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How to Design Your Own Specialization Program

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Volume, Frequency, Types of Exercises, and More

This article is about to tell you everything you want to know about one of the most important cornerstones of bodybuilding—but first, I want to tell you a quick story.

Last summer, I was working with a college lacrosse player who wanted to put on some size in the off seasons. (At 6’2’’ and 180 pounds, I didn’t blame him.)

Between some tweaks to his diet and some changes to his program, we packed 15 pounds on him during the summer, and when he walked in the door the coach looked at him and said, “I thought I told you to gain some weight?”

This kid went from 180 to 195, with only 3 pounds being fat, and to be honest… he really didn’t look all that different. He didn’t even measure that different. His chest circumference increased by about half and inch, and his arms barely grew. In short, he increased his overall body weight by nearly 10%, and he looked the same.

Not something you’d like to experience, right?

Me neither. I’d prefer to actually look like I gained some muscle—and this is where specialization comes in.

Why I Believe in Specialization Programs

Over the course of my career, I’ve worked with clients for a number of things: athletes for performance enhancement, cougars for getting their butts firmer, and more fat loss clients than I can count.

And, of course, through my coaching program and articles in bodybuilding magazines and websites, I have a ton of experiencing with muscle building; packing mass onto smaller frames has always been a passion.

I’ve always found that I enjoyed designing (and executing) specialization programs more than anything else—that is, writing workouts for guys looking to bring up lagging body parts.

Perhaps it’s because I take an approach to training that is based primarily on improving aesthetics and symmetry. Or perhaps it’s because I have always been outspoken in my opinion that physique goals are intensely personal, and people have every right to “design” their body’s results as they see fit. Whatever the case, I’ve always encouraged people to use them in their training.

So, here is my pitch:

I firmly believe that because full body muscle growth slows dramatically for advanced trainees, specialization programs are often superior to programs aimed at increasing overall size.

There, I said it.

And it’s not like people really disagree with me.

Just look at any muscle magazine: every other week there is a chest program, or a back program, or a leg program. These are all specialization programs aimed at increasing the size or strength of a specific body part over a short duration.

Having said all that, here are a few of the many reasons I prefer specialization programs.

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Photo: Blake

The Cold, Hard Facts About Muscle Growth

FACT: SIGNIFICANT MUSCLE GROWTH HAPPENS IN SPURTS.

Whatever theory of training you subscribe to, whatever program is your “go-to” for mass gain, if you’ve been training for a few years, then you probably didn’t get to where you are a pound at a time—but rather in 5-10 pound growth spurts that took place intermittently over the years.

This is true for the vast majority of my clients and athletes, and it has certainly been true for me personally.

FACT: AT HIGHER LEVELS OF DEVELOPMENT, Full Body Growth Becomes Increasingly Difficult To Achieve.

The more muscle you have, the harder it is to gain muscle. Although in a broad sense, this is because you are going closer to your genetic ceiling, one of the more specific reasons is that your body simply cannot continue to grow under the same conditions.

More advanced trainees are stronger. Lifting heavier weight for a comparable number of reps is more taxing on the nervous system and the general metabolic processes involved in recovery.

In almost all cases, as you progress, your ability to train for full body growth will be far greater than your ability to recover from such training.

FACT: ON AN ALREADY DEVELOPED BODY, Training Your Ass Off For 8 Weeks To Gain a Small Amount of Minimally Visible Muscle Is Lame.

Given that the above statements are true (and you can tell they are, because I put the word “fact” in front of them, which as everyone knows is binding on the internet), even when you put on some muscle in a given time period, it’s generally distributed over your entire frame.

Gaining a few pounds of lean body mass is always nice, and I would never say it isn’t a goal worthy of effort or achievement. It just sucks when you achieve it and you can’t visibly notice it. And when you’re already pretty well developed, that’s often what happens, even if you do everything “right.”

FACT: EVERYONE NOTICES When You Put An Inch On Your Arms, Or Add Significant Chest Size, Or Grow Across The Shoulders So Much You Need To Buy A New Suit.

Training with the goal of increasing the size of a single muscle or muscle group has a lot of benefits, which I’ll get to later, but the main one is visibility. People notice. More than that, you notice—and as you know, nothing is as satisfying as actually seeing the results in the mirror instead of the measuring tape.

So if you can only have the occasional growth spurt, why not dedicate a spurt to something that will be visibly noticeable, intensely satisfying, and realistically achievable over a short duration?

THE BOTTOM LINE

For intermediate and advanced trainees (or even beginners who are looking to pack on some noticeable muscle with minimal fat gain), I believe in short, single-minded bursts of training for 3-6 weeks, and no more.

Now here’s the truth: there are some incredible programs that can help you lose fat and gain musclelike Final Phase Fat Loss or The Super Hero Workout, and while all of those are effective in their own right, if you really want to take your results to the next level, a specialization program is the perfect way to follow that up.

Oh, didn’t I mention that specialization programs don’t require extreme “bulking” diets that usually lead to excess fatness? Nice little bonus for ya.

So, today, I’m not going to give you a specialization program: I’m going to teach you how to design your own.

The Essential Principles of Specialization Programs

When writing a specialization program, the first things to consider are volume and frequency. It should go without saying that when prioritizing a muscle, you need to train it moreNot only with more sets and reps, but a much greater frequency, too.

For a specialization program to be optimally effective, it must meet the following criteria:

High Overall Frequency

In a perfect world, I’d have people training once every 36 hours. When that isn’t possible, every other day is the next best option. At the bare minimum, you should be able to figure out how to squeeze in three workouts per week.

High Weekly Volume, Moderate Workout Volume

Your total weekly volume is going to be pretty high: Between three and four training sessions per week, you’re getting a lot of total work for the selected muscle group. I recommend that you aim for 40 to 50 sets per muscle group week, broken into as many sessions as possible. Here’s how I’d break down 50 sets:

  • 15 Sets of High Reps (12-15)
  • 15 Sets of Moderate Reps (8-12)
  • 15 Sets of Low Reps (6 or below)
  • 5 Sets of Very High Reps (18-25 Reps)

Moderately High Intensity
Given that you’ll be training with both high volume and high frequency, finding the right intensity is important. As a starting point, I recommend using roughly 90% of your max in a given rep range.

So if your 10 rep max on the bench press is 225 pounds, use roughly 200 pounds for sets of 10. This recommendation stands, regardless of the rep range.

5 Kinds of Exercises Your Program Needs

One of the best things about specializing a body part is you get to shy away from the basics and really get into some fun exercises. While it’d be impossible to list all the combinations of all the exercises, each workout would need to consist of the following:

Compound Exercises
I hope I don’t need to define this for you. Just know that big movements are always at the core of any program. Examples include squats, deadlifts, overhead press, pull-ups, close grip bench press, dips, lunges, bent-over rows and floor presses.

Each workout should have at least two compound exercises.

Explosive Movements
Movements requiring explosiveness are great because they increase strength, power, coordination, and recruit muscle fibers that other exercises leave behind. Examples include jump squats, kipping pull-ups, push presses, cleans, explosive push-ups, jump lunges and cheat curls.

I recommend including one explosive movement per workout.

Isolation Exercises
Stop pretending you don’t like biceps curls. Sure, you can probably get big arms without them, but how sweet is that pump? Other examples include lateral raises, swiss ball leg curls, cable flies, triceps extensions and calf raises.

For the purposes of specialization, I recommend adding two isolation movements per workout.

Unilateral Exercises
Specific to specialization programs, unilateral movements (compound exercises that use just one limb, rather than two) are effective because they recruit a greater number of High Threshold Motor Units (HTMUs).

They’re also a great way to improve symmetry and help with muscle imbalances, but for the purposes of maximally recruiting HTMUs, I normally recommend that your unilateral movements correspond with your heavier workouts.

Examples of great unilateral exercises are: single leg pistol squats, single arm over-head presses, single arm dumbbell chest presses, Bulgarian split squats and dumbbell rows.

You should include at least one unilateral exercise per specialization workout.

Wacky Exercises
These are the exercises you aren’t really sure how to classify. Oftentimes, it’s stuff that crazy strength coaches like me come up with just to mess with you. While they tend to be really bizarre things that make people look at you funny, they are often also radically effective and innovative movements that can help bring your training to the next level. Included in this category are: Siff lunges, fly-aways, javelin presses, drag curls, Bulgarian jump squats, lumberjack presses, renegade rows, side-to-side pull-ups and pike push-ups.

At least one exercise per training session should be new, innovative, and wacky. (If you need some examples, cruise around my YouTube channel for about 30 seconds and you’ll see a few.)

It should go without saying that a lot of these may overlap: a wacky exercise may also be explosive, or a compound exercise might be somewhat wacky. Use your best judgment to figure out which exercises are going to make the program the most fun and effective for you.

What About the Rest of My Muscle Groups?

One of the things I notice about specialization programs is that almost no one mentions how to train the rest of the body. You’d think increasing the size of a single muscle was as simple as adding in a few extra sets and whatever they decide the Chest Exercise of the Month is. At best, you’ll see something along the lines of “put all other body parts on maintenance.”

It’s not that simple.

When people make broad recommendations like “put everything else on maintenance” it leaves trainees with a lot of room to screw things up by doing too much and inhibiting results.

Correct manipulation of volume is tricky, and honestly, I like to err on the side of caution. I’d much rather have people do a bit too much for the prioritized body part and a bit too little for everything else.

To that end, I really tone down the volume for other body parts.

After all, what does “maintenance” really mean? You need to define it. For me, it means you need to accept that your focus is your focus, and everything else takes a back seat. So when I tell someone to put something on maintenance, I mean they should train it as little as necessary. That means not losing strength or mass. In most cases, this is a lot less than you think.

The majority of people can hold onto muscle mass by doing a full body circuit once per week, which is is a pretty decent starting point.

I do understand the concern and fear of losing mass, and I’m not discounting the validity of it. I just take a more pragmatic approach to things: If all you care about is having big legs, who cares if it feels “wrong” to only train chest once every 10 days, or even less?

If at the end of the program you have bigger legs, you accomplished your goal and you and your big legs can go back to training chest again.

Closing Thoughts

I’m certainly willing to agree that you can gain muscle—even as an advanced trainee—on programs focused on whole body growth, but the result is usually not impressive.

On the other hand, there are a lot of great programs from a lot of great coaches that can lead to significant growth over a considerable length of time.

For me, that’s not good enough.

I believe in acceleratory, single-minded bursts of focused training, intended to produce dramatic results in a relatively short time-frame.

Given that mindset, specialization programs are great for someone like me. They’re quick, fun, and the visibility of the results are intensely satisfying.

Bigger arms in four weeks? Sign me the hell up.

What are YOUR thoughts on specialization programs? Do you prefer to focus on full-body growth, or one muscle at a time?

About the Author

John Romaniello is a level 70 orc wizard who spends his days lifting heavy shit and his nights fighting crime. When not doing that, he serves as the Chief Bro King of the Roman Empire and Executive Editor here on RFS. You can read his articles here, and rants on Facebook.

Comments for This Entry

  • BLACK TRUCK

    BENCH PRESS ALL DAMN DAY

    September 10, 2016 at 7:51 am

  • Ali

    any sample workouts please? Like how many reps sets and rest period for each exercise ? Id love a chest specialization( tnation has too many diff ones) and a shoulders one? thanks

    April 24, 2013 at 7:10 am

  • Presson

    This sounds like something awesome.Can't wait for it.

    April 16, 2012 at 10:18 pm

  • Kasper

    Will the program be available soon or is it just me who can´t find it? I think that there is plenty of comments

    March 21, 2012 at 6:11 pm

  • Samim YIGIT

    It would be great if one could have a chance to access such info in order to avoid to lose time, energy and motivation.

    March 21, 2012 at 2:58 am

  • eugene

    great info,thanks

    March 13, 2012 at 6:21 am

  • Guest

    Hi Roman! Is it appropriate to do a specialization program while on a fat loss diet?

    March 12, 2012 at 1:27 pm

  • Kayiyer

    Hey roman, Chest size is increasin, but getting a little curvy for my liking. How do i flatten it out?

    March 12, 2012 at 2:35 am

  • Ray

    Looking forward to that program Roman!

    March 11, 2012 at 6:03 am

  • Rebecca Jacob

    I have been morbidly obese for a long time and nothing has come home to me more that the more you train the harder it is to show the positive effects.  The positive effects of feeling well everyday after an hour of exercise is priceless.  I have adopted a new lifestyle of diet and exercise.  Mon - Fri an hour of weight training at the gym.  I am 59 years old.  I feel better in my clothes, I have lost 25 Pounds but have hit a big wall but am not givingup.I have done specialty programs, overall full body workouts with weights and barbells, dumbells.   I enjoy the exercise but still need to lose >50 pounds.All of the diets, all of the programs, are mindboggling. 

    March 10, 2012 at 9:50 am

  • David H

    how does a program like this work with a 5X5 approach to lifting? Use it as a change of pace?

    March 9, 2012 at 9:46 pm

  • Kasper

    Perhaps I´m a little tired but am I the only one who can´t find the program? I guess that there are more than 75 comments...

    March 9, 2012 at 6:32 pm

  • Rohanjgeorge

    WOAH!! THIS IS AMAZING NEWS!!

    March 9, 2012 at 1:18 pm

  • Fatima

    Hi. Great post. I tried this program yesterday .I was thinking as a girl i am so strong but i think it is very huge maybe i did not get it right. Please give the leg program as well ·      5 Sets of Very High Reps — 18-25 Reps almost heavy weight Squats and deadlifts jump squats sissy squats Bulgarian split squats 

    March 9, 2012 at 5:23 am

  • Nygell

    Quality post!! My shoulders are very keen for my hands to get hold of an example program!

    March 9, 2012 at 4:32 am

  • Justin Giesbrecht

    Roman, while doing specialization programs, what do you think of specializing on 2 different muscles at once. Like arms and chest.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:30 pm

  • Toddbo01

    John, this article has my attention big time.  I would like to see your program.  Just some input, I am 49 and on a HRT program.  My test levels tend to run high, still working on finding my balance.  I have been training for 10 years and 80% of that time with some good trainers.  Muscle gains have come slowly for me if I want to keep my fat in check. I would like to prove my doctor wrong with your deal.  He is a bodybuilder too and says at best I am only looking at being able to add 3-4 lbs of muscle a year.  Yes, a year is what he said.  My testosterone levels run between 700 and 1000 and free is on the high end.  He just told me this information last week, so this came out at a perfect time. 

    March 8, 2012 at 2:19 pm

  • Freddie Teigland Olsen

    Been waiting for more bodybuilder stuff from you roman! finally!   So lets get thisone to 75 shall we!?!!!! hehe.

    March 8, 2012 at 11:17 am

  • Cass

    Roman, I think, for someone who is already lean but has a lagging body part (or two), specialization is great! For me, I would really be interested to find out if you can successfully set up a specialization program for 2 lagging BP's, and be working them simultaneously, if those BP's are separate enough (i.e. one upper body, one lower). For me, it would be either glutes and delts or glutes and tri's (I think this is probably the case for many women). would love to hear your feedback on the idea of addressing this "2 at once" idea! Thanks! C-

    March 8, 2012 at 10:16 am

  • DaveH

    Thanks for this post!  I see those specialization programs and think I could never add all that on to the splits I am currently doing.  I'm glad you tackled the unanswered question of what to do with the rest of the body while going through these specializations..

    March 8, 2012 at 9:39 am

  • RJG

    Hey Roman, Does this really work? Did you try this during your bodybuilding days or was it later that you got this? so doing the rest of the parts once in a week is okay? or should i make it even less?

    March 8, 2012 at 8:59 am

  • Héctor Hernández

    Hey Roman! first of all, congratulations for your amazing hard work  and thank you for all the programs and posts that help us to find ourselves in the huge ignorance sea we are swimming in  ( i'm getting too deep maybe).  Anyways let me introduce myselft, I'm Hector and I've been strugling and enjoying the SuperHero Program for the last months, I'm in my last week of Phase 3;  I'm a tiny 5,7 guy who started in a 13% of body fat and 143.3 lbs got down to 134,4 lbs before Phase 3  and right now I'm in a 6,77% of bodyfat and 139 lbs sooo you guys can see I packed some muscle too!!.  After reading ur lasts posts, I've been thinking about extending phase 3 for another 4 weeks to pack some inches of muscle more , then complete with phase 4 and afterwards prolly do the follow-up schedule you propose  : Fat loss with minimal muscle gain.  My date goal to look as awesome I can  right now is August so time fits... Since you are the creator I thought I should ask your opinion, so any thoughts on that would be so helpfull :). Thank you very much. ---H2.

    March 8, 2012 at 8:02 am

  • Judith_boon

    Thank you.......enlightening!

    March 8, 2012 at 7:33 am

  • Jonastida

    Excellent post. This is a very true statement. You can make a dramatic improvement to your physic by just getting you shoulders bigger.

    March 8, 2012 at 5:42 am

  • Tony Rodda

    Refreshing to hear when all the latest articles to pack on muscle and shred fat promote full body movements and why utilize one muscle group when you can hit three! So this provides argument for the flip side and agree to build mass the only way forward is to focus on one muscle group at a time and as hard as you can and as you mention, ideally 36 hours later, you are fresh and ready to go and focus on the next muscle group!

    March 8, 2012 at 4:58 am

  • elad

    so how to get bigger arms in 4 weeks? :)

    March 8, 2012 at 4:58 am

  • Denniswgalan

    Thats top notch info brother, keep it up

    March 8, 2012 at 2:04 am

  • Advocateshams

    Great Post.  If someone wants to priortize his legs, what should, in your opinion, he do for dividing the programe between quad dominant and hip/ham dominant exercises in a given week.

    March 8, 2012 at 1:52 am

  • rmg

    Roman - Sounds like you would go along w/LEE Hayward's 'blast your bench', 'blast your chest', etc programs.   Emphasis is onone body part/area, yet does not ignore overall fitness. 

    March 8, 2012 at 12:45 am

  • KJ

    can you "specialize" on two areas??  I'm working on rounding out my shoulders (specifially needing more front and real delt which have always been my weaknesses) and also my booty ( I want a little more on the top to get more of a bubble), I need glute work with out much leg work because they tend to get larger than I'd like .....are there 75 comments yet??

    March 8, 2012 at 12:04 am

  • Pedro Gomes de Moura

    Thanks for share this precious thought

    March 7, 2012 at 11:55 pm

  • Rob Oli

    Roman, I am very interested figuring out workouts suing all the different exercises you've posted above.  Your article was very interesting and I can't wait to pick through it to forms a 3-4 week workout cycle.  If you were to post a the Full Specialization Program...sign me up!!!  Hope to see it soon.

    March 7, 2012 at 9:41 pm

  • Rodney

    have been a massive fan since FPFL and would love to see your specialization programme

    March 7, 2012 at 8:33 pm

  • andy

    Good  training programe. 

    March 7, 2012 at 8:19 pm

  • Bruno Fontinhas

    Hi Roman! It seems racional to me your ideia. When a guy achieve a plateau and is in good shape, it´s the best solution the specialization. By the way i just finished last week your bcb and i must  thank u, because i´ve seen a noticeable growth in my legs. For me it´s a great thing, because it as always been very hard to put some muscle on my legs. But still need it to my calves...well, if i start thinking in all muscles :) so give us that program please

    March 7, 2012 at 8:00 pm

  • Knoxvilleabs

    I have always done specialized body parts it seems. I blasting my arms & shoulders this month next month most likely abs then legs

    March 7, 2012 at 7:42 pm

  • Byron

    Great article Roman. I'm 52 and always looking to increase the size of a  bodypart, as it gets harder each year. I'm currently on the BDD, which was a bonus when I ordered the FLF program. If you post a program, can I do it now, or should I wait until the end of my 28 day diet?

    March 7, 2012 at 6:26 pm

  • Eliegareb

    Love the post and the site...Just started to implement some of your recommended movements within my "turbulence" workouts and the results have been crazy.

    March 7, 2012 at 6:25 pm

  • AC

    I like a couple full body workouts a week (maybe not completely full but in general) along with a couple specialization sessions a week.  Balances things out.

    March 7, 2012 at 6:23 pm

  • Cillian

    Great post as usual Roman. Love how you go against the grain and make so much sense out of it!

    March 7, 2012 at 6:13 pm

  • Shane

    Thanks for sharing Roman. Love your thought process. Good to use when a body part is lacking in strength and size.

    March 7, 2012 at 6:12 pm

  • CoachOne

    Im one of those older guys (51) that used to be an athlete.  Lots of years ago.  I've dropped about 50 lbs over the last six months (After about another 50 over two years) I was a fat boy (6'1"as high as 325) now about 225 (Football weight but not the look yet).  Most of the last few months have been on your programs.  Now in the middle of extreme fat loss.  Moving kinda slow.  But I will finish it and see if I make my 215 goal.  Can I move to something like you are talking about after this to get my legs and arms back or should I stick with a more general body program?

    March 7, 2012 at 6:07 pm

    • John Romaniello

       Hey Coach! Congrats on the progress so far, that's awesome. So happy to hear it. I would say to stick with the program as written for now, and then hit up a leg specialization program for a few weeks after.

      March 7, 2012 at 6:55 pm

  • LivnFIt

    In your specialization programs do you just focus on the preferred  body part neglecting the rest of the body or incorporate some about of full body work in with the addition of the specialized pieces (i.e., in addtion to the impact of the compound movements, which will in some fashion work several muscle groups)?

    March 7, 2012 at 5:46 pm

  • Per

    A full program sounds great! I know it's not the same as specialized training, but how does your 15-minute series compare against/complement this specialization phase? 

    March 7, 2012 at 5:35 pm

  • Vinnzapien

    Hey john good info. You seen to always have great stuff to say. I love your blog posts. Keep them coming

    March 7, 2012 at 5:20 pm

  • Darryl721

    Specialization definitely makes more of a visual impact than random increases in muscle mass. I'm looking to add more shoulder mass myself. I was wondering, how often can you train muscles before you go into overtraining? Abs are another muscle group I've been specializing on. Three times a week I do direct ab training, but two other days of the week I do full body bodyweight HIIT routines that also hit my abs

    March 7, 2012 at 5:19 pm

  • Eobando87

    Recomendation for tomorrow's specialization program: LEGS! I want big ass legs, dude!

    March 7, 2012 at 5:16 pm

  • Vlad

    Should a beginner focus on specialization programs,or should he train all muscle parts equally at first?

    March 7, 2012 at 5:12 pm

  • Rob S

    I like it.  Really made me think as it is one thing I haven't tried.  Sometimes that is all you need.  One question-what kind of split would you recommend for maintenance of other body parts?  every other day for 4 specialized workouts, then a maintenance, repeat?  Too much to do some HIIT training on the "off" days, provided NOT on a targeted bodypart?  Great post.  Thanks!

    March 7, 2012 at 5:08 pm

  • Bud

    Great info, can't wait to get to the gym and try it out!

    March 7, 2012 at 4:48 pm

  • JD

    Ive just started specializing on my posterior chain...a powerful back stands out so Ive quit focusing on my chest so much, and have focused more on the backside with a bit more emhasis on delts too. 

    March 7, 2012 at 4:31 pm

  • buzz

    THX Roman - just what I needed to hear....!I've been in 'training' for 35 yrs. from gymnastics, soccer, alpine skiing, ........ I still train to be able to continue to ski ,...... At 58 I can see that there are body parts that still need improvement. Focus in ONE area is something I rarely see or hear about- gonna give it a shot for the next Month. Is that about the safe time frame to concentrate.......?

    March 7, 2012 at 4:15 pm

  • Ron

    I lift in 4 week cycles - 3 complete cycles - one week off. My cycles rotate Heavy/Moderate/Light lifting days. I try to keep my body guessing what is coming next. Subing in a 4 week specilization cycle is just what I need. I am going to add a different 4 week specilization routine every 12 weeks to keep it real. I thrive on new routines and exercises. I also like your 90% of 10 rep max rule. I am 50 years old and I have to lift smarter to keep myself injury free but I also have to continue to challenge myself. Please continue to give valuble advice - sometime one small bit of your information can have a great impact on someones overall sucess- thanks again and best wishes.

    March 7, 2012 at 4:12 pm

  • Rob

    How would you use a specialization program to concentrate on strength? I mean one or at the most 2 specific lifts.

    March 7, 2012 at 3:53 pm

  • Shawn

    I like the comment about changes coming in spurts. It totally agrees with quantum physics! Roman, you are a quantum physical trainer! Great article, thanks! Not only do you get the benefits but it also serves to spice up the routine and keep things interesting.

    March 7, 2012 at 3:46 pm

  • Waterseng

    Roman, You are only mentioning the lifting, etc. and nothing relative to nutrition.  Are you going to address that aspect in a separate blog?

    March 7, 2012 at 3:29 pm

  • Pabergin

    What do you think about an upper back specialization program? Or is it better to do the entire back? My upper back could use some development... Thanks, Paul

    March 7, 2012 at 3:29 pm

  • David

    Awesome article is Awesome. It also reminds me of an old one I read stating that specialization workouts do wonders for increasing lean mass, while full body workouts are for burning the most fat due to the metabolism increases.

    March 7, 2012 at 3:16 pm

  • Scout5210

    This is something i have been wanted to try .......Lets Do This ......

    March 7, 2012 at 2:48 pm

  • Mark

    You know what you speak or, Sir Roman! In my earlier years of starting out in the gym, I trained using a specialized program not knowing that's what it was. I put myself on a 4-day a week program of Chest on Monday, Arms on Wednesday, Back on Friday and Legs on either Saturday or Sunday. I would work each of those body parts using 6 or 8 different exercises to hit those muscles from every angle I could think of. I gained 25lbs of lean muscle in 3 months! Got noticeably bigger all over and people started asking what I was doing. Very little fat, never really had any at that time. I was 40 years old when I did that, started at 5'10" and 160lbs. Life happened and I'm 54 now, still 5'10" and have stayed at 185lbs since then. I'm anxious to read your blog and get direction on how to implement a specialized program that will work for me now to get to 195lbs. You da man!

    March 7, 2012 at 2:32 pm

  • RicforSpam

    Interesting ideas. I've been mostly focused on fat loss and overall leanness, but I see how specialization can help me LOOK even better than I am...

    March 7, 2012 at 2:28 pm

  • Chaz

    Im in the middle of an arm spec program now, the one that came with Ben Pakulski's MI40 program. Just did the math, its 97 sets per week for 3 weeks. Ive got 4 workouts remaining. What I'd really love is a Chest program, perhaps one called "Chiseled Chesticles" :D Seriously, can you  buy that on its own? Ive only ever seen it offered as a freebie when you  buy other stuff, none of which I've needed in the past. Gotta do something about my freakin' chest. Nothing seems to have worked so far, squeeze presses included. I even tried using a tricep bar to avoid the issues you tend to get when squeezing round dumbells together as you approach failure.

    March 7, 2012 at 2:28 pm

    • 75atom

      I have the same problem with my chest, and same approach with the Chiseled Chesticles. I bought 3-4 programs from Roman, and I don't want to buy this Lean Hybrid Muscle stuff. Would rather pay for what I need: The Chest program.

      March 7, 2012 at 6:33 pm

  • Roan-Paul Spölmink

    How often can you do specialization after each other? Can I go like: Biceps, Chest, Shoulders, Back, etc. or do you need have a full body program for some time in between? Nice post! Looking forward to your program

    March 7, 2012 at 2:16 pm

  • Tom

    What about cardio during this time period?

    March 7, 2012 at 2:05 pm

  • Lloydb3

    Awesome post. Do you think it's possible to put on 5-10lbs without using any supplements or gorging on food until you feel like you're going to explode. I naturally only need about 1200 calories per day and I'm kinda hippie in regards to doing things naturally.

    March 7, 2012 at 1:57 pm

  • Chrischeah01

    I've used specialization programs since I started following you and love them. I always have more noticeable gains. Thanks Roman!

    March 7, 2012 at 1:52 pm

  • Jtmayfield

    How will body type affect specialization?  I tend to lose mass so quickly in my shoulders and arms when I am training my vertical leap. 

    March 7, 2012 at 1:48 pm

  • Onn Onon

    Roman judging from the first sentence of your closing thoughts, would you agree with me if I say that exercises/workouts/programs that works more then one muscle group at any one session are geared towards fat loss while programs that only works one muscle group at any given sessions are best for muscle growth? 

    March 7, 2012 at 1:46 pm

  • Tconnelly83

    Roman, what does you diet have to look like during the specialization program?

    March 7, 2012 at 1:43 pm

  • Raidho

    So what you're saying is specialization-workouts 3x/week + 1 full body maintenance-workout/week? How would this apply to a beginner/intermediate with 8 months of solid training but no satisfying results (wanting to look great naked, like a gymnast) ?

    March 7, 2012 at 1:24 pm

  • Tom

     Exactly what I was looking for!!!!!

    March 7, 2012 at 1:23 pm

  • Peter K

    should the specialization be labeled more as: A) upper body pressing, B) upper body pulling, C) lower body; considering compound movements work more then one muscle.  A specific routine could look like this: A,B,A,C,A,B,A,C to allow proper recovery and prevent any muscle imbalances from getting exaggerated.  

    March 7, 2012 at 1:18 pm

  • K A A Vos-techniek

    i iloke this one very much i alwayw do compounds and ful body bcuase i donn't have to think about it very much im gonna give thts a try. greetz from the lowlands

    March 7, 2012 at 1:17 pm

  • Rcole

    Very interesting reading.  I am very interested in attempting to gain some muscle.  Would love a post of a full program..

    March 7, 2012 at 1:05 pm

  • Billxedos

    As always your stuff is top notch bru. How do I continue to burn fat while working on adding size?

    March 7, 2012 at 1:02 pm

  • Vrosalia2

    Roman, I have knee problems and have a tough time with squats and lunges. What exercises would you suggest to replace? Vince

    March 7, 2012 at 1:00 pm

  • Robbie G.

    Love the blog.  It would be great to see a whole program.  Looking forward to it!

    March 7, 2012 at 12:58 pm

  • Chris Olson

     This was a great article. Very insightful. To celebrate my 35 year in this world, my goal is to increase my upper body size (muscle-wise, not fat-wise). I don't want to get too big, but I'd like to increase my chest, back, and arms a little more.

    March 7, 2012 at 12:58 pm

  • AJ

    hey roman, I'm a female doing some of the things you're talking about compound ex: squats, deadlifts, pullups, dips, handstand pushups; explosive exercises: clapping pushups, jump lunges, explosive inverted rows; unilateral exercises: pistol squats & I'm working on 1 arm pushups. Well, I usually don't make comments, but I was looking at pics of myself 2 mos ago and yesterday, and this workout which I call the explosive workout (I also have balancing moves to target the fast twitch muscle fibers), in 2 months I can see major differences in my body composition. So, I'm commenting because I want to see what ideas you have that might increase my insights. Thanks for your specialization info, I found it very interesting. AJ

    March 7, 2012 at 12:55 pm

  • Daniel

    Awesome info Roman. Cant wait to see the program. 

    March 7, 2012 at 12:53 pm

  • Rbeau91031

    I like ful;l body growth as it tends to be more productive

    March 7, 2012 at 12:43 pm

  • Riekie

    great information, really appreciate it. One question I have though is would there be anything adjusted for females? or is there really no difference.....

    March 7, 2012 at 12:40 pm

  • Alan

    Easy reading blog which I have enjoyed over the last couple of weeks thank you.  Not sure which body part to pick first I should do my legs but would rather do arms or shoulders.

    March 7, 2012 at 12:35 pm

  • Esther

    Interesting article

    March 7, 2012 at 12:34 pm

  • jjones85

    GREAT post! I can't wait to see this full specialization program. C'mon people, comment.

    March 7, 2012 at 12:14 pm

  • Alejandro Pichersky

    Hey Roman, Excellent post as always!!! I guess that even though I've been doing some kind of training since I'm 13 (now I'm 29) I still need to pack muscle in general, so I think it will be best for me to focus on full-body growth

    March 7, 2012 at 12:11 pm

  • Ed

    Good article.  I have done arm specialization programs before.  I need to focus on back for the next few weeks, particularly strength.  I have a ballroom dance competition coming up and I am 65 years old.  AFter a few rounds of competing, my back gets tired and the dance frame, which MUST remain still, suffers as a result.  Looking forward to specializing.

    March 7, 2012 at 12:06 pm

  • Chris

    Thanks Roman!  You've given me the confidence to design my own program.  This from a girl who used to be afraid of the free weight section of the gym (but always interested!)

    March 7, 2012 at 12:01 pm

  • Jeremy

    Great post as usual Roman! I just hope that we get enough comments because I REALLY want to see the full program.

    March 7, 2012 at 12:00 pm

  • Harry

    I've been working to add weight and mass since the beginning of January and have a little but have really wanted to add size in a couple specific places - definitely giving this a try!

    March 7, 2012 at 11:59 am

  • E_J_J_B

    Cool stuff. Looking forward to seeing an example tomorrow.

    March 7, 2012 at 11:57 am

  • Conor Flynn

    This post opened my eyes to a new style of training, and would be a nice change of pace from constant total-body workouts aimed at total body gains, and hopefully finally deliver some results to my lagging chest.  Thanks.

    March 7, 2012 at 11:53 am

  • Pat

    Roman,  I have been a follower of yours for quiet some time now. Your post are always interest and put new prospectives into the vast world of working out. I have purchased FPFL and completed the program. Now that my body is down, I am looking for that size, putting lean mass on my frame. This program focusing on one body part for a prolonged period of time is intriguing to me. Always appreciate the information you provide and can not wait to see your specialized program.  Pat

    March 7, 2012 at 11:50 am

  • Gavin

    Interesting stuff, thnx Roman. And did I understand it right, that you're aiming for 4 training days a week and on 3 of those you'll do 15 sets for the targetted muscle?

    March 7, 2012 at 11:47 am

  • Aleferds

    muito bom parabens, o que falta é a pratica......abraços alex.

    March 7, 2012 at 11:45 am

  • Daniel Wallen

    Can't wait to check out the program.  I notice slow growth via tape measure with my routines, but want to experiment with full specialization to see if this speeds up gains.  My shoulders especially could use it.

    March 7, 2012 at 11:43 am

  • Marie

    Would this work for shaping a woman's lower body? I noticed my arms, shoulders, back and abs have changed moreso than my lower half following SHW.

    March 7, 2012 at 11:42 am

  • Chris

    Great info, thanks!

    March 7, 2012 at 11:41 am

  • Alphawarrior1

    I like it ! I am eager to see a full program and see how it fits in a weekly shedule

    March 7, 2012 at 11:39 am

  • Shibn

    4 to 6 weeks should be enough

    March 7, 2012 at 11:38 am

  • Chrystal Flores

    Roman, my daughter and I are trying to strenghten our arms for basketball. We both have very stong legs, but need a more specific program for our arms.  Any suggestions?

    March 7, 2012 at 11:37 am

  • Rbrooksa2

    I like very much, the specialization program. Thanks for your offer.  Hope we get to 75 comments.

    March 7, 2012 at 11:35 am

  • Briansteenhoek

    I just turned 47 today and have been working out since 16. I only have time to work individual muscles groups over a five day period and continue to have success but always open for a new twist. Thanks

    March 7, 2012 at 11:34 am

  • Brewster311

    Hey Roman,  Thanks for the great post, let's adds some size!

    March 7, 2012 at 11:32 am

  • Izzy0417

    Roman, As a past user of your Final Phase Fat Loss program, I am a true believer in short 6 week program. I also believe in full-body growth program, its too easy to let other muscle groups lag behind on specialization program. I look forward to seeing your full specialization program. 

    March 7, 2012 at 11:30 am

  • Fredrik Eklund

    Tried it, dominated it, loved it. Mesa pecs grew alotta, thanks bru =) 

    March 7, 2012 at 11:29 am

  • Workoutgirl50

    As a person teaching fitness since 1984, probably in the cougar category but date from 40 on up, so not really, I really appreciate the specific data. I'm concentrating on getting rock hard abs, my final frontier. My ass is spectacular. I just haven't paid attention until now. I'm seeing results thanks to your data. I teach usually 4 fitness classes a week, step, Zumba, boot camp and kickboxing. I must lift weights, planks and do compound exercises...period. I'm staying a size two or zero toned for the rest of my life.

    March 7, 2012 at 11:29 am

  • 2busyTom

    I understand the point you make on the specialization vs full body.  The range of exercise selection reminds me of star complexes.

    March 7, 2012 at 11:28 am

  • Edub

    Good stuff Roman!

    March 7, 2012 at 11:28 am

  • Markrosko

    Would specialisation work while doing hiit workouts(3 times a week for lowering body fat) or do we specialise and stick to 1 at a time ? Thanks interesting subject.

    March 7, 2012 at 11:24 am

  • Adam

    Great post bro... :)

    March 7, 2012 at 11:22 am

  • Adam.

    Excellent post.

    March 7, 2012 at 11:18 am

  • John Romaniello

     Full body circuit, fairly heavy =)

    March 7, 2012 at 11:10 am

  • Andrew Edwards

    Loved the post bru. Specialization programs just feel better. I know its lame, but i'd love to see your forearms workout.

    March 7, 2012 at 10:46 am

  • Justinjustpringle

    Hey Roman. Great informative post. I have noted that a few people have made reference to a nutrition guide with the SHW. I did not get a guide per-sae, received the great supplement guide, and was wandering if it was only part of the hyper drive pack.... If so, would the nutrition guide for FPFL work with SHW. Finally (sorry to ramble on - typical Brit) would it be possible for you to outline a typical days calorific intake for one of your cheat days as I'm struggling on the fast day with nausea and end up biting the bullet at about 17.00 hrs.....

    March 7, 2012 at 8:08 am

    • 75atom

      Until Roman gets up... yes SHW nutrition guide was included in the hyper drive pack. The first couple of fast days were hard to me too. I got nervous and thought about break the fast. But now, let's say after 10 or so fast days I'm fine. Taking 5 BCAA tablets every 4 hour, drinking like duck, going bed early and I'm fine.

      March 7, 2012 at 9:38 am

  • Dazzasupreme05

    Great post as usual and makes total sense. I'm goin to practice building a prgm to see what I has leeeeaaaarned lol. Would love to see a pgrm

    March 7, 2012 at 6:53 am

  • Brian

    great post.. I love specialization training myself.. esp for shoulders and lats :)

    March 7, 2012 at 5:11 am

  • 75atom

    I'm sorry in the editor it didn't look like this...!

    March 7, 2012 at 1:48 am

  • 75atom

    Roman, Based the on the original what was on T-Nation I put together one Chest Spec. Program. I ate as in Phase3 of SHW, 2900 kcal on WO days and 2100 kcal on non WO days being 2450 my maintenance kcal.  I tried to follow IF 8/16 style pattern. After 6 weeks no visible nor measurable results... :( What did I screw up?  Program was like this: Workout 1 Incline barbell bench press 3 x 15 Explosive decline push up  3 x 15 Single arm floor press 3 x 15 DB fly 3 x 15 Dip  2 x 15 Single arm pec-deck 2 x 15Workout 2 Gironda bench press 1/2 - 1 3 x 6 Fly away 3 x 12 Single arm DB bench press 3 x 12 D1 Sqeeze press 3 x 12 D2 Pull-over 3 x 12 Cable fly 2 x 12 Workout 3 Barbell bench press 4 x 4 B1 Incline natural grip DB bench 4 x 6 B2 Explosive push up 4 x 6 Close grip bench press 3 x 4 Alternating cable fly 3 x 6 Workout 4 Incline DB bench press 3 x 25 DB fly 3 x 25 Explosive push - up 3 x 25 Single arm pec-deck fly 3 x 25

    March 7, 2012 at 1:45 am

  • Matt Letten

    Very insightful. Been needing to work on this flat chest of mine. Thanks for the education.

    March 7, 2012 at 1:09 am

  • David

    Roman, I really enjoy all of your posts. I have a somewhat related question. I'm 5'10 about 175-180 pounds. Not too much fat. I can somewhat see my abs. In terms of aesthetics, do you think it would be more beneficial to try putting on some muscle (given my weight, I'm clearly not huge) or to focus more on fat loss to bring out the physique. Thanks!

    March 6, 2012 at 11:39 pm

  • TylerCarter

    I did get bigger arms in four weeks after I read this, thanks JR.

    March 6, 2012 at 11:22 pm

  • Matter2003

    Very interesting Roman.   Before starting this program, I had really good success with a program called "The Blueprint" by Rob Regish, in which I added a lot of muscle pretty quickly...lot of compound movements and included things like static holds, EDT blocks, etc...never tried a true specialization program, would be interested to give it a go...

    March 6, 2012 at 10:43 pm

  • Cal

    I have wanted to do something like this for a long time but have never been able to not train other body parts. I need to bring up my lagging shoulders. Any chance you could put up a program for them as I feel they would be the hardest to manage. 

    March 6, 2012 at 10:27 pm

  • Jaymz_101

    I am fascinated with this as I've only trained for strength up until now. I feel it's time to get bigger. I hate when people watch me lift then ask afterwards why I'm not bigger (considering the weight and my size).

    March 6, 2012 at 9:09 pm

  • George frand of Brony

    Bitchin post Roman!! I've been rocking out a mass gaining workout for a few weeks now and have put on roughly 6 pounds of lean muscle! A major part of the information I've been using has been coming from your genius. Just wanted to throw out a thank you for your goodnesses! Once I'm done gaining I'm gonna pick up FPFL and rock off that last bit of fat! You're the man!!!11!!one!!

    March 6, 2012 at 8:53 pm

  • Wallace0713

    Awesome info. Now just need to figure out how to put the workouts together.

    March 6, 2012 at 8:53 pm

  • Ajhaycock

    Comment people, I want to see Roman's progam.

    March 6, 2012 at 8:25 pm

  • Kenneth Osborne

    i agree with the shorter periods 3 to 6 weeks it makes sense

    March 6, 2012 at 8:10 pm

  • Randy

    Hi Roman. I used to be really into body building. I was very active, and played hockey, baseball and golfed. I was hit by a drunk driver about 18 years ago, and pooched my lower back. Over 16 years I went from a lean 180 to 310 lbs. At age 48 I decided to leave my excuses behind and in the last two years I have been battling back, but I am now at a stand still. I've managed to lose 40 lbs, but thats as far as I can seem to get down to. I would like to lose another 80 pounds and get down to 190. I downloaded Vic's system, but my lower back won't take it. I am looking for some advise that can help me develop a routine to develop my core and lower back, so I can advance my training to a higher level. I have found buying programs sight unseen over the internet a waste of time and money as most systems seem to be people that don't have a slight diability to work around. I am open to suggestions.

    May 30, 2011 at 10:16 am

  • brian Gray

    hi i have just seen your video on last phase fat lose and i am great full that i found you .i am a boxing trainer and i also do fitness boxing classes for overweight woman and men at my club.what you explain in your video is what i happening to most of my clients.they are stuck at a level o weight loss and no matter how much cardeo they do they cant seem to loose the last few kg.can you reckomend me any exercises for all the group you spoke about to ad to my programs i am already doing with them.mainly for the woman who have a pair shape body and love handles and belly fat.i mentioned you to my clients and they are just as excited as me to discover that it is a hormone battle thank you for the information you are sharing as it has answered my search as to how to deal with the last phase of fat lose.you are a true champion for sharing this important information thank you brian

    March 12, 2011 at 12:53 am

  • Ted

    To the next "Roman in an affiliate promoting asstard" whiner: I want you to come up with an integrated program for muscle growth, test it for efficacy, put it out on the internet for everybody to judge, and put you name behind it. And I want you to do it for free.

    February 13, 2011 at 3:00 pm

  • Dan

    Man, all this hostility is no good for anyone. Save your energy for the gym. Roman you are the man! Thanx for all your good work. Greatly appreciated!

    February 11, 2011 at 12:52 pm

  • Dean

    Hahaha, I LIKE WHAT MIKE SAID. Well put!

    February 11, 2011 at 9:04 am

  • Dean

    Wow, what's with the bashing?! John Roman is a class act & I don't understand how anyone could be knocking him. I bought FPFL and it's GREAT. Roman is great at what he does, so to be ass holes is not cool. Haters...the shit people say sometimes! Instead of a free chest routine, how about one for the delts?

    February 11, 2011 at 9:01 am

  • VB

    ADTS?? Another Dumb Teenage Shithead?? Well that's what i think anyways. U gotta choice jackass. Read the information and benefit or fuckoff!! U are absolutely of no benefit to this community with ur presence. From me, Fuck OFF!!

    February 11, 2011 at 7:46 am

  • simon

    Hey Roman, any chance that you'll release the chest specialisation program on it's own? Coincidentally this is what I have planned for March, currently I'm basing my plans around your T-Nation article on specialisation (longer version of this one) and your T-Nation article on back specialisation. Keep up the good work. Simon

    February 11, 2011 at 5:29 am

  • Joel Marion

    Oh, another idiot on the internet. Huzzah, Joel P.S. U rite teh gudz Ramanelos...keyp it uhp bai.

    February 10, 2011 at 10:33 pm

  • Clement

    Hey Roman, I'm a bit confused by the programme's set-up. They don't include rest times or much specifications. Does that mean we can rest as much as we want? There are some which require intervals between each set. Do we do them immediately after the set and then rest as much as we want (probably 2-3min) and then perform the next set?

    February 10, 2011 at 6:16 pm

  • ADTS

    @ Roman - I will. @ Kerls - I did.

    February 10, 2011 at 6:03 pm

  • rocky

    Roman, what do you do about other body parts during the specialized programs? Do you not train them or how's that work?

    February 10, 2011 at 4:36 pm

  • Michael j kerley the 3rd

    Awwwww hell naw?!! Just realized who adts was! @ adts: Email me cause i had to make a new email address and lost yours in the procsess.

    February 10, 2011 at 3:41 pm

  • Ruben

    I must say that I meant 'One Arm Dumbbell rows'. The description 'DB rows' I always see as doing it unilateral. Lying Dumbbell row, that one I do with two dumbbells. Because you need to lay down or you smack on your face. ;-) Roman, what do you mean with 'allow your body to turn with the row'? You mean lifting your shoulders up?

    February 10, 2011 at 2:57 pm

  • John Romaniello

    @AD - I appreciate that, sir. Now that you mention we've interacted on T-Nation, I was able to deduce your handle, and yes, our interactions have been great. In any event, I appreciate that people come to my defense, it does feel great; however, I also appreciate criticism in many forms. I can appreciate that certain content is better suited to a certain audience. To that, I've most been writing the more "hardcore" stuff for Tnation, and the stuff on this site is a bit more varied, as the readership requires. In any event, thanks again for clearing it up, and I do hope you continue to check the site.

    February 10, 2011 at 2:39 pm

  • John Romaniello

    In the case of those two exercises, I'd do the barbell in an overhand grip and with a pause at the top. I'd do the DB rows with a parallel grip and a good stretch at the bottom. The barbell (with an overhand grip) would work traps and teres a lot. The DBs (especially with a stretch) would hit the lower fibers of the lat. If you allow your body to turn with the row, you'll also get a lot of infraspinatus and surpaspinatus.

    February 10, 2011 at 2:24 pm

  • Ted

    @ Ruben and or Roman "A1) Barbell row: 3 x 10 A2) Dumbbell rows: 3 x 15" What is the purpose of supersetting these? Am I missing something or is the purpose essentially more repetitions and perhaps preventing boredom?

    February 10, 2011 at 2:19 pm

  • imre

    Hi Roman, I sent you email thruogh my mail account and through your website, do not know did you received it. When will you send your bonuses for LHMR?

    February 10, 2011 at 12:47 pm

  • ADTS

    @Roman I'm actually a big fan of yours, we've went back and forth on T-Nation a few times (in a good way). Both sets of comments I made we're really not meant to be as douchy as they came off, humor is hard to convey over the internet especially with my terrible grammar. Also, as a fellow Jets fan I was also still moderately ass-hurt by our early exit. I liked and bought FPFL and loved the different pieces you did about maximizing the hormonal responses of different kinds of training. Loved the Basics of Training series and have directed a lot of people just starting out lifting weights to it. I remember reading it the first time and actually being anxious (ghey) about the next part. Your rest pause article is also top notch. I have incorporated RP into many phases of my training, and while physically and mentally draining at times it has produced great results. Its got to feel good with this many rushing to your defense, congrats on your success thus far and I wish you the best. AD

    February 9, 2011 at 6:02 pm

  • Michael j kerley the 3rd

    Roman pwned you in that long post of his. As someone who bought all ( i think its all of them anyways) of romans programs, i can say they do all work as advertised and roman doesnt go as heavy on the marketing as some people. Also hes a pretty cool guy who actually takes the time to answer stupid questions from people like me and all the other joe soaps who post on his blog and facebook. Im rambling so good day.

    February 9, 2011 at 3:49 pm

  • Ruben

    Yeah I read it, I was looking for some good exercices and there I found a whole bunch! I used some of them. But I prefer my own schedule because I know those exercices better and I'm not so experienced in spec programs but when I do another back spec program I think I'll give it a try!

    February 9, 2011 at 11:04 am

  • John Romaniello

    @Clement - thanks for the kind words, man. You're the best. @Ruben - program looks good! Did you also happen to read my 6-week back specialization article on T-nation?

    February 9, 2011 at 10:09 am

  • John Romaniello

    @ADTS - Thanks for stepping up man, means a lot. I'm sorry the site isn't quite what you'd hoped it would be, but it's impossible to make everyone happy. Out of interest, what specifically would you like to see more of? @

    February 9, 2011 at 10:05 am

  • Ruben

    Hey, let's go back to business, no more jibbering around. :-) I am fascinated by this article, I also read it on T-nation and it made me really think about my training routine. I've gained a lot of muscle the past years but it's getting harder and harder, I think I even don't grow anymore. So this article gave me a boost. I started a specialization program for my back this week, here is the training schedule (+ a full body training once a week): Monday: A1) Barbell row: 3 x 10 A2) Dumbbell rows: 3 x 15 B) Renegade rows: 2 x 6 C1) Cleans: 3 x 6 C2) Barbell pullover: 3 x 10 C3) Shrugs: 3 x 15 D) Supine row 3 x 10 Wednesday: A1) Lying dumbbell row: 3 x 10 A2) Barbell pullover: 3 x 15 B) Barbell row: 3 x 6 C1) One arm dumbbell row: 3 x 6 C2) Overhead barbell shrug: 2 x 15 D) Kip pull ups: 2 x 10 Saturday: A1) Pull ups: 3 x 6 A2) Seated neck rows: 2 x 15 B1) Single arm cable pulldown: 3 x 10 C1) Seated row: 3 x 10 C2) One arm bodyweight row: 3 x 6 D) Hyperextensions 3 x 15 Any comments are welcome. Oh and I also want to promote some stuff. Like cottage cheese, or oatmeal and oh banana's! Good products I share with everyone who asks me about nutrition for getting bigger. ;-)

    February 9, 2011 at 3:32 am

  • Clement

    ADTS, perhaps you might want to revisit the video and blog on the Transformation Solution. In it, Roman CLEARLY states that it's a good STARTING point, but that if you're advanced, you don't need to buy it. Before being to derisive, I think you should read posts carefully. Yes, I am one of the "your readers" which you mention, and I would add that the reason we like Roman's posts is that he's GENUINE, HUMBLE and COMMITTED to his profession. Genuine because he never lies about the products he believes in. I don't see him promoting dodgy fitness programmes which he hasn't yet tried out, himself. XFLD, Eat Stop Eat and Cheat Your Way Thin - these are products that Roman has personally tried before. Humble, because he is unafraid to post new content that may have contradicted his old beliefs. Years ago, he was eating tuna out of a can and eating 5-6 meals per day. Now, he fasts for a FULL DAY. He is unafraid to embrace new beliefs and try them out. If he's wrong, he admits that he is, because he always wants his followers to get the best information out there. Committed, because of the wealth of free information he's giving us on facebook and here. I feel you should look at everything he's doing and the bonuses he's giving to us before you criticise him for having affiliates. Personally, I would gladly pay $49.90 to have Roman's bonuses on their own, because I know how great the guy is. The information he has taught me already deserves a whole lot more than what he's earning. So, is he just earning your money or promoting programmes for the sake of finances? If he was to just keep his blog up and running - and that, in itself, costs money - and give away free information, he'd just go bust. People in the fitness industry do not earn much at all. It is unfair and myopic to pick on him when he's merely promoting a product that he believes in. Honestly, are you going to say that Eric Cressey's Show And Go, Craig Ballantyne's Turbulence Training and now Elliot Hulse's Lean Hybrid Muscle Reloaded are just money-making scams with no results?

    February 9, 2011 at 3:21 am

  • ADTS

    Roman, out of respect I was perhaps overly critical and I will not hate on your posts anymore. I used to love this site and got a lot out of it but was bitter because it has taken a direction that I don't like. If your current readers like your posts then obviously you have to continue to serve them. I stand by the message of what I said just not in the manner in which I said it. BTW: The video of you and the Vermonster was epic.

    February 8, 2011 at 7:56 pm

  • Mike

    Epic---that was a virtual spin kick to the fucking throat. It's funny how for 9 months this commentor put up with your "below average" posts. I wish I had time like that to waste...he should go jerk off with razor blades.

    February 8, 2011 at 7:51 pm

  • Tunya Sytsma

    Roman, obviously he did not read the "Comment Rules". 1. I talk about grown up stuff, so let's act like grown ups. (ADTS missed the mark on this rule. 2.Don't be overly disrespectful to others......look like a jerk (ADTS...you certainly got this one right).

    February 8, 2011 at 7:16 pm

  • Josseline

    dude.... you got owned!!!!

    February 8, 2011 at 6:53 pm

  • John Romaniello

    I declined to comment on your last post, but honestly, I really don't need to put up with your shit. Here's the bottom line: affiliate promotions are a part of how I make my living. It's also a part of how every fitness professional makes their living. I don't train my clients for free (in most cases) and I don't coach for free. I have spent 10 years in this industry helping people, and I maintain this blog primarily in an effort to do just that. In exchange for promoting products I believe in or think can be of value to my readers, I put out a lot of free information. Being extremely honest, I promote about 20% of the products I'm asked to, simply because I don't A) want to spend my time promoting constantly or B) don't like the product. Instead, I promote only those I believe in, and even then I don't push that hard or that often. In point of fact, I probably promote less than HALF as often as most of my affiliates. Now, in your last comment, you'd mentioned that "as recently as 9 months ago" I was putting out good content. That would have been May of 2010. Between May 1 and now, I have published 42 blog posts, only 6 of which have really promoted any product. You imply that NONE of these posts contained good information? I think that's ridiculous. Furthermore, 36 blogs posts in 9 months--or roughly one per week--are pure information. Let's assume I promote ONE product every two weeks--and let's be honest, that would be a huge exaggeration in most cases--I'd still be giving out free content with as much frequency as I promote. In the case of the blog, I think a ratio of 36:6--that is, SIX TIMES as much free content as I promote. Do you get pissed at the television every time there's a commercial? Do you toss Men's Health across the room every time they have the audacity to run an ad? More importantly, to paraphrase another blog commenter (Ted), you don't work for free, so why should you expect me to? Now, to answer your specific comment - my "old" article is on a website that less than 1/3 of my readers visit. Posting it here for more people to read is hardly a practice I'd feel worthy of scorn. Is there marketing involved in the decision? Absolutely. I happen to have a program related to the topic that I'd like to offer people, so it's relevant--and yes, will probably lead to more sales. You would chastise me not only for doing my job, but for doing it WELL? I can't fucking fathom how that makes sense. Additionally, LHMR is not an "old" program -- it's a new version of a pre-existing program, with all new workouts. This is also the first time I've told me readers about it, so it's NEW to both this blog and most of my readers. I believe in LHM, and I think that a LOT of my readers would benefit from the program, hence my promotion. If I didn't recommend shit to people who were looking for it, I'd be doing my job badly. Finally, you mentioned in your last post that you wouldn't be returning, and here you are spewing your ignorant and condescending vitriol. Please, feel free to avoid this site and the constant schilling of products that clearly don't work.

    February 8, 2011 at 6:47 pm

  • Josseline

    @ Ted- Ditto

    February 8, 2011 at 6:46 pm

  • Ted

    "Never to return, AD" And I quote. Grow up, get a life, and go away.

    February 8, 2011 at 6:37 pm

  • ADTS

    Yayyyy another product!!! Recycling an old article to push an old program? A new low, Roman.

    February 8, 2011 at 6:10 pm

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