Theory to Practice

18 comments written by Joshua Trentine

I came across an interview I did with Carl Lanore on Super Human Radio some time ago. 

Carl is a great interviewer and really got a lot out of me for this show. The Renaissance concept wasn’t fully evolved at the time of the show, but we do cover the fundamentals of Ken Hutchins’ original SuperSlow protocol. At the time of the show we were no where near ready to come forward with the machines and the Renaissance protocols that go with them.

I’ve outlined the subjects that we covered in the interview below. Most of these subjects will require much more explanation for the initiated viewer.

  • What is High Intensity training
  • What went wrong with Single Set Training to Failure
  • Realistic stats for a Natural Bodybuilder
  • What’s so magical about our single set
  • What dictates hypertrophy
  • General training guidelines
  • How do we define failure
  • What is the stimuli for adaptation
  • SuperSlow exercises can produce the benefits of H.I.T and High Volume Training 
  • What went wrong with H.I.T and what’s the solution
  • Did Nautilus equipment miss the mark
  • Rep Ranges for SuperSlow protocol
  • What is most important load or fatigue….both?
  •  Lactic Acid threshold and hormonal impact
  •  Body-weight exercises
  • How to adapt the Chin-Up
  • Radical Cam effect and using HEAVIER loads with more precise expression
  • SuperSlow and Bodybuilding
  • What does a SuperSlow rep look like
  • Focus and discipline- benefits of proper equipment and environment
  • Free Weights vs. Machines
  • Thorough Inroad Technique and extending the set at the key point of stimulus
  • Squats Vs Leg Press- what kind of Leg Press is best
  • How to get started
  • Breathing (I’m not happy w/ this discussion, but I didn’t want to bog down,  see Al Coleman’s  blog article HERE)
  • Generic Routine
  • The real work starts at failure
  • MedX & Retrofit Nautilus
  • Metabolic impact of Leg Press
  • How to prepare for Leg Press
  • T.U.L’s
  • Does “Power Factor Training” hold any water
  • Mechanical work formula
  • A & B routines
  • Why do we avoid the thought of “holding weights”- I’m not happy with this discussion and the word “hold” snuck into the conversation where I didn’t like it. Again the constraints of the forum.
  • Avoid ValSalva
  • Breathing & Inroad
  • Prone Leg Curl vs Seated  
  • Is SuperSlow ideal for Bodybuilding pre-contest preparation?

Now that you have an overview of the conversation, sit back and enjoy by clicking here! 

Please appreciate that this is a national radio show and the information had to be as low tech as possible, as the average listener is not engaged in H.I.T training and wouldn’t recognize anything about SuperSlow beyond what the name might entail.

There are a few subjects that I feel I was a bit lax on as I didn’t want the subject matter to get to technical for our first show. I thought this would be a good surface level introduction worthy of a follow up at some point.

Listening today I’m not particularly happy about the discussion about how we should associate with our breathing.

The RENAISSANCE follower should defer to Al Coleman’s blog post Breathing…Easier Said Than Done! 01/12/11, for the latest on this subject.

The other point in the interview that requires much more detail is the instruction of “Squeeze Technique” VS. the term “hold”.

In practice, there is NEVER any point in time where we think or attempt to hold when performing Renaissance Exercise.

This subject deserves an entire article.

In the interview you may get a sense, at times, that I’m trying to encourage the listener to work through the endpoint of an exercise in order to illicit the most intense contraction, and other times the word “hold” crept in.

Defer to the idea of “squeeze technique” or thorough inroad, never “hold”.

As always, please let me know your thoughts and comments by posting them below in the comments section and we will personally reply!

{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar Travis Weigand January 19, 2011 at 7:56 pm

I found this interview to be of great value the first time I listened and think it is well worth another. Perhaps this is a bit off topic, but one statement here really caught my attention: the paragraph that begins with “please appreciate that…”.

I find that the mere idea of this protocol seems to spark a lot of interest in a person, particularly when I can see they were completely unaware its existence . As we very well know, the amount of detail and explanation necessary to even begin to grasp this protocol is tremendous. While the studio is a great environment to begin to learn and understand, I’m interested to hear about some of the less formal introductions you as trainers have made, both to potential clients as well as in general conversation. What strategies seemed to aid in their understanding? What didn’t?

Perhaps this could be another topic of discussion in a future post. I find this initial introduction to sometimes be as much of an obstacle as it is an opportunity.


avatar Jeff Wiese January 21, 2011 at 3:28 am

Enjoyed the interview.
Listening to someone speak, then adds a context in which to put their written words. This is especially important now that we all communicate elctronically.
I thought Carl was a great host, paying close attention to your topic.

The reference to “impatience” as far as staying with one movement continually for such a long time was a good one. I’ve timed people doing a conventional exercise of several warm up sets then working up to a final set, and compared it to a slow (Note: I am not pretending to be educated in SuperSlow) H.I.T. set and found that the time under load is about the same. Apparently the breaks in between each set and the resetting of the wieght alleviates the trainees boredom, and of coarse the exercises efficiency and overall effectiveness. It’s that not getting out from under the load that drives them mad.
Courage really helps out.

Good job on steering the converstaion several times back to muscle growth and strength being “multifactorial”.

I’d like to hear, or read more on the “Thursday” workout. I can’t imagine going through a workout with the equipment you have available (I’ve never worked out under ideal circumstances.) and still being able to come in two days later and perform another workout, albeit less taxing. The closest thing I’ve done to this is when I was doing one of Mike Mentzer’s split routines. I found I could recover in a much shorter time after the delt./arm day then the leg day.

It was a great interview Josh, glad you posted it. I’d encourage everyone to give it a listen.


avatar Joshua Trentine February 1, 2011 at 12:50 am



avatar Scott Springston January 21, 2011 at 5:36 pm

Finally saw the interview! Very good!!


avatar Jeff January 26, 2011 at 7:21 pm



avatar Joshua Trentine February 1, 2011 at 12:50 am


Thank You!


avatar Jeff January 26, 2011 at 7:16 pm

Below is a question we received in our email. Please post all educational questions to the “comments” section , so all can benefit. This is a especially good question.
Hi there Josh – I really enjoyed listening to your audio interview and thought of a couple questions. Hopefully you won’t mind my asking..

First, the second training day – the “detail” day – reminds me of how McGuff’s big-five; little-five approach. But something I wonder about on this is that it would seem to me that with the big compound movements for upper body, the arms would get more directly hit than pecs/back etc. So on the little five day, would it not make more sense to focus on a pec fly/pullovers etc? Just curious on this as it would seem arms get more than enough work on the big-five day while chest-back does not get direct stimulation.

Second, the issue of training once vs twice a week. McGuff and for that matter Mentzer and Little are pretty adamant that for the vast majority, training once every seven days or less is optimal for full rest and overcompensation. McGuff/Mentzer seem to have found that after a short while, for most, their clients’ progress would stall or be minimal on a 2x/wk frequency, yet some very advanced HIT trainers such as yourself find that a rest pd of 2-3 days is plenty, and very effective with their clients. I’m curious why you think it is that different trainers employing very similar methods observe differences like this with their clients on training frequency?

Thanks Josh for your consideration… again, really enjoyed the interview. I was fascinated to hear how you approach things. Cheers,



avatar Donnie Hunt March 21, 2011 at 12:23 pm

Hey Joshua,

Really enjoyed the interview! You and Carl really covered alot of infomation.

The question that Don asks here about working the chest and back directly rather than the arms on “detail” day really caught my attention. Did you or anybody else have any thoughts regarding this?


avatar Brian Liebler January 30, 2011 at 11:57 am

Frequency and incorporating the A routine(compounds) along with the B routine(isolation) or “detail day” is becoming a recovery problem for me.Especially now that I’m in late 50’s.

For the past 4 weeks on Monday I have leg pressed,pulldown,chest press, row and shoulder pressed.

On Thurs. leg curl/leg ex followed by pullover, chin, dip,shrugs, calf raise.

Even though the leg curl/ex routine is less intense than my leg press routine, it does reduce my strength level and today, 3 days later, I have a deep ache in my quads.

Prior to this ,I trained the” Big Five” every 4 and most often 5 days and I would add some isolation in a post exhaustion fasion. ie leg press followed by leg curl one workout and leg press followed by leg ex the next.

I tried spacing the A&B routine every 4 to 5 days but I missed the metobolic effect I get from leg pressing.

What are your thoughts on this and do you have any suggestions?



avatar Joshua Trentine February 1, 2011 at 1:07 am

Many times the recovery issue has more to do with the inability to eliminate recruitment of uninvolved body parts and faulty movement patterns.

As the subject becomes advanced he can use greater loads and gets more oxygen debt, but you also see him normalize quicker after a workout.

Recovery can be impeded and stimulation halted when exercise stress is distributed over the entire body. This is leading to much confusion regarding recovery.

We are writing a blog on this subject, it requires more attention.

Whether training one or two times per week, exercise rotation maybe used instead of protracting recovery periods.
I think exercise selection and rotation must be considered before taking too many days between workouts. This should be reserved for the ultra-advanced.


avatar Tim January 30, 2011 at 5:40 pm

I actually had the same question as Don. Why a 2x per week frequency versus McGuff’s once per week (or even less frequent)? Terrific interview.


avatar Joshua Trentine February 1, 2011 at 1:12 am

Even less frequent should be reserved for the most advanced subject.

Many times people are jumping to consolidation and very infrequent workouts to soon, way to soon.

The determination to add more recovery is commonly based on “sticking” points rather than protocol mastery.

These can be mechanical problems or problems with qualitative considerations not necessarily an indication that more recovery is needed.

IMO adding more rest at every sticking point isn’t looking close enough.

I hope Al chimes in on this.


avatar Scott Springston January 31, 2011 at 3:52 pm

I’m 58 and I’ve just started doing the 2 a week workout plan doing compounds on Tuesday and iso’s on Friday and I seem to be recovered enough by the next workout. I’ve often felt that training once a week which I had been doing for quite some time was too infrequent. So far twice a week seems to work. How long it will work I can’t say yet. My biggest problem when starting this was that I hadn’t done pulldowns in quite a while so I was sort of sore at first from doing them for many days. Most of the other exercises I do I had done before so I recovered from them fairly easy.
I’m currently doing this.
Pulldown — 5–6 reps
Nautilus chest press–5-6 reps
seated row—5-6 reps
standing press 6–5 reps
Pullover–5–6 reps
tricep extensions— 5–6 reps
laterals 5–6 reps
Curl —–5–6 reps

I erg ( row on a concept 2 rower) for legs once and a while on off days.


avatar Scott Springston January 31, 2011 at 4:50 pm

Oh, one more thing. I can’t say for sure but it’s possible that if I was working legs with the effort like I do my upper body with leg presses and calf raises and extensions/curls, it might take my body quite a bit longer to recover than it does now.


avatar Al Coleman January 31, 2011 at 5:12 pm

If anyone is having trouble downloading the show.

Try the link below. It may take a few minutes to load but be patient.



avatar Scott Springston January 31, 2011 at 7:11 pm

I found I needed to use windows media player to watch it but I was using FireFox and with out a special Windows media firefox plug in it wouldn’t work. It was an easy free download.


avatar Joshua Trentine February 1, 2011 at 1:48 am

I hope everyone can see that 2x/week is a template I chose for example, for the show. I find this works best for many clients.

A program can be written for someone to train 5x/week just as easily as 1x/week. I think it’s clear that the Renaissance workout and equipment is designed in such a way that optimizes training time spent and requires more recovery than orthodox training programs.

Our information (philosophic and practical) can help save you much wasted time and injury, but when it comes to specifics, there are far too many variables involved to make prescriptions.


avatar Andy February 5, 2011 at 5:49 am

I remember a HIT bodybuilder, named Bill Sahli, suggesting to use his “2 Day Rule”…waiting after a training session until you feel 100% recovered, muscularily and mentally. At that point you have compensated. But we not only want to compensate, but to overcompensate and lay down new muscle. So at that point wait another 2 Days until you train again.
For me that´s pretty logical and takes into account the principle of individuality.
Takes into account your individual recovery ability at any point of time, depending on daily life stressors, age, hormonal status, nutritional status, intensity of previous training session etc..
I just can say about my own: I have more to learn about exactly listening to my own biofeedback.
I think then training will be more rewarding and successful than mainly relying on numbers on my training chart.


Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: