Thursday, July 9, 2009

Its What You Don't Do

"Sometimes, instead of what you do in the weight room, it's what you don't do that will lead to success."

That quote is from Jim Wendler in an interview he did for TMuscle. First of all, his approach to strength training is brilliant and over looked and you should read the article and buy his e-book just for that.

But what really struck me was that one quote...and that's a pretty good philosophy for success in anything, not just the weightroom.

Most people get so overwhelmed by the little stuff that they forget about what's important and what will actually drive them forward. All too often people spend a lot of time in that "middle zone" and never push them selves to that edge.

They are their own worst enemies.

You see, getting anything worth having is hard. And it takes a lot of work.

But not as hard as most people think and not nearly as long, either.

Its funny how it happens, but a clear focus on your goals while using your biggest levers with ultra consistency will lead to some pretty amazing things.

In order to do this and to understand this you have no choice but to cut the fat and get rid of what's not working and what is simply not necessary.

This takes a little bit of ruthlessness and honesty on your behalf, but the pay off is peace of mind and actually getting results for once.

With that said, let's look at 3 things NOT to do in regards to strength and conditioning...

1. Don't stress out over which "program" to follow. Have a plan, have a goal, and know that you have to do xy and z to get there...but leave a little wiggle room. Follow a program that works, yes, but keep a general plan in mind and realize that sometimes life happens.

2. Don't obscess over the details. A row is a row, a chin is a chin, a press is a press, a lunge is a lunge (any single leg movement)...3 days a week or 4? Sled dragging or prowler pushing? None of this stuff really matters...train hard using movements that work a lot of muscle, vary your intensity and volume, rinse and repeat.

3. Don't drive yourself into the ground week after have to learn how to deload and give the body a break so that it can come back stronger. This is hard to do for guys like you and I, but absolutely necessary. A down week every so often (every 3-6 weeks, usually) is good for the body and mind. I like the advice of "working out" with your nutrition...use that time to really dial in on your eating and your habits.

Let's face it, anyone who has been strength training for a long time has done all 3 at some point. Its human nature to tinker, and we all like to fool ourselves sometimes that we're "different" and that we don't need to back off or take breaks (newsflash: we are not all like snowflakes). Be concise with your goals, clear with your limitations, and let the big things take care of everything else.

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