Friday, May 15, 2009

Workouts in Review- Cathe's STS

Shock Training System

Well, it's been a month and I'm in love. With STS of course! Cathe has done it again and produced an exceptional program. Changes are appearing and I can't wait to reveal the results at the end of the program.

When I first got news of the STS program over a year ago, I wasn't sure what to expect. The one thing I did know is that Cathe had been thinking long and hard about this routine and was putting a lot of time and effort into it's perfection. As the details started to come out I knew I had to purchase the system. I actually bought the system over a year ago and waited patiently for it's release. I tried to distract myself with other programs all the while wondering when I would get the STS final product. Finally it came and I was smack in the middle of ChaLean Extreme. No worries, I finished that up and took a rest week then it was on to STS, yippee!!! It was worth the wait!

STS is based on 4 principles:

Periodization Is a way of planning, organizing and varying your training program over time to bring about optimal gains in your physical performance. Periodization programs have been shown to be most effective in improving muscular strength, motor performance,  lean muscle mass with reduced body fat. A most important aspect of periodization training is the planning of the recovery.

Muscle Confusion is really a training principle that creates variety in your training. The reason to use MC training protocol is because it prevents plateaus and keeps your muscles growing. Muscles become accustomed to a training program very quickly. We need to develop different exercises and perform a variety of sets and repetitions. This also helps to avoid plateaus and boredom.

One Rep Max is the maximum amount of weight you can lift one time for any exercise. The STS program allows you to find your 1RM so you can quickly and effectively determine the correct weight to use for each exercise. This is extremely important as it will allow you to obtain results both safely and quickly.

Progressive Overload is the gradual increase of intensity placed upon your body during a workout over a period of time. In order for muscle to grow you need to continually challenge it. Week 1 you are at about 60% of your 1RM and  every week you gradually increase your weights by about 5% so that by the time you finish the program you are at about 90% of your 1 RM.

The thing I appreciate most about this program is that there is a different STS workout for each scheduled weight training day. That's right, no repeats! For any of you out there like me that means no getting bored, yeah!

STS features 3 mesocycles each lasting about four weeks. Each mesocycle is designed to stimulate your muscles and body in a different way.  At the end of each mesocycle there is a one week active rest. I take the time to go walking and practice yoga. This program is simple in it's format and so easy to use. Each strength day I just pop in a new DVD and viola, a whole new workout. The bonus is that you can do the cardio of your choice so no boredom there either.
The program is laid out so that you finish in a little over 3 months.

Here is the basic rotation:

Mesocycle #1 rotates Chest, Shoulders and Biceps;  Back & Triceps then Legs for 4 weeks
Mesocycle #2 rotates Chest, Shoulders & Triceps;  Legs then Back & Biceps for 4 weeks
Mesocycle #3 rotates Chest & Back; Plyo Legs; Shoulders then Biceps & Triceps for 4 weeks

Remember you get a one week active rest after each cycle.

This program also includes a fantastic online Workout Manager. This priceless tool will help you track your rotations, weight, body measurements and help you find your 1RM. This tool is so great! You can also print out your workout sheets so you can keep track of the weight you use and how you feel during and after each workout. This is yet another part of the program where Cathe went all out. I love spreadsheets and organization so this was perfect!

If you want to invest in an at-home program that really works, invest in this one. It can be used in so many ways and for a long period of time. If you are serious about making a difference in your physique, GET THIS PROGRAM!


Ingrid said...

STS sounds like a fun workout program, especially for those of us who like variety and switching things up. I'm glad you are seeing results. How long is the program?

Nicole said...

It is a great program Ingrid, it lasts a little over three months. Well worth the time investment for sure:)


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