Strength Training Split, High Rep Part I

Finally, more on programming! To recap…after returning from Maui on Monday afternoon, I was coming off my “rest week” and feeling quite rejuvinated. However, due to losing Monday with travel, Nick and I had to structure this past week slightly differently.

Typically, my strength days are split Monday/Thursday: upper body, Tuesday/Friday: lower body, Saturday: vanity day. 

We found the best tweak for the routine to be:

  • Tuesday – lower body, Wednesday – upper body push muscles, Thursday – upper body pull emphasis and Friday lower body training again. 
  • Tuesday’s training was a heavy, low rep workout, so we cycled back to a high rep day on Friday.
  • (You can find a variation of Tuesday’s lower body workout in “Strength Training Split, High Intensity, Part III and IV”)

I always look forward to training legs. They usually include my prefered conditioning, but it is also the company that I enjoy so much. I often join Nick and his training partner Mark for leg workouts. They adapt to my program, but it often falls in sync with their weekly program as well. This Friday, we had a fourth in the group and it was just an all around good time full of hard effort, encouragement, a little bit of heckling and jokes.

Below is an example of how we structure our high rep lower body workouts.

First, as always, we spend about 10 minutes with a solid dynamic warm up. Again, the purpose here is to increase the body temperature, fire up the central nervous system, activate muscles, increase joint mobility and so on. I highly suggest people incorporate this type of warm up before training. This is a great way to help prevent injuries, also reinforce good movement patterns and prep the body for the upcoming workout.

Next, we generally start our strength training with a few sets of either squats or lunges. Sometimes we opt for 3 sets of 20-25 rep barbell squats, however this past Friday, we went outside and performed two rounds of walking lunges across the parking lot (measured about 70 yards each round).

After we successfully smoked our quads, we moved back into the gym to complete two rounds of a leg complex we call “super legs.” What you will see below is a variation of the traditional set. The beauty of this exercise is there are MANY variations! I will post others in the future. In this workout, we used a 10 pound medicine ball for an additional challenge. The complex includes: 

  • 16 squats
  • 16 alternating lunges (forward or reverse – 8 per leg)
  • 16 split jumps (8 per leg)
  • 8 squat jumps


I learned this complex from Nick a long time ago, who picked it up from JC Santana. The traditional complex is simply body weight and the reps are:

  • 24 prisoner squats
  • 24 alternating lunges (12 per leg)
  • 24 alternating split jumps (12 per leg)
  • 12 squat jumps

(We also have a variation which you can incorporate if you or a client has knees that can not tolerate the lunges and or split jumps which I will post at a later date as well.)

To wrap up the workout, Nick, Mark, Dan and myself all headed back outside for 5 rounds of conditioning. Check back in the next day or so as I will be posting part II of my high rep leg workout!


4 responses to “Strength Training Split, High Rep Part I

  1. Whew, I bet that burns. 1-2 mins between rounds?

    • It’s a good one Nicole! and yes, you can take 1-2 minutes between rounds. If you feel recovered before that time, you can also start sooner as well 🙂

      Thanks! -Alli

  2. Alli – I just found your blog and I love it! I was wondering if you could provide me with the “knee friendly” version of this workout sometime? Thank you!

    • Hey Chris!

      Great timing on this question.. as a matter of fact… you can see the video clip of a knee friendly version on Nick’s website

      The reverse lunges are more friendly than forward because they require less deceleration from the knee joint. Also, using the bench helps reduce the impact from the jumps….on this particular video however, we would also want to substitute the split jumps at the end with explosive step ups on the bench, to again, reduce the impact from landing. Let me know if you have further questions or if this helps enough!


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