Hey, did I mention that I met Dorian Yates? He was sitting on the lobby of the hotel where I was staying for my bodybuilding show. The Master's Olympia was being held in conjunction with the NPC show. I saw him sitting there with Peter McGough, who writes for Muscular Development, and I had to walk up to him. I thanked him for the inspiration, and told him that Marty Gallagher said hello. They are old friends. Yes, he is still big. He looks healthy. I also saw Lee Haney, Ronnie Coleman, Shawn Ray, Tony Freeman, George Farah, I rode the elevator with Phil Heath,everybody was there. I really just wanted to say hello to Yates , though. I always liked him.
I was sitting out on the park benches outside of the hotel early in the morning on Saturday( my show was at 4pm, the Olympia at 7pm that day), because I couldn't sleep at all, and all of the Pro's were walking by. Man, were they hungry looking, like zombies. They had the "hunger shuffle", where you are just barely walking. All of them nodded at me, and moved on. When one is that hungry, talking is a pain in the ass.
Ok, Part 2
About percentages- use them, don't go by feel on the main exercises. Work to a peak and overreach(see part 1) and then work back down again. They work, really they do. Now, if you have a coach right on top of you who can pick your weights, percentages aren't needed. But that doesn't happen very often.
For assistance work, change it up constantly. Do barbell exercises, dumbell exercises, machines, bodyweight stuff. Variety. No , not to "shape the muscle", but so you don't get BORED. And work fast. If you have a partner, do "I go, you go". For example, lets say you and your partner are working dumbell rows. You do your set, and as soon as the partner finishes the last rep, begin your set. Think about walking out of there with a great pump everytime.
How much assistance? 2-3 exercises, 5-12 reps, again, not set in stone. Jimmy Anderson and I, back in the early nineties, used to SQUAT AND LEAVE, just do our squat sets and go home. I still do that today. 6-10 sets of squats and I am out of there. Leg curls and lunges and blah blah blah...they pale in comparison to squats, although I had love affair with a hack squat machine one training cycle many years ago. I loved that one hack squat machine, but that gym closed and haven't found one like it again, so they are out.
For the other stuff, chest, back, shoulders, I think that 8-15 sets total for a body part is enough. I like 5 sets per exercise, but there is nothing wrong with doing something like this:
Squat, then deadlift ,using %-. Then lat pulls, one arm rows and chins, 4x8-12 reps.
or something like this-
Press and bench, using %-, then laterals, db bench, cubans, dips 5x8-12
Also, you can do chins and dips every workout. Chins especially respond well to frequent training. With the dips, just don't do them the day before a heavy bench workout.
Alright, hit me up with any questions!