Tuesday, 08 May 2012

What I've learnt in the last 6 months

A guest post by Terence Mitchell

1.   I love the prowler.  I think it's a great conditioning tool.  However after almost a year of combining hill sprints with prowler sprints, I've made up my mind.  Hill sprints are superior.  
They tax my body, my legs and more importantly my mind.  Yes, I know anyone can load a prowler to 200kg, push it for 25 meters, then collapse in a heap, but that will do little for them.  Hill sprinting builds champions. The history books have many examples so I don't need to go into them here.  I also really wish I could get more ladies into hill sprinting.  So far I have got one of my clients into sprinting hills consistently and her results are awesome.

2.  Pull-ups can mess up the shoulders.  Chin ups are more user friendly.  I get more carry over to my pressing movements and deadlifts via chin ups then pull ups.  Pull ups I suppose are more 'difficult' per se but they are just not as biomechanically awesome as chins.  Well, at least in my opinion and I have been doing both non stop since I was 12.  If I could go back in time I would have never done a single pull-up and focused all my efforts towards chins.

3.  I think an agility ladder is gay and a joke.  If you think hot stepping' through one of those things is going to make you a better athlete I pity you.

4.  Jumping is everything awesome.  A client of mine who is a pro boxer has done jumping specific training with me twice a week for almost 6 months and this guy is becoming a freak!!  If I could go back in time to when I was a young athlete, I would of jumped like my life depended on it.

5.  Medicine balls are awesome if you have the right weight for the right athlete AND you are not doing lame shit with them like over head presses or using them for push ups.  These things are meant to be thrown!  So make sure you throw them!

6.  If you can lift heavy stuff and jump and sprint, you are about as functional as you can be as a human.  Let this be the end of the debate!

7.  We are all more or less the same, so therefore all the basic principles of strength, speed, conditioning, mobility, nutrition and recovery apply to all of us.  Stop thinking that you are some special snowflake!

8.  It is possible to drop ten kilos and get back to your previous lifting maxes BUT it will be difficult and it will require tremendous patience and you will have an initial drop of strength by at least 20% if you are lucky.  It has taken me a full 10 months to do this.  I was expecting it to take a year because I am not naive about shit.  So I'm delighted it only took me 10 months.

9.  You become a better trainer by training people as individuals.  Weird hey.  It does not count if you train 50 people at once.  That just becomes a chaotic gang bang of a boot camp.  It counts when you program for over 50 people individually day in and day out for over 5 years.  Ten years being ideal.

10.  If you cannot save 10% of your salary when you earn peanuts what makes you think you will be able to save 10% of your salary when you are a high roller??  Shit is relative.  Another example:  If you can't get results with the the most simple bits of equipment, it will count for naught if you have the chance to train in the most perfectly equipped facility.

11.  When men pussy out on their responsibilities as men, women take over and step up.  This is serious and something that is happening more and more in the modern age in which we live.  With this comes a legion of estrogen dominant men who become full time child minders and casual joggers (relax, I just love taking the piss out of joggers) while their wives go out and take charge and make their decisions for them!  Remember Men were born to take charge and lead.  Countries, armies and families!!

12.  I urge you to write a training manifesto.  Something that keeps you aligned to your goals and more importantly your training values.  A manifesto is cool during the good times when you rollin' BUT when you become unstuck, hit that frustrating plateau and need some motivation to kick your own ass, this is when a manifesto becomes essential as it will remind you why you do what you do and what needs to be done in order to forge ahead and stop feeling sorry for yourself.  Remember a training manifesto is not a list of goals, that is also important and a good idea but a manifesto is more of a mission statement.  Goals can become loose and lofty without a detailed plan and a detailed manifesto will ingrain that plan into your mind-set.

13.  The better I eat and the more money I spend on quality foods the better I feel.  This is profound because the graph so to speak does not flat line after a period of time!  It continues to climb!  Better is better so much better is MUCH better!!

14.  Sex is a funny old thing.  The more sex I have the more natural testosterone I produce so therefore the better I feel, the faster I recover, the stronger I lift and more body fat I burn.  This is not me trying to be funny this is scientific fact so hate the game not the player.