Tag Archives: fat loss
Minimalistic P/P/L Protocol
This popped into my mind this morning so I felt it worth sharing, you’ll have three options, you can use one, all three or cycle them, choice is yours.
Weekly cycle options:
Two Day Week – Monday/Thursday
Three Day Week – Monday/Thursday/Saturday
Four Day week – Monday/Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday
Daily = use only Protocol 1
Protocol 1 –
Pull Day – Kettlebell Snatch
Push Day – Push Press
Leg Day – Front Squat
Reps – 10 sets – 10 (wk1), 8 (wk2), 6 (wk3)
Protocol 2 –
Pull Day – Kettlebell Snatch, Deadlift
Push Day – Push Press, Floor Press
Leg Day – Front Squat, Hack Squat
1st movement reps are as previous.
2nd movement reps: – 4 sets – 12 (wk1), 10 (wk2), 8 (wk3)
Protocol 3 –
Pull Day – Kettlebell Snatch, Deadlift, Pull Up
Push Day – Push Press, Floor Press, Dip
Leg Day – Front Squat, Hack Squat, RDL
Previous movements reps as above.
3rd movement reps: 2-3 sets – to failure each week
A no frills approach to coming all your bases.
In your warm up some movement flows & loaded carries would do well.
Additionally 100 reps of each of these: banded face pulls, pull apart, lat pull downs and hip thrusts/pull throughs (2×50, or 4×25, etc) will do you the world of good.
Fr you cool down stretches/trigger point work will be needs specific on problem areas for yourself and also generally around the areas worked for the day.
There is nothing fancy about this, it’s so simple it’s complicated.
You aim to add weight where you can.
If you can’t add weight then slow down the tempo, or add pauses, or decrease rest 💪
Challenges, fancy trying some?
Training for the most part is about going in, hitting your reps, miles or specified needs.
Sadly this is the element people won’t talk about because it’s boring, it’s also what a lot of people avoid which is why they don’t ever get anywhere.
Since we’re not getting out of this period of illation anytime soon here are 5 challenges for you to do at home (1 for each month we will still be in UK Lockdown).
Now these are all about volume and based off of the challenge that will take the number one spot because to be honest it’s a great challenge.
1 – 10,000 Swings (Dan John)
A brilliant challenge that is a stand alone program of 20 total sessions across a month.
It breaks down to 500 swings a day (how you choose to hit that is up to you).
Dan also recommends adding in a strength movement in either ladder format (e.g – 1,2,3,1,2,3 etc) or something I’ve done that works is a simple 2-5 reps of a strength movement rotating Push/Pull/Squat.
Here is a clip from the man himself:
Keeping this in mind, I’ve been playing with the idea of running it for different movements.
Of course a lot of thought has gone into what would work and how, this is what structure I’d suggest:
A1 – Challenge
A2 – Supplementary Movement – Optional
This means you can do two movements tops, or alternatively jus the challenge movement itself.
Here are the other 4 for your consideration, the start off easy and finish hard, also they’re not for everyone and there’s not qualms in saying that.
2 – 10,000 Squats* – Can S/S (Goblet if strong)
3 – 10,000 Push Ups – Can S/S
4 – 10,000 Snatches (KB or DB – 5000 each arm) – Solo recommended
5 – 10,000 Meters of a Loaded Carry – Solo recommended
*If squats are not comfortable for you then 10,000 Lunges are the alternative.
When I did the swings I opted for these rep ranges:
A1 – Swings: 50-30-20
A2 – Supplementary Lift x2-5
Repeat 5 times
You might look at the above and recoil because of how dull it will be, and while that is true it works very well so I will ask you this question:
Do you want to be better than you currently are now?
A simple yes or no will suffice to answer this ^^.
In our modern life we are spoilt by choice, as such it has made many of us complacent, petulant and caused much stagnation in regard to physical progress.
Now some people surely want to enjoy their training and have fun, it’s a good option yet over the years no training starts off being enjoyable, and if it does it rarely stays that way unless you’re getting results, and even then it can become very trying of ones resolve.
As Bruce Lee said – “Don’t pray for an easy life. Pray for the strength to endure a difficult one.”
Give the above a go if you’re lost for something to do, or don’t, yet come September when things start to ease don’t look back at your time and see you wasted it.
“What sort of things should I be eating?”
This has to be one of the most commonly asked nutrition questions.
Provided you’re over the age of 12 there is a high probability you understand that eating more natural foods, or what many call whole foods is the way to go.
What he question above is really asking is this:
“What can I do to still eat the way I currently do and make the progress/recomposition I require?”
Sadly in my old grumpiness I tend to have a blank expression on my face when this is asked.
Often followed by myself asking the persons if they ant the truth or what they want to hear.
Many get offended, as you can imagine.
There are literally hundreds of thousands of books on how you can make thousands of meals with minimal ingredients that you could literally grow/raise at home.
Our issue is that as a people we’ve gotten lazy and too used to convenience, which is also why many are now obese.
^ You waist wants to be ideally no bigger than half your height in inches as an absolute max, ideally it’s not near that.
So if you’re 70″ tall, then a 35″ waist is the largest yours would ver want to be, and ideally it could do with being a couple of inches shy of that.
Excess visceral fat is the worst kind for peoples health.
If you’ve got enough belly for multiple people then instead of asking what you should eat, you’d do well to ask yourself this – what do I currently eat?
^^ Make a list of all the things you consume, don’t lie to yourself either about it.
Once you’ve got the list, seek out any comfort/convenience foods and aim for their opposites.
Oh, this doesn’t mean making brownies at home, while that is a nice thing to do occasionally it’ll do little to save you from what was chasing those people in the old Nike adverts.
While I understand it’s tough for some.
The change won’t happen from being told what to eat, it has to come from within you because unless you really want to change or improve you life, well, you won’t.
A harsh truth people don’t want to hear, however that is my answer to the very first question.
You should investigate this thoroughly.
Because they’re awesome.
Chances are you’ve heard of the rings before, they got popular in about 2010, and in all honesty are one of the best upper body training tools you’ll ever find.
Going beyond merely doing press ups, drips, chins and even muscle ups on them you’ll find you can progress to low skill level ring routines that will hit almost every muscle in your torso.
The only down side for people is such things don’t provide instant gratification, as such they lose favour.
People are fickle after all and lack patience.
Anyway, the other two items are a little more niche.
Indian Clubs, while not new, are great for shoulder health, core stability, building movement flows and will send your cardio vascular health through the roof without you even realising it.
Then you’ve got the macebells, their benefit can be found in the fact that they’re incredibly difficult to use.
Swinging one around in a basic figure of 8 around your head in a controlled fashion will hit essentially every muscle you have, that is if you don’t fall over first – which is exactly what happened to me first time round, lol.
Here is a video that utilises the uncommon pair above:
One for the rings:
Hopefully you’ll be inspired to do something a little different.
While I still love barbells and the classic lifts, there’s more to life, so go and explore.
Once you’re bitten by the training bug it’s easy to become consumed by insatiable hunger to train more.
A lot of people have been there at one time or another.
While the mind is willing the body is soft & squishy.
Doing too much too soon won’t get you to your destination any quicker, contrary to popular belief.
In fact not allow sufficient time to recover will hold you back from your potential because fatigue masks fitness, as Charles Poliquin used to say.
I’ve been one of these people, an in truth I still am.
The addiction to doing more, it will always hold me back in regards to my athletic ability and overall progress from training.
It’s honestly not the best place to be in mentally, however once you’re stuck there it’s difficult to get away from it.
You’ll find yourself creating ways to do more because you fee the need to do so.
This is addiction.
You may laugh, although it can cause as many issues as some that fall into that realm which are more nefarious and less accepted by the public, such as train spotting for example.
Anyway, here are the 9 reasons why you need to limit training, ideally to 3-4 days per week.
1 – Recovery & Adaptation
You adapt, overcome & progress when you recover, not when you train.
2 – Hormonal Health
Keeping your foot to the floor will have you run the risk of creating hormonal issues due to constantly elevated cortisol/adrenaline.
3 – Planning is easier with less
Having less time means you’ll strip away the faff and focus on that which will yield the most bang for your buck, as opposed to adding in junk to your training.
4 – Mental Health
Too much training and a lack of results, because you thought doing more would mean faster results when that’s not really true, will destroy your mind. This will cause unwanted stress and a whole host of other things.
5 – Life
People swap out one life for another, spending all their time in the gym to find that they eventually lose their true friends, and sometimes even their family because of their neglect.
6 – The Desire to Train
Training less often begets people wanting to do more, yet this is where you must resist the temptation because it’s better to do say 3 sessions where you give it 100% and go beyond in 45-75min, than have 14 lack lustre sessions.
7 – You’ve Not Earned More
Training at a high volume and high frequency takes YEARS to work towards, so unless you’ve been training 10+ years well and are nearly maxed out in terms of your genetic potential then 3-4 days will be plenty.
8 – Nutrition Suffers
More training means less time to prepare wholesome meals and also affects the types of foods you can eat due to being constantly in a state of sympathetic dominance.
9 – You Don’t Need More
In all honesty you will find people often make far more progress by doing less better than more poorly.
A hard truth to accept, even for me, yet it is a such.
As an average person, because let us be honest, if you’re reading my drivel then like me you’re pretty average and we’re not going to break any world records or leave marks in the history of training.
So why take it too seriously?
By all means have a laser like focus and discipline to achieve a goal and desire to better yourself, just remember that you’ll need to go through periods of climbing to a peak and then willingly stepping back down to tread another trail.
If you don’t accept this it will be forced upon you.
After all, there’s more to life than being really really ridiculously good looking 👀
One fear of many is gaining excess amounts of body fat in their adaptive training period.
I can understand that fear on a personal level.
One thing to remember though, you don’t need to be 100% stage lean or athletically ripped all the time.
In fact it’s not healthy for you physically or mentally.
That being said, to some people this is ‘them’ an it’s how they are and all they choose to be, in which case that’s cool because their understanding is that for constant aesthetic glory there may be a sacrifice to physical performance (lifting, sport, etc) or health, and that’s a price they’re willing to pay.
So before you get on at the people who want to ‘look good’ all the time, just remember, it’s their choice.
After all, you can’t say shit these days about people destroying their health through obesity because it’s ‘body shaming’ yet you can take lumps out of those who love fitness because it’s ‘obsessive’ and ‘unhealthy’.
Fucking hypocritical bullshit that is 😂
Anyway, here are the 6 secrets:
1 – Hold the Milk
Drinking black coffee, tea, or things such as mint/peppermint tea’ etc isa great way to save on calories if you’re a little worried that some will sneak up on you.
2 – Condiment Reduction
Mayonnaise, I love it, however… what I think might be say 15g is actually more like 50g 😋
Spreads, sauces and all things related are often very calorie dense and super easy to consume plentifully, so reducing how much you have will save you a rather large amount of calories.
This doesn’t mean stop having it, just reduce it.
^^ You can also substitute for spices, check your cupboard because I’m sure there’s a 5-spice in there somewhere hidden away.
3 – Less Cardboard Carbs
I know that people are stockpiling the nonperishables.
Cookies, sweets, biscuits, cereals, and all things carb that come in a box, while they last for decades and taste delicious, you can chow down on 600+ calories in a matter of mere minutes if you’re too careful.
Swap these for veg.
Seriously, instead of snacking on cereal bars eat a packet of peppers, you can buy either of these for about £1 (three large peppers or 4-6 cereal bars), same price, massive difference in both nutritional quality and calorie content.
4 – Unhealthy Health Food Trends
Juicing, fat free foods, meal replacements, basically anything that is a ‘trend’ is something to watch out for as they are often love in nutritional value and high in unneeded calories.
Now you may have read juices and feel confused because they’re meant to be good for you, ad to be fair veg only ones are great, adding in one or two fruits also won’t hurt, however…..
It’s the heavy fruit ones and also the added scoops of whey (or some form of protein), peanut butter, Nutella etc that skyrocket the calories, making what was once a tidy snack into a calorie laden catastrophe.
As for meal replacements, etc, well, just cook and don’t be lazy.
5 – Diet & Zero
Now some people love fizzy or carbonated drinks, if this is your vice then going for the Diet or Zero option will save you on the extra calories in this time.
I’d also alternate with drinking water, for example:
1 pint water > 1 pint Coke 0 > 1 pint water > 1 pint coke 0
This way you’ll learn to control yourself and also end up appreciating the carbonate beverages far more. Plus water is apparently pretty good for you accordion to ancient lore.
6 – Alcohol avoidance
Personally I feel people soul avid this entirely, less for special occasions (weddings, christmas or new year, not birthdays as it’s always someones birthday).
Give it’s 7 calories per gram this is the fastest way to rack up unwanted ones and pile on the pounds, which is a 40’+ waistline is your goal then by all means fill your boots, however that may be not so beneficial for your health.
Now some people feel they need a drink and can’t live without one.
Being someone who has slain the demon known as alcoholism (high functioning I might add), this can be a hard thing for people to put to bed or not rely on.
I can say that opting for spirits s a substitute to beers, stouts, and other dense drinks will reduce the total calories consumed, this means neat, no mixers – you’ll drink less that way. While not ideal, it’s a start.
There you have it, some ways you can curve your consumed calories while you stay safe at home.
#7 – Bouns Tip – Portion Control
It’s easy to simply eat too much in the form of too big a portion, don’t eat more than you need.
Piling up a plate is nothing short of gluttony, take only what you need and err on the side of less, you can always snack on peppers post meal if you’re still feeling you need a nibble.
It’s fair to same some avid gym goers are in a bit of a panic.
A few questions regarding how much people should be eating int his time has been popping up.
In all honesty most would do well to take the calories down a notch, simply due to the fact they eat too many as it is, yet in some cases the extra calories may be beneficial because of extra recovery.
What to do, right?
First it would be to try and consume as many of your calories from nutrient dense food sources (meat/veg), then you can worry about the rest.
Without all the fancy calories equations using activity multipliers this will serve you well.
Take your total bodyweight in lbs:
Multiply it by 13, those will be your corona calories (for most people).
Me bing a slight 74kg (163lbs), it gives me this:
163 x 13 = 2119 calories per day.
This would be based on reduced activity (a lot of walking and grappling for me).
Believe it or not that is about right to sustain my current weight with minimal activity that would allow maximal LBM preservation.
A normal day will see me right with 2800-3200 to sustain my weight, I know this because of adding them up on random days across serval months to see trends (on myself personally).
While the method I offer isn’t as complex as many, it works.
The above will serve you well in this time.
Here are the other numbers I use when life is back to normality and training/activity is back up.
To lose mass: BW x11-13
(starting at 13, dropping slowly to 11)
To gain mass: BW x17-19
(starting at 17, building slowly to 19)
^^ You start at the lower number and see if your mass/LBM is going the way you want it to, then stay with those callers until progress stops and adjust up or down accordingly.
One main issue people come across is the go to the extreme end far too soon and then have nowhere left to go, a common mistake that people repeatedly make time and again.
Don’t be one of them.
As for macros, if that’s your things, here is my suggestion:
Protein – 1g per pound of total BW
Fat – 35% total daily calories
Carbs – whatever calories are left after Pro/Fat tallied up
While staring up at the ceiling last night this little protocol came to me.
It’s nothing spectacular, however it is a nice framework.
3min work > 90sec rest > repeat 10 times
This would provide a 45min total bout of work.
While easy on paper it’d easily build up.
Alternating two movements will work well, that way you can give a decent effort each work set of 3min to the specific movements as you’d have four and a half minutes rest between each.
True enough you can also use one movement, just be warned as that gets hard rather quickly.
Say one movement is your chosen poison, the best way to apply the above would be to have multiple loads you alternate between.
Kettlebell Swing: 24kg, 32kg, 40kg & 48kg bells.
Each set you’d use a different load, not repeating the same load two sets in a row.
Perhaps you wish to use other movements, I’d suggest these:
Push: KB Jerk, Push Press, Dip, Press Ups
Pull: Rope Climb, Inverted Row, Pull Ups, DB Row
Squat: Back SQ, Lunge, Zercher, Sandbag
Hinge: Swing, RDL, Hamstring Curl, Pull Through
Loaded Carry: Bear Hug, Sled Push/Pull, Famers Walk
The above would include the warm up sets as well.
You’d start your timer off and do some simple mobility/movement drills to RAMP for 90 seconds (basically doing the rest first), plus you can set up whatever it is you’re doing in this time as well.
Then at your first 3min round you start.
Alternatively you can go strait in at 3min and do a ‘light rounds’ or two, then use the last 90seconds rest before 45min time is up to do some cool down bits.
In the rest periods of the 90 seconds I’d personally advise some corrective work, usually in the form of upper thoracic mobility work, gentle trigger point release (not on areas wing worked) and so on, that way you’re resting and also being productive.
You may wonder how many days per week you are looking to do this, the answer is a minimum of 3, and the maximum is up to you.
Follow this rotation and you can even do it daily with little to no issue:
– Restoration – Stretching, foam rolling etc
– Flow State (nasal breathing only, no exceptions)
Worth some investigation.
How would you define the following (in a fitness sense).
Would you personally classify each by the abilities one may possess to be deemed worthy of said placing in this hierarchy, perhaps time served or level of progress.
You may see it as a combination of all of the above.
To me it’s down to these three simple qualities:
- Body Composition
- Base Strength
- Athletic Ability (skill in their sport/thing)
These are my chosen markers due to their basic objectivity, just look at all the people who’ve trained for 10+ years and have achieved very little, they’re beginners in my eyes, yet on paper you’d think these people to be training sages.
While entirely arbitrary why don’t we look at these a little more for some context because i know some people will get butt hurt because it’s 2020 and the world is still hyper sensitive.
Beginner (novice) – low levels of LBM in retaliation to the individuals total mass with potentially high or low levels of fat mass because skinny fat is totally a thing, arguably the worse thing to be in my ignorant opinion, that’s just me though.
Basically they don’t look like stye train.
Intermediate (amateur) – reasonable levels of LBM in relation to the individuals total mass, often these people have lower levels of fat mass as well, not always, just often.
Essentially they look like they’ve bumped a weight or two and in fact train the way they claim as oppose to simply talking about it.
Advanced (elite) – high level of LBM, often reasonably low levels of fat mass, not always just often. At a glance you’d stop and think, they look strong, and if measured accurately this would be confirmed due to high LBM.
Yep, these are the people many look up to in awe of.
Rather dependent on what the person trains for, however as an arbitrary guide I base this off of what they can pick up and put overhead in a strict press.
Beginner (novice) – Less then 3/4 total bodyweight
Intermediate (amateur) – Their current total bodyweight
Advanced (elite) – 1.25x bodyweight or more
Why pressing overhead you ask?
It’s because it keeps people honest, and pressing overhead often reveals a multitude of sins and gaps in someones structure, stability and mobility as well.
As with strength it will come down to the specificity of what they do.
If we take Running as an example, just because why not make it relatable to the gen-pop.
Beginner (novice) – 10min (or more) average mile
Intermediate (amateur) – 8min average mile
Advanced (elite) – 6min (or less) average mile
Intermediate (amateur) – 8min average mile
Advanced (elite) – 6min (or less) average mile
Of course each of the above will come down to the person we are looking at, yet even using the example above you’d find some decent trends in how well to do a person is in fitness.
Anyway, how do you see yourself fin regards to fitness?
Beginner, intermediate or advanced?
Why not, it’s just bit of fun and gets people thinking, plus we also need to remember that even if we are advanced in some things we may be absolute noobs in another.
After all, isn’t life about climbing as many mountains as possible and achieving a lot of different things, or is it just me who thinks that way?
Please do share your thoughts below.
Being a little bit of a nerd I personally enjoy the principles behind things not everyone wants that, so why not just get straight to the good stuff 💪
Protocol 1 – 6-12-25
A classic from Charles Poliquin.
Choose three movements.
Do a set of 6 for the first, 12 for the second & 25 for the third to fully decimate a muscle group/area.
Examples for each movement pattern:
Do 2-3 sets of the following with 2-4min rest after A3.
A1 – Weighted Dip x6
A2 – Close Grip Canadian Press x12
A3 – TRX Tiger-Bend x25
A1 – Weighted Ring Chin Up x6
A2 – T-bar Row x12
A3 – Face Pull x25
A1 – Front Squat x6
A2 – Squat (close stance, heels raised – cyclist squat) x12
A3 – Duck Stance Leg Press x25
A1 – Snatch Grip Deficit Deadlift x6
A2 – RDL x12
A3 – Prone Hamstring Curl (neutral feet) x25
If you do this correctly you will find a drop of in loading % of each set after 2, this usually because at our top weights we’ve got 1-2 good sets in us, then things start to fatigue so a reduction in load of 5-10% is sensible.