Four weeks ago we embarked on a new strength cycle with a focus on bench/floor press (upper body), deadlift (total body) and back squat (lower body) – Check out the details here.

We followed a basic strength progression of 5×5 in the first week, 5×3 in the second. A 1-1-1-1-1 set up in the third, followed by a de-load in the fourth.

On Saturday just past we retested the CrossFit Football Total and the results, well they were pretty obvious. Most people* managed to walk away with quite a few PRs and big smiles.

I promoted the concept of a strategic, smash and grab style session. Get in, work smart, get some PRs (modest) and get out. To go after 4 different 1RMs in one hour and fifteen minute session can be a pretty spicy undertaking but from what I saw I think just about everyone went after it the right way.

Why you didn’t PR

At the start of the session I explained that there were a number of *factors that had the potential to impede ones ability to nail a PR and walk away empty handed – to keep this short I’m only going to cover 2…

Consistency

It’s pretty hard to expect gains if you only rock up to the gym once or twice a week. The cool thing about the next 4 weeks is that the clock resets and you get another opportunity to build some consistency into your training – just start from today.

Again, we’ll be programming our strength days on Monday, Wednesday and Friday every week. We’ll go after the Olympic lifts and gymnastics on Tuesdays and Thursdays (alternating between each, week to week).

As a bare minimum, you’ve just got to make it to Mon, Wed and Fridays but make it to 5 sessions or more a week and I’ll put money on you walking away with some #gainz.

Let me put it like this: There are people that [SAY] they want to be stronger and then there are the people who actually go after it with everything they’ve got. All you have to do is walk the talk – because as everyone knows: talk is cheap.

Current sickness, injuries and/or niggles…

If you’re currently injured or recovering from an injury than you’re going to need to take that into account. If you’ve recently been sick and couldn’t make it to work, chances are you probably didn’t make it to training either.

In the last 4 weeks I’ve:

  • had a couple of big stacks on my mountain bike that meant I couldn’t squat for a week.
  • have an ongoing dicky right shoulder that’s even been interrupting my sleep at night – so no overhead work at all
  • been pretty sick with a tummy bug for 4+ days – so
  • pulled a muscle in my back (trying to show off ) and had to take off 3 days

The last 4 weeks has been an absolute nightmare as far as training goes and I didn’t get a chance to test my lifts on Saturday -> but that’s OK. I’m in this for the long haul and I know that I’ll get another opportunity down the track. If I can cope -> you can cope.

The Next 4 weeks (July baby!)…

Same as the previous cycle we’ll be focusing on a total body movement (TB), a lower body movement (LB); and an upper body movement.

The movements for the next 4 weeks will be:

  • TB – power clean (previously deadlift)
  • LB – front squat (previously back squat)
  • UB – strict press (previously bench/floor press)

We’ll also be changing up some of the accessory work and adding some extra strength endurance work. Karl has agreed to program all the met-cons and I know he’s keen to up some of his own conditioning work so you could reasonably expect to see that too.

Like I said in a previous post, it’s really important that you:

  • train at least 5 days a week -> if 3 is the best you can do -> make sure you train on mon, wed & thu
  • track every single thing you do in the gym over the coming 4 weeks – use BTWB (no really)
  • dial in your recovery – eg:
    • eat well – fuel your performance
    • sleep well – at least 8 hours a night (yes, you might have to go to bed a little earlier than usual)
    • manage your stress – meditate, get outside and go for a walk, do whatever you have to do to chill…
  • If you get sick – take a couple of days off and ease yourself back in -> remember we’re in this for the long haul…

If you have any questions regarding the coming weeks, leave a comment below, send me an email or speak to me face to face and I’ll do my best to help you out.


Coach B