Getting into better shape starts with looking at how the opposite sex trains.
I got my start in a small gym in upstate NY, which was really a beat up, abandoned, glorified warehouse with its share of leaks. It was, well, just downright old. But this place is where, as cliché as it may sound I was bit by the “iron bug.” I legitimately fell in love with the weight room.
The thing is, even in this old beat up place, way back in the mid 90’s, I’m sure I saw many of the same things you all see now. That is, a bunch of dudes training hard. Loading up barbells to squat, pull, press, bench, whatever it may be, all in search of packing on muscle and/or getting stronger. In the “other room” were women on machines working their “inner thighs” or walking on stair climbers (yes I’m that old) and doing endless amounts of crunches (again, yes I’m that old). This image was the inspiration for the best advice I can give you for 2013: if you want to get into better shape and achieve your fitness goals, take a look at how the opposite sex trains.
For the ladies out there, that means you should lift weights. I’m not talking about the cute, rubber-coated 5 pound dumbbells in the corner. I’m talking about barbells, heavy ass barbells. Now, I know what you’re thinking, “but Jay I don’t want to look like a dude.” Ok, I’ve got you, and I understand what you’re saying. But let me tell you this, I’ve worked with countless numbers of female athletes and so I know, without hesitation, you will not look like Chyna. EVER!
Sure, there are endless articles on how you don’t produce enough testosterone to blow up, or you can just trust me and save us all some time. Instead of doing that, I’d like to invite you to go to your Facebook page and search “Girls Gone Strong.” Take a look at how these women are built and tell me that an athletic, strong, build is not what you want.
A video shows Jen Comas Keck deadlifting 315 pounds. Yes, a young woman pulling 315 pounds. Check it out and tell me that she is “too big.”If you do, I’ll give you a list of mental health specialists to contact because you’re nuts. She’s not the only one. Every one of these women train hard, heavy, and get after it. I’m not saying everything works for everyone, but wouldn’t being stronger help you in whatever you do (sports or life) and make you more confident? Am I wrong? So get after it.
Ok guys, now you. I know most of you reading this are in search of one of either better athletic performance, or living the dream. Living the dream, obviously, is to be jacked and tan. The thing is, regardless of the goal, the foundation of everything you need to do is energy production and utilization. I don’t care if you’re trying to get bigger or be a better athlete, your aerobic system is important to everything, and what allows you to recover.
Yes, everyone now wants to be cool and do all these wild and crazy HIIT workouts with hammers, and ropes, and, well, you name it. And don’t get me wrong, they’re great. But here’s the kicker: anaerobic training will take away from aerobic capacity.
Now, I know the athlete’s out there saying “well Jay my sport isn’t aerobic” right? That’s bullshit. Whoever told you that doesn’t have a clue. Everything you do is aerobic, period. Now there are exceptions to this like weightlifting, powerlifting, throwing and jumping events in track and field to name a few. Team sports are a different story. Look at hockey, 45 second shifts, that’s anaerobic, but how do you recover between shifts? Your ability to recover is due to your aerobic system.
I’m not saying that you should chuck the weights out and just do aerobic work, but what I am asserting that low-end aerobic work and aerobic interval training will improve performance, improve aerobic capacity, and improve body composition. That doesn’t mean to go out and do nothing but run 5 miles a day, because you and I both know that’s stupid and counterproductive.
What if you run 10 minute intervals in your aerobic training zone (typically around 70% of max heart rate), or even better just put the treadmill on as high of an incline as possible and walk keeping your heart rate between 130-150 beats per minute for 45 minutes. You’ll lean up, be in better shape, and perform better. Sounds like a winning combo to me.
So take a step back, look at your training and your goals and reread this. After you’re done tell me that this won’t help you reach your goals and I’ll call you a liar. Step out of your comfort zone, train more like the opposite sex, and make 2012 the beginning of the new, better you.
To further improve your body composition, 1R would also recommend the following supplements: