Tag Archives: conditioning
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.
- Mobility & Movement
- 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.
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.
So you want to look like a superhero.
Who doesn’t right?
They are everything we wish we could be and more, always doing the right thing and never having to sacrifice anything, they always find a way to save everyone.
While in this life we might not be able to achieve such heroism we can more than give it a good go. Failing that at least their aesthetic is something achievable for us.
Yep, the majority of people can look like a true hero with the right training.
*Please note this is a guide and there will of course be specific needs to each individual, however this will help get you started on the right path.
When we first meet our hero in any story they have a decent base.
Keeping this in mind we must ourselves create a solid foundation from which we can build something truly awe-inspiring. To do this we shall carve out the pre-mentored hero in 4 weeks of training at least 3 days per week that while effect, is unguided.
Day 1 –
W/U – Farmers Walk x10min
A1 – Squats 20reps, as many sets as possible in 20min
B1 – Clean & Press x10, as many set as possible in 20min
C/D – Stretching x10min
Day 2 –
W/U – Rowing, as far as possible in 20min
A1 – Presses 10reps, as many sets as possible in 15min
B1 – Bent Over Row 10 reps, as many sets as possible in 15min
C/D – Stretching x10min
Day 3 –
W/U – Hill Running x10min
A1 – Romanian Deadlift x10reps, as many sets a possible in 20min
B1 – Bear Crawling for 10-20m, as many set as possible in 20min
C/D – C/D – Stretching x10min
Our would-be hero has no real reason behind what they do, they just do it because it’s all the know.
The above will be a great place to start building your base of strength, conditioning, movement skill and mental toughness.
Soon enough though this base will be put to the test.
It isn’t uncommon for people to ask – “What sets/reps should I be doing?”
While perhaps not that exactly, it will be something along those lines, as such I’ve found that cycling them based on a classic Heavy-Light-Medium rotation applied to a Pull-Push-Legs split.
One element to remember is that Heavy doesn’t mean hard and light doesn’t mean easy, however that is a topic for another day, for now I will give you something you can apply immediately.
- Heavy – 5-3-2-5-3-2-5-3-2 (heavy yet not hard)
- Light – 20-15-10-20-15-10 (light yet not easy)
- Medium – 5-8×1 + 1×20 – ramp to heavy single for the day, then take 60-70% of that and do one set of 20 reps
Split Options: 4 day split examples
^^ 2-4 lifts per day is often sufficient, 1 main with the rep/set scheme, the rest can be 2-3×10-15 or 4×6, your choice.
If we take the PPL and apply the rep schemes over a small cycle.
No change in lifts, only reps.
Day 1 – Pull – Heavy
Day 2 – Push – Light
Day 3 – Legs – Medium
Day 4 – Off
Day 5 – Pull – Light
Day 6 – Push – Medium
Day 7 – Legs – Heavy
Day 8 – Off
Day 9 – Pull – Medium
Day 10 – Push – Heavy
Day 11 – Legs – Light
Day 12 – Off
Many will then say – “What now?”
Once you’ve gone through this you’ll find you’re back at the heavy day being for pull, you can choose to keep the lifts the same and try to hit a higher load or you can perhaps change the lifts, pick your poison.
This allows for a constant rotation of days and keeps things interesting, if you are constrained be the working week and days you can train then you may need something a little different, in which case all you need do it ask for the answer.
Not going to lie, I just smashed out a wall of text for a post elsewhere.
As such I am going to keep this one nice and short.
If you want to read the wall of text then head over to Gains Central 🤗
Below you’ll find one of my favourite lifts for getting in a solid session in less than 20min.
To be fair CrossFit paired it with pull ups and called their monstrosity Fran.
Thrusters – 95lbs
Do it as fast as possible, lay down, die.
^^ When this was created it was based on the principle of 21 was the max amount of reps achieved (momentary muscle failure), then 15 was next, then 9 and so on.
These days people can hammer through Fran with little issue.
Anyway, enough about Fran, let’s talk about thrusters.
A front squat followed by a press.
This is a movement that hits pretty much everything.
Give me 20min and I can use this lift and nail myself with it.
Here are 5 options for a 20min thruster session (this includes the warm up).
1 – Rep Ladder OMEM
Say you load the bar with BW, do one thruster on the first minute, the two on the second, three on the third and so on, until you do twenty at the end.
If you miss the reps on a minute then take the next one as rest and start over with the number you failed on.
2 – Weight Ramp
Star tog off with the bar and then add 5-10kg, or whatever every set and go as high as you possible can.
If you miss set (do 3-5 reps per set), drop the load by 25% and start over from here adding weight as before.
3 – 30/30
Pick a load (you can increase it as you go if you wish, I like BW for this).
Do 30 seconds of thrusters, then rest for 30 seconds.
Repeat until 20min is up.
4 – Breathing Thrusters
You will pick a load, start off light.
Each set will be 20 reps broken down like this:
10 reps then stand and hold the weight, 5 deep breathes, 5 more reps, 10 deep breathes, last 5 reps, then drop the bar, add load and repeat for the remainder of the 20min.
5 – Time drops
Pick a load and do the following.
5min of continuous thrusters, then 3min rest.
4min of continuous thrusters, then 2min rest.
3min of continuous thrusters, then 1min rest.
2min of continuous thrusters, then lay down & die.
There you have it, a one movement wonder.
You don’t have to use thrusters, you can sue plenty of over movements, however there is something about this particular spawn of satan that hold a special place in my heart.
Much like sitting outside a coffee shop in the summer with a friend and laughing at elderly people who can’t parallel park with no remorse of hesitation, ah, good times.
Yep, I’m going to hell, meh, it happens.