Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Recovery’ Category

IMG_5149  IMG_5148

Surprisingly, there is only 2.5kg difference between these two pics.

For Sieraya’s first results blog, see here.

This girl, what a trooper. She has had an intense year, working 50hrs a week managing her own gym with lunch hours worked at her desk, long commutes to work and back, and the stress that comes with all of this and the job itself. She has had ups and downs over the past year and a half (since her last results blog) and not all of her work has been in the right direction. But, that hasn’t stopped her. And it’s showing through in her work, which is steadily moving in the right direction.

Now for some quick stats:

Her first pics on the left have her bodyweight at 78.3kg and her bodyfat percentage at 35%

While the pics on the right have her bodyweight at 75.8kg and her bodyfat percentage at 26%

That’s a loss of 9% bodyfat while only losing 2.5kg. What has been most interesting about her results is that since her last results blog she has put on 5kg of muscle and has lost a further 1.5% bodyfat.

The change has come from utilizing metabolic resistance type training programs and dietary strategies such as low carb, intermittent fasting and such to more bodybuilding/volume based programs that focus on heavier weights and less cardio based training, coupled with high protein diets with moderate carb intake and low-fat. Now, a sidenote, the aforementioned strategies are useful, particularly if you are looking to lose a lot of bodyfat quickly and aren’t overly concerned with keeping as much muscle mass as possible. For example, the pic below has Sieraya at a lower bodyfat percentage than she is now, and looking “smaller” but that is not necessarily what Sieraya wants, she wants muscle mass, she wants to be lean and muscular, a hard combination to be sure, that takes much more nuance.

FullSizeRenderOn the left she is 69kg with a bodyfat percentage of 23%

On the right she is 74kg with a bodyfat percentage of 26%

As you can see from the two pics together, that while she was leaner and lighter in the pic on the left, she doesn’t have the same kind of curvature and musculature as she does on the right. And these are things we have worked on together as we get results from different programs and methodologies, as we find what works for her to get her the results she is looking for.

The same goes for her strength and indeed her training ethic, in the videos below we get a glimpse of the hard work she’s put in with her strength training, as well as her hypertrophy/volume work. And let me just say, some of her high volume hypertrophy programs have been just as grueling as some of those metabolic resistance workouts (as you can see with her German Body Composition video).

I couldn’t be prouder of Sieraya and I look forward to the coming months of training as we start a new block.

Read Full Post »

Why Weights Are Better Than Cardio for Fat Loss -Adam Bornstein.

The Sisterhood of Lifting -Alice Round.

Wheat Belly Deception: Understanding Wheat, Insulin, and Fat Loss -Adam Bornstein.

What Do We Mean By Fat Civil Rights?

The Body Cleanse: Does Juicing Really Work? -Adam Bornstein.

BioLayne Guest Blog by Jonathan Goodman – The Fitness Industry is Failing -Jon Goodman.

Strength Is Not Always the Answer -Adam Bornstein.

Strength and Prevention of Injuries -Mark Rippetoe.

A Better Way to Perform Circuit Training -Adam Bornstein.

The Ultimate Training Secret -Lyle McDonald.

If You Want To Lose Fat, and Keep It Off, Don’t Fall For The Low-Carb Trap -JC Deen.

5 Common Diet Excuses Too Many People Make -JC Deen.

Training For Fat Loss In Simple Terms: What You Must Know -JC Deen.

When to Eat Delicious Food and When to Avoid It -Mike Israetel.

The Hip Impingement Solution -Dan McClean.

The Sport Psychology of Goal-Setting -Mike Israetel.

Off-Season Strength Building for CrossFit: Do’s and Don’ts -Jacob Tsypkin.

Activated charcoal: The latest detox fad in an obsessive food culture -David Gorski.

The measles vaccine protects against more than just the measles -David Gorski.

What is Athleticism?– Justin Hays.

How Long Should You Stay on a Program? -Mike Robertson.

How to Stick to Your Diet -Nia Shanks.

Damage Control – What to do When You Over Indulge -Nia Shanks.

Top Fitness Articles Of 2014  -Kevin Richardson,

5 Reasons Why You Don’t Need Vitamin Supplements  -Kevin Richardson.

Are You Changing Behaviors with Motivation, Ease, or Both? -Eric Cressey.

Squeeze More Muscle into Your Training -Chad Waterbury.

Q & A: Whey Protein and the Deadlift -Chad Waterbury.

Proper Hip Thrust Technique: Head and Neck Position -Ben Bruno.

First Powerlifting Meet: 20 Mistakes You Don’t Want to Make

Anabolic Steroids and Muscle Growth -Lyle McDonald.

Heavy Light Medium Training -Lyle McDonald.

Effects of Low-Versus High Load Resistance Training – Research Review -Lyle McDonald.

My Weekly Routine -Brad Pilon.

7 Muscle-Building, Testosterone-Boosting Tips for Guys Over 40 (& All Hardgainers) -Jason Ferruggia.

Read Full Post »

So far we have looked at four program design tips John has to offer (see here, and here) now we might like to take a more specific look at (one can assume one of many) periodization technique/s, entitled the “AIT Formula”. Johns periodization program comes from two main beliefs:

  1. Not believing in peaking.
  2. Related to 1., he doesn’t really believe in periodization.

He claims these beliefs to be heretical, but he does explain: (1) – he states that there people who have peaked, but many more so who have attempted to peak and failed, the exmaple he provides is the Olympics. Many athletes have their worst performance in years at such games, and while John concedes it might be the pressure, which he’s ok with, he also notes it could be that the pressure comes from the “imagined need to peak, the change in training to allow a peak, and, ultimately, the pressure to respond to the need to peak.” (p. 118) Regarding (2)- he states that all the number crunching, graphs, charts and percentages doesn’t get poundage on the bar, that perhaps there is a part of ‘paralysis by analysis’ going on here. John states his periodzation model accounts for that pesky little thing called life, which can often get in the way of the most organized program, it’s a three stage system:

  1. Accumulation

  2. Intensification

  3. Transformation (John, 2009, 118)

John’s periodization schema are seemingly more meta than simply advocating linear, or undulating periodization, his methods are life lessons one brings to a life-time of training, competition and self improvement, as such his series will take on a different tone than simply parroting the science.

Part 1: Accumulation

John’s phase one is about what he feels most programs are lacking; variety. He’s talking more than simply varying from the decline to incline for pec development, he’s talking about walking on the treadmill, then doing a few sets of benches and a few machines then hitting the steam room (p. 119).

This is far from an overstatement. The first part if the AT formula is accumulation, and doing just a few exercises a year is the antithesis of what I’m hoping you’ll adopt. Accumulation is actively seeking and learning new sports, lifts, moves, ideas and games. One literally accumulates a number of new training moves and attempts a low level of mastery of each. (John, 2009, 119)

John states this is a design we practiced often as children, playing various games both organized and not, developing different skill sets, working different energy systems, and it’s an art, he says we need to look for again. But, more than simple variation, this is about new skill sets, new training concepts, new challenges, both to our training and our philosophy. He states that the general idea of variation is to change, as we mentioned, bench press positions, but what he’s asking is to consider is a sport, if you lift weights try a powerlifting or Olympic lifting comp, if you have done that, try a triathlon. The very act of entering these competitions will open your training up to principles and practices you haven’t tried before. Even if it is the simple lesson: “seek out new training concepts – not only to add variation, but also to challenge our long-held notions of strengths and weaknesses.” (p. 120) This is the idea of accumulation versus simple variation.

The Rules for Accommodation

  • Try something new. Join a team, a club, a sport, or take up a new hobby. Meet new people; learn some new skills and have fun.

  • Continue your chosen sport or continue working on your body composition goals. Monitor your progress in all the usual ways: before-and-after photos, body fat measurements and athletic achievements.

  • Through the lens of your new endeavor, rethink and re-imagine your primary goals. This, of course, is the key to the whole process. (John, 2009, 120)

Part 2: Intensification

For John this is as simple as adding new ideas and challenges to keep you interested and motivated in your training, that this very simple concept is often overlooked by people. I know this myself, in that when I’m training for fat loss I might stick to too high a rep range, same when I’m looking for hypertrophy, or strength. Dan asks us, in a kind of thought experiment to think, what if we only had 45mins/week to train? What exercises would you leave in, or take out?  Whatever you would leave in tells John what you need to be focusing more on; this comes from an adage he uses often throughout his book (stolen from Olympic wrestling champ Dan Gable): “If it’s important, do it everyday. If it isn’t, don’t do it at all.” (p. 123) John states three ways we might be able to achieve this:

  1. You can do the old Arnold trick: Work your weaknesses first each workout. In this example, do the most important thing for your training first. Perhaps twice a week do nothing but whatever lifts or exercises you chose in the political prisoner situation [that is: only having 45mins/week to training, broken up into three 15min workouts as you’re a political prisoner, hypothetically]. My wife, Tiffini, has a one-line time-management system. If you have to eat a plate of frogs, eat the biggest one first.

  2. Measure your workouts only by how you answered the political prisoner question. All the extra stuff is great, but it’s only icing on the cake.

  3. Using the lessons from some of the information gathered during the accumulation phase, try to see if you’re making improvements in the areas you found in need. (John, 2009, 125)

The goal of intensification John states, it’s only rule, is to: “do what you say you need to.” (p. 125)

Part 3: Transformation

The third phase is potentially the simplest of them all: add all you’ve leaned and put it together in practice. John states your training should have a strict teleology, that is it should have a design, it should lead somewhere, and that you should not add things to your programs that do not reach said goals. As such John breaks his program down as follows: Day one: push, Day 2: Leg day, Day 3: Games, Day four: Pull, Day five: recovery activities, Day six: easy cardio, Day seven: compete. Let’s now go into a bit more detail.

Day One: Push Day: for his athlete John does what he calls “skill” and “tactical” work everyday, but he states those training for body composition may change these variables to suit their specific goals, but the workout consists of military presses, power curls (essentially a power clean with a curl grip) and isometric ab work (he recommends a hanging leg raise with your legs held folded in front of your chest). All exercises are performed at his famous 3 sets x 8 reps, with a minute rest. (John, 2009, 126-7)

Day Two: Leg Day: John states simply to do front squats and overhead squats at 3×8 for this, and provided you do your “skill” and “tactical” work (or whatever assistance exercises suit your goals), he states to add some hill sprints or sled pulls.

Day Three: Games!: yeah, this is pretty straight forward, go have some fun! Throw a ball, play some sport, get amongst it.

Day Four: Pull Day: John’s favorite pulling exercises for his “peaking” athletes are variations of the snatch, whether it be clean-grip, whip or wide grip. Again he follows a 3×8 with one minute rest protocol.

Day Five: John states to merely do your warm up drills here, then go home.

Day Six: he suggests light cardio here, some easy hill runs for example

Day Seven: Compete: he states of course you can move any of these days to suit your competition day or date. He does offer some basic tips for the week however:

  • Stay tight on the diet and keep the workouts fast to keep some of the pudge off.

  • Dont go crazy and try to make some massive leap overnight. Enjoy the benefits of all the work up to this point.

  • Have some fun; enjoy yourself. Reap what you sow. (John, 2009, 128)

In summary John states to always be open to new ideas and experiences and that you shouldn’t be afraid to put your new knowledge into practice. He begs that you take the time to consider what’s important, he might ask you to do this in all areas (and I’d agree), but for our purposes he’d we can simply state he’d want you to do it with your training.  He also states that when testing, or one can assume competing, that you know when to ease off, that keeping an eye on your body fat percentage levels is important, and also to find an outlet for your new and excess levels of energy (p.128-9).

That might bring my series on John to a close for now, I can tell you I’ve only scratched the surface of the amazing things he has to offer, and I highly recommend you follow his blog, or buy his books as his simply no-nonsense approach to training, even where you might disagree with him, is still invigorating.

Reference

John, D. (2009). Never Let Go. Aptos, Cal. On Target Productions.

Read Full Post »

The Diet And Training Combination: Figuring Out How You’re Messing It Up -JC Deen.

Yoga for Athletes: Why Activation and Inhibition Matter More than Stretching -Dana Santas.

Round Backed Deadlifts Another Look -Lyle MacDonald.

How To Gain Weight — Practical Applications for Eating to Build Muscle, and Why You Might Not Want to Gain Weight Fast -JC Deen.

Why Should I Use “Good” Form if I’m Stronger With “Bad” Form? -Bret Contreras.

The Top 5 Deadlift Mistakes to Avoid -Amir Fazeli.

9 Non-Fitness Books Every Fitness Professional Should Read -Dean Somerset.

Body Positivity in Space

How to Strength Train for Jiu-jitsu -Charles Poliquin.

Strength Strategies: Installment 1 -Greg Robbins.

Acupuncture, Organic Food, and Other Questions -Steven Novella.

5 Mobility Rules of Thumb, Part 1 -Quenn Henoch.

5 Things to Know About Your First Weightlifting Competition -Ariel Stephens.

(Please don’t skip me!) Warm-up -Neghar Fonooni.

How to Science Your Fitness -Dean Somerset.

The Taxonomical Disorder of Recovery – Antonio Robustelli.

4 Worst Foods for Plantar Fasciitis -Rick Kaselj.

The 3,500 Cal Per Pound Weight-Loss Fallacy And Why Even Experts Get This Wrong -Arya Sharma.

Perfectionism Sucks (Plus 9 other Things I Learned in 2014) -Neghar Fonooni.

7 Worst Shoes for Your Feet -Rick Kaselj.

2014: Chiropractors, naturopaths and acupuncturists lose in state legislatures -Jann Belamy.

The Best of 2014: Product Reviews -Eric Cressey.

BEST Products of 2014 -Rick Kaselj.

An Open Apology to the Internet – Lyle MacDonald.

The Health Benefits of Moderate Drinking -Harriet Hall.

BEST Articles of 2014 -Rick Kaselj.

The Truth About Belly Fat -Rick Kaselj.

Ethics in the Fitness Industry -Nick Mitchell.

Massage & Muscle Stiffness -Patrick Ward.

No, the HPV vaccine does not cause promiscuity -Scott Gavera.

5 Lessons on Coaching -John O’Neil.

Nine Things that Improve Insulin Sensitivity: Accelerate Fat Loss & Build Muscle Faster! – Poliquin Group.

Detox: What “They” Don’t Want You To Know – Scott Gavera.

Working in Tall-Kneeling -Dan John.

Fitness Marketing Bullsh*t -Nick Mitchell.

Top 10 Foods that Help Balance Cortisol for Optimal Body Composition – Poliquin Group.

Diesel Quick Tip – Awesome Hip External Rotator Stretch

The Multi-Angle Giant Set for a Big Back -Charles Poliquin.

Stop Striving for “perfection”. Find your strong.– Alice Round.

Why IIFYM doesn’t mean go YOLO on food choices….don’t be a basic bitch -Alice Round.

Why FATS dont make you FAT -Alice Round.

Bret’s Third Powerlifting Meet: What a Crazy Day! -Bret Contreras.

Don’t Be a Slave to the Scale -Bret Contreras.

 

Read Full Post »

As I don’t have as many videos or as many impressive ones, or much to say, I’ll include two weeks of training blogs in this post. Firstly, let’s look at how I did on my goals set for the 3rd week:

Deadlift: 160kg (352lbs) x 8 reps

Didn’t quite get the 7, but thought “why not try for 170kg?”

Bench: 120kg (264lbs) x 8 reps

Squat: 140kg (308lbs) x 8 reps

Military press: 70kgs (154lbs) x 8 reps

Back felt pretty good for most of the third week, I really tried to tighten up my form on the deadlift, that is, I’ve been working on my thoracic spine mobility (along with foam rolling my back and pecs) and not only did it make me feel a lot stronger, but it allowed me to lift pain free (for more on this type of thing see here). Unfortunately on the Friday I made the mistake of going shopping and messing about, then when I finally got to my squat workout, my training partner and I were over it, as such I tweaked my back again doing squats. I managed to get 130kg x 7 pretty comfortably with a few pauses at the bottom (didn’t film it unfortunately), but with insufficient warm up and focus I later felt my back tighten up. I only managed a 60kg military press, and would say that isn’t worth a video, I’ll try for 70kg x 3, which while still not that impressive is a better lift, in week four.  I only had four days to workout in the fourth week due to flying out to Sydney (and Soundwave \m/) on the Thursday, so I focused on my heavy upper body workouts and got in lower body where I could.

I’m still struggling to get through the bulk of my hip extension workout, but it’ll just mean I’ll have to factor some hamstring dominant hip extension into my next phase, which is fine (perhaps on accessory day). The workouts are taking longer, obviously, which isn’t so bad, I’m prepping for it, but sometimes I get cut off, I’ll include my training diary for the third and fourth weeks below, and you can see what I mean. The goal for the ‘hypertrophy’ week was to try and use some of the weights I lifted second week for higher reps,  the 3 rep strength week in fourth week was a chance, despite my back, to really try for some competition worthy weights .

IMG_0213

So, lets look at some goals for the fourth week and how I went with them:

Deadlift: 200kg (440lbs) x 3 reps

Bench: 140kg (308lbs) x 3 reps

Squat: 160kg (352lbs) x 3 reps

Military press: 70kgs (165lbs) x 3 reps (managed 80kg x 3, which is the heaviest I’ve ever military pressed)

Read Full Post »

As you’ve all seen from my post, here I’ve set some goals for this weeks training, they are:

Deadlift: 180kg (396lbs) x 5 reps

Bench: 120kg (264lbs) x 5 reps

Squat: 150kg (330lbs) x 5 reps

Military press: 70kgs (154lbs) x 5 reps

I’ll also include my completed training diary for this week (below), and, as you’ll be able to see from the videos above (if you want to see all of my training videos head over to my YouTube page here), I’m doing pretty well with keeping on track. I hurt my low-back a little on the last rep of deadlifts on Monday, which makes me realize I’ve neglected both my soft tissue work and thus my form has suffered (you can see my t-spine rounding somewhat in the vid). I managed to get through my barbell hip extensions with a slightly increased weight (160kg x 5), and my rollouts, but I didn’t feel comfortable doing stiff-legged deadlifts whilst in pain. It felt a bit better by Wednesday, but was still not 100% by squat day on Thursday, so I took it a bit easy, got 140kg x 5 and left it. I couldn’t get my military press day in as I had a tattoo appointment on Friday, so I’ll have to leave that for next week. I’ll also have to miss Monday but will probably start again Tuesday next week after I heal up, which means I’ll be doing a few consecutive days of training, but I’ll also be doing a higher rep week (4×8) so it won’t matter too much, hopefully.

IMG_0182

I haven’t really looked body composition or aesthetics, so I’ll include my most recent assessment in this post. I’ve been a little tighter on the diet, going to dinner more than anything is my problem, even when I try to offset the calories. It would be nice to reduce some bodyweight (specifically bodyFAT after all who says powerlifters can’t be aesthetic?), and get under 90kg for the comp (and thus drop a weight class), and if need be I could do some water and caloric manipulation to get there. At the moment keeping the diet relatively on track (without sacrificing too much on my social life) is enough for my purposes, I’ll include some, shall we say “before” pics early into the process and see if these change at all over the coming months. At the very least, you can have a chuckle at my calves.

IMG_0097IMG_0092IMG_0098

My assessment details are as follows:

Rob Assessment 11/2/15

Weight: 93.3kg
Height: 185cm
Age: 33

Skinfolds
Triceps: 4mm
Biceps: 3mm
Subscap: 12mm
Iliac: 25mm
Total: 44mm
Bf%: 20%
OMRON: 18.1%

Girths
Arms: L40cm R39cm (15in)
Legs: L62cm R62cm (24in)
Chest: 108cm (42in)
Waist: 88cm (34in)
Glutes: 104cm (40in)

As you can see, I’ve lost 1.7kg in a week, but my bf% is admittedly pretty high. I’m not entirely sold on the measurement system we have at the gym (the calculations are made from an old ass book), especially given the low numbers on all but my iliac measurements. Still, regardless of the accuracy of this measurement, as long it is consistently inaccurate I’ll be able to gauge any body composition changes over the next few months.

As stated, next week will be a 4 set x 8 rep week, and with the resulting couple of days off due to my tattoo, I’m expecting my back to be good as new, so I might set some goals for next weeks training:

Deadlift: 160kg (352lbs) x 8 reps

Bench: 120kg (264lbs) x 8 reps

Squat: 140kg (308lbs) x 8 reps

Military press: 70kgs (154lbs) x 8 reps

Read Full Post »

The Overlooked Key to Muscle Growth -Lee Boyce.

Why I Lift, and Why You Should Too -Bret Contreras.

Double Stimulation Training -Christian Thibaudeau

Kettlebell Leg Training -Mike Robertson.

December Research Round-Up: Foam Rolling Edition -Bret Contreras.

My New Study on Fasted Cardio and Fat Loss: Take Home Points -Brad Schoenfeld.

Bionic Ethics -Mike LaBossiere.

Eating What Bugs Us -Mike LaBossiere.

Simplifying Your Squat and Deadlift -Mike Robertson.

Slow and Steady Wins The Race

Eric Helms’ Epic Article on Natural Bodybuilding Potential -Alan Aragon.

BioLayne Video Log – How to Track Macros When Eating Out -Layne Norton.

The Myth Of Core Stability.

20 Ways to Train Smarter -Bret Contreras.

New Insight into Rest Intervals for Muscle Growth -Brad Schoenfeld.

When is Weight a Symptom?

Correctives-Dan John.

Realistic Reps and The Rule of Ten -Dan John.

Five Movements That Will Make An Impact Overnight -Dan John.

The Problem With A Lively Debate

Yes, Fat People Are Actually Human

What To Do When You’re Not Motivated -JC Deen.

The Iron Age: Resistance Training and the Metabolic Syndrome -Dr Jonathon Sullivan.

Stuff to Check Out: New Years Edition -Dead Somerset.

Bullet Proof Abs of Steel -Dean Somerset.

A New Approach To Fat Loss Nutrition -Adam Bornstein.

Eating At Night Does Not Make You Fat -Adam Bornstein.

No Carbs Diet: The Flaw in Fat Loss -Adam Bornstein.

Overtraining or Undertraining? Plan From a New Perspective -Michael Nackoul.

Calling All Rookies -Natalie Tenorio.

Light-Load Training: Can It Build Muscle? -Brad Schoenfeld.

Top Fitness Articles of the Week — January 11, 2015 -Jesus and Kristen.

5 Tips On How You Can Be the Change To A Better Gym Culture -Matt Klingler.

Top Fitness Articles of the Week — January 4, 2015 -Jesus and Kristen.

5 New Strategies for Fat Loss -Clay Hyght.

Steroids: What Pro Bodybuilders Are Really Using – Shadow Pro.

The Best Damn Posterior Chain Exercises -Bret Contreras.

How Many Carbs Do You Need? -Nate Miyaki.

An Often Over-looked Form of Soft Tissue Treatment -Jarrett.

Crawling Your Way to Chiseled Abs -Charlie Badaway.

A New Super Smoothie -Mike Snowden.

7 Reasons To Swing Big Bells -Kelsey.

Circuit Training -Kelsey.

Real Talk about Aerobic Training for Athletes -Mike Robertson.

Some Thoughts on Increasing Punching Power – Charles Poliquin.

My Take on Medicine Balls -Charles Poliquin.

 Most Bang For Your Bucks 2015 Resolutions -Charles Poliquin.

Ten Things I Was Grateful for in 2014 -Charles Poliquin.

Top 15 Incredible Reasons to Strength Train… Besides a Bangin’ Body -The Poliquin Group.

25 Simple Ways to Improve Insulin Sensitivity & PREVENT Diabetes -The Poliquin Group.

 

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

%d bloggers like this: