Today's soapbox post will stay short and sweet :). But something to ponder is how and what stresses we are allowing to be driving factors in how we evolve. We all evolve to the demands placed upon us, for better or for worse. We are adaptable, we are pliable. What are we allowing to push and pull us around, what undercurrents are dragging us down without us knowing?
Something to think about…I am not saying this as someone who knows anything different, only that it is something that I have been thinking about this past week, mainly because I do have some control over what I allow to have mental rent inside my head. If I don’t want to be driven to conform to unconscious outcomes, the first step is to acknowledge they might be there, then to seek them out and remove the tumors before my self shifts in congruence with thoughts and patterns that are not of my own choosing.
And now back to discussing stressors that if allowed to propagate, will only produce positive benefits!
Build - This cycle, we are focusing on some really fundamental and powerful compound movements. The back squat and the deadlift. We have four weeks to progress in load. It is best to start out on the conservative side when beginning a new program. This helps in two ways. First, you are able to get an idea of how the movements feel, and second, you are able to add weight week to week, built-in progressive overload. This is much superior to basing everything on percentages, as we are not strength athletes. Not all days are created equal, so by going off of feel, you do not run into the mental challenges of feeling as though you are not doing what you are supposed to if you can not live up to weekly percentage increases. Leave a little in the tank on week one, increase weight each week if you are able, and I guarantee you will finish stronger than when you started. Our accessory lifts for this cycle, focus on some bilateral upper body movements, isometric core work, and the often neglected anterior shin.
Ignite - Time to blow it out and go big. Short work periods followed by almost completed rest periods. For this to be effective, you must really lay it out on the line. No holding back. Now is the time to see how much power you can produce!
Build + Charge - One of my all-time favorite ways to increase strength, build muscular endurance and challenge the anaerobic system. Interval weight training. Lift something heavy for a bunch of reps, immediately jump into some type of cardio activity and go as hard as you can. Choose a weight that is hard but doable for you. You have chosen correctly if on the last round of the set, you are getting close to failure, and the pace that you chose for the conditioning should also be very hard to hold…but holdable.
Grind - Every Minute on the Minute. These can be some of the worst workouts ever if programmed correctly. They look easy. But we all know that looks sell the books, but can be hiding the devil beneath.
Sustain - Aerobic pacing with isometric holding. It's a banger combo. Great for building muscular endurance in the range being held, and promoting mitochondrial growth and efficiency. Also continuing on with the nasal breathing trend. But upping the ante with some cross-training and box breathing.
Cool Down - We got some ankle mobility, forearm and finger work, and static stretching.