Tag Archives: abbreviated training

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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5×5, just not as you know it.

A great little protocol that will be good for fat loss, hypertrophy, strength endurance and fun.
 
I had this little training program come to me while walking last night.
 
This it by no means anything groundbreaking.
 
Keeping that in mind, I reckon it will humble a fair few if the proper effort level is given.
 
The basic set up –
 
– Pick 1-5 movements
– 5 sets total
– Each set is a 5min time block
– No Sloppy Reps
– Rest 3-5min between each set
– Train 2-3 days per week
– Enjoy for 6-12 weeks
 
A 5min block of time where you simply perform only one lift, sounds easy on paper, not so much in reality, especially if you don’t put down whatever it is you’re lifting.
 
Keeping a hold of a bar or piece of kit for 5min is quite the challenge both physically and mentally.
 
Of course in some instances it won’t be possible.
 
This is where the beauty of he above comes in to play and helps you regulate the intensity.
 
You don’t have to keep a hold of whatever kit you’re using or keep moving if it’s a bodyweight exercise you’ve chosen, you can stop an rest.
 
The main focus is on training density & work capacity.
 
You simply not what weight you used, how many reps you got an aim to beat that next session, simple.
 
I’d personally stay with the same movements for 3 week blocks, you can either repeat the same session for each of your 2-3 days or change the lifts each time, that’s up to you, just keep that the same for the suggested block.
 
Example 3 days –
 
*The warm up of the rest will be int he first 5min set, doesn’t have to be, it just saves time.
 
Day 1:
Set 1 – Kettlebell Snatch (don’t put down)
Set 2 – Farmers Walk
Set 3 – Kettlebell Push Press (don’t put down)
Set 4 – Pull Up – any variation
Set 5 – Kettlebell Double Racked Squat (don’t put down)
 
Day 2:
Set 1 – Sandbag Clean & Carry
Set 2 – Thruster BB (don’t put down)
Set 3 – BB Row
Set 4 – Kettlebell Single Arm Swing (don’t put down)
Set 5 – Press Up – any variation
 
Day 3:
Set 1 – The Bear Complex
Set 2 – Squat – any variation (don’t put down)
Set 3 – Power Snatch
Set 4 – Ring Dip
Set 5 – Power Clean
 
*Warm down with a good old stretch and marvel in all the good effort you put in.
 
^^ One thing to keep in mind with the above is there needs to be a focus on quality reps.
 
(Now imagine trying to do this with just one movement for all 5 sets of 5min….. Brutal)
 
Even though in the example I’ve said in some cases not to put the kit down, if your form is going to pot then don’t be a hero, put it down, grab some rest and try for a few more reps.
 
There will always be next session to try and make the full time.
 
Feel free to add in smaller movements as well, thing such as face pulls, reverse flies, bicep curls, skull crushers and so on.
 
The idea behind this little protocol is to get you focusing on achieving a decent amount of quality work.
 
Give it a try and let me know how you get on.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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3 Different ways to hit your volume goals.

Evening All,
 
Increasing volume is one of the most time tested ways to make progress, in many training endeavours.
 
That being said, it can be pretty tough to keep getting in more volume through straight sets, purely for the monotony if nothing else.
 
This is something I’m currently battling with.
 
As such here are 3 little ways to get in extra volume without compensating on intensity (actual load).
 
Let us say that you’re aiming to hit a total number of lifts on your press of say 75 in a session, however 15 sets of 5 just aren’t grabbing you and those sets of 5 are flying up, in fact you’ve probably got sets of 7 with that weight you’re using, this is how you can break it up a little.
 
^^ If this sounds a tad specific it is because I’m thinking of my kettlebell press, with the 28kgs it’s a solid 7 and 8 at max effort, however the 32’s for reps elude me still. First world problems.
 
1 – Undulating Back Off Sets
 
Total NL to hit – 75, 2-4 reps will be used each set until 75 is hit and it may look like this:
 
3,4,4,3,3,2,2,2,3,4,3,4,3,2,2,3,4,3,2,3,4,2,2,2,2,4
 
This might be paired with a SuperSet of Pull Ups matching the reps.
 
Rest as needed.
 
So you undulate the reps between the rep option base don your own feeling of fatigue and speed of the reps.
 
2 – EMOM Sets
 
An every minute on the minute (EMOM) can actually be great fun, just make sure that each bout of lifting is 15 seconds or under in the initial stages.
 
25min, 3 reps per set, all snappy reps and the best part is everything is over nice and fast, be warned though, this is harder in reality than on paper.
 
3 – Ladder Sets
 
A personal favourite of mine, the reps in the ladder can vary depending on what it is your doing and the needs, however for the above this is what it might look like:
 
1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,10,10
 
Ladders can be any style of sequential reps, 3-5-7, or 8,4,2 for example, and any other combination you can think of to hit your target NL for the day.
 
If like me you’re stuck on putting in the reps then these may help.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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Doing less, better.

“Inch wide, mile deep”
 
An interesting quote.
 
Many have it in reverse – inch deep, mile wide.
 
I wrote of this before, yet it seems to be sticking in my mind which means something hasn’t been covered or fully understood my end.
 
If you’re ready some of the past posts you will have seen the ones on abbreviated training programs and their effectiveness.
 
The ethos of doing less better.
 
While that style of training won’t put you on the Olympia stage, they will yield a lot of progress and give a robust look that most people would be quite content with. After all, not everyone has the dream of being the absolute Don.
 
You can also apply the principle of “Same yet different”, all you need to is utilise these size movement patters as the base (you’d also do well to train in multiple planes of movement as well – frontal, sagittal, traverse).
 
Push – Pull – Squat – Hinge – Loaded Carry (locomotion) – Full Body
 
You may train 5 days a week, or on a rotating day on day off, perhaps three on one off, it doesn’t matter, you can manipulate things as needed.
 
Here is an example:
 
Day 1 – Push Press & Snatch Grip Deadlift
Day 2 – Squat & Farmer Walks
Day 3 – Snatch
Day 4 – Off
Day 5 – Incline Press & Trap Bar Deadlift
Day 6 – Front Squat & Bent Over Row
Day 7 – Off
 
All for 8×2-3 or 1-2-3-4-5-4-3-2-1 or 5×2-3-5
 
You got a lot of options.
 
The idea of this style of training is to stick to a select few exercises that offer a lot of bang for you buck.
 
You may keep this selection for 4-6 weeks, then adjust them, you may have only one moment per day, it’s up to you.
 
The take home is this.
 
It’s okay to do less, just make sure you do it better.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

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How the early 1900’s can help you in 2018

Are you looking for a new year challenge?

It’s good for Strength, Fat Loss, Hypertrophy, Mental Toughness and much

I have a very simple one for you that you.

20 rep squats.

They’re glorious.

Say you’re training 3x a week, this would be perfect as you can have either 1,2 or 3 20 rep sessions, I’d probably go for 2 initially.

It might look like this:

Day 1 –

A1 – Squat – 1×20
B1 – Press – 25 total reps, rep/set method of your choice
B2 – Pull – 25 total reps, rep/set method of your choice
*C1 – Remedial movement of your choice – 50 rep total

Day 2 –

A1 – Hinge – 5-15 total reps, rep/set method of your choice
B1 – Press – 25 total reps, rep/set method of your choice
B2 – Pull – 25 total reps, rep/set method of your choice
*C1 – Remedial movement of your choice – 50 rep total

Day 3 –

A1 – Squat – 1×20
B1 – Press – 25 total reps, rep/set method of your choice
B2 – Pull – 25 total reps, rep/set method of your choice
*C1 – Remedial movement of your choice – 50 rep total

*Optional postural/remedial exercise if time is a plenty. Perhaps reverse flies, curls, tricep extensions, etc.

Simply marvellous 🤗

It also offers a great method of progression too.

You start at 50% of your current 1RM, so if that is say 120kg, you start at 60kg.

From the starting 50%, add 0.5-1kg every successful session.

When things start to get hard and say you only hit 13/20 reps, you keep the weight the same and focus on building those reps to a solid 20/20.

At this point you could drop the 20rep day to once per week and use one of the following set/rep protocols for the other squat day:

Rep/set protocol examples for the 25 rep goal:

– 5-3-2-5-3-2-5
– 5×5
– 5-5-3-3-2-2
– 3×8
– 8×3
– 5-4-3-2-1-10
– Ramp to heavy 3-5RM (alternate 3-4-5RM each time)

^^ You can imagine this goes a similar way for the 50 rep goal, so 5×10, 3×15 etc

Plenty of choice.

The seconds day also doesn’t need to be a back squat, it could be a front squat, a zecher squat, or any other variation, again this would be cycled, ideal spend 3-6 weeks on each variation before changing it, aiming to add a small amount of weight each session.

Personally I quite like changing the variation as it allows you to drop the overall intensity while keeping up the relative intensity, however that’s a chat for another day.

The same is true for the press/pull/hinge – you can stay with the same variation (bar, dumbbell, trap bar etc) for 3-6 weeks adding anywhere from as little as 0.5kg to as much as a whole 20kg plate each side, although the latter would mean you’re literally a god among mortals.

It might seem like 3 training session per week is not much, however if you follow this and apply the basic progressive overload as described above, you’ll find you can stay on this almost indefinitely.

If needed you could also do this program only twice per week, meaning you drop day 3. Very useful if you also have other goals, such as sports or martial arts.

I wish you all the gains for the new year.

Enjoy,
Ross

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