Tag Archives: progress

Giving to Yourself

Amateur athletes, weekend warriors & those who train hard.

Give yourself the gift or more time.

Give yourself the gift or more rest.

Honestly, you’ve got plenty of time to make progress, even if you’re in your 60’s you can still move forwards.

Too many rush and injury is their reward.

This doesn’t mean you will become slothful or lacklustre in your training, oh no.

You will still be required to lift with intent, focus and gusto.

The only difference is that you allow yourself a little more rest between sets, perhaps an extra day off here and there all to allow you more recovery which will translate in to more progress in the end.

You see for the majority of us training is suppose to enhance our lives, not absorb or detract from them.

In my years of training I’ve been obsessive, too rigid, unwavering in adherence to the routine and while it did indeed yield results, would it really have been so bad if I arrive at that point perhaps 2-3 years later?

My prize was glory when the flame burned bright.

Even for a short while I was untouchable, then it all fell to pieces and burnout was my enteral reward.

This took almost as many years to recover from.

Yep. 5 years of the true iron path ended up in 5 years to recover from it, and the kicker is I wasn’t even anything worth shout about in the grand scheme of things.

While we talk about enjoy the journey, which I did, I can tell you it wasn’t worth it, breaking yourself for ego is never worth it, yet many will do this because it’s the message of the world.

Work hard and what you seek shall be yours, oh and it will, you just wont be able to hold on to it for very long.

Sensible training, reasonable & repeatable sessions, more recovery days and optimal nutrition choices, that is what will yield the best long term results.

True you may decide to test/peak/push yourself perhaps once of twice per year, and in truth that’s all you need.

Anything more is superfluous.

As I sit here typing this I do wonder, will you listen to me?

Will these words of warning resonate or run off like water from a ducks back because like a far younger me you still think you currently know better.

The truth is we never know better, we only know what we know, or what we choose to believe and that’s rarely whats best for us.

Anyway, here are 7 suggestions for you, garnered from years grinding away for little reward.

1 – Nutrition trumps training
2 – Consistency is key, so train reasonably & repeatably
3 – Train every 3-5 days
4 – Take 5min rest after heavy sets, maybe even up to 10
5 – Test yourself once or twice per year
6 – Set mini goals that require some effort, not all your effort
7 – Have a greater purpose behind you for training, training for the sake of training rarely ends well

Enjoy,
Ross

Leave a comment

Filed under Fitness, Nutrition & Health

Frustrations

While chatting to a client last night the goal was to listen o their frustrations. 

The didn’t feel for the effort they put in (to all aspects of their life) that they were getting their just desserts.

“My training is consistent.”

“My nutrition has been varied and clarions tracked.”

“My work has improved in both productivity and efficiency.”

“My life couldn’t be at a better point, and yet I’m not where I want to be, it’s so frustrating! I just start to think things will never change and just don’t know what the point is in keeping it all up.”

“I know things take time, I just want some hint it’s going to be worth it.”

A truly heartfelt frustration.

Often the effort we put into a great many things doesn’t yield the results we’d perhaps desire.

While this might not be fair it just is what it is. 

I have friends who dislike that quote ‘it is what is is’, potentially because of it being the attitude of people who have become resigned to the deterministic philosophy due to their life experience in always knocking them down or the undeserving getting that which they feel should have been theirs. 

It’s an understandable annoyance, yet these are also the same people that won’t outwardly express what is it hey want, or vocalise what is perhaps needed to be said to the right people,  they often just sit and wait in the hope that they will get recognised just because they feel they should. 

Sadly in this life if you want something you have to not only want it, work for it, or go for it, you must also make it known you want it by asking for it. 

Fortune favours the bold or brave (depending now his quote you prefer). 

It’s quite true. You’d be surprised what you can actually get simply by asking for it. 

Anyway, back to the frustrated client above. 

I was quite honest in telling them I didn’t know why they where not where they wanted to be or showered with glories praise, from an emotional standpoint that is. 

From a training/empirical standpoint it’s been 3 weeks into their current training after they spent 5months being inconsistent and basically pissing about and making poor choices. 

Yes I did tell them that directly because pandering isn’t what they needed and the simple truth is that you won’t often see much change in 3weeks, maybe 3 months or 3 years, however not 3 weeks. If you had dramatic change in such a short space of time, like say losing 2 stone I’d advise you go to the the doctor as you may have a terminal illness, yet this is the result people feel they deserve.

This was what prompted me to re-ask “What result/expectations do you feel you should have by now and why?, No, really, why? Why do you have the expectations you do?”.

Now for something a little bigger to consider, especially if you’ve felt/feel this way…..

Why out of all the people on this planet do you feel your the only one with these frustrations?

Why are you so special that the process should be different or miraculous?

Is it because you know someone who knows someone or you say it on social media?

Very few things in this life happen by accident. They are often an accumulation of minor, or major choices we’ve made or didn’t make and eventually they all come to fruition and result in X, Y or Z,which may or may not be your desired outcome.

As with any endeavour, even those that are truly frustrating, you must just accept that they will take time and perhaps be a tad more realistic with your expectations.

Frustration affects us all, yet like a lot of things they’re fleeting and not worth dwelling on.

Take a look around you, see that most other people are in the same boat and enjoy the journey because it’s rarely the destination that makes it worth while, it’s often the experiences you pick up along the way. 

Enjoy, 

Ross

Leave a comment

Filed under Fitness, Nutrition & Health

Training Diaries 101

A new day has broken through the starlit canvass of night, and I think it’s going to be a good one.

Morning All,

Over the weekend a companion that has been with me for through thick and thin in the gym for the last 3 years has finally retired.

Training diary 13, it’s been a blast, now you can rest and thank you for all the wisdom you’ve shared with me.

A concise record of your gym antics is an essential tool.

Keeping track of the lads lifted, volume totalled, lifts made and missed, can give you vital information in regards to what worked, for how long, what you didn’t focus on enough and the things you need to be doing to progress.

While not everyone keeps a diary, most people these days do track what they’re doing.

Be this in the form of videos, photos, YouTube training complications or IG live, some tracking goes on.

It seems to be fashionable or heroic to say – “I don’t track, I remember it all.”.

Maybe they do, maybe they don’t, however it just sounds like ego to me.

Why think you’ve remember it correctly when you can KNOW you’ve remember it correctly because it’s immortalised in some form of tracking, like that in a training diary.

Many would rather talk a good game than record what actually goes on and have it written in stone.

Then again, stones too, can lie.

So today was a new training protocol.

I’ve opted for a 6 week modified Delorme protocol.

The Classic Delorme: 3x10x50-75-100% 10RM

^ A solid endeavour that really works if you give it a true effort, many will feel it’s not enough work however to me that means they’re not quite putting in a good effort.

^^ If you’d like to do the above yet feel it’s just not enough then still use the loading perimeters (50-75-100% 10RM) and use this rep protocol: 20-15-10.

So how does the version I am dong differ from the above?

Let’s take a look.

The Modified Delorme: 5×5-5-5 (50-75-100% 10RM)

Day 1: 5×5-5-5 (50-75-100% 10RM) – max series (up to 5)

Day 2: Match total successful series on D1 @5×50% 10RM

Day 3: Match Series on D1 @5-5×50-75% 10RM

– Two lift focus – Bench Press & Deadlift
– Up to 1min rest between 5’s, then 3min rest between series
– When 5 series completed with good form on Monday add load

You might be wondering where my other movements are.

Fear not, the Pulling, Squatting & Carries will be in at the end of the session as accessory work following a rep protocol that takes my fancy on the day.

This will keep total time training to a minimum.

Why?

Because for my own personal goals I need to break the old mindset of ‘train more’ that is creeping back in, my last training diary highlighted this was beginning to find its way back into my life again.

The above is only 6 weeks.

If I personally can’t stuck to that then what good am I to the world?

Sometimes we need to stay on a path and see the journey through to the end.

Too much hopping about has been apparent in my training.

Time to stop that.

So dear readers, do you have a training diary?

If yes, what has it taught you and if no, why do you feel you don’t need one?

Do share your thoughts below.

Enjoy,
Ross

Leave a comment

Filed under Fitness, Nutrition & Health

3 forgotten steps for setting good goals.

Chances are you’re aware that setting your sights on the far horizon is a great way at keeping you focused on the path that lay before you.
 
We often find it’s once we’ve achieved the goal that things go wrong.
 
Once the praise has drive up and people are no longer falling over each other to congratulate you and grab a selfie, many begin to fade away.
 
Sadly the heights they’ve reached are now lost.
 
You see once you make a good change you are no longer in the place you were when you started aiming for that goal.
 
This is the biggest mistake you’ll see from people.
 
Achieving a goal, enjoying their time at the top, stagnating and slipping backwards due to a lack of attention/praise, then they attempt to repeat the previous steps and find they don’t quite work in the same way if at all.
 
You see our bodies are clever little organisms.
 
They remember previous stressors, they adapt to them and put in place mechanisms/systems to deal with that specific stress just incase it ever happens again.
 
You may have heard of this called the law of diminishing returns.
 
Put simply what once worked perfectly will often never work that well again.
 
Many people fall in to this trap and get frustrated.
 
“It worked before so why isn’t it working now? – I know, I will just do more of this and that will fix it.”
 
^^ Sometimes, for a short time this works, then you crash and burn.
 
Realistically this adaptive process our bodies have is something to be highly thankful of because without it we’d probably not be here.
 
As such if you want to keep getting praise, admiration and people flocking to you in their murder, then you need to keep your finger on the pulse of fitness.
 
“If you do what you’ll always done you’ll get less than you did before.” – Me 🤗
 
Don’t believe me?
 
Check out the people who try to out-train multiple glasses of wine and other alcoholic beverages by more work, they fail severely and each video/photo that goes up on the gram you can see they’re getting a little bigger each time.
 
Ah, survival and adaptation, we love you.
 
The big question then comes in to play; how do you avoid this?
 
That is where the three forgotten steps of goal setting come in to play.
 
1 – Reassessing your current level.
 
This is because you’ve got a new baseline now and what worked before may not work again, or if it does the results will be drastically lacking when compared to how you did previously.
 
Getting a new set of stats will help you logically plan the steps you NEED (objective truth) going forwards.
 
2 – Being objective in your estimations, not emotive.
 
Setting a positive emotion to your goal is all well and good, however people don’t move towards pleasure, they move away from pain.
 
Emotions can have to going back to the things you like or feel comfortable with, while it may give you the warm and fuzzy feeling you enjoy, this doesn’t mean it will get you to your goal, for that you need to be objective.
 
Example: Squats, Deadlifts & Sprinting will do more to build a solid pair of legs and bountiful booty than crab walks, cable abductor or kins backs ever will. This is an objective truth, not an emotive bias.
 
3 – Start of doing less than you think you should, just do it (less) better.
 
The trap of more ensnares a lot of people (myself included).
 
After a period of detraining you need to take a step back, perhaps starting off easier, lighter of with less volume than you FEEL (emotive response/bias) you need because you can’t progress if you don’t allow yourself to.
 
Hard to hear yet often necessary, well, if you want to make progress anyway.
 
🤗🤗🤗
 
There you have it, three elements of goal setting that people forget.
 
Here is a little something to get you started, it’s an ultra simple strength & conditioning routine.
 
Day 1 –
A1 – Press (any variation) 2×5-7
B1 – RDL 2×8-12
C1 – Sprint 8/22 x10min (8sec work, 22sec rest)
 
Day 2 –
A1 – Squat (any variation) 1×20
B1 – Supinated Row 2×6-8
C1 – Loaded Carry (any variation) x10min max distance
 
Day 3 –
A1 – Clean (full or power) 2×3-5
B1 – Dip 2×8-12
C1 – Rope Climb (no legs) x10min or Row 4-6×400-600m
 
The above are all working sets, they don’t take in to account warm ups leading to the main weight. So 2×5-7 means 2 GOOD sets of 5-7 with a close to all out effort (RPE 9).
 
Oh, one more thing, you’ll need to tidy up your nutrition.
 
The easiest way to strip of excess fat is with optimal nutrition, it’s far easier not to eat the 1000 calorie tub of ice cream than it is to burn it off.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

Leave a comment

Filed under Fitness, Nutrition & Health

***Why training 2-3 days per week is actually better for you than 5-6***

Across the years of ramblings you’ll find many a message on here.
 
Some align and fit together nicely while others contradict each other.
 
Each post is often written based on its own context, however in fitness you will find that most of the time things don’t really line up, unless you loos specifically for things to make it happen.
 
Take the above, training 5-6 days per week is 100% the best option for some people, especially competitive types or those with specific goals.
 
In fact, hitting up to say 15 sessions or more per week is the way for some, just not all.
 
Would it be great if everyone could train multiple times per day?
 
Yes, if you look at all the information, both imperial and anecdotal, you will find that training for around 45min per session (that is time spent in the working zone, that doesn’t include warm up/cool down) done multiple times per day is literally the best way to train.
 
There is only not problem, it’s not viable for 99% of the people.
 
Okay, maybe 98%.
 
You see while the above is great on paper it doesn’t take in to account that little thing called ‘life’ for most average people.
 
Yes you are an average person, just like me.
 
As such you don’t need to total 800+ training sessions in a year, you just don’t, I mean come on people, yo’ve got to live as fulfilling life that has more than just training in it (unless you’re a super athlete and paid to do a sport/train, in which case you do your job).
 
This is where you find training 2-3 days per week helps.
 
It seems like it’s not enough.
 
Trust me I understand that agonising pang.
 
At one stage in my life even saying those words would freak the shit out of me and I could swear that I’d just instantly gained 3% body fat from uttering such heresy.
 
Obviously that didn’t happen, however it was quite the large clue that the ‘healthy mindset’ of fitness has become poisoned and in fact my addictive personality had taken over.
 
You see my end there is a tendency to replace one addiction with another, that’s a story for a different day though.
 
So what can training 2-3 days per week do for you?
 
Well….
 
– More freedom to have a life & pursue other pleasures
– Require logical training (no fluff, just productivity)
– Ample recovery
– Higher adherence as getting 2-3 days in out of 7 is easy
– Reduced stress
– Progress (due to actually recovering – SAID, GAS, etc)
– Time, you get more time and that is a precious thing
 
With the points about they are all pretty self explanatory.
 
The big three though are having less Stress due to not needing to live in the gym, if you only train twice that’s cool, whereas having set rota of 6sessions and when miss one you freak out it just doesn’t make for progress.
 
Also training less days means that you are more productive and can really give it a good effort and then actually recover enough from said session to legitimately progress your next session. Very hard to do if you train all the time.
 
Lastly is the fact you’ve just got more time.
 
This means you can give more attention to life, perhaps even tidying up your nutrition or just generally being more chilled because training is there to enhance your life not take it over.
 
Now I can’t just let you go without a little something.
 
This is not body body building, it will be for overall strength and conditioning, if you would like a specific example let me know in the comments below.
 
Here is a small template for training 2-3 days per week.
 
Day 1 – Posterior Chain Focus
Day 2 – Full Body Focus
Day 3 – Performance Focus (optional)
 
Some training ideas:
 
Day 1 – Posterior Chain Focus
A1 – Deadlift (any variation): 5-25 total reps
B1 – Pull Up: 50-100 total reps
C1 – Odd Object Clean & Press: 10-100 total reps
 
Day 2 – Full Body Focus
A1 – Squat: 50-100 total reps
A2 – Dip: 50-100 total reps
B1 – Bent Over Row: 50-100 total reps
B2 – Press Overhead: 50-100 total reps
 
Day 3 – Performance Focus (optional)
A1 – Power Clean or Snatch: 5-25 total reps
B2 – Push Jerk: 5-25 total reps
B2 – Sprint: 30-60m
C1 – Loaded Carry (any position/variation): 10-20min
 
Give training less an honest effort, you’ll be amazed at the results you can get from doing less better.
 
Enjoy.
Ross

1 Comment

Filed under Fitness, Nutrition & Health

One for all the SuperMum’s

Mid Morning Mum’s entering in droves with what looks like and endless amount of strollers, buggies and prams.
 
It’s like watching vultures circle as they scope out the coffee shop for a table 😂
 
They might be smiling, however it’s not a smile that says –
 
“Hey, how are you.”.
 
It’s closer to one that says –
 
“Oh, hi, I see you’re finished with tis table even though you’re not. K, thanks, bye.”
 
And now the kids are kicking off crying…. 🤦‍♀️
 
Mum’s truly are superhero’s doing everything they do.
 
I’ve literally just watched one do to much count, 11 things simultaneously, it was very impressive and if I’m honest a little scary.
 
I can barely pee without missing if my concentration drifts, let alone do that many things at once.
 
Mum’s, we salute you.
 
Speaking of these glorious warriors, one topic I often end up engrossed in conversation with them about is getting their pre-baby body back.
 
^^ While not a goal for all of them, it’s a really common one.
 
First things first, having a baby is quite the strenuous experience on the body and utilises a considerable amount of ones resources.
 
True enough some come out fairing better than others, however that’s more a case of individual difference, prior exercise/fitness levels and overall health so if you don’t bounce back straight away don’t stress, it’s okay to take several months to no longer feel like you’ve had your ass kicked.
 
So, how long can ‘getting back’ take?
 
The truth is you can’t get that body back, it’s gone and trying to go backwards just isn’t possible because of the one obvious truth many forget, they’ve just had a baby.
 
The only way to get the body you had back would be to go back in time.
 
So instead of thinking “I need to get back to this.”, think instead about moving forwards to something new and improved 🤗
 
Many will think about going backwards.
 
While an understandable mindset it’s not a healthy one because some end up linking their identity, worth, confidence and overall sense of self to what they were before the little bundle of joy came along.
 
I get it you know, why this train of thought occurs.
 
Tis’ simply because many don’t know any different, and that’s okay however some re-education is needed.
 
Personally I’d always advise hiring someone who specialises in the pre/post-natal field so that you can get the most current, useful and relevant information based on YOUR specific needs and situation.
 
^^ Some have more separation than other, or major hormone disruption, perhaps even joint dislocation and prolonged elevated levels of relaxin, so you’d do well to consult a professional.
 
Another key element to keep in mind is that there’s no need to rush back to a new physical peak.
 
True enough some seem to get there within 8 week post baby, it happens and unless it’s you then you’d do well not to compare yourself to an entirely different human being.
 
So just keep that in mind.
 
From experience there is also not a lot of time for some people, this can lead to all sorts of unwanted stress and is why it’s worth knowing that there is no rush to move forwards.
 
The gym/training mentality if that you NEED to do 60min.
 
Rubbish.
 
You’d be far better off doing 20min sessions daily (you can them mix CV work one day, Strength work another, Movement capability the next and so on).
 
Moving away from conventional wisdom is key here.
 
Just like the little one taking baby steps to build up ones health, strength and fitness is the most optimal way forwards.
 
Doing so will be incredibly manageable and therefore far easier to sustain consistently because even the busiest Super-Mum can find 20min a day for herself to train.
 
Oh, alos as tempting as the glass of wine might be at the end of the say of when babe is asleep, if you’re looking to move forwards a daily glass (or bottle) could be quit ehe heavy anchor dragging behind you, just something worth remembering.
 
^^Same is true for delicious foods, by all means have them, however just remember the more that is consumed the heavier that anchor behind you becomes.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

Leave a comment

Filed under Fitness, Nutrition & Health

Expectations vs Reality

Do you know what is actually achievable from training?
 
In our modern odd world it’s easy to have the lines blurred.
 
Growing up with classic 80’s, early 90’s cartoons and action stars such as Stallone, Schwarzenegger, Lindgren, Van-damme, Lee, plus a boat load of other physical specimens it’s easy to see why the world has some distorted views.
 
I shared a book with a close friend recently.
 
This book was apparently quite eye opening to him.
 
Of course over the years I had tried to convey many of the messages found in said book yet they all fell on deaf ears.
 
The combination of body dysmorphia, unrealistic expectations and wrapped social media/movie/anime images had set quite the distorted image of what was real and what wasn’t.
 
The book is ‘Your Muscular Potential’ by Dr Casey Butt.
 
A very good read for those looking to lift the veil, you’ll potentially enjoy his website too as it contains all the calculators mentioned in his book:
 
 
Believe it or not you might be near your maximum muscular potential, that is if you’re of a decent level of leanness.
 
Filling out a t-shirt is easy when your fat so if size if your prize you might do well to ask yourself this; is it legitimate lean mass and size I’m after or just being big due to being fat?
 
^^ Food for thought.
 
Beware of what you follow in the world wide web.
 
You might be being lead astray.
 
Once you learn what is realistic and what isn’t (without ‘enhancement’) you’ll find quite the weighty stress removed from your shoulders.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

Leave a comment

Filed under Fitness, Nutrition & Health

My KGB Training Method – Part 1

***The how, what & why***
 
Before you think it, this isn’t related to the Komitet Gosudarstvennoy Bezopasnosti.
 
In this particular incarnation of those letters they mean the following:
 
Kettlebells-Grapplling-Bodyweight
 
Three different days.
 
Three different focuses.
 
Three different outcomes.
 
You might just find this the refreshing change up in your truing that you need.
 
*3on-1off or 2on-1off-1on-1off works the best I’ve found, however you can work this in to however many training days you have per week.
 
Kettlebell Day –
 
3 bells are chosen (4kg difference each bell, ideally 8kg) a light-medium-heavy set as it were.
 
You might choose 24kg, 32kg & 40kg, you will alternate between those based on feel, once you choose your bells you’re stuck with them for the session or until you’ve mastered the heaviest one, at which point you go up a bell size, using the above 32,40,48kg would be the new set.
 
The aim of the day is to build strength, power, endurance and general fortitude (LBM).
 
You’ll find your grip, glutes & core gain quite the benefit from this style of work.
 
Grappling Day –
 
Don’t worry if you don’t grapple, it’s the principle that matters and it is this:
 
– Pick things up with your hands, carry, load, throw, push or drag them.
 
This is a day for things such as sandbag carries, follow day cleaning the weight on to a block.
 
Ideally you’ll be working with bodyweight as a baseline, then you can have a heavier/lighter option in the form of more bags of different/awkward objects.
 
Clubbells, Indian Clubs, Maces, Hammers, Bars and all the other good stuff like these fall in to this day.
 
This day serves as a dual purpose strength & conditioning tool, plus it will have a great crossover to daily life and making you anti-fragile.
 
Plus if you grapple it will also help that as well.
 
You’ll build a solid set of mittens, glorious glutes & mighty abs.
 
Bodyweight Day –
 
Learning how to get the most out of the least is truly a skill the frugal possess.
 
A skill we should look to bring to our training as well.
 
Mastering basic skills such as running, jumping, crawling, claiming, bridges, planks, hanging around and how to move well is something EVERYONE can benefit from, literally.
 
The purpose of this day is to help you develop at the very minimum the infant form of gymnastic abilities.
 
Once you master ‘feeling’ your body and working with it instead of against it you’ll find your overall awareness goes through the roof, not to mention improvements in posture, grip, glutes and core.
 
There we have it, the first part of this simple yet surprisingly effective method.
 
Now you know how the days are set, and what to expect (well, a taste of it), you must understand why.
 
Knowing the why is the most important part.
 
If my why, the why of this little system fits your why then you’ll achieve great things from it.
 
Say they don’t match, that’s cool because you have plenty of other options out here.
 
On this occasion at this time we just don’t see eye to eye this time around, perhaps in another life 💪💪
 
Okay, the reason why this got put together was simple.
 
It’s about improving quality of life for the long term.
 
Helping you become strong, move well and able to face almost every daily task without a second thought.
 
You’ll also find this is great as you can do it anywhere, you don’t need a gym, you can have all the kit on your own or amongst a group of friends.
 
Your progress is on your hands.
 
Part 2 to follow.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

Leave a comment

Filed under Fitness, Nutrition & Health

Lift Ladies, Lift!

Strength Training for Ladies:
 
Lift the heavy thing + solid nutrition = all the gains.
 
That’s essentially it.
 
🤗🤗🤗
 
I suppose we could look at some details as well.
 
You know what, to me the fact that more women are lifting is a very good thing because of all the benefits it offers, however we need to look at a few things to maximise what can be gained.
 
In the beginning days you’ll find these two main differences between the sexes when it comes to training due to genetics.
 
*If you’ve found different please do share your experience.
 
Ladies tend to do better with a higher volume of total work and their RM loads are not that far apart.
 
Men on the other hand don’t handle quite as high a volume and their RM loads can be dramatically different.
 
We shall tackle the volume in a second, first the loads.
 
Example:
 
Lady – 5RM = 100kg, 1RM = 107kg
Gent – 5RM = 100kg, 1RM = 120kg
 
This has bene linked in with overall levels of neurological strength and MU firing rates, plus the initial difference in LBM when looking at beginners on both sides of the fence.
 
Of course as training starts to progress this gap lessens, however one thing that does seem consistent is that ladies handle more total volume far better than the gents do (faster recovery etc).
 
Strength itself is a skill.
 
You have to learn to express your strength, regardless of how much base strength you have, if someone knows how to get everything ‘just right’ they will surprise you with just how much iron they can shift.
 
The most optimal rep range for this is 1-5 reps.
 
In regards to optimal sets, that’s where things get interesting as in an ideal world it will be answered as such – how many you can handle with good form.
 
That might be 5 sets, it might be 50.
 
Who knows.
 
Many who follow the tome of hypertrophy will start to bang out statistics and ‘evidence’ or ‘studies’, which is all well and good, however strength is a different animal.
 
You want to lift a heavy load, as often as possible, while staying as fresh as you can.
 
When I’ve trained ladies in the past who wanted to get strong this seemed to work very well for beginners put o the intermediate level (as a general starting point).
 
2-4 reps x 10-30 sets x 3-10RM
 
The weight east set would change in some rather sharp and random ways.
 
Not what people expect, here is what is may have looked like if the reps were static (for simplicity).
 
2 x 7RM, 3RM, 5RM, 10RM, 3RM, 3RM, 9RM, 7RM, 5RM, 4RM, etc
 
^^ One or two movements (compound focus)
 
Throw in some conditioning work in the form of sprints, kettlebell snatches, complexes, PHA bits and pieces and you’ll soon find yourself or your female clients getting the results they’ve always wanted.
 
*I found many ladies enjoyed full body work and responded best to it for when they were after an overall aesthetic look and strength.
 
Here is an example session:
 
W/U – Mobility Flow (or KB complex flow)
Skill – 15sets of Bent Press practice 1-3 reps
Strength – 10-30 sets S/S Clean & Press + Chin 2-4 reps
Conditioning – L/C, Rope Climb Hold, Swings – 10Min
C/D – Mobility or Yoga Flow
 
A lot of volume, a lot of practice and varied loads each and every set.
 
Easy on paper, in practice no so much.
 
The aim of getting stronger is the goal of many.
 
One little gem of information for achieving it though is this; you leave a session feeling stronger than you did when you entered, like you could do more however you don’t.
 
Leaving something in the tank and feeling strong is key.
 
Doing the will allow you a higher frequency of training and that will yield results far faster then you could imagine, if you’re willing to leave a little in the tank every session.
 
Obviously there will be some days you push a little harder than others, however this shouldn’t be the status quo, despite what fitness rags tell you.
 
Apply the philosophy of ‘same yet different’ as well and you’ve got a very potent mix for progress.
 
*S-Y-D = Zercher Squat, Front Squat, Back Squat -they are all squats and while the same they’re still different.
 
Now go, become strong.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

Leave a comment

Filed under Fitness, Nutrition & Health

Chances are it’s not your genetics

Do you find it easy to blame your genetics for any problem that arises?
 
Many do, trying to refute such a claim is not easy.
 
That said, it seems the world and it’s dog all have terrible genetics from what our ever connected state of affairs tells us.
 
I’m willing to call bullshit on it.
 
Take this classic:
 
“I have a thyroid condition.”
 
^^ Often self diagnosed and if it is legitimate then you will do well to look at their lifestyle habits.
 
While having a bum thyroid or similar issue does make something like fat loss harder, it’s not something that means you can’t make progress, you just need to be more diligent.
 
Would you like to know a secret?
 
I persoanlly have an under-active thyroid myself.
 
Yep, a legitimate one as well, the funny part, apparently I’ve had it for years and the Dr’s just didn’t see the need to inform me because my weight/BMI etc was always in the normal ranges.
 
Obviously anyone else with the same condition who is overweigh clearly has it worse than me….
 
It’s in no way the fact our lifestyles, activity levels, eating habits and general thought processes are different.
 
Nope, they’ve just got it worse and that is why they’re overweight.
 
🤔
 
Before you get offended, look, I get it, life can be hard.
 
We comfort eat, make poor choices and a whole host of other mistakes along the way.
 
In the end though most of our issues can be dealt with if we decide to make the necessary lifestyle changes.
 
This isn’t easy, it’s just a choice you make.
 
People talk about genetics and how they’ve made them a certain way and while they may indeed play a part, most of how you are comes down to your choices and lifestyle.
 
That’s just how it works.
 
If we take weight as an example, because everyone has a weight issue these days.
 
You don’t see any obese starving people, even if their genetics predispose them to being 400lbs, if they are starting and don’t have access to the calories needed they won’t ever be 400lbs, regardless if they have the genetic potential to be.
 
^^ Read that again and think about all the times you blame genetics, then look your lifestyle choices and take the time to have some honest reflection.
 
Now there will be some instances you have no control over, that’s just an unfortunate part of life, however for the most part it’s all in your hands.
 
While it is easy to blame say genetics, other people and the general state of the world, that doesn’t make it the best thing to do.
 
You’ve done it too often, I’ve done it too often, most people will continue to do it too often.
 
Time to take a step back, see the big picture and take charge.
 
Enjoy,
Ross

Leave a comment

Filed under Fitness, Nutrition & Health