Monday, June 20, 2011

If I Were You I'd Take Precaution

Last year, I started training Raelyn in preparation for 7th Grade Volleyball. We kept things pretty simple with basic compound lifts and easy to learn accessory movements. This year was going to step it up since she was older and knew what to expect from the sessions. Training would last an hour which included Warmup, PVC Roll, Band Assisted Stretch, Explosive Power Movements, 2 from Bench, Squat, Dead, Press, Auxiliary Lifts and PVC Roll/Cool Down.

Week 1 was an Introductory phase of learning the exercises and temp. Week 2 was where she really progressed.

Example Training Session
5 Min Walk
PVC Roll-Ham, Quad, Glute, Back x 2
Band Stretch
Y, L, W, T x 10
Overhead Press
Front Squat

Above is the basic outline of training session not including some auxiliary supersets, explosive movements and conditioning.

Last Year After Week 1
Deadlift 80 lbs x 8
Overhead 20 lbs x 8
Squat 55 lbs x 8

This Year After Week 1
Deadlift 155 lbs x 8

Overhead 50 lbs x 8

Squat 65 lbs x 8

Every exercise was chosen in order to maximize her play on the volleyball court. She would need power, strength and stamina. There is no wasted movement or exercises to "make her sweat." She can go to her local personal trainer for that nonsense. She brings it every time she walks into the weight room and there are few girls out there working as hard.

Stay tuned it only gets better...

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Umm..Yeah I Am Gonna Need You To...

Let's pretend you were in Office Space, but it was filmed in your gym. You run into a lifecoach/hypnotist/whatever and now the slate is clean. You don't give a crap about what everyone else is doing with their new found exercise or the new training protocol that just came out. Many times enthusiastic trainees fill their head with too much information they lack focus and have 5 different programs going on at once. Not gonna work.

So now that you've wiped out your hard drive of all the training info from over the years, lets put in place a solid foundation that will help guide your training decisions.

1.Train Like You're in Prison.

This rule is something I always think about when training. I've always been fascinated with guys training in prison. How is it someone doing 10-20 years can get jacked but you're still squatting 185 lbs. Better food and nutrition? Hardly. Use of illegal performance enhancers? Possibly. More rest=more growth? I'll give you that. How about not wanting to man-handled? If I dropped you in prison you would either grow or turn into someone's main squeeze. Not that there's anything wrong with that. Do you have to go to prison to test Darwin's Theory? Nope, just train like your life depends on getting bigger, faster, stronger.

2.Focus on a Barbell to Complete Compound Exercises.

Training should start with a main compound lift in which you use a barbell. Squat, Bench, Deadlift, Overhead Press and their similar variations. Everything after that should add muscle mass and bring up the aforementioned lifts. This is usually where people get cute and do some new exercise. Stick to the basics that have worked for longer than you've been lifting.

3.Do What You Like.

Training should be fun, if not you'll leave it like your high school girlfriend. After the main lift, you have unlimited exercises to choose from so it's not a crime to do something you enjoy. For me this was a couple of different exercises. Kettlebells were a tool that fascinated me enough to go to Houston for Mike Mahler's Seminar so I could learn how to snatch and clean. I took this same approach when incorporating handstand pushups to my overhead press routine. I didn't know what I was doing. Didn't read a forum on it. Just picked a wall, kicked up, and started pressing away. There has to be an new exercise you would like to try. Find an old school strongman magazine you will see some variations that would change up your dull routine.

4.Hang Out with Strong People

The importance of this one is hard to measure, but it can make a huge difference in the future of your training. It is very east to train a certain way and you don't know what you've been missing out on. This happened to me when I was a graduate assistant at Texas State University. I was a lost weight lifter until running into Coach Leo Seitz. I went to his office and asked if I could help out with his athletes. This is where he began to preach the good news of the Squat, Deadlift and Bench Press to me. Coach Seitz was also good for a saying on how he approached his training Wide Fu**ing Open. Catchy, huh.

5.Don't Take Training Too Serious

When you stick to a routine and see gains it is very easy to let training take over your life. Don't let this happen. Keep some balance in your life which will ensure training isn't a chore. For that time you designated to train by all means go all out but when you're don't bring the session home. Doing this will keep you in the game longer not on-again-off-again relationship with the gym.

There is too much misinformation regarding training so you need to have some set-in stone rules that you can reference. Everyone has them for everything from how you want to raise your kids to picking a girlfriend why wouldn't you do this for training. That's right, ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!

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