly.

Pretty Deep.
Only posthumous, was I able to come across this gem:


If I had my way, the weightlifting area would be treated like a “dojo” as the martial arts students would use their area and equipment for training.

The entire area would be treated with respect from the bar to the barbell plates, from the chalk box to the platform.

The barbell bars would never have the soles of a lifter’s shoe get on it to move or spin it, no more than you would place your shoes on the table top. The bumper plates would never be tossed or stepped on.

The barbell will always be loaded with double bumper plates on each side whenever possible to preserve the bar and the platform. The purpose is to distribute the load over two bumper plates instead of one with an assortment of small iron plates.

The barbell lifted would never be “thrown” down or dropped from overhead except for safety reasons. The hands will guide the bar down in a controlled manner as it is in a contest.

Anger from a failed lift will be controlled so no four-lettered words would be used.

Instead the energy for the anger will be directed for a positive result.

A good Olympic bar will never be used on a squat rack for squatting purpose. There is no need to use the good bar on the squat rack where it could ruin the knurling or cause the bar to be under undue stress, damaging the integrity of the quality of the bar that makes it straight and springy.

When a lifter finishes using the area for training, it would be left neat and clean with the barbell bars and plates properly stored.

Imagine how it would be if you did not have the gym to work out in and had to go to one of the spas, health clubs or fitness gym to practice Olympic lifting.

Imagine if you did not have a “good” Olympic bar and bumper plates for training.

Imagine if all the equipment was your very own and you had to replace it if you or someone damaged it by abuse – the money coming out of your own pocket.

Treat the Olympic barbell bars, bumper plates, platforms and any items used for training or competition with respect.

Development of a strong character begins with respect even for innate objects.

Character Building begins with Respect and Responsibility.

It all comes down to treating gear and equipment as if you paid for it yourself. If you really appreciate the art of lifting and training and movement, then have enough self respect to not only clean after yourself, but to preserve the gear for the entire community to use.

Knowledge of Self.
Evolve or Die.

read more