Thursday, July 18, 2013

Animal Ability

           Do you want to have the strength, mobility & toughness of an action hero? Well let me tell you about my own method that I have used training myself (& others as a former fitness trainer) to work towards this goal. Let me preface this by saying if you want to be a powerlifter, bodybuilder, etc you need proper guidance for steering this toward your specific goal. Also if you play a specific sport you need to make sure you add in specific skill development.
        My methods will take you 80-90% towards anyone of these categories. If you want to be prepared to take on anything then this is a (if not the) style to use. Strength, power, speed, agility, quickness, mobility & flexibility are what this style will help you build.
       So let's jump right in & quit the yammering, the following is a guideline to the order I have found works well in most cases. Now when I say most that means it is NOT written in stone. Do not be afraid to experiment! Just don't hurt yourself doing something weird. I train six days per week, one day conditioning/cardio type movements, the next more explosive/strength/power oriented work. I use Monday – Saturday with Sunday being a free day.

       General Warm-up – I know, I know, boring, but it needs to be done. Take at least five (5) minutes of moving all or at least the majority of your joints. Do not just get on a bike for 5 minutes & think you have done good, because you haven't. Jumping Jacks or a variation are a good thing to start with, but you need some squatting/hinging, some reaching & twisting.

       Specific Warm-up – This is usually used mainly on  explosive/strength/power days as your body works best when your nervous system is stimulated. This usually (you may see this word a lot) consist of the first 3-5 exercises or movements simulating them. I even do this for explosive jumping/plyometric movements, I just do them without as much explosiveness.

       Stamina/Conditioning/Cardio - I sometimes use a certain skill or skills I wish to learn at or near the beginning, but then I get into the meat. I use rounds/timed tempos with minimal rest between movements & rounds/tempos. I usually end the session with some odd work like muscle endurance in my feet, light resistance high reps.

       Explosive/Strength/Power – I usually (that word again) start with a jumping &/or sprinting drill. I try to make sure the combined rep total is 20. Depending on S/C/C day I choose drills that are not compromised from that training. This is important as it further stimulates the nervous system. This can allow stronger muscle contractions.

    Next I usually move to some high resistance lifts. I usually perform a squatting &/or hinging, upper body pull (vertical – horizontal), upper body push (vertical – horizontal), ofttimes I will follow with midsection or posterior chain work. I try to stick with certain basic movements & place specialized odd movements after basic heavier movements. Some people would choose to do it opposite, but in my experience the basic movements are so much heavier than odd movements that with focus it doesn't really matter that you have worked those muscles.
   A final comment before I go to the next part. E/S/P is not stamina/conditioning/cardio so take at least 0:30 or longer between movements. Having said that it is rare that I rest longer than 2:00.

       STRETCHING!!!! - This is the life saver. For the last five years I have been using method called Gravity Poses. I have no monetary interest in this company I just have found Lucas' Gravity Poses to work the best.

       General Warm-up  5-10 minutes

       Specific Warm-up (especially on high resistance days) 5-10 minutes

       Stamina/Conditioning/Cardio 10-30 minutes

       Explosiveness/Strength/Power (jump, sprint, basics + esoteric) 15-30 minutes

       STRETCHING! 10-20 minutes

       Total Time S/C/C = 30 - 60 minutes

       Total Time E/S/P = 35 – 70 minutes

       You should always strive towards the lower end of the time scale. Most important take away is use the minimum amount needed to achieve your fastest gains.

       So if you wish to be prepared physically & mentally for any activity or sport try the Animal Ability style!

No comments: