Earlier this year I designed a bench press program called the 2 Plate Special. It was created to help the myriad of lifters stuck around a 180-240 bench press max bust through plateaus and make progress. While I knew this training protocol would help, I didn't expect it to catch on like wildfire.
The feedback for this program has been nothing short of amazing. High volume rep work seems to be the spark that many trainees needed to re-ignite progress. Along with the testimonials I've received touting this program's effectiveness, I am also getting the following type of questions:
Can I use this program for lifts like squats, deadlifts, overhead presses and rows?
The answer is, of course, yes.
The following workout is just that; a complete program based around my 20-rep training protocol. I call this training system a powerbuilding workout because it will not only help you bust through strength plateaus, but it will also help you to pack on muscle mass in the process.
I recommend running this program for a minimum of 4-6 months. If you are able to commit for a full year, I am confident you will reap a bounty of benefits. Regardless of how long you run the program, please let me know how it goes. I'd love to hear your story and learn about your strength and muscle building progress.
Understand that this program is not really anything I would run while trying to lose fat. Consider Wild 20 to be a bulking program. Keep your calories at 300 to 500 above maintenance levels, and your protein intake no less than 200 grams per day.
I recommend running this program for a minimum of 4-6 months. If you are able to commit for a full year, I am confident you will reap a bounty of benefits.
"2 Plate Special" - Wild 20 Overview
You will perform a total of 7 sets using the same weight for the following major compound movements:
- Bench Press
- Overhead Press
- Deadlifts or Barbell Rows (pick one, not both)
Here is how you will perform the 7 sets:
- Set 1 - Weight x 5 reps
- Set 2 - Weight x 5 reps
- Set 3 - Weight x 5 reps
- Set 4 - Weight x 10 reps
- Set 5 - Weight x 10 reps
- Set 6 - Weight x 10 reps
- Set 7 - Weight x max reps, goal 20+ reps
Set 7 is your money set. If you are able to reach 20 or more reps for this set, add 5 pounds to the lift the next time you perform it. If you are unable to reach your 20 rep goal, continue to use the same weight and aim for progression the following week.
You will find that once you are able to reach 20 reps on your money set, progress and weight additions will start to occur quite frequently. It is not uncommon to add 5 pounds to a lift every 2-4 weeks. Over the course of 6 months this could potentially add 30 to 50 pounds to your bench press, squat or deadlift.
So to recap, your Wild 20 sets will:
- Use the same weight for each set.
- Feature an all-out max rep 7th set.
For your Wild 20 sets I suggest using the following start weights if your bench press max is under 240, your squat max is under 350, your deadlift max is under 400, your barbell row max is under 225 and your military press is under 150.
- Bench Press - 135 pounds
- Squats - 185 pounds
- Deadlifts - 185 pounds
- Barbell Rows - 135 pounds
- Military Press - 95 pounds
Sample training schedule
Here is a sample training split. It can be adjusted to best fit your weekly schedule.
- Day 1 - Chest & Triceps
- Day 2 - Back & Biceps
- Day 3 - Off
- Day 4 - Shoulders & Traps
- Day 5 - Quads, Hamstrings & Calves
- Day 6 - Off
- Day 7 - Off
|Chest & Triceps|
|Bench Press||7||Wild 20|
|Dumbbell Incline Bench Press||3||8-12|
|Machine Chest Press||3||8-12|
|Pec Dec or Cable Crossovers||3||10-15|
|Lying Tricep Extensions||3-4||8-12|
|Rope Cable Tricep Extensions||3-4||10-15|
|Back & Biceps|
|Barbell Rows or Deadlifts||7||Wild 20|
|Pull Ups or Inverted Rows||3||AMAP|
|T-Bar or Seated Cable Rows||3||8-12|
|Rope Cable Curls||3-4||10-15|
|Shoulders & Traps|
|Military Press||7||Wild 20|
|Seated Arnold Press||3||8-12|
|Side Lateral Raise||3||10-15|
|Bent Over Reverse Flyes||3||10-15|
|Quads, Hamstrings & Calves|
|Dumbbell Stiff Leg Deadlift||3||8-12|
|Seated Calf Raise||3-4||10-15|
Note: Ab work can be inserted on any of the training days as needed.