This title may seem somewhat misleading and close to sacrifice, bearing in mind that Rough Strength’s primary concern is power and everything related to it, but there’s a reason for this wording. Anyway, let me explain myself a little bit before you start throwing rotten food at me. First of all, I suppose you are one of the people dedicated to strength training, not superstitious. You’ve trained for a while, and your body may have sent you subtle signals that you train too much or too hard. You know, the pain here and there, injuries, etc. You may have interpreted these signals correctly, but you may be afraid to do less powerful training because you fear losing your precious gains. Well, the information below should provide you with a possible solution. But before we move on to the wonderful things, you should update this article in your memory, because this is a kind of sequel.
When exercising strength training for a decent period, you are likely to have suffered not only from its disadvantages but also from its disadvantages: excessive injuries, injuries, monotony, fatigue in the nervous system, etc. Maybe I got into the trap of thinking about these things is inevitable. While it is somewhat inevitable, what if you can dramatically reduce the downsides of strength training?
Unless you have a lot of commitments, you’re likely to be a strong training addict just like me. Once you experience a solid PR taste, you become hooked. Think about your training a lot, and you probably want to train more. However, the sad truth is that the more you practice, the more you have to tame yourself as much as you have to be precise in your training variables (size, intensity, frequency). The more strength exercises, the more injuries you get, the more stress you have, etc. Of course, playing with numbers and carrying out loads are viable options for training, but they require serious restraint and do not always work.
(Tip: If you still want to do a lot of exclusive strength training, start thinking about weekly progress. Instead of using more and more intensity in each exercise, look at the microcycle as a whole. Plan progress that can be achieved for a whole week.
Mission of the week:
- Add 6 reps to push the exercises
- Add 2.5 kg to pull the exercises
- Add 6 reps to leg exercises
Then add the planned amount in any appropriate exercise. If you do 3 full-body exercises a week, you can add reps to a push-up exercise in each exercise, or you can add 6 reps in the workout. Of course, this is just a hypothetical example. The practical application of this method is very circumstantial and you will need to use your brains to make the most of them)
In the article “Strength VS Skill Training”, I shared with you a viable option for faster progress while doing more force-focused training and more free skills. So why not take a step forward? What if we could afford more work? How to implement this? What will happen to your body composition as a result? Well, these questions have disturbed me for so long, and I seem to find an answer: a variety of training.
It all started with my interest in martial arts. I was very cold about them until recently. I have no idea why I am interested, but I think martial arts is a badass skill in your arsenal (especially for a skill engineer like me). There was only one problem – I was exercising strength training 3 times a week, exercising body weight skill 3-4 times a week, and skiing 2-3 times a week. There was no room for martial arts. Anyway, I decided to take a week off of everything and spent it on learning new things.
I was lucky enough to find a good dojo from the start. Initially, the courses required a lot of skill and stamina, because I was not used to training for two consecutive hours without stopping, but over time, intensity and rhythm became more manageable. Anyway, I spent this week on 3 martial arts courses, every two hours.
The following week I decided to add two full training sessions to the body, which turned out to be quite adequate. I focused on the movements of a large complex and nothing else. Here is my program:
A) Weighted dips – 3-5 sets of 5-8 reps
B) Sumo Deadlifts – 3-5 sets of 3-5 reps
C) Weighted pop-up chin grip – 3-5 sets of 5-8 reps
Day 2 and 3 – off
A) Slope dumbbell presses – 3-5 sets of 3-6 reps
B) Squat – 3-5 groups of 8-10
C) Front levers / front lift hoist – 3-5 sets (I use different rep schemes here)
Day 5, 6 and 7 – off
Note: By “off” I mean no strength training. I do skill / endurance in those days
Of course, at first, my strength decreased due to muscle fatigue from other exercises, but it started to climb quickly as soon as the adjustment period ended. In addition, I seem to feel fresher and stronger with just two sessions a week.
After a week I decided to re-work the body weight skill. I have used weekly volume assignments for this and have done their job brilliantly. Then I added again 2-3 ski sessions a week.
The main question you should ask me at this point is How can I have sex with so much training without excess training? The answer is variety and calories. All the training I do right now (about 12-15 hours per week) develops completely different performance qualities for my body. In addition, I eat 3200-3300 calories a day (which is much higher than maintenance) to support my lifestyle.
Is it necessary to train this a lot? If you only have 3-4 hours a week for training, then no. Work with what you have. However, if you have some free time, let me share the benefits of training a lot:
- I still have a golfer elbow condition, but because of less strength exercises and more variety, it is closer to healing than ever before;
- You finally experienced the G-Flux effect. I can assure you it’s real. Basically, this theory states that a person who spends and eats more calories will have a better body composition than a person who spends and eats less. For example, a trainee who spends and consumes 3,000 calories a day will have less fat and muscle than a trainee who spends and consumes 2,500 calories a day;
- My strength training programming has improved because I focused only on large compound moves;
- Improve my conditioning BIG TIME. The endurance action is a fucking pain in the ass for me. I prefer strength training rather than jogging on any day of the week. However, if you are training in a group, you have no choice but to endure all the pain because you are not a crusher (this is good advice for anything you hate doing; make it competitive).
- Martial arts training is especially great because of the feeling of comfort, confidence and tranquility you gain. Both strength training and martial arts appear to be vital in developing a strong and flexible mind and body. Hand in hand together, parts of the same puzzle.
- Finally, spending less time on something makes you appreciate it more.
Basically, I encourage you to offer more variety in your training. Think about any skill you always want to develop but you didn’t start with all the time and energy training. For example, rock climbing or landing, windsurfing, parkour, etc. Feel free to get started as soon as possible, and don’t worry about your gains. Despite what you’ve heard, endurance training won’t kill muscle mass; serious calorie deficits don’t.
So here is a blueprint for this training approach:
- Differentiate between strength training and skill / endurance work
- Keep strength training at low to medium volume, high intensity, and moderate frequency
- Add as much skill / stamina as you want / can handle
- Back up this amount of work with calories
- Enjoy improved performance, fat loss, health, comfort, etc.
In case you are wondering, the current training week looks like this:
Monday – Martial Arts
Tuesday – skiing
Wednesday – Martial Arts
Thursday – Strength Training
Friday – Martial Arts
Saturday – skiing
Sunday – Strength Training
Every day or anytime I feel it – skilled work for body weight, stretching, and additional skiing
Of course, this solution is not for everyone. If you are a competitive athlete and require a lot of strength training, then varied training may not be, and may not be, your first priority. However, if you don’t have plans to win medals, break world records, and things, I invite you to try it out and decide for yourself whether it’s worth it.
I hope I can answer yes, but no. If you do more powerful training than your body can handle, you will certainly be injured.
I know this smell is like CrossFit, but anyway, I encourage you to expand your horizons. These things work and will make you an invaluable gift. Thanks for reading.