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Posted: Tue Sep 16, 2008 3:06 am
by luna4rto
I used the Charles Atlas Course when I was 16 years old, but for reasons that I don’t know I didn’t have the expected results, I trained the whole course for about four months and I did not see the muscles in my body that Mr. Atlas promised. As I said I don’t know what happened, maybe I was too young or I did not train properly or it wasn’t enough time. Now I am 50 years old, 5'9'' tall, and a couple years ago I was in bad shape (most of my life I did not work out at all), my weight was 225 lbs, with a 32% body fat. I decided to change that and I started working out, eat properly, and after a year my weight an body fat composition were better, now my weight is around 180 lbs, my body fat composition is 22-23%. Actually I workout pretty hard, I swim 7,500 yards per week, I bike 50 miles, I walk 20 miles and I lift weights four times (the lifting I started doing seriously maybe two months ago), I research constantly about new programs to challenge myself and avoid plateaus, and then I found in my personal library the old course that Mr. Atlas sent me, and I started training two weeks ago, now I’m seeing some results in just this little time. As a coincidence I started a yoga class twice a week at the same time.

My question, is absolutely necessary to train a full week the lessons? Or is there other way to do it, as one day for each muscle group? New discoveries in sports physiology and bodybuilding techniques show that we can expect better results if we don’t over train the same body part every day, if that part is being train once or twice a week there is enough time for recovery and muscle healing, then the expected hypertrophy will show up. And about to train every day (actually twice), most of the modern programs advise to take at least one day off, to give some rest to the body and obtain better results. I’ll wait for your advice and if I have to follow the course as Mr. Atlas originally thought, I’ll do it, but I hope there is some flexibility that some experts already practiced, thanks a lot in advance.



Posted: Fri Dec 05, 2008 6:58 am
by luna4rto
Hello guys, I already finished the whole course and I have some results that I never saw, I'm 50 years old and when I was younger I was not satisfied as I'm now, but still I have the question, is it better to follow the instructions given in the last lesson (Exercises for perpetual daily practice), or is it better the workout for one muscle group per day. Hey, experts and experienced guys, give me some feedback, thanks.


Posted: Sat Dec 06, 2008 9:28 am
by Henry Marczak
I originally had the Atlas System about 1970, but back then I didn't have the discipline to train consistently. Today at 56 I just got laid off from work as a building site labourer and now have time to train during the day. One thing for sure, if you just put in a quicky job at it your not going to get results that you would get from real hard work, you have to put effort into it and train daily. I'll spend my whole day doing Tai Chi and Dynamic Tension exercises, like greasing the groove man!


Posted: Fri Dec 12, 2008 5:18 am
by luna4rto
I think you're right Mr. Marczak (and by the way thanks for your reply), I understand your point, consistency, patience, hard work, and not just one day, or a week, or three months that is the time necessary to finish the whole course, but my point is different, and maybe I wasn't able to explain it properly, then I'll try to do it again. My point is if I rearrange the workout, using the same exercises that Mr. Atlas originally created, but with a different schedule, are we able to get same or better results? I know that the whole goal of his course is not just about bodybuilding, is about a change to a new lifestyle, but there are some modern methods that are recommended nowadays to train a couple group of muscles per day, and the muscle healing process that provides hypertrophy shows up in theory faster and better. For example chest and back Monday, abdominals and arms Tuesday, shoulders and thighs or legs Wednesday, and so on, and you rest Saturday or Sunday, and my question is if for the long run, now that I finished again the course can I schedule the workout that is provided per week in the original course, for one day? Is this adequate or do I have to stick just to the last lesson, or the exercises that appear in Mr. Atlas 10 Steps to a better body?


Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 11:19 am
Newcomers, and oldies who've let themselves go to seed and then return to DT, should do as the course says for the first 12 weeks. After that, they can go ahead and vary it. It all depends on what your needs and desires are. I know of a guy who exercises with DT only every other day, and he's won some minor bodybuilding titles, has his pro card, and still competes. DT is open ended in its design.


Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 4:40 pm
by Bridge
There is total flexibility with Atlas' methods. Whether you are an oldie or newcomer to the course, if you haven't done it before, it is better to follow the course as outlined for 12 weeks, as stated above. The course lays a great foundation for you, to be followed up by doing The Perpetual Lesson, the greatest lesson written in fitness. After completing the regular course, it is wise to do the Perpetual Lesson daily. You can also do your favorite DT exercises throughout the day in little increments that can do wonders for you. The Atlas course is so far ahead of its time, with principles of training not straining, doing little bits throughout the day, now called greasing the groove, and training twice daily with a 3 mile walk in the middle, so as to always keep your metabolism in high gear. DT is a great course, the best, and is complete in itself.


Posted: Mon May 04, 2009 10:45 am
by curdog
I think Spearhead is right on the money about flexibility after achieving the Perpetual Lesson.

BUT, those modern methods you spoke of have an important presupposition that is NOT a part of DT. Those modern techniques you mention presuppose that you are going to exercise to failure. In other words, they have the "no pain, no gain" mentality. Given this presupposition, it is only natural that more time would be required for recovery, rest, growth, etc.

That no-pain-no-gain-presupposition fails with DT. The presupposition on DT is "train, don't strain." When you feel yourself tiring, just BEFORE the point of failure, you should stop. Long recovery times are, therefore, not required. With DT it is, therefore, possible to train every day without doing the body harm.

Since I am fifty years old, I require more recovery time than I did at twenty. I have allowed myself at least one day to rest. I have chosen Sunday as a Sabbath of rest for the soul and body. If I am feeling sluggish sometimes I will rest other days.

If you want to do chest and tris on Mon., back and bis on Tues., legs and shoulders on Wed., etc. there is no DT law against it. You certainly won't harm yourself. The point is to DO DT. Do it in such a way that you "own" the programme. Or, put another way, take responsibility for doing DT, allow time for it, and do it in such a way that you will be able to continue doing for the rest of your life because you enjoy it.


Posted: Tue May 05, 2009 2:06 pm
by luna4rto
Thanks for your replies, they're very wise and have sense. Actually I'm following other course that I don't want to mention its name, and its principle is in general to train until failure as you said above. The funny thing is that when I practiced DT for a few months I had better results in some parts of my body, especially in my chest, other people noticed that right away, now I looked more ripped, and my abdominal area starts to show up a six pack, but some days I'm so tired, and exhausted. I'll finish this course just for fun, and at the end I'll start over DT again, if I can... for the rest of my life, who knows, variety spice the life.


Posted: Wed May 06, 2009 9:44 pm
by lch
just remember train dont strain, experience from thousands of pupils proves twice daily wont hurt a bit it will benefit you,then for the perpetual lessons follow them faithfully because there will be times it cant be done daily in this fast paced hectic world of ours


Posted: Thu May 07, 2009 11:34 pm
I world is too fast paced. Everyone needs to slow down so I can catch up. :lol: Seriously though, Atlas does tell us to live simply.