How Regular People Should Train, Part 4
Part 4, here we go…
You may notice a common theme in my writing and my training philosophy is, as my Isaac from Bangor, Maine once said, “Stop trying to be Hardcore.”
Right now “hardcore” and “high intensity” workouts are the fad, but is it really how “regular people” should really be training like this to achieve their fitness goals?
I still stand by my philosophy and say, in fact, they probably do more to sabotage people people then help them be successful.
How many people start an “Extreme” workout, or some high intensity circuit based on a pretend “Theory” based on cherry picked science only to be become frustrated, maybe ashamed or embarrassed and they never go back.
A properly designed program, like we do, can meet anyone where they are at and help them be successful from Day 1.
Training like the a S.E.A.L. has been popular for some time, but again this is not for regular people despite how much they want to think it is.
The quote this newsletter series is based on come from my friend Doug, a Former Recon Marine during a conversation on a message board… remember those?
"I [also] think training like a Navy S.E.A.L. is stupid for the average person. I would say [normal people should] PT like [the] infantry units, run, body weight stuff, “ruck” a little, a little weights and enjoy life if you’re not training for specifics."
In Part 1, I broke down how each mode of exercise listed is important for a regular person.
In Part 2, I specifically broke down why the first mode, Aerobic Capacity is probably the most important factor for a “regular” person.
In Part 3, I took on the next second mode, Muscular Endurance, why you need and how you build it.
Today we look the next mode, in the quote Doug refers to it as “Rucking” - rucking in the military is a term that refers to putting on your gear and packs and going for a sustained “hump” or run at a pace that is faster than walking but puts you just on the edge of getting short of breath while doing it.
I look at this as “weighted cardio” or Aerobic Power (tempo training in some circles) and for that we use kettlebells.
If Aerobic Capacity is how long you can go, Aerobic Power would be what pace you can hold while still being “aerobic” - ie. you should be able to hold a conversation without struggling to breath.
So, why should you care?
Partly because when combined with your higher level of Aerobic Capacity your ability to “do work” whatever that means to you, becomes infinitely easier.
In top of that, this overall higher level of fitness will lower blood pressure, lower your resting heart rate and allow you to perform work at a higher level while maintaining a lower heart rate.
In terms of ‘working out” this means you can burn more calories in the same amount of time, because you are able to ward off fatigue for longer periods of time fatigue won’t force you to dial back your efforts.
I started training with kettlebell in 2001.
No, that’s not a typo - Kori and I have been training with them longer than most of the western world has been aware of them.
While most trainers use kettlebells as odd shaped dumbbells I’ve traveled to Russia 4 times to train, been a member of Team USA 2 times and represented the USA at the IUKL World Championships in both Germany and Ireland.
So, I know kettlebells.
And, this aerobic power training is really where they shine and if you can get over the initial intimidation you too can have the benefits.
That said when training we need to use movements that have a “rest” phase, for this the Kettlebell Snatch and Kettlebell Long Cycle (clean & jerk).
I can’t say this enough, be sure you are getting proper training in technique.
Both Kori and I actually worked as instructors for the largest organisation that certifies trainers before moving to Texas. We have a structured progression to get “regular’ people doing these exercises without hurting themselves or having the kettlebell crash into your wrist.
When you’re using this tool you can build a level of fitness that can’t be built through other means and once you reach a certain level…
Fat falls off your body, that’s not an exaggeration. The Aerobic Power component is the missing link in most programs.
It’s simply not in most programs because most programs push you to higher intensity levels and you miss out.
How long do you need to go?
Well, we aren’t doing it for quite the same reason as the Grunts in the Marine so we don’t need to do the 60-90 minutes that become common.
At the most a few or maybe three 10 minutes “intervals” will do.
Don’t start out here, but this is the goal to work up to.
We focus on pace and heart rate and watch for technique to fail, above all once technique fails we stop. We then try to do a little more next time… just like when a person starts running, really.
This type of training also helps the body buffer against fatigue so many of your extracurricular activities will improve as a side effect.
Do you like to run, bike, swim or maybe just have a great time in the back yard or pack with the kids?
You need to be doing this type of training then.
This mode by far has been the hardest to breakdown, but I hope this gave you a little bit of clarity and showed you why, when combined with the other modes we talked about it’s an important piece of the puzzle.