Category Archives: books

StrongFirst.com Training program template

Craig Marker over at StrongFirst recently wrote a great article about training for their certifications, SFG1 and SFG2.  This group is very well researched and has had lots of success training individuals.  I listen to them and experiment.  As you may know, I enjoy Paval Tsatsouline’s work and StrongFirst has been his most recent project.  Anyway, the article describes cardio training methods for passing the snatch test for their certifications (100 snatches in 5 minutes with a certain bell) and a kettlebell pressing program which will allow you to press bigger bells.  It is based off of Russian training protocols that allowed strength to be gained and maintained for a long, long time.

This article is written with an eye towards kettlebell training but it can be used for any modality.  I have recently pursued strength training through the barbell after achieving 1/2 bodyweight kettlebell press on each side.  In January I am moving to a mixed training modality of kettlebells, barbell, running, and cycling.  I love simplicity and minimalism.  I prefer to minimize equipment use.Ie…I like the idea of a weight, you, the gound and effort. If you want to press something overhead, get it from the ground and put it overhead. Therefore I am going to be training the kb getup, overhead press with the kettlebell, the floor press with a barbell, the zercher squat (barbell), and of course the barbell deadlift.

Now to the point.  I have been using training cycles for beginners as described by Marty Gallagher, Pavel Tsatsouline, and Mark Rippetoe.  After running into this Craig Marker program I have decided to use it over the next year to improve my lifts further while not burning myself out.  In order to simplify the training I decided to create an excel spreadsheet so that I could simply add in my current max and the program would quickly calculate the percentages throughout the program.

Excel – Strongfirst Strength Template 45lb bar- Wave.xlsx

Excel – Strongfirst cardio.xlsx

Note that the cardio is suggested upwards of 30 minutes in the article, I kept it at six weeks so that the two programs would be of similar length.

I am thinking about adding two weeks prior to this cycle. They would be for speed work. I would increase from 40 percent to 60 percent over the two weeks period. This would also allow you to run this program 6 times a year with 4 weeks off for recovery, vacation or life in general. 

What are your thoughts on this?

These templates are based upon a 45 pound standard bar.  My wife and I are going to be training together.  Due to this I will be creating spreadsheets for barbells of other weights.  

I hope you all find StrongFirst, check them out, and enjoy these templates.

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Secondary Research Guide for Health and Wellness

This is a list of the resources that I tend to use when doing my research.  I thought that it might be useful for all of you in your studies.  It’s probably best to just click and get the 1 page .pdf version linked below.  Otherwise enjoy scrolling through the blog.  Happy researching.

Secondary Research Guide for Health and Wellness.pdf

 

Consult Reference Librarian


Reference Books

– Dictionaries

Blacks Agricultural Dictionary

Food and Fitness: a Dictionary of Diet and Exercise 

Nutrition and Well-Being A to Z

Green Health: An A-to-Z Guide

Taylor’s Dictionary for Gardeners

– Encyclopedias

Gale Encyclopedia of Alternative Medicine

Encyclopedia of Healing Foods

Sports, Exercise, and Fitness

Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine

Encyclopedia of Organic, Sustainable, and Local Food

 

Indices and Abstracts

AGECON Search

AGRICOLA

AGRIS

Agricultural Index

AMED

BIOSIS

CINAHL

Consumer Health Complete

Health Source: Nursing/Academic Edition

JSTOR

Global Plants

Medline

Natural and Alternative Treatments

Natural Standard

PUBMED

 

Journals

– Scholarly

American Journal of Preventative Medicine

Explore – The journal of Science and Healing

Integrative Medicine: A Clinician’s Journal

International Journal of Naturopathic Medicine

Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine

Journal of the American Dietetic Association

Journal of Applied Horticulture

Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research

Journal of Sustainable Agriculture

Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture

Naturopathy Digest

Natural Medicine Journal

Primary Care: Clinics in Office Practice

Strength and Conditioning Journal

– Practitioner

Muscle and Performance

Natural Practitioner

Organic Gardening

Prevention

 

Government Documents

USA.gov

Center for Disease Control

Department of Agriculture

Department of Health and Human Services

Food and Drug Administration

National Agricultural Library

National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine

National Institutes of Health

Texas Department of Agriculture

United States Department of Agriculture

 

Websites

Nabne.org

Naturalmedicinejournal.com

Naturopathic.org

ndnr.com

 

Professional Organizations

American Association of Naturopathic Physicians

National Association of Sports and Physical Education

Texas Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association

 

Key Words

Prevention

Holistic Nutrition

Natural/Organic Food 

Naturopathic Medicine

Physical Fitness

Strength and Conditioning

Weight TrainingWellness

 

Style Sheet

American Medical Association

Council of Science Editors

The Beauty of Barefoot

Remember growing up barefoot.  The brilliance of running, jumping and playing sans shoes.  Hardly a care in the world was envisioned as a barefooted child. There was always something grounding to it.  You felt more alive.  Truth is there is something to that.  There is good evidence that going barefoot allows you to be grounded to the Earth which then allows free electron transmission from the Earth to your body.  These electrons act as a very powerful antioxidant which could reduce inflammation in the body.  As we know, inflammation is the base cause of many chronic disease.  There is actually a documentary called Grounded that you can watch for a short time on YouTube covering a lot of this information. On the flipside a well respected Doctor that I work with recently stated that skin is not a very good conductor and he thinks that it is highly unlikely.  Of course as a Paramedic it is clear that the skin is capable of conducting electricity as shown through the example of defibrillation of a patient.  Beyond this I tend to side with nature and the simple fact that our long lost ancestors did not wear shoes and we are not born with shoes.

Beyond these aspects it has been shown that running barefoot or with barefoot/minimalist shoes is a great way to prevent injury.  Injuries are prevented by the natural changes in your running style that allow your body to use your lower extremities as the shock absorbers that they are.  With the current running shoe fad the heel of the foot strikers first while running.  This is caused by the shock absorber in the shoe eliminating the pain that you would otherwise have with this type of rhythmic event.  However, running this way causes the body to have a shock from the heel to the hip joint.  After years of this people begin to notice pain the the knees and hip joint from the constant rhythmic pounding.  On the other hand, when you run barefoot your toes touch the ground first and your heel touches down much lighter.  This creates a spring like motion that reduces the impact of the running.  Therefore your joints remain safer.  You also run with a smoother quicker motion that is more under your body instead of in front of your body when you run barefoot.  This quick video demonstrates many of these points.

Beyond all of this there is also information that is available that shows that barefoot or minimalist lifting is good for the body as well.  Two of these reasons are given in “Power to the People” by Pavel Tsatsouline.  Loads of other fitness resources and equipment such as kettlebells can be found at dragondoor.com.  Dragon Door is a fantastic resource.

1. Padded shoes can displace the center of gravity of the lifter leading to unnatural body mechanics.

2. There are reflexes that the body has based upon pressure the body senses.

Because of these issues I have chosen to lift barefoot outside these days.  I also perform all of my kettlebell exercises barefoot as well.  If it is too cold I will wear wear Chuck Taylors which many regard as the best all around shoes for weight training due to their minimalist design and thin soles.  Say nay to the naysayers and refuse those that would force your feet into a struggled tight existence.  Free your feet as nature intended and enjoy the world as we were meant to.  It just makes sense if you were to think about it.

As with every change you want to start out lighter and with less intensity for your body to be able to compensate for the changes.  These techniques should allow the body to compensate for any aspects of poor mechanics.  Your body will become stronger in the areas that you are weak which will then allow you to perform heavier more intense exercise without injury due to that misbalance.  Always remember to lift intelligently and within your limits.  It is important to remain healthy while you are becoming stronger.  That should certainly not scare you off of attempting heavier weights though.  Form is the key to remaining healthy. Challenge yourself within the limits of proper form.  

On a side note I just ran across StrongFirst: The School of Strength and I have become quite intrigued.  It looks as though Pavel Tsatsouline is the Chairman of StrongFirst.  I must look into it more.

Enjoy training one and all.  Lets get stronger.

How subsidizing gmo and mono cultures is the same as subsidizing tobacco

I believe that subsidizing massive monoculture crops is the same as subsidizing tobacco.  I believe this because both of these items kill.  It just takes a long time to do it.  It is difficult to link the food we eat and the disease process in our bodies because of the length of time required to develop those signs and symptoms.  It is also difficult to see the connection when the community of “experts” (allopathic Doctors and scientist) allow you to believe that disease is of a genetic nature.  The simple fact is that most diseases that our (United States) health system deals with are preventable.  Therefore a vast majority of the money spent on disease is preventable.

How are these diseases prevented?  By choosing healthier lifestyle habits.  There are simple lifestyle choices you can make in order to live a healthy life.  I discovered these written out in a great book called Pottenger’s Prophecy.  They make sense intuitively and the book presents well written and researched evidence for these steps.  One of the steps includes eating fresh non GMO foods and not as many calories (especially empty calories).  This is because empty calories lead to metabolic disease and inflammation which then lead other major chronic diseases which are common in the Standard American Diet.  Two others include exercise and stress management.

As we all know empty calories are easy to come by.  They are inexpensive and found everywhere.  Any soda, processed food or fast food is going to be full of inexpensive empty calories.  These calories present themselves as food and for a large portion of the population these calories exist as the primary food source.  Do you know why these calories are so inexpensive compared to local organic produce?  It is because in 1971 Earl Butz decided to change their policy in order to promote the growing of as much food as possible.  This led to food surpluses (which ensured food for hungry Americans and the world).  The US government in turn gave subsidies to the farmer’s due to the decrease in the sale price of the crop.  Therefore the federal government purposely created a program where they paid farmers to grow as much food as possible so that we may store that food for future use.  Of course the corps used were the main grains of the day which are easily stored.  Corn and Soy being the mainstays.  With all of these extra food stuffs lying around and no one eating them, the food companies decided to make other items out of them.  Therefore High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) was created among other items.  The food companies also add these items in as fluff in nearly every processed food on the shelves today.  We also decided to use these foods as feed for our animals instead of raising them on their traditional diet of grass.

The USDA also promoted a grain based diet as a healthy diet around this time as well.  This we now know to be incorrect and the food pyramid should look more like this.  This alone is extremely harmful to the human body.  It also coincides with what the USDA was telling people to grow.  The federal government and the food companies have a long history of working together. Here’s a quick look at recent Monsanto/Federal government connections.  With the food company involvement GMO seeds have become a huge portion of the monoculture crops grown. These GMO crops have many of their own issues.  One of the issues is the glysophate in the crops.  Glysophate is the active ingredient in Monsanto’s herbicide Roundup. The problem with glysophate is that it is a metal chelator.  Therefore many of the nutrients that are required by the human body are unable to be absorbed due to the glysophate in Monsanto’s Roundup.

While the current issues that we face today were not intended or foreseen by the farm bill it has become clear that the subsidizing of massive monoculture crops is the same as subsidizing tobacco.  It is clear that the massive increase in easily obtained cheap empty calories has been the primary cause of preventable disease in the Standard American Diet.  Furthermore these calories appear to be artificially cheap compared to their counterparts due to the subsidization.  

So what is the answer?  How do we save the US with one simple policy shift?  To me it appears simple and clear.  At the very least you stop subsidizing massive monocultures and start promoting local healthy varied organic produce.  What would this do for the US in brief?

1. Provide a healthier base of food for our citizens. An organic properly raised food diet is the basis of a healthy diet.  This has been proven through epigenetics.  

2. Dramatically cut down on petroleum use therefore increasing our national security.  The US imports approx 70% of its oil and we use approx 19% of that oil solely for agricultural purposes.  From petroleum based pesticides to the transportation of those food items.  That means that if we were able to decrease the use of petroleum on our foods then we could dramatically decrease our dependence on foreign oil.  Therefore we would increase our national security.

3. Increase local jobs by breaking up the food monopoly and requiring more individuals to participate in the food system.  By breaking down the massive monoculture farms that only a few people run with massive machinery we would be able to provide jobs for a much greater amount of individuals.  More individuals could own farms and those individuals would have to hire others to assist on the farm.  They did it in Cuban during the Cuban Special Period with great success.

4. Increase awareness of food by bringing food sourcing closer to the individual.  Individuals will become more aware of food and the consequences of food choices in their lives through the necessity of cooking with fresh foods.

5. Increase community through collective farming techniques.  Community can be increased through the family approach to eating fresh food and the necessity to shop/barter at local farmers markets and neighbors.  Communities will be forced to interact with each other at a greater level.

6. Decrease healthcare costs through healthier inputs into the body and increased physical fitness.  Healthcare costs would be decreased by decreasing the amount of preventable disease.  Through the decrease in preventable disease you would have less of a population that was passing through the system therefore healthy individuals would not have to subsidize the individuals with preventable chronic disease.

7. Increased empowerment of individuals who take charge of their lives instead of simply believing that these chronic diseases are genetic and therefore forced upon the patient.  The psychological effects of having the ability to take care of oneself can be dramatic.

8. Increase food security by (1) eliminating the just in time shipping paradigm of American grocery stores and (2) more importantly eliminating food deserts.   Communities would have increased food security by having their own crops developing for them on a regular basis as well as eliminating food deserts by bringing the food to the individuals yard.  Individuals would also return to the previous norms of canning and fermenting foods.  Fermenting foods having the added bonus of being healthy for you as well.  This is an interesting article about how food systems  (Just in time or saving grain) have historically been unable to stave off mass starvation.

9. Increased awareness of holistic nature of our world and greater concern for the environment.  It is my belief that through ones connection to food individuals would be forced to look at the world in a more holistic nature in terms of ethics.  With this greater awareness I believe that there could be a reconnection between individuals and the earth.

10. Greater individual freedom and liberty by decrease the necessity of government oversight and control.

 

 With that I leave you with yet another beautiful commercial from Chipotle called the Scarecrow.  There is another great one called Back to the Start if you haven’t seen it yet.

The Natural Advantages Suggested Reading List

I wanted to present a reading list of books that have been educational to me. In no particular order. I hope that you enjoy it.

Nutrition and Food

In Defense of Food – Michael Pollen

Why We Get Fat – Gary Taubes

The Warrior Diet – Ori Hofmekler

What to Eat – Marion Nestle

Pottenger’s Prophecy – Deborah Keston, Gary Graham and Larry Scherwitz

The Encyclopedia of Healing Foods – Michael Murray N.D. and Joseph Pizzorno N.D. with Lara Pizzorno M.A., L.M.T.

Fitness

Power to the People – Pavel Tsatsouline

The Purposeful Primitive – Marty Gallagher

Enter the Kettlebell – Pavel Tsatsouline

Return of the Kettlebell – Pavel Tsatsouline

Textbook of Weightlifting – Arthur Saxon

The Development of Physical Power – Arthur Saxon

The Naked Warrior – Pavel Tsatsouline

Super Joints – Pavel Tsatsouline

Cooking

The Art of Simple Food – Alice Waters

The Flavor Bible – Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg

The Paleo Diet Cookbook – Loren Cordain Ph. D.

Agriculture, gardening and sustainable living

The New Organic Farmer – Elliot Coleman

The Permaculture Way – Graham Bell

Maria Rodale’s Organic Gardening – Maria Rodale

Little House in the Suburbs: Backyard farming and home skills for self-sufficient living – Deanna Caswell and Daisy Siskin

Toolbox for Sustainable City Living – Scott Kellogg and Stacy Pettigrew

For Your Pet

Work Wonders: Feed your Dog Raw Meaty Bones – Tom Lonsdale

Suggested books that I have not read yet

Nutrition and Physical Degeneration – Weston A Price

The Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine – Michael Murray N.D. and Joseph Pizzorno N.D.

Real Strength for Real People

Bent press, dead lifts, getups, kettlebell swings/snatches and sprints. That is my workout. Two sets of 5. High intensity cardio. 45 minutes 3 days a week will create real strength for real people while staying lean. Bent press and deadlift for strength and power. Getups, swings and snatches are great for building tension and muscular endurance. With these exercises you will develop lean, wiry and solid muscular development without excessive muscle mass. Lets break it down.

Why do I only perform 2 sets of 5 reps of the bent press and dead lift?

I do this in order to build strength without causing an excessive amount of muscle growth. By performing only two sets of 5, at a heavy weight, you will train for strength. When you lift heavy you create more strength in your muscle fibers in order to assist with the lifting of heavy things. This is important for your daily activities. While you do this you will learn how to build tension in your muscles and how to contract your muscles more effectively. You will also learn irradiation. Irradiation is the phenomenon of the body acting synergistically. If you contract all of your muscles including those that are not directly involved in the lifting action of the the object you will actually increase your overall strength. Therefore if you are performing a side press on the right side and you squeeze all of your muscles including your hand on your left side you will actually lift that item easier.

If you perform more sets at a lighter weight you will experience muscle growth, however you will not have the same strength to go along with it. High sets increase the fluid in the cells of the muscle instead of actually increasing the amount of strength that you have. Therefore if your goal is to build strength and tone without an excessive amount of size then lifting heavy is the answer for you. It is a great formula for both men and women who want a strong toned body. You will not get bulky with this program. Lifting heavy is great for fat loss as well.

If you would like to build size then you should lift as heavy as possible and a lot. The more time under pressure the more benefit you will reap. Pavel Tsatsouline (Power to the People) suggests starting at 80% of your 5 rep max and keep doing sets of 5 with short breaks (30-90 sec) in between. Keep doing these until you have exhausted yourself and you are unable to continue on with good form. Each individual will be different, it might take anywhere from 5-20 sets. Just keep going until you are unable to complete the 5 reps in good form. This also requires eating a lot as well. In a stressful environment for a long period of time the body will shed much of the excess muscle. Therefore I choose to train for strength instead of bulk. It is also healthier to maintain the body at a strong lean weight instead of a bulky mass. You can actually lift heavy with two sets of 5 for a few months and then lift for bulk for a few months as well in order to help cycle the workouts further. However it is up to you to choose.

Another key to successfully training for a lifetime is the use of cycling. Cycling your workout is when you start with a weight that you could easily perform 10 times and you work your way up consistently with that weight performing sets of 5. The first set of 5 is at that weight, the second set would be a weight that is approx. 10 percent less than your first set. You increase the weight of your workout regularly until you are unable to perform 2 sets of 5. With my dead lift I add 2.5 pounds to each side of the bar every workout, with my bent press I add 2.5 pounds to each side every week. When you find your max you will often times you will only do 4 for the first set then maybe on your next workout you can only do two. This is ok. Remember to never lift to failure, if you don’t feel as though you an complete the rep then don’t try it, and then on your next workout choose a weight that is lighter and easier to perform and work your way back up again. Start out low and end high. Every-time you cycle through your weight will get heavier and heavier. As an example we will take the dead lift. My first workout was at 200 pounds, I added 2.5 pounds per side every workout until I got up to 245 pounds. This was my max at that time. After that I dropped the weight down to 215. I cycled through this workout until I hit 270, which was my new max. I then dropped the weight down 245 as my starting point. I am currently in this cycle as of now. As you can see, my new low weight is my old max weight so there has been a steady increase in my overall strength. Even when you are lifting the lighter weights it is imperative that you always lift it as though it was the heaviest one that you could. This allows you to practice your form and also to increase the tension in your muscles.

I perform the getup for 5 reps/side one time. This usually takes several minutes to do and allows me the opportunity to place myself under the weight for a good amount of time.

Why do I perform mostly high intensity cardio as the basis of my cardiovascular workout?

High intensity cardio is the most efficient form of cardiovascular training you can perform. In terms of fat loss it works substantially better than steady state moderate intensity cardio such as jogging. Not only do you lose more fat in a quicker amount of time you also maintain a higher metabolism longer due to the intense workout. When you perform distance style steady state running your body actually stores fat in order to utilize it as energy throughout the run or other endurance event. When you perform high intensity cardio your body is working beyond the aerobic capacity of the body and therefore expends the energy that it has including the fat of your body. One simple way to note this is by looking at olympic athletes. The long distance runners are always skinny but with minimal muscular development and the sprinters are always thin with very good muscular development. This is because long distance running is counterproductive to muscular development. So, the question is, would you rather look like a marathon runner or a sprinter?

How did I choose the exercises?

The exercises that I have chosen are essentially a combination of Pavel Tsoutline Power to the People as well as his kettlebell training philosophy from Enter the Kettlebell. I chose them in order to function as a big push and a big pull. The bent press uses the entire body to push a weight up to the sky. Not only does this work every muscle in the body, primarily the pushing ones, it also trains the body to work together. The same can be said for the dead lift which allows the entire anterior chain to be used primarily in a big pull. Furthermore, the heavier the weight you are using the more tension you will generally produce in your muscles, the dead lift allows for very heavy weights, therefore it also assists in developing strength through training the body to tense your muscles. The getup is a big push as well and the swing is a great cardio exercise that works the posterior chain very well.

I also chose these exercises for their usefulness in every day life. Everyone must lift things to place them on shelves (bent press) and everyone must pick things up off of the ground (dead lift). The getup trains getting up off of the ground or out of bed (a daily function) and the swing and snatch assists with incredible cardio and great hip flexion. These exercises are designed to give you the most bang for your buck for sure. Does that mean that these are the only exercises that you need to perform? No, not necessarily. You are welcome to perform the side press, or maybe work towards a one arm push up or one arm pull-up. Maybe you want to do one leg squats (pistols) or the bench press. They are all great exercises, just ensure you are using tension.

I don’t believe in isolating muscles. The world doesn’t isolate muscles so why would I train that way. Isolating muscles is only good if your goal is to build a body builders beach body. That isn’t my goal. My goal is to build purposeful strength and it is my opinion that someone who is purposefully strong looks good.

Kettlebell Swings/Snatches and Sprinting

I chose swings and snatches because it is a fantastic cardio workout while working your entire body. I am not interested in training for long distance endurance sports. The heart already beats all day everyday. I am interested in training the heart to be able to function superbly under extreme duress that is unexpected. The swings and snatches do this quite well. They are not the only thing though and If you do not have a kettlebell then you are welcome to perform a set of sprints. Go out and run as hard as you can (look into barefoot running techniques) for 20 seconds and then take the rest of the minute or so off. Do this ten times and you just had yourself a great cardio workout. You’ll be surprised how effective it is.

I am generally opposed to running because it is simply not an effective fat burner compared to other cardio activities as most people perform it as an exercise. There is a great discrepancy between what people believe to be running. When I think of running I think of my time in the Marine Corps where you ran 3 miles as fast as you could and you moved on with your day. There was no lolly gagging along at a slow pace. I was taught how to run by a Marine Corps scout-sniper who believed several things. One was that group runs only trained the slowest person, therefore he made it his goal to drop everyone off of the run and then go back and pick them back up. This kept the Marines motivated and ensured that everyone got a good cardio workout. As we waited for the other to catch up we were performing exercises, usually a fantastically funny sounding a looking exercise called Monkey Fuckers. It’s brutal on the thighs and your lungs as you try not to laugh at what you were doing. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=22PMO2SvLZk We really did have a damn good time. He also believed that singing cadence was a waste of time. Essentially he believed that if you were able to sing cadence then you were not running fast enough. This is a much different pace of running that what most people do. Most people tend to go out and jog at a slow pace and this is completely ineffective no matter what your local personal trainer tells you is the “fat burning zone.”

I do however believe that there is a primal instinct in us as far as running goes, and I believe that we should exercise that instinct through sprinting. Therefore it is my intention to structure my cardio training as follows. Monday will be a sprint day. I will sprint for 12 minutes total, 6-8 sprints or so of approximately 20-30 seconds. I will then rest and jog back to the start point. This will allow me to actively rest for a minute or so. I will increase the time of the sprints as needed or decrease the rest time. On wednesday I am performing 6 minutes of snatches. All out as hard as I can. Snatches are a beautiful training monster that will send your heart rate flying through the roof. Then on Friday I will perform 9 minutes of swings. They will be done at a high intensity but will generally be a easier than the snatches. This will allow three different forms of cardio throughout the week, as well as some variety in the training. The variety will be both in the type of activity as well as the intensity of it. I will increase the training time and intensity on a regular basis. If you are unable to perform swings/snatches or sprints that is ok. The key is to choose an activity that increases your heart rate and gets you working hard. This may be as simple as walking fast, walking up stairs or jumping rope.

So that has become my answer for for real people that want real strength in a condensed amount of time. Work hard, work effectively, work quickly and move on with your day. If you lift heavy, cycle your workout and perform high intensity cardio you will improve your overall health dramatically and improve your life. In just 45 minutes or less 3 times a week you can quickly transform yourself. Your body will respond to the work that is placed upon it. You will also be able to improve your strength and health without feeling sore or fatigued. There is no need to walk around all day with dead legs because you just squatted 40 times with a moderately heavy weight. There is no use in working out to improve your strength just to become so tired that you can’t do anything else that week. I’m interested in being strong and having a life. Not being strong and sleeping all week.

This method of training allows you to steadily improve your fitness while being able to achieve specific goals. It is important to note that there are many training methods that are effective to a certain point. There are group fitness adventures that will wear you out completely. Nearly all training will provide a base level of fitness at first. However, the question becomes are you able to continue on for a lifetime of improvement? This is where many group fitness plans fail. They fail because their training goal is to make their client tired. This is not an effective training goal. Becoming tired is simply a function of repetition. The question should not be how tired am I, but rather: Have I improved my strength? Have I improved my cardiovascular fitness? The next question is how do you determine this?

With this program you can track your strength easily, you will watch yourself progress through heavier and heavier weights. You can also track your cardiovascular fitness by the amount and intensity of swings/sprints or snatches. You may also purchase a heart rate monitor to track it further as well as taking your resting heart rate. I hope that this information finds you well.

I will have more to come in another post, but until then enjoy your training and enjoy getting fitter.

Two great resources that you should own are “Power to the People” by Pavel Tsatsouline and “The Purposeful Primitive” by Marty Gallagher. They can both be found on Dragondoor.com