This article couldn’t have come at a better time.
It’s about “Why Most Workouts Suck”.
This isn’t referring to how some workouts might be boring or un-cool, but rather because their simply ineffective.
Now, the reason I say this guest article couldn’t have come at a better time is due to the fact of how I was just getting done explaining to one of my athletes about how he didn’t need to be puking or crawling away from every one of his training sessions in order justify if his session was good or not.
For what ever reason his “strength coach” at his high school was telling him and the rest of his teammates the exact opposite.
“If you’re not puking, you’re not working!”
Let me just say this… If a coach ever tells you this, RUN away as fast you can and never listen to another word that “coach” has to say because he don’t know jack.
NEVER measure a training session by how tired or run down you feel afterwards.
Instead, measure a training session by it’s overall effectiveness.
RESULTS are RESULTS.
And yes, while some training sessions should be BRUTAL and tough to get through, that doesn’t mean that each and every one needs to be that way.
BALANCE is the best word I can use to describe how your training layout should be.
Either way, I hope you get the point.
My man Chris gets into deeper detail within his guest article below.
Why Most Workouts SUCK
by: Chris Lopez, CSCS, SFGII
Yesterday I was training a combination of double presses and double front squats using my 24kg kettlebells and I discovered something.
The protocol that I was following required me to do ladders of 1, 2 & 3 reps – nothing incredibly heavy – in a 25 minute density period.
When you’re doing lower reps with a manageable (moderate to light) weight a lot of great things can happen.
Use these lessons today when you train…
First, you don’t tax yourself mentally.
How many times have you had to get geared up to lift something heavy? I don’t know about you but when I used to train I used to over stimulate myself with a couple of shots of espresso, a long a$$ warm-up, some plyometrics and maybe some smelling salts (I kid :-).
But seriously, back when I was young and was constantly chasing PRs – something I only recommend you do once or twice a month – I had to jack myself up for EVERY training session.
It’s no wonder my adrenals would get fried, I’d have bags under my eyes and I’d need more than a couple of days to recover.
When you use a manageable weight, you don’t over tax your nervous system and you actually feel like your training gave you something…not make you feel like you got hit by a truck.
Second, using moderate weights allows you to focus on weak points.
Most people – when they press heavy kettlebells – have a tendency to pop their rib cage and get disconnected through their midsection. You’ll notice that happening when you start to lean back and your chest starts to get “bodybuilder proud”.
Pressing this way will load your pecs more, but it turns the press into a segmented mess where you lose your “cylinder” or your core – the foundation from which you press from. Remember that in order to press heavy kettlebells or to press anything properly, you must get rid of energy leaks. So when your rib cage “pops” or you lose your abs, that constitutes a leak in energy and therefore a weaker press.
Using the moderate bells allows you to PRACTICE how to press heavy kettlebells without having to press heavy kettlebells. (Stop scratching your head and read that again 🙂
Which brings me to my final point…
While I was training yesterday, because the weight was moderate, I was able to not only focus on keeping my ribcage connected but on crush gripping the handles and “juicing” the handles of my kettlebells.
Those are 2 skills – ribcage connected & “juicing” the handles – that can’t be focused on when the weights are heavy because, well, we’re usually focused on just lifting-the-freaking-weight and nothing else.
Did I happen to mention that focusing on technique also creates “incidental gains in strength, power, and extreme fat loss”.
Focus on Form: Get STRONG, SHREDDED, and EXPLOSIVE
What could be easier?
And that’s why most people’s workouts suck…
Because they workout to just feel tired.
Because they workout just to workout.
Because for some odd reason, people want to feel like they got hit by a truck after they workout.
BUT if you train properly – using moderate to light weights on most days – then you can improve your technique and get stronger in the process by grooving the right patterns in your body for when the time comes to really go after that PR – be it a pressing a heavier weight, going for a rep PR or doing a snatch test.
This is why I always say PRACTICE, don’t workout.
Stop looking for the “burn”, chasing reps or trying to get that feeling of “working out”.
Focus on practice and save your strength and energy for the days you really need it.
Oh, one more thing…
That session that I did yesterday where I just focused on keeping my ribcage down and juicing the handles…
Well doing that made the kettlebells feel really light. Like a couple of “toys” almost.
In 25 minutes, I performed 7 ladders of 1, 2 & 3 for a total of 42 reps.
Without knowing it, I just happened to hit a new PR 🙂
Chances are, if you just focused on technique, you’d do the same.
So there you go.
Don’t just train to “get tired”
Train to GET BETTER.
Train to “OWN THE WEIGHT” (direct quote from Chris from an old interview we did)
Technique will always reign supreme.
Just remember that the next time you go DO WORK.
For one of the BEST Kettlebell Programs out there, check out Kettlebells 4 Fighters.
This is an awesome 6-Week Program that will get you more powerful, strong, and shredded up like a fighter WITHOUT having to get punched in the face (which is always a bonus)