so today i tried the Escalating Density Training (EDT) style of training. w/ EDT you take two (normally antagonistic) exercises and basically try to increase the reps you can do in a given amount of time when you repeat the workout. basic CF stuff focusing on increasing power output. Staley, the creator of EDT, recommends using your 10RM weight for each exercise but starting at 5 reps in an attempt to get as many reps as possible in the 15 minute 'PR Zone'. more reps in the same amount of time equals more power.
well, after the WOD i did a PR Zone coupling front squats and KTEs. not exactly antagonistic exercises but finding functional, multi-joint, antagonistic leg exercises is difficult since the leg functions as one piece...so i kinda went hip extension vs. flexion. it went well. i was able to maintain 5 rep sets for a total of 16 sets in 15min. perhaps i shouldve gone a heavier but it definitely wasnt easy. i finished sweaty and pretty beat.
and then i read a post referring to Coach's policy of achieving a score of 18-20 on Tabata squats before doing anything with weight. since i suck at squats, ive been trying to work on them. just last Saturday i did some Tabata squats and got a score of 16/129 (minimum/total). i know, i know...by Coach's standard, i should not be lifting. regardless, this got me thinking. just as CFJ 31 went into great depth comparing different versions of Fran, i wanted to compare my power output during my EDT PR Zone to my most recent Tabata squats. i was interested to see how they compared but, more importantly, i dont want to waste my time w/ less effective protocols. so heres how it went...
205lbs (BWT) X 2.5ft (squat distance) = 512.5ft-lbs/rep
95lbs (barbell) X 2.5ft (barbell's distance) = 237.5ft-lbs/rep
BWT squats - 512.5ft-lbs
95# front squats - 750ft-lbs
now we can compare my performances using the two protocols:
PROTOCOL___WORK/REP___X___TOTAL REPS___=___TOTAL WORK
Tabata squats - 512.5ft-lbs/rep X 129reps = 66112.5ft-lbs
EDT front squats - 750ft-lbs/rep X 80reps = 60000ft-lbs
I DID MORE TOTAL WORK DURING THE TABATA INTERVAL!! moreover, it took nearly a fourth of the time to complete my Tabata interval as it did my EDT PR Zone!! that has incredible implications for my power output during the two...
Tabata squats - 66112.5ft-lbs / 240sec = 275.5ft-lbs/sec
EDT front squats - 60000ft-lbs / 900sec = 66.7ft-lbs/sec
even if you argue that the power output of the EDT PR Zone is lower because it utilizes two exercises, this simply does not account for a fourfold difference.
so...conclusions...the data definitely illustrates the superiority of the Tabata interval over a weighted EDT PR Zone with regards to power output IN THIS CASE (for me w/ this weight doing this exercise). in all honesty, it says more about me than it does about the protocols. if i want to max my power output, i should do plain old BWT squats, not 95# front squats. similarly, how does this reflect on Coach's policy of Tabata squats prior to weight? i think it perfectly supports it. if we assume that my body supercompensates in some relation to my power output, even though i might think im doing great things for myself with weight, i can produce more power using the Tabata interval and, therefore, become a better squatter faster w/ the Tabata protocol. of course, as CFJ 31 suggests, my power output at any given weight for any given exercise has a ceiling because i can only perform a repitition so fast. once i can repeat that max speed over the entire workout, ive maxed my power output for that exercise/weight combination. thats when i need to add weight and judging by Coach's policy, im guessing its somewhere near one squat/second for the Tabata interval.
in summation, dont squat with weight until you can score 18-20 on Tabata squats...i just love rediscovering the already discovered.