For those of you who have been reading each week, you’ll be relieved to know that I’m letting up a bit on my density and intensity for today.
No rabbit-holes, no extended metaphors, no rants.
Rather, just a run-down of some things I’ve been doing in the gym. Ya know, in the event that you’d like to try ’em out, too. [Then, in the comments, will you let me know what you’ve been playing around with?]
- Keeping it simple: Doing three 10-minute work blocks per session. For instance 10-minutes of pull-up practice, sets of 3, then 2, then 1; EMOM x 10 minutes of 5 reps clean and press; 10-minutes of 40-20 work-rest intervals of crawling.
- Pairing taxing slow-eccentric repetitions with explosive movements: As bulking season comes to a close, I have been enjoying this particular recipe for leanness. (Leanness is like chili. There are a million different recipes–some are healthy, some are painful, some of them have secret ingredients…ok, cutting off this metaphor before I can’t defend against it being “extended.” The point is: this is one way to get some cuts.) A few examples would be slow-eccentric weighted squats followed by weighted or unweighted jump squats; slow-eccentric bench press followed by explosive push-ups; even grindy deadlifts followed by swings, followed by broad jumps would work!
- Jumping: I was regularly broad-jumping and box-jumping a few weeks back, and now I’m onto jumping rope. I love the coordination and quickness it builds. I also love that it burns a jillion calories in 10 minutes. Another benefit is conditioning the muscles, joints, ligaments, and tendons to accept the force that I’ll be applying when I suddenly start running in the next few weeks. See, I love to run, but only when the weather is perfect. So, as soon as it’s sunny and 65, I exhibit zero self-control; I’m out the door for 5+ miles of pure joy. That would be a recipe for disaster after 6 months of an average weekly mileage of… 0.3? The transition will be much smoother with proper preparation for impact.
- “Diminishing Sets Protocol” for my double-kettlebell front squats: There’s a bunch of ways to make this work for you, but the idea is to stick with a predetermined number of cumulative reps per session, but to get them done within a gradually-decreasing number of sets. In other words, the overall trajectory is that your number of sets diminishes, while the number of reps/set increases. The particular scheme I’m using was suggested on Pat’s Secret Facebook Group Page (which you can join by subscribing to his email list). I’ll perform 50 reps twice per week, starting with 10 sets and aiming to reach 3 sets by the end of ten weeks. Each week, I take 2 steps forward and 1 step back, so that progress is steadily maintained, and overload is avoided. I’m expecting the next-size-up ‘bells to feel pretty light when I front-squat with them by the end of May.
- Hanging leg raises: Because abs. (Psst…Did you hear that Pat’s just putting finishing touches on his “Ultimate Abs” program. I’m trying to get a head start.)
- Backbends! I’ll just leave this right here for you:
So, what are you working on? Is there anything you’d like to be working on, but you don’t know how to get started with it?
OH! And before we get to the Sweaty, IF there are some kettlebell skills you’d like to learn and practice–with the grand guidance of Pat Flynn and Aleks Salkin–you might want to meander your way over to this page to register for “Bells & Beer.” It’s a workshop we’re holding on April 8th, and it’s gonna be a good time.
Try this little flow to practice balance and control, as well as to burn your glutes and hams:
The first 3 minutes are slow and steady.
For 90 seconds…Root your right foot, bring your left leg back for a reverse lunge and then up to marching position to hold for 3 counts at 90-degrees; without replacing the left foot, continuing flowing that left leg back for a single-leg deadlift. From there, go back to the 3-count hold in the marching position, before repeating the sequence.
For 90 seconds…Repeat with the lift foot planted.
The goal is to never put the moving leg’s foot down for the entire 90s and to keep glutes, hamstrings, and core engaged throughout. Do not lock out your standing leg, and instead rely on a strong, tight quad and core to keep you stable.
For the remaining 2 minutes…
10-second rest, follow by 20-seconds of plyo lunges (x 4 sets)
P.S. Seriously! Come to our workshop! We’d love to meet you, swing with you, and drink with you!