The most underrated principle of exercise is strength. Strength is the mythical crystal slipper of the world of weight loss, fitness and athleticism. I am confronted on a daily basis by women who perceive strength training as a “system” aimed at might, mane and brawn. That form of ‘exercise’ reserved for elite level bison wrestling and is too often deemed unnecessary in the world of general fitness and weight loss
I have ladies who enter my gym with trepidation in fear that following my philosophies and approach to exercise will have their tank tops busting at the seams.
The reality of the situation is that in order to successfully attack ones goals, whether they be weight loss, fitness, or improved sports performance; the base of your training must be strength. In order to be lean, fit, fast, explosive or just fit into your skinny jeans you need to be strong first.
Strength is the ABC of physical education. A good infrastructure of strength will allow for better outcomes in whatever your physical goal is. In order to build an effective ‘machine’ that burns fat at an accelerated rate, and improves your training ability you need to build a substructure.
The human bodies base of performance is dependent on your strength and power output. The more force you can exert the better your body can execute a task. As mentioned in previous articles, strength is a skill and the more you practice your skill the closer you get to perfection.
Triathletes, cyclists, road runners, canoeists, fighters, surf riders, motocross racers, you name the sport and being strong will improve your ability to perform it. As Mark Reifkind said quite simply “Strength fixes everything” by no means does this mean all athletes need to build incredible limit strength, this means that whatever your physical goal is – being strong first is crucial. In order to move forward and develop power, endurance, speed and fitness you require a certain amount of tonicity and tension.
There are some simple rules I live and coach by when incorporating an effective strength program into my athletes, housewives and weekend warriors training programs. No I am not going to discuss a plan, nor deliberate over rep ranges, sets and intensity, but I will offer you some advice.
Follow these simple rules and get better at life.
Don’t over complicate your workouts. Keep it simple because simple works, stick to the basics. Leave the fancy gadgets and elaborate complexes to the girl in the neon head band doing one legged squats on the bosu ball. At OTG we have a motto we adopted from Eric Bach “Success lies in the ruthless execution of the basics”
Choose exercises that target compound movements over isolation exercises. In training you
want to transfer power through more than one joint, this will not only build solid muscle but it will reinforce ligaments and joints whilst building connective tissue and strength through multiple planes and develop overall strength over size.
Ensure your training is effective, focus on your weaknesses, hone in on everything you ‘suck’ at – improving on weaknesses builds new strengths
As an athlete, regardless of sport you need to focus on movements which target your movements, that mimic your flow. A fighter’s power comes from the ground up, a punch is pulled from the ground and exerted from the hips. Target movements’ vs muscle.
There is no such thing as over training. Only under recovering. Make time for recovery or make time for failing. Simple
Watch what everyone else is doing and do the complete opposite. There are far too many ‘experts’ out there today and nowhere near enough authority.
Be strong FIRST
A good relationship has a solid foundation, a sturdy base and a concrete support structure. Don’t allow ego to interfere with your process, do what you need to do to succeed and continue to push the evolution of the human form. Build your body and it will build your character.
Be strong first.