Monthly Archives: May 2019

Are you the average man or woman?

Do you want to train for health, performance and to feel better because if that is the case keep reading.
 
Three things in the gym you should ideally be able to do.
 
Ladies:
 
1 – 1x Double Bodyweight Deadlift
2 – 5x Chin Ups
3 – 1x 3/4 Bodyweight Press
 
Gentlemen:
 
1 – 1x Double Bodyweight Deadlift
2 – 10x Pull Ups
3 – 1x Bodyweight Press
 
None of the above requires astronomical strength.
 
Hit the above though and chicness are you’ll have some good base results.
 
Say you struggle to achieve these then it can mean a few things, such as you might have been injured one upon a time, have a legitimate medical excuse that makes you exempt etc.
 
If you have no aliments (real ones), then it may mean this:
 
– You’re too heavy
– You’re too weak
 
Now a lot of people will get the hump reading this.
 
Some will scream and shout about their not being any cardio goal however I shall explain why there are none.
 
CV is easy to build.
 
(I’d recommend a sport, like boxing, BJJ, skipping etc)
 
Think about it logically for one moment, please.
 
You can go from couch to 5k in a matter of weeks, perhaps even train to run a marathon within 6months (I’ve known people to go form never doing any fitness to that feat, it was most impressive).
 
Yet when it comes to building strength you’ll find that shit takes a long time, especially if you’re very de-conditioned.
 
Strength, or base strength has a universal crossover to life.
 
As does mobility, as such here are three other things you should be able to do:
 
– Sit in a full ROM squat pain free for 5min
– Lay down, stand up, crawl and climb things pain free
– Pass all minimum ROM tests (google this)
 
Many will see me as overly harsh, other will know my intentions are good though.
 
Like a post I shared a few weeks ago about being abel to haul around a sandbag of your own bodyweight.
 
Ideally you should be able to carry it for at least 1min without any real trouble. get it to your shoulder and even over head too with not too much soul crushing effort.
 
^^ All of this will build decent CV levels by the way.
 
(If you want to build strength and CV use kettlebells)
 
We’ve become so sedentary.
 
All of the above seems like truly huge feats and they’re not.
 
Not really.
 
Investing in your own strength, mobility and base levels of conditioning will help stave off meeting Charon too soon.
 
Give it some thought.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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***Wickedly Simple Core Crushers***

Now that I have your attention let us get started.

It’s fair to say people desire a nice strong core.

The big question people often have though it this one:

How do I get a strong core, crunches?

Now crunches have a place in training, they’re not the devil people make them out to be, however they’re far from the best movement you could be doing.

Today I have 6 simple core crushing methods for you.

1 – Inch Worms

Bend down, touch your toes, walk your hands out as far as possible (try to finish with your arms fully extended overhead).

Sets of 3-5 reps will do you justice.

2 – Lizard Crawling

Keep your chest as close to the floor as possible and crawl to your hearts content.

Sets of 20m is surprisingly effective.

3 – Turkish Get Ups

A full body movement that punishes a weak core.

Sets of 2-3 reps each arm will be quite the challenge.

4 – Awkward Object Clean & Press

Find a sand bag, slosh pipe (this is a brutal bit of kit), log, anchor or whatever is tricky to hold and proceed to clean and press it.

An object half your bodyweight is a good start.

Go for as many reps as you can in say 20min for a surprisingly effective little session.

5 – L-sits

A classic gymnastic movement that is far harder than it looks.

Saes of 10seconds will prove enough for most people, once you’re stronger add 5 seconds, keep adding time until you get to say 60second because if you can hold an L-sit that long you’ll have an iron clad core.

6 – Diaphragmatic Breathing

Less a training session and more a consideration for daily life.

Learning to breath correctly will not only fortify your core, it will also help lower stress levels and make your posture better as well.

There you have it, some different ways to train your core.

It’s also worth noting that you can have the strongest core in the world and not have ‘abs’ because those are down to your nutrition choices.

I wonder how many people will try the above over the classic Instagram nonsense, if it’s just one then I can die a happy man.

Enjoy,
Ross

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20/20 – Tactical Time Based Training

Having no time to train is rarely an excuse that holds much water these days.
 
Time can always be found for something that is a priority to you.
 
I’m sure you can find 20min per day to invest in your health.
 
To get you started you’ll find 20 sessions below to try.
 
1 – Death by Watt Bike
 
An interval program, 8 seconds work, 12 seconds rest for 20min.
 
Personally I’d advise you do 5min of your 20 on the bike as a W/U, then 10min using the interval protocol the 5min slow peddling in to a couple of cool down stretches.
 
2 – Pull & Hinge to Glory
 
Set a timer for 20min at 1min intervals.
 
Each minute do 3-5 chins and 5 swings until all 20min is done.
 
3 – Push it Real Good
 
Put 20min on countdown, load up a barbell and aim to do 100 thrusters in the time.
 
4 – White Buffalo in the Sky
 
Perform one 500m rowing sprint, rest the time it took you to complete the sprint.
 
Repeat until 20min is up.
 
5 – A Complex Series of Events
 
Grab 2 kettlebells, set you clock for 20min and do the following as many times as you can, ideally without putting the bells down even once.
 
3-5 reps for all: Swings, Cleans, Presses, Squats – repeat
 
6 – A Complex Chain of Events
 
Like the previous one only heavier and you put the bells down after the squats to shake out tension.
 
1 rep for all: Swings, Cleans, Presses, Squats – repeat
 
7 – The Bear Essentials
 
Perform the Bear Complex with a barbell, aim for 3 sets of 8 reps per movement.
 
Increase weight each set, if you do all three before 20min is up then congrats, use more load next time just know that for today you’re done.
 
8 – Walk the Walk
 
Simplicity at its finest.
 
Carry 50-100% of your bodyweight for 20min.
 
9 – Bodyweight Blitz
 
EMOM for 20min do 5 pull ups, 10 press ups & 15 squats.
 
10 – DRAW!
 
Pistol ladder 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,etc up as high as you can go in the 20min, no broke sets – this means if you fail to perform say 7 straight on one leg and instead do 4 you do 4 on your second leg, rest a spell and start the ladder over again at 1.
 
11 – Single Arm Sadist
 
As above just with single arm Press Ups.
 
20 min will seem like a very long time doing this.
 
12 – Everybody do the Worm
 
Have your trust 20min countdown ready and also a kettlebell.
 
Do 15 swings, then inchworm your self out in to a press up position and do 1 press up, inchworm back to the bell and do another 15 swings, then back to the press up position for 2 press ups and repeat this for 20min.
 
As with all ladders once your form goes start again at one, the swings stay the same throughout.
 
13 – Nice Snatch
 
20min of kettlebell Snatch, you can change hands as many times are you choose however you can’t put the bell down,
 
14 – What a Jerk
 
Like the above except you will use 2 kettlebells and perform jerks for 20min without setting the bells down.
 
I like to add in a racked walk once I need rest from the jerks just to keep moving however this isn’t mandatory.
 
15 – Chains & Whips Excite Me
 
Aim for as many rounds as possible in 20min of the following:
 
Overhead Lunge 20 reps holding a chain(s) overhead, run back with said chains still overhead then put them down and grab a battle rope and perform 15-30 explosive whips (double hand slams you may know them as).
 
Repeat until death ensues and then keep going.
 
16 – Limber Timber
 
Pick a yoga or movement flow and do if for 20min.
 
I’d persoanlly aim for one that has a high bias towards mobility and overall movement, check out Max Shank for Idea.
 
17 – Deadlifts & the Diaphragm
 
See how many sets of the following you can complete in 20min.
 
5 Deadlifts (pick a sensible weight), 10 deep breaths with a focus on utilising your diaphragm, repeat and enjoy.
 
18 – Lift, Run, Bang
 
Out of your 20min us 5 to get warm, then for 10 do the following:
 
20 sec of Clean & Press, 20 sec shuttle runs, 20 sec of power ball/bag slams, repeat for 10min solid.
 
Last 5min will be cool down/stretching off.
 
19 – Shoulder of Justice
 
Using an object of 50-100% of your bodyweight take it from the floor to your shoulder (left then right ,etc), repeat for 20min.
 
20 – Sissy that Walk
 
20min of prowler push 20m (liked out arms) followed immediately by dragging it back (bent arms) the same distance, try to make the transitions as quick as possible.
 
The above is nothing spectacular.
 
All of them are based largely off of density programming.
 
You will want to add weight where you can and always aim to keep a record of what you achieve so that you can do better next time.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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Beware the Company You Keep

Nutrition is a struggle for a lot of people.
 
The connection many have to their foods is strong.
 
Considering most people have a food for every situation, mood or desired feeling they’re after its easy to understand.
 
Try to make some adjustments, even those that will result in long term benefit and people just can’t handle it.
 
Like a child they pine over their treats and get pissy.
 
Of course you can eat, drink and otherwise consume whatever you choose if you’re an adult yet you’d do well not to expect sympathy or leeway when you start complaining about being overweight.
 
That my friends is the result of your choice, own it.
 
Now you’ll find many start to say that it’s easier for some, they don’t have that sweet tooth or what ever other bollocks will be cultivated to justify their behaviour.
 
True enough there can be some deep psychological reasons for addiction to foods, yet given the level of intelligence and information in our world now people know this already.
 
Thus is comes down to their own choice.
 
So you might be wandering what makes people decide to go for a different choice, the answer is simple yet not very nice.
 
They’ve finally reached the point where they feel bad enough about themselves to do something.
 
The discomfort now outweighs the small pleasurable hit they get from food.
 
In my experience people are more likely to move away from pain than towards pleasure.
 
Yet this can be hard when you’ve got an addiction.
 
Oh yes, many people are heavily addicted to food, or rather the feeling that food gives them.
 
Being the emotional creatures we are we get addicted to the feeling that we get from ‘the thing’ as opposed to getting addicted to the actual thing itself, for the most part.
 
If you’re genuinely not sure why you can’t make an adjustment to your nutrition then apply the following steps.
 
1 – Eat as normal
2 – Write down each feeling/emotion said food provides
3 – Reflect on this and make a choice
 
I know people will start to bitch piss and moan about life being for enjoyment blah blah blah.
 
Okay we get it, people like foods such as ice cream.
 
News flash, this is pretty much true across the board.
 
Decedent foods will always be sought after because that’s how we evolved, to seek out those foods that light up our senses and make us feel good, yet in our world of overly abundant amounts of them this just leads to one unfortunate outcome….
 
You get fat.
 
There I said it.
 
Making poor food choices multiple times over and in large quantities will lead you down he path of getting fat.
 
Of course how large you become will be determined by your social circle and what they consider to be acceptable.
 
You see peer pressure is just as prevalent amongst obese people as they say it is amongst the slim.
 
If you’re surrounded by the large and you’re not large then in time you will join them. They will make subtle remarks over time about you not eating enough, being small and so on.
 
Eventually their peer pressure leads you to obesity and poor health.
 
If you delve in to the social circles/backgrounds of people you’ll find the reasons for why they are the way they are.
 
You are the way you are because of the choices your group allows you to make because it fits in with their values, beliefs and biases.
 
The mythic state of being an individual is not really what people think it is.
 
A tough truth to hear.
 
Take some time to mull over this.
 
Look at the people around you, closest to you and see just how they’ve influenced you.
 
Then make a choice, stay in the place you’re in or make a change.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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What’s your doctrine?

In fitness you’ll find many tomes.

Each has its own unique benefits, limitations and place in the realm known as physical culture.

You can probably guess I’ve followed a few over the years.

Becoming embroiled in one thought process is easily done, especially if it’s spoken with enough conviction. In the 70’s we had body building, the 80’s had step, the 90’s was functions training and the last couple of decades brought us CrossFit & HIIT and more recently Movement Culture.

As mentioned above, all have their good points and in truth once you find one that keeps you consistently training you’ll feel great, or at least a part of something bigger than yourself.

I’ve personally been in the industry a fair while now, a literal lifetime when compared to the age of some young adults just stepping in to the field.

In this span I’ve seen trends come and go.

Plus there are a few things that have stayed and will always remain important.

  • Strength
  • Mobility & Movement
  • Health
  • Enjoyment (purpose)

You might love running, if so cool you go run just be aware of what running is lacking from the above (strength).

Perhaps you’re a powerlifter, great just be sure to fill in the missing gaps (health, mobility & movement).

I’m sure you can see where I’m going with this.

On a personal note I don’t really care what people do so long as they are doing it for the right reasons, that being it means something to them that is at the live of their very soul, none of this superficial bullshit, got no time for such pointless things.

Do you love what you do?

No, really, can you say without any doubt you love what you do (in the gym, this kinda applies for life as well – just saying).

If you have any hesitation or have to justify your answer then somethings not right.

You’ll find many a doctrine in fitness, ideal if you find one that have the elements mentioned above that’s the most optimal one, however it’s also rare.

Enjoy,
Ross

Oh, before I forget, it’s okay to create your own style you know. Learn from all the single views of the big picture and eventually you’ll have quite the impressive view to which you can then give back to the realm of fitness by creating something of your own.

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A little S&C for free.

Morning All,
 
Typically I will try and throw out various methods and bits of info for people to take away and try.
 
No specific reason for it other than if an idea crops up it might as well be shared.
 
You may find some of the older programs below useful.
 
You may not, either way they’re there.
 
One thing I have noticed in the age of the internet is the abundance of info and free stuff, it’s quite the time to be alive.
 
The slight issue is that it means people don’t go looking for the right info, just what they want to read.
 
Take some free training sessions people share.
 
Most are high volume bollocks that has no rhyme or reason.
 
There is little focus on developing much of anything in their training and it’s all for the attention.
 
While it is true there’s many ways to the top of the fitness mountain each one needs strength.
 
Here in lies the problem, people don’t want to get strong.
 
As such this little protocol today is focused on that very thing, with some added extra for those who want to leave feeling their heart race (because people are addicted to feeling that they’ve done something).
 
– Main Movement(s): 2-3-5
– Accessory Movement: Time or Distance Goal
– Conditioning Element: Optional sprint protocol
 
You might be wandering what I mean by 2-3-5 in the main movement, it’s pretty simple yet will be rather scary to some people.
 
You literally just to a set of two, then rest, then a set of 3 and rest some more and finish with a tough set of 5.
 
Yep, the 2 & 3 are your warm up sets.
 
This goes against conventional wisdom and that’s why it works.
 
You’ll need to have some focus as this doesn’t give you the option of pissing about.
 
Here is an example day with 2 main lifts performed as a super set (you can pick as main man lifts as you choose and perhaps have easier ones to potentiate harder ones).
 
A1 – Deadlift 2-3-5 Rest 120 seconds
A2 – Press 2-3-5 Rest 120 seconds
B1 – Famers Walk 10min x20m carries
C1 – Rowing Interval 8/12 x5min
 
Simple.
 
Depending only our time you can be in and out of the gym in 20min or stretch it to 45, that’s up to you.
 
In regards to progression (if you keep the movements the same) add 2-3% to your top lift each session and milk it for all its worth.
 
Funny how many people miss that little gem.
 
If something is still progressing and producing results stick with it as long as possible.
 
^^ On average a lift/movement does well for about 6 sessions for most people and then needs changing as a guide.
 
Take a read on the above and leave your thoughts below.
 
If this isn;t for you that’s cool however I’d like you to take away one thing; train for strength first and foremost because being weak isn’t good and will lead to an early grave.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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They’re only words after all.

Respect, admiration and praise.
 
Just a few things most people want.
 
While maybe not from the masses it will be desired from either specific peers or people of importance to you.
 
In the fitness realm you’ll often find in a somewhat ironic twist that the people you want these things from are the ones who’ll put you through all the ‘shit tests’.
 
We call them friends.
 
Not just any friends though, your honest ones that you might even consider your bestie’s.
 
It is a few simple words from this ilk that can make all the difference.
 
On that same token though all it needs is one jibe and you get cut deep because that’s how friendships work 🤔
 
You might have read the words above and feel these aren’t for you.
 
If so that’s cool, however do you know which ones do resonate?
 
What do you want from your training and more importantly why?
 
Many will come up with the reasons that sound go.
 
You know like being their best self and all similar things, however admitting that there is a side of you that wants things or emotional sustenance you might say is okay.
 
To have a world of unanimity it must start from your heart.
 
Be honest with yourself and to your true motivations.
 
It’ll feel like a weight has been lifted and progress can truly be made.
 
So my good people, do you resonate with the three words above or are your ones different?
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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Trusty Rusty

A man and his kettlebell.
 
Because no dogs were available at the time.
 
Have you ever thrown around the aforementioned cannonball with a handle?
 
They offer a plethora of benefits.
 
Strength, mobility, CV, power and much more.
 
Their beauty comes from their simplicity because you don’t need much to accomplish a lot, provided you don’t have a kettlebell that is little more than a door stop in regards to total weight.
 
I’m sure many will disagree with this.
 
Oh well never mind.
 
What will transpire below is not for the very de-conditioned although it can be adapted for such.
 
Here is what weight I’d recommend for you have as an essential starting out:
 
Gentlemen – 24kg
 
Lady – 16kg
 
With such limited choice you’ll have to be clever with training and keep things simple yet effective.
 
Try this short 26 week protocol –
 
Weeks 1-6 – Get Up & Single Arm Swings
 
– Up to 10 total get ups per day
– 75-250 single arm swings per day
 
Weeks 7-12 – Clean & Press (or push press, or jerk)
 
– Clean ladder 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10 with 1 Press
– Press ladder 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,19 with 1 Clean
– Alternate between the above per day
 
Weeks 13 – 18 – Single Arm Swings & Squats/Push Ups*
 
*can be pistols/single arm push ups*
 
– Single arm Swings 75-250 per day
– Goblet Squat or Push Up* ladder 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10
– Alternate SQ/PU each day
 
Weeks 19-24 – Single Arm Swing, Clean, Press, Squat
 
– Complex ladder 1,2,3,4,5
– Perform up to 5 ladders each say (one at a minimum)
 
This isn’t fancy, however it is effective as you can tweak movement variations to your hearts content and add in some GTG (grease the groove) work if you feel strong enough.
 
^^ I’ve found a pulling movement works well for GTG.
I’ve personally done the above with a 32kg and found limiting the choice was a great way to give myself a much needed kick up the arse.
Give it a go and as always –
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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A Habit for Every Mood

Habits are funny things.
 
Much like anything we have one for every mood or situation.
 
Some make us feel good, others motivate us and a few do nothing better than punish and stall of progress.
 
Over they years I’ve become more adept at finding out a persons reason why they have these little patterns.
 
Personally knowing has always been a priority.
 
It’s just my inherent personality trait, some call it being nosey and others say far worse, yet knowing has always been that insatiable lust of mine.
 
To not have considered every option, sacrilege.
 
It probably came form being an only child and spending countless hours alone quietly playing with the same few toys and each time comping up with a new story.
 
Of course without knowing more there was only so many situations I could pull from thin air because truly original ideas are few and far between.
 
Habits, much like knowledge, don’t just come thin air for the most part. You’ll find we either pick them up from watching others or then being suggested to us.
 
After all a habit was once a choice you consciously made.
 
Might not be what people want to hear however it’s the truth in the largest majority of situations.
 
In regards to your habits do you know which ones you have for which mood?
 
Take 5min to make a list.
 
What is your immediate reaction in the following:
 
– Happy
– Sad
– Angry
– Confused
– Tired
– Focused
 
The list can be longer and for any mood/emotion you can think of and I bet you will have a habit for each, be that to get you in to or out of the desired emotional state.
 
Once you know what habits are anchored to what emotions you can begin to understand why this is and start that lengthy and often painful process of letting go the ones which are detrimental and creating new more productive ones.
 
While this is simple it won’t be easy.
 
Growth never is though.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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Deliberate Practice FTW!

Did you know you’ll never be good at the things you don’t do.

🤯🤯🤯

I know right, quite the mind blowing sentence.

Funny thing is this is something a lot of people actually forget or just don’t seem to be aware of.

When it comes to fitness, or movement as a whole the use/disuse principle is quite really one people should keep in the back of their mind at all times.

If you are looking at having a certain set of skills they need to be practiced.

^^Once you acquire the skills maintaining them (depending on how high a level you want to retain) can take minimal effort.

Same goes for an area you’re aiming to improve or build upon, it needs some attention. 👀

All that being said, you’ve also got to accept there may be some form of sacrifice of what you have to gain what you want.

The cosmic balance must be maintained as it were.

I like to think of it like spinning plates.

You can spin only so many as one time, those will be the ones that are looking good yet there will be some that are slowing, others that are about to topple and a few that are already in free fall, that’s just life.

Using fitness as an example.

You are rather unlikely to bench press 500lbs while also being able to run a sub 5min mile pace on a marathon.

True enough it’s not an impossible task to achieve, however it’s just not probable or reasonable for many.

In our mind we see ourselves at our peak or what was our last peak of fitness, this leaves us with a hefty dose of cognitive dissonance in regards to our abilities.

You’ll also find it’s another reason people won’t push themselves out of their comfort zones and be humbled.

Unless it’s proven it can be ignored. 🤔

Many would rather live in blissful ignorance than uncomfortable awareness.

Sad but very true.

So to wrap up this little mid morning musing take some time to be honest with yourself.

What areas do you need to work on more than you do?

^^This can be in relation to fitness, life, business and more.

Give it some thought.

Enjoy,
Ross

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