Natural Bodybuilding With JC: The Insanity Press

bodybuilding-leg-workoutLooking for something different to shock your legs? The following is a routine I came up with when the squat rack wasn’t available. It has drawn enough attention in my local gym that I thought some of you might be interested in giving it a go. Just a warning – it is high volume and extremely taxing. If you choose to try it, please exercise good judgment and proper safety.

I start by loading the press with a single 45 pound plate on each side. I push out twenty reps and then load another plate on each side. After a short rest of about a minute, I push out fifteen reps. I then load another plate on each side and follow the cycle, resting for approximately one minute before I push out twelve reps. Then another plate is introduced and ten reps are pushed out.
Simply put, my warm-up looks like this:

90 x 20
180 x 15
270 x 12
360 x 10

My working sets follow the exact same pattern, except I stop at 8 reps, until I hit a weight where I cannot do more than six reps. Once I hit the set of six, I stay at that weight for an additional set. It typically looks like this:

450 x 8C290391E-504A-4A68-920A-6B69BD857859
540 x 8
630 x 8
720 x 6
720 x 6

The next step is where it gets a little tricky. With the aid of two others, one on each side of me, I push out a third set for six reps. Then a plate is removed from each side and I push to failure, usually 4 or five reps. Then another plate is removed from each side and a I go to failure again. This process is repeated until I am back down to one plate. There is no rest between these drop sets beyond the 2 or 3 seconds it take to unload the weight.

720 x 6
630 x 4
540 x 4
450 x 4
360 x 4
270 x 4
180 x 4
90 x 4

Until recently, I trained legs for two consecutive days a week, the first day being a quad emphasis, and the second being a hamstring emphasis. The leg press can be used to target/emphasize the quadriceps or the hamstrings.Unknown

To place a greater emphasis on the quadriceps and outer sweep of the leg (Vastus Lateralis), place your feet low and close on the press. I bring my feet together and place the heels of my feet along the lower edge of the press. To place a greater emphasis on the hamstrings and inner thigh (Adductors), place your feet high and wide on the press. I place the tips of my toes on the top right and left corners of the press. To get the full benefit of the exercise, be sure to bring your knees as close to your chest as possible when pressing.

I utilized this method for two consecutive days a week, once with a quad emphasis and once with a hamstring emphasis. This is in addition to the lunges, front squats, 33004CD9-3486-4857-81B3-B95ACC2F8EA5stiff leg dead lifts, extensions, and raises that followed. A neutral stance with your feet hip width apart and centered is of course another equally effective method.

Happy Lifting!

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5 comments for “Natural Bodybuilding With JC: The Insanity Press

  1. January 28, 2013 at 1:21 pm

    Great workout JC – we used to call that ‘running the rack’, and it works well for every bodypart. The name came from dumbbell curls, where you’d finish your heaviest set, place the ‘bells back in the rack and immediately grab the next lighter set and rep out. You’d run the rack down that way, til you couldn’t do another rep with the 10-pounders. Definitely a mind-blowing pump, but not something I’d want to do every workout!

  2. Chris
    January 26, 2013 at 5:22 pm

    I can see why this is called the insanity press. I bet it works though.

  3. January 25, 2013 at 6:41 am

    This looks like it would be very effective, and extremely painful. How bad is the lactic acid buildup on all those drop sets?!

    • JC
      January 25, 2013 at 9:20 am

      It is hard to describe the pain. If I try to stand immediately after, I topple over and trip. I’m usually sweating profusely at the end of it and can barely catch my breath. But something else happens, and this is what makes it so appealing to me. Besides the burn and pump I receive, I am always overcome with the most intense sense of elation. I get really giddy and have a hard time containing laughter. It is a natural high in every sense – and it keeps me coming back for more. As for DOMS, I usually hurt until the day before I have to do it again. Stock up on Beta Alanine if you plan to make this a regular in your routine 🙂

  4. January 24, 2013 at 9:06 pm

    Funny you should post this today I just got done with a drop set on the leg press. Although not as killer as this one! Sounds awesome! Thanks for the tip on the emphasis on hammies and quads too, nice tips.

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