This method of training was developed by none other than Josh Thigpen. A quick google search and you can learn all about his triumphs in sports alike. The book itself delves into the how and why’s this layout came about, but for the sake of our hows and why’s, we’ll keep it simple.
First you must keep in mind that being a traditional “STRONGMAN” (or STRONGWOMAN for that matter ) isn’t about have a one rep max that blows the socks off of people, instead, it’s about being having a grasp on strength as a whole. “The ultimate goal of strongman is to become the perfect all around strength athlete. This means that you must have brute maximum strength, repetition strength, static strength, explosive strength, grip strength as well as functional mobility”, say Sue “Metty” Metcalf, and the Cube Method allows any dedicated participant to truly embrace this attitude. With that said, Stongman athletes don’t always have the luxury of a firm 8-16 week preparation for a meet, let alone knowledge of what the events will be, this is what makes this simple, yet conjugate approach so successful.
The Cube Method follows a simple breakdown by keeping the lifts grouped as: Deadlift, Overhead, and Squat. It has a similarities with 5/3/1 in that it runs a 3 week on to 1 week deload (again, benefiting the “at random” competitions often run into). Where it begins to stray from 5/3/1 and lean more towards the Westside Conjugate Method is that the 3 weeks of heavy volume follows a Max Effort, Dynamic Effort, and Repetition Method rundown. Chances are… we lost some of you… so here is something to help digest it:
Week 1 2 3
Deadlift 1 2 3
Overhead 3 1 2
Squat 2 3 1
Seems simple enough, but where the meat and potatoes come into play is the variety at which you should be tackling these efforts and method. Here’s what I mean by variety:
-High bar narrow stance olympic squat
-Cambered Bar Squat
…. the list goes on, and that is just for squat. The idea is to duplicate the same effort as little as possible. If you did MAX EFFORT cambered bar deep squats, then it should be removed from your max effort days for quite some time. Can you do them on a dynamic or repetitive day? Absolutely! But remember, the idea is to keep the body guessing, leaving little time to acclimate. Same goes for Deadlift and Overhead movements, change it up on the regular.
Overall the idea of limiting acclimation isn’t new, but the way Thigpen revolutionized the concept of Strongman training is very much a new concept.
I suggest anyone who wants to expand their horizons in sports training read his book/PDF