We’re fortunate to live in an era where folks like Dr Brad Schoenfeld and other researchers are consistently working on practical research to answer specific questions that lifters want to know. We’re also fortunate that folks like Greg Nuckols and James Krieger are doing analyses outside of the peer reviewed research to keep the community on the cutting edge of data-informed training. [Read more…]
Many of the e-mails and social media private messages that we get are regarding time off from training. Even many of our competition prep athletes write us during some level of panic, asking us what they should do for their training during a vacation, family emergency, injury, medical restricted period, hardship etc. etc. It’s as if the end of the world is coming and even so much as a hiccup in their training schedule will de-rail their gains, and they are only a week or two away from turning into terrible bodybuilder/athlete, or fat slobs with no muscle. It almost seems like they believe they will never be training or lifting weights again.
Now that I’ve been lifting with serious intent for 14 years, and training other people for 13, I’ve noticed a consistent pattern that occurs during the “lifespan” of a serious lifter.
Initially, (especially for those who start reasonably young, say in their teens or twenties) enthusiasm and passion combined with a lack of understanding of what it truly means to commit to a lifetime of lifting, and a lack of knowledge and experience regarding the “diminishing returns nature” of gains over a career, results in some poor decision making among novices. [Read more…]
My current opinion on blood flow restriction training is as follows in the year 2018. I feel that it’s such a valuable tool that all strength athletes should be at least somewhat well versed on how to, and when to apply it. I can’t imagine many ambitious athletes who will not at some point find a reason to pull the BFR card. [Read more…]
What follows is an excerpt from my contribution to a roundtable on overtraining in the most recent issue of Alan Aragon’s Research Review, which by the way, is an amazing body of work that spans a decade of issues. I’ve had the privilege of contributing to the AARR twelve times over the years and I can’t recommend it highly enough for those who want to see how the master engages with the literature: https://alanaragon.com/about-aarr/ [Read more…]
This fall will be my 20thyear in the Iron Game. In that 20 years I have tried at least 100 different “Hacks” in an effort to get my training completed when I didn’t have the ideal set up or machine. I remember in 1998 when the local gym, which ironically I ended up buying, had a brand new Smith Machine. At the time, I was newly diagnosed with my spondylolisthesis and was instructed by my neurologist not to squat until I had my CT Scan done and my results back. So I came up with the idea of using the Smith Bar as a leg press. I did so by laying on the floor, on my back, below the smith bar and putting my feet up on the bar. [Read more…]
With the primary goal of acquiring strength or size, a common secondary aim for most lifters is to manage their body composition by way of monitoring nutritional intake and caloric expenditure manipulation. You can’t be an athlete in strength sport without loving the weights (and probably the food), but it’s just as likely that you hate the cardio as well. [Read more…]
As I mentioned in part one of this blog, knowing the context in all aspects of an athletes’ life is important in order to succeed when training them. This is especially true when it comes to a sport that relies on multiple components of athleticism to achieve high performance, as it requires sufficiently complex training to address many aspects of physical fitness. With these athletes, weight training is only piece of the whole training pie. What better way to learn all the available context than to live with an athlete right? It just so happens this is the specific circumstance I have with my son Xander. [Read more…]
If you want to build your body and you are, in fact, a competitive bodybuilder, decisions are easy.
Goals are clear and simple paths can be set up to make the most out of your efforts, both in-season and out of season.
But what if you do not see yourself hitting the stage any time soon? Or what if you never have plans of competing, but you still enjoy building your body? [Read more…]
Stay in your lane! Professing to be an expert in any niche that you either have not already done at a high level or have a ton of experience in is never right. You are only fooling yourself and hurting those who you are telling your lies to. That being said, it never hurts to learn, experience or expand your horizons and knowledge base. As long as you know your limitations. [Read more…]