So, these last few months I’ve made some different changes in what I’ve been doing in terms of training and life.

Images like this psych me up beyond belief!  Looking at pics like this has ALWAYS worked…

I’ve noted the 13 most important things I’ve been doing with much success below…

Read up, apply to your life and enjoy!  Oh, and if you like these things, make sure to click the “LIKE” button above and leave a comment.  That’s not asking too much now is it??

1) Training 2-3 times a day

Business has picked up and it’s been getting to be more of a challenge to get in my workouts.  There will NEVER be a time where I can’t find time to train as I MAKE the time to train.  Training is that important to me

Now, remember, my goals may be different from yours.  I’m not just trying to look and feel good, I want to perform at the top of my abilities and when I refer to that, I mean come next year for the Crossfit Games, I want to make it to the big show and do well.  No more just making it to Regionals and placing in the top 10.  That’s NOT good enough.  I want to be one of the ELITE so I will always make time to train no matter what.

So with that being said, I’ve been often times training twice or maybe even 3 times a day.  To the normal person, this may seem like absolute craziness but, you must understand, my workouts are not all 45 mins to an hour long.  Actually, very few are ever last longer than 45 mins.  You need to get in and get out so you can start to recover.  Two hour workouts are useless…

Now, what I’ve been doing is breaking my workouts up into 2 to 3 parts or just having 2 to 3 different workouts per day.

For example, I may do a quick workout in the AM just specifically focusing in on skill work such as, Olympic lifts or gymnastics moves.   I may only do 1-2 movements total, sometimes 3.  It will be specifically skill work, no major conditioning or heavy work involved.  I’m focusing in on speed, explosiveness, and technique.

The second workout of the day will be way more intense.  I may do just strictly strength work where I pick a major movement such as a deadlift, squat, or overhead press and hit reps of 1-5 per set for multiple sets, say 5 up to 10.   After this I may hit a few accessory movements to complement the main movement I just did.  If strength is the main focus, I will do what ever it takes to lift the heaviest weight I can for the allotted amount of reps chosen.

I’ve also been doing strength-endurance work where I’ll do a squat, deadlift, or press variation for reps of 2 or 3 up to 5 within a certain amount of time.  Say 3 reps every minute on the minute for 10 mins.  I would then be getting in 30 total reps of a heavy weight within 10 mins.  That’s been improving my strength-endurance a ton!   I’d do this and be done.  10 mins total workout time plus the 15-20 i use for warm up…

On the other hand, I may choose to do a conditioning workout where I hit up a series of movements in either a superset, tri-set, or even a 4 to 5 movement circuit.  These workouts are strictly for conditioning and may last up to 30-35 mins.

2) Switched Up Protein Powders

It’s been said if you continue to take in the same foods from the same sources over and over and over, you may build up a food allergy.

I’m huge on a quick protein supplement source for when I wake up in the AM, when I’m on the go, and for right after workouts.  A solid source of quick protein is absolutely essential.

For the longest time, I’ve been taking in Body By Vi which is a great product.  It tastes great, mixes well with pretty much anything and everything but, I feel it has one major down side…  It’s Soy Based…  While it’s NON-GMO soy, it still isn’t the most optimal source of quick protein.

Either way, about a month back it seemed I would get the sneezes and a runny nose when ever I ingested a shake in the morning.   I thought it may have been just from my outdoor allergies but, when I tested it out and switched protein powders up, my symptoms disappeared.  I had a few other clients actually tell me the same thing.

The protein I switched back to is Prograde’s Protein.  I used to use this and switched out to the Body By Vi brand a while back.  Both have given me great results but, it’s a smart thing to switch it up after a while.  Especially if you’re taking it in pretty much every day.

I plan on switching between the two every 6-8 months to make sure I don’t develop any crazy food allergies.   Since switching up, I feel great.

3) Strongman Training 1-2 Week

I’ve been adding in Strongman Training at least 1 to 2 times per week in some way shape or form.  Usually I add in some heavy farmer carries, thick bar clean and presses, heavy sled drags and pulls, or some heavy sandbag or keg carries.

Strongman training is an essential type of training I feel everyone should be adding into their training.  Whether your goal is to lose fat, gain strength, or is strictly performance based, strongman training is where it’s at.

Before, I would only do strongman training every 2-3 weeks or only do it when I programmed it into my 4 week cycles but now, it’s essential that I do at least once or even twice a week.  It’s that effective!

To easily do this, I may throw in some HEAVY sled drags at the end of my training session or do some heavy farmer walks or carries.

4) 400m Sprints

Just like with strongman training, I’m now hitting up the track at least 1 time every week and hammering the 400m sprints up.  I can feel my conditioning has greatly improved since doing this.  I wrote about how to improve your endurance and strength all at the same time in a earlier post and running 400m sprints weekly, has proven this to be true.

What I’ve been doing is focusing in on two different types of 400m sprint workouts…

1) I do 90-100% 400m sprints for 4-5 reps with full recovery periods in between sets.

2) I’ll do repeat sets at 80% with incomplete rest for 5-10 reps.  These suck….

Either way, running these 400m sprints each week, I’ve seen some major improvements in my running conditioning.   No need to run miles on end, I’ll keep these in my program forever (even thought they suck).

My goal is to get my 100% time down to :53, which was the fastest I ran back in high school…  It would be nice to be able to hit that time 2 times in a row with only about 3-4 mins rest.  That would be ELITE…

5) Eating Paleo Monday – Friday, Fasting On Sunday’s

It’s no secret, eating like a caveman thought going Paleo works!  Since adapting it to my lifestyle, it’s given me more paleo eatingenergy, strength, and endurance.

But, that’s just it – ADAPTING it to your lifestyle.  For me, there’s no way I could eat strictly Paleo 24/7, 365 so I tweak it up so it works the best.

What I’ve done is focus in on eating strictly Paleo Monday – Friday then typically on Saturday’s, I eat what I want (I share what I’ve eaten before below…) and then on Sunday’s I fast until about noon, then get back to eating Paleo the rest of the day.

So, Monday thru Friday, I’m eating mainly lean meats in forms of grass-fed beef, chicken, and turkey.  I have eggs usually about every morning with tons of fresh spinach.  I add in some form a vegetable in EVERY meal with mixed greens, steamed broccoli, or just a load of fresh spinach.  I’ll also add in fresh fruit with a mixture of berries or an apple to my morning meals.

For snacks, I’m eating nuts and seeds or just eating some more lean meat and fruit.

Recently, I got a KILLER Paleo Recipe Book that I’ve been getting awesome ideas about.  I’ve tried a few different ones thus far and I’ve loved them all.  in fact, I’m cooking up another “Meatza” tonight for the 3rd time!  I can’t get enough of this recipe!

the "meatza"
the "meatza"

If you’re having trouble finding ideas for meals, check out the Paleo Recipe Book.  Might be the best $27 I’ve spent in a while…

I go organic with just about everything I eat.  I believe the extra investment is worth it.  Actually, I have ZERO doubt it’s worth it.

Now, on Saturday’s, I’m cheating a bit more to not only to keep me sane, but just to change it up a bit.  After all, you’ve got to get out a live a bit!

Here’s what I had last Saturday (If you’re really interested…)

Right after I woke up = Protein Shake (Prograde Prograde + Athletic Greens + Spinach + Raw Honey + Berries + Almond Milk + Almond Butter)

AM Breakfast = 6 eggs + fresh salsa + guacamole + grilled chicken pieces

Snack – Handful of Almonds with some Raw Organic Honey

WORKOUT (Heavy Deads with a quick conditioning circuit of tri-sets)

Post workout – Prograde Protein mixed with a ton of berries and spinach

Later on – Some Corona’s + Some sort of pretzel stick with peanut butter on it with M and M’s stuck to the peanut butter (while watching some College Football)

Dinner – Fried Philly Steak Sliders w/ Queso dip (Appetizer) + The “Boss” Angus Burger (beef, bacon, guacamole, cheese, ranch dressing on whole wheat bread + steak fries w/ ranch)

Dessert – The Best brownie I’ve ever had….  Brownie on bottom topped with vanilla ice cream + marshmallow spread on top of that, finished off with caramel sauce.

This was a damn good Saturday!  Obviously, I wasn’t cheating the whole day but, the meals that I did cheat on, I made sure I got in the goods.

Now, on Sunday’s typically what I’ll do is fast until around noon or 1pm.  Depending on how bad I cheated the day before, I’ll maybe fast up until 2-3pm but very rarely am I doing that.

While fasting, I’ll drink my Athletic Greens first thing in the AM then continue to drink water and green tea throughout the rest of the day.  When I finally eat later in the day, it’s usually a HUGE mixed green salad with grilled chicken.  I keep it pretty lean on these fasting Sunday’s and it’s paid off real well.

6) Stretching Every Night Before Bed

One of my major weaknesses has been with my flexibility in my hips and low back.  You can never be too limber and I’m trying to improve this each and every day.

Once of the easiest ways I could find to fit in stretching was to do it before I went to bed.  For the last month or so, I’ve done this just about every night.  It’s easy and I can do it even when I’m watching The Jersey Shore….  (Not really).

If flexibility is one of your weaknesses, I would recommend giving this a shot.  Might as well do something productive while you wind down for the night and watch your corny TV shows 😉

I focus on hitting up my hamstrings, piriformis, hip flexors, and low back by using a bunch of different band stretching exercises plus movements I’ve learned from  I suggest you dive into that website and listen to what ol’ K-Star has to say.  Use the movements he shows and you’ll be feeling more mobile and hostile in no time.

So, we’re just about half way through the 13 things I’m currently doing that work….  I’m going to go ahead and cut it off right here now and turn this post into 2 parts….

In the next part I’ll be discussing some stuff I’ve been doing each morning that has increased my energy a ton.  I’ll also talk about what I’m wearing to train in (that I feel has added more strength to my lower body), who I’m listing too to blast through my workouts, and some other key stuff you will not want to miss!

In the meantime, let’s hear your COMMENTS and FEEDBACK.  Just note – I’ve got some new KILLER Forged Athlete T-Shirts getting printed up as I type this and if we can get over 30 comments, I will randomly select 1-2 of you out there and send you a FA tee!