October 30 "Enthusiasm is the most important thing in life." -Tennessee Williams
On my own, I have learned simple is best. Yet, what I read said, complex is best.
There are many reasons strength training isn't portrayed as simple, but perhaps the biggest is that the simple is not worth as much money as complex. Arthur Jones and other high intensity advocates had simple programs. Many of today's gurus teach a Soviet/Eastern European periodization that factors in the level of the tide, sunrise, moon phase, barometric pressure and the orbit of Halley's comet.
While those programs can work as well, they work because the body is made to work hard and to follow that work with a period of rest. I believe a lot of the reason for the pushing of the complex approach is because when you see all the factors that you must (according the the ones pushing the complex) consider, you are sure to understand why you need to be paying top dollar for this advice, probably need a personal trainer and could never make gains on a simple program. Reminds me of lyrics from Pink Floyd's "Mother"
- Momma's gonna put all of her fears into you.
- Momma's gonna keep you right here under her wing.
- She won't let you fly, but she might let you sing.
- Momma's gonna keep Baby cozy and warm.
In our case Mother is the excessive periodization faction and their followers. If they told you it was as simple as putting more weight on the bar when you can or doing another rep when you can and changing exercises occasionally you would start to question the worth of the coaching you were buying. The more complicated it is, the easier it is for the coach to justify their existence.
Can it be that simple? The resounding answer is yes, not only can it be that simple, it IS that simple. Look for lifting programs from people like Ken Leistner, Matt Brzycki, Kim Wood and the like. These guys practice the KISS (keep it simple, stupid) principle. You won't see a workout called Double Negative Inverse Loading Periodization Protocol, but you just might find some effective workouts that make you stronger, larger and able to perform at a higher level in your chosen sport.