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HST Vs Bill Starr's Madcow 5x5 For...

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Big V
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2008/05/18 07:07:14 (permalink)
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HST Vs Bill Starr's Madcow 5x5 For...

For a good balance between size/strength but moreso pushing towards size, what would you say would be the better routine? I realise there's a lot of factors to think of such as how the individual responds to a certain type of training etc, but if you HAD to pick one of the 2 which would you pick, and if possible explain why.

I'm interested to hear people's opinions on this:

HST - http://www.hypertrophy-specific.com/hst_index.html

Bill Starr's Madcow 5x5 - http://www.geocities.com/elitemadcow1/5x5_Program/Periodized_5x5.htm
#1

9 Replies Related Threads

    shibadybob
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    RE: HST Vs Bill Starr's Madcow 5x5 For... 2008/05/18 07:29:23 (permalink)
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    Never tried HST so it's a bit of a biased answer from me....

    I'd go with Bill Starr every time. I have been training with a similar routine for a while and it works, my strength is still increasing and the workouts are simple yet effective.
    #2
    Big V
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    RE: HST Vs Bill Starr's Madcow 5x5 For... 2008/05/18 07:35:51 (permalink)
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    I think I'm going to definitely try both, it's just that I can't figure out which to try first. Obviously I'll stick to it for a couple of months & monitor my gains aswell.
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    Big V
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    RE: HST Vs Bill Starr's Madcow 5x5 For... 2008/05/18 08:50:20 (permalink)
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    The thing about HST though is that there's so much waiting going on before you do any decent work. E.g. you start off working out your maxes (15,10,5 rep maxes) then you take around 2 weeks off for Strategic Deconditioning. You then still don't start wokring with heavy weights for weeks as you'll be doing 15 reps for 2 weeks, 10 reps for another 2 weeks, then finally you'll be doing 5 reps for 2-4 weeks. It just seems like a load of unnecessary waiting to me and seems to be far more complicated than is necessary. Another thing about HST is that it doesn't include deadlifts whatsoever and I find that extremely odd considering that deadlifts are one of the best exercises you can do for all round mass.

    Madcow 5x5 seems to me like a real solid straight to the point no Bullsh*t training method. It has it's complicated methods but nothing like HST at all, and you start lifting heavy from the beginning which can only be a good thing.

    It seems like I've answered my own question here as to which routine is better, but that's just MY opinon & I'd like to hear what other people think. If many of you feel HST is better & provide a reason as to WHY it is better, I may see myself beign more inclined to try out HST than Madcow 5x5.
    post edited by Big V - 2008/05/18 08:54:36
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    sad pear
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    RE: HST Vs Bill Starr's Madcow 5x5 For... 2008/05/18 12:29:03 (permalink)
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    Hi

    I've used both numerous times

    I like both

    The 5 x 5 routine is good, I like the way the goal is to push more and more weight (much more measurable and satisfying than loosely trying to add 1 or 2 kg to your bodyweight over a training cycle as with HST). I really surpassed my strength expectations using this routine - I managed a bench press of 115kg x 5 at a bodyweight of less than 90kg (6'3 tall - so not a big frame) and was really chuffed.

    In the end, after 3 consecutive training cycles I had to give it up - I don't think I ws made to squat heavy 3 times a week (that many sets at least) - got nagging pulls in my hips etc. when doing mundane daily activities (and I was using sensible form).

    With HST I was pleased with the weight I put on. I put on 4kg (approx) over 2 consecutive cycles (16 weeks = 2 rest weeks). Was happy with that.

    Really enjoyed training this way. The first week / week and a half I thought 'is this really going to work?' lifting light weights... I think you just have to put your faith in a routine and follow it through then assess at the end.

    The start of my journal shows (in my sig) where and when I put the weight on using HST in those two cycles.

    Just trimmed some fat off and am now using HST again (the third time).


    Don't get too caught up in trying to find the ultimate training program. Pick one that seems sensible, train consistently, eat well, rest... when you get to the end of the training cycle/routine (and you gave it a fair chance), see if you enjoyed it, and got the results you were after. If you did, do it again (if it ain't broke etc...), if you want to try something different give something else a try... you should be able progress with most of the tried and tested routines in the stickies on this forum (IMO)

    Good luck
    #5
    shibadybob
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    RE: HST Vs Bill Starr's Madcow 5x5 For... 2008/05/18 12:59:17 (permalink)
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    I don't think I ws made to squat heavy 3 times a week (that many sets at least)


    I may be wrong as it was a while ago that I read through Bill Starr's 5x5 routine but are you not supposed to use an approach where say if you trained mon,wed,fri then you would go heavy monday, lighter on wednesday then build up to a weight increment on friday with which you will then use in your heavy sets on monday the next week.
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    Big V
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    RE: HST Vs Bill Starr's Madcow 5x5 For... 2008/05/18 13:11:01 (permalink)
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    Thanks for replying pear, that's great. I am the same as you in the thinking of "is this really going to work?". I mean I'm a bit sceptical about doing 15 reps per exercise for the first 2 weeks, to me it just seems like a complete waste of time that I could have put to better use. Do you feel it's necessary to do the 2 weeks of 15 reps in order for the program to work properly?
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    sad pear
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    RE: HST Vs Bill Starr's Madcow 5x5 For... 2008/05/18 13:59:19 (permalink)
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    Shibadybob - yeah you're right, the mid week day you use the 3rd or 4th (can't remember off the top of my head) ramping up set as you're top set... in reality that could be a couple of 2.5kg plates off the bar each side, with strict form light day is still a reasonable effort (IMO)... but you're right

    Nice ava btw

    Big V - in HST FAQ pdf that you can download it does detail why you should do 15 reppers, IIRC the whole idea is to flush the joint in preparation for the upcoming weeks. You are supposed to chase the burn, the last day of 15 reppers where you push your rep maxs on all the exercises it really kicks your arse. In the last 4 weeks where you're doing 5 reps, drop sets and negatives, I think you appreciate the lighter stuff in the early weeks (4 weeks of dropsets and negatives on each body part at a frequency of 3 times a week is probably enough). But it's all a matter of experimenting and finding what works for you and what you enjoy.

    I think the 2 weeks SD rest after testing the maxs assumes you may already be over reaching and in need of a rest... I think if you're not over reaching (I don't know what you've training like in the last couple of months) you COULD be ok on 1 weeks rest... but I'm certainly no expert.


    If you're small and you want to start throwing around some heavy compounds I'd go 5 x 5. If you fancy doing something a bit different to everybody else (and you don't mind looking like a bit of a d1ck with light weights for a short period of time) do HST. I personally love the last 4/5 weeks HST... but training is just a hobby to me and enjoyment is important.
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    shibadybob
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    RE: HST Vs Bill Starr's Madcow 5x5 For... 2008/05/18 14:06:50 (permalink)
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    Yeah I can see your point mate, I did squat 3x a week in my first year training and have to admit I found that very taxing once the weight increased.
    #9
    buzzer
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    RE: HST Vs Bill Starr's Madcow 5x5 For... 2008/05/19 08:27:24 (permalink)
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    do HST its more for hypertrophy hence the name,but when you get to your 5rm use the 5x5,
    bigV
    where did you read that HST doesnt do deadlifts
    the routine on the front page is only an example,HST is a set of principles not a routine.
    #10
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