Location: Woodcock Sports Centre, Aston University
Swing-Assisted, Uneven Muscle Up - 1
Frog stand - 30 seconds, arms straight
1 set of Raise-assisted handstand push ups (2 plates) - 4 good reps then 1 failure
1 set of Weighted chin ups - 5 reps @22.5kg
1 set of Barbell Squats - 5 reps
1 set of Dumbbell Bench Press - 5 @32kg
1 set of Hanging Leg Raise - 10 reps
1 set of Romanian Deadlift - 5 reps @115kg
Finisher: Tabata Intervals - Rowing Machine @90% effort (eyeballs remaining mostly in their sockets)
Total Time: 25 minutes
Post-Workout Nutrition: this, 30 minutes later
I have to know. I have to know whether the Body by Science approach can work for me. I have been flirting with the idea by taking two or more rest days between strength workouts, but that is not the same as what BBS recommends.
Broadly, it recommends that your strength training consist solely of a single, all-body session, once a week, in which you do a single set of each exercise. The exercises (about 5 of them) should be compound exercises that hit the major muscle groups. The idea is that in fact we need a week to fully recover and maximise the potential for gains.
You can add other sports and activities into the mix - just not training that is aimed at strength or growth gains.
So today I selected my own set of exercises which I think broadly fit the bill; and as you can see, I did only a single set of each.
I should state up front that I have not read the book yet. I have just read the great coverage on Conditioning Research (here and here) as well as a brief low-down from Natural Messiah, offline. But that's enough to understand what's being recommended. I just don't necessarily know why at this point.
My plan is this: average 2 workouts per week.
Workout 1: a randomly selected activity that is demanding without causing too much muscular fatigue. Swimming, climbing, light circuits or gymnastics. I may even start doing some amateur parkour / urban circuit training since the light mornings are now upon us in the UK.
Workout 2: today's routine.
The question is, will I get stronger and if so, how quickly? Also - will I feel better? Will I have more energy on non-workout days?
One possible confounding factor - I have just started supplementing with 3000 ui of vitamin D3 (see here for why.) Apparently this can affect athletic performance.
I should mention that I have an article in the pipeline that will expand more on the question of how to structure the week's exercise. I am trying to reconcile the BBS philosophy with the Primal/Paleo philosophy, and also incorporate some great posts by other bloggers on the subject.
What am I trying to achieve with my workouts? Do I want to get stronger, or do I want to emulate ancestral patterns? Is variety more important than progression, and is the latter merely something that has been drilled into us by modern life rather than any genuine imperative? More thoughts to come.