Welcome to the “website”! A very brief “background” before you access the sheet and embark on your MinimumDose™ journey!
My name is Pak and I did my PhD on “the minimum dose required for 1RM strength in powerlifters“, a project dedicated to understanding
what the least a powerlifter can do is and still get stronger.
As part of my PhD, our lab and other collaborators, got to do a few studies on the topic, including a review of the current scientific literature, training studies as well as interviews with some of the best powerlifting athletes and coaches in the world. I also got to read a bunch about minimum dose training in general, including the least one needs to do to make substantial muscle size gains.
Tl;dr we found out that powerlifters or resistance trained individuals can get meaningfully stronger for 6-12 weeks by doing a few heavy/high intensity of effort sets per lift, per week. Additionally, as low as 1-4 sets per muscle group per week can yield meaningful increases in muscle growth, in both trained and untrained individuals.
That’s not to say “a few sets” is all you need for life but it may be something you can try when time or recovery resources are limited or even when training motivation is low.
This sheet contains a series of 6-week minimum dose style “templates” for hypertrophy, 1RM Squat-Bench-Deadlift strength as well as a mix of both.
Although these templates may lead to meaningful increases in strength and hypertrophy in the short term, they may not be a viable “long-term” option if your goal is absolutely maximizing strength or hypertrophy. However, you can run any of the programs indefinitely and expect some progress, just manage your expectations appropriately, especially if you have been training for decades.
The templates are all 2-3 days per week long and will probably “work” best if you train every other day. That said, feel free to adapt the templates as you wish.
I recommend that you run whichever template you like for 6 weeks, see how’re responding and then take it from there. 6 weeks should be plenty of time for you to get a feel of each program and see some sign of gains. Lastly, when viewing the templates, set zoom at 50% to get a clear view of everything.
Enjoy and remember that consistently lifting > whether you’re following an optimized training program year-round
As Bruce Lee once said:
I don’t know man just, you know, try the whole MinimumDose™ thing out, you’ll probably gain some strength and muscle but like chiliiiill, it ain’t that deep, you know?!–Totally Bruce Lee
Some studies relevant to the sheet:
- The Minimum Effective Training Dose Required to Increase 1RM Strength in Resistance-Trained Men: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
- Reduced Volume ‘Daily Max’ Training Compared to Higher Volume Periodized Training in Powerlifters Preparing for Competition—A Pilot Study
- The Minimum Effective Training Dose Required for 1RM Strength in Powerlifters