4 Training Tips

1. Perform heavy negatives (eccentric contractions), particularly in the stretched position.

Slow lowering of weight, sometimes with weight even greater than one's concentric max, is amazing for growth. Example exercises include stiff-legged deadlifts, "hithead" overhead presses to the top of one's head, and seated incline "profanity curls" (four-count negatives).

2. Respect muscle-specific and whole-body recovery time frames.

Having revealed my love of soreness-inducing heavy negatives, it's a must to respect the five-day recovery time frame for a muscle group, as well as a full week off for every eight-12 spent in hard training. Check out "Muscle Masochism" in our archives.

3. Employ undulating periodization.

Just a few years ago I was indoctrinated into a training regime that involves alternating heavy/ negative low-rep sessions with a following week of lighter medium-rep sessions. In this cyclical way, glycogen can be spared somewhat on heavy days while one's largest motor units and joints are rested (in a relative sense) on the lighter days. Research suggests that even advanced guys at a plateau can grow like weeds! Amazing.

4. Do low-moderate intensity "cardio" so as not to interfere with training load.

Although harder cardio does indeed burn fat and the tortoise vs. hare debate will rage on infinitum, I vastly prefer the low-moderate-intensity approach. I simply lift too close to the overtraining envelope to add-in hard cardiovascular exercise. Outdoor walking (it's intense enough if you're near or over 200 pounds or wearing an X-Vest) and uphill treadmill walks at a heart rate around 120 bpm drain calories and body fat without kicking up cortisol, other stress hormones, and beating-up the joints. Whether your priority is the holy grail of size plus extreme leanness or it's performance in a given sport, I think there is no better way to address fat loss.

1 Comment:

  1. MizFit said...
    love the heavy negatives.

    I need to get my husband back lifting with me to spot...

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