So the 2012 year is over and gone forever. It was pretty tough. But a lot of good things happened either. The first thing I've learned (or just been reminded) is that there is no limit to human stupidity and naivety. There are apocalypses and different ends of the world almost every year. Sometimes several times per year. Why do all those sheepeople still believe that crap? I think, it's because people are too lazy to think. Do you really believe that end of the world will come in one day or one hour? If you analyze that "prophecy" you'll find out that the end of the world should have come due to displacement of the Earth's axis (well, according to the "prophecy" I know). Think about it a bit. Do you really believe that such HUGE process is possible in one day? The Earth evolved during 4.54 billions of years. So that all is crap. And you shouldn't believe it. I digress. Let's get back to my theme for today.
I wrote lots of articles on this theme. It's one of the main principles you need to understand. And it works not only for training or nutrition. You can use it anywhere. Examples? Let's take business for example. You build your base one client at a time. You open new branches only after the first one is working good. When you can't do everything by yourself you hire new employees to make more. You provide new services only when your first one is working well etc. It's progressive resistance. If you want to learn new skill you need progressive resistance. If you want to learn guitar you need to learn hand placement first. You need to develop coordination. You need to learn how to play right. Then you can develop your skill further. If you want to learn how to play chess good you need to know how the pieces move, what are the rules etc. Then you need to learn basic rules of opening, middlegame and endgame. Then you can progress further. You got the idea. Progressive resistance is probably the most powerful weapon in your arsenal. Be wise. Use it. There is nothing impossible if you understand the principle of progressive resistance.
Protein and Diet
Another big theme for me. Many people say: "Protein is not that important". They can be right partly. I found out that protein is the most powerful macronutrient out there. At least for me (and probably for you too). Let me put it another way. High-protein diet + intermittent fasting = optimal nutritional approach for me (and for all the people with average-to-slow metabolisms). This is what works. Everything else fails. 5-6 meals per day - fail. High-carb - fail. High-fat - fail. Eating throughout the day - fail. But again, this is what works for me and probably will work for people with average-to-slow metabolisms. If you have fast metabolism and fail to gain size then forget about intermittent fasting and you will probably need much more carbs.
Regarding diet there are only 2 factors that matter most. Yepp, only 2. Calories and macronutrient ratios. Everything else matters much, MUCH less. Calories and macros should be your primary concern. If these bad boys are in check you WILL get results. If not it doesn't matter whether you drink water from plastic or not, no matter you drink diary or not, nothing matters much and you will probably fail.
Another topic is sugar. This mofo should be eliminated from the face of the Earth forever. Stop eating it.
If you sleep less than 8 hours then you are in suboptimal state. You ARE losing possible gains.
I like the principle of Occam's razor. Cut all secondary to get to the primary. This principle helps me to see what is necessary and stay sane in this age of information overflow. Simple stuff works. Basics work. Learn the basics and then progress to more complex and advanced stuff but with simplicity in mind. Training programs and diet plans shouldn't be overcomplicated to work. Remember this.
Time and Discipline
Too many people don't understand such simple concepts. Besides hard work you need to put in time to get results. You need to be patient and disciplined. Work hard consistently and when it's time you'll get anything you worked so hard for. Be patient.
Fuck them. Stay away from them. Never look for excuses. They make you weak.
All this is simple stuff but it needs to be reminded. As for me, in 2012 I took my handstand training to another (much higher) level. I reached straight handstand and several different handbalancing tricks. Also my planche and planche push-ups improved big time. I learned 2/3 one-arm chin-up, reached claw fingertip push-ups and much more. The closer I get to my training goals the harder training becomes. There were lots of plateaus in 2012. Much more than before. But I know one thing - the harder you work for something the more you appreciate it when you get it. My training quest is far from over. It's 2013 and there are big things that wait. Let this year be better than previous ones. Thanks for reading and support. If you need help don't be afraid to ask.
Play rough in 2013!
It seems pretty obvious that everybody on this planet is unique. Even when comparing them to their parents or other relatives. Everybody is different. Some people are right hand dominant, others - left hand. Some people are tall, some are short. Some people have fast metabolisms, some have slow. I can go on and on. Why am I writing this? Because all the people know they are different but still try to copy others (usually more successful ones) without even thinking. I see this all the time. I talk about this all the time. You can't expect results from thoughtless copying of programs and training approaches. Or diet methods. Or anything. "Hey, that dude got pretty big from doing this program. I will definitely get big from doing it exactly". Sorry to disappoint you but more chances that you won't. Why? Again, because everybody is different. Or because that guy might have years of experience and tons of knowledge under his belt and he designed a program that takes into account his physiology, biomechanics, stress levels, spare time etc (in other words, that is individual for him). Or he may be lucky bastard with genetics that allow him to use all the crappy programs in the world and grow. Or something in between. Your program might not be unique but it definitely must be personalized for you.
Because otherwise you'll suck.
Ok, Got It. What Should Be Personalized?
There are several points you should tweak to make program work for you.
Your technique should be as close to flawless as possible and at the same time it should be the most efficient for you. If you strive for less then be prepared to say "hello" to injury sooner rather than later. It seems like a no-brainer but there are lots of people who train with poor technique, suffer from injuries and blame in this everything except their stupidity. Don't be one of them. Remember, almost every injury you get now will bother you in future.
Bench press, curls and crunches? Think again. For a whole, all-around program you'll need some kind of squat, some kind of deadlift/lower back pull, couple of pressing movements in several planes, couple of pulling movements in several planes. Some coaches add several other exercises but this is the base of any successful program.
Proper Exercise Selection
Every trainee has different biomechanics and thus requires different exercises. For example, let's take barbell squat. The person with crappy biomechanics and poor leverage for this exercise might never be able to perform it properly. What to do? Not to squat? Wrong. This person needs to find an alternative that will work. This could be Sandbag Zercher Squats, Sandbag Bear-Hug Squats, Barbell Front Squats, Barbell Zercher Squats, Kettlebell Squats etc.
Lots of trainees get into this "intensity trap". They rush to add weight/reps/sets every session until they hit the situation where the weight seems impossible to lift for given amount of reps and sets. They hit plateau. Smarter trainees take it easy and lower intensity a bit. Stupid ones keep hitting it hard and get nowhere.
Proper Set/Rep Scheme
This is very important. Some people just don't progress on high reps, as well as others struggle with low reps. Stick to set/rep scheme that works for you.
Right Macronutrient and Food Selection
Talking about diet. Macronutrient proportions and food selection are probably the most important factors (along with calories) that will bring you the most results. When you are creating your diet you should keep in mind all your food allergies and cut out that foods completely. Also pick food content according to right macros for you. Pick the wrong ones and you'll get no results.
There are a lot of other factors you need to take into account but these are the ones I'd like to concentrate on right now.
The most important thing you can do in studying others' successful programs and diet approaches is trying to understand the principles that are behind. If you have fast metabolism forget about intermittent fasting. If you want to build muscle mass the fastest way then calisthenics probably aren't the best option. Think! Thanks for reading. Comment, like and share. If you need unique personalized approach feel free to contact me.
There was a big healthy feast. Lots of absinthe, beers and pizzas. Tonight is more to come. That's how we do it, Rough Strength style.
Thanks everybody for congratulations and support. This was very productive year. I hope next one will be even more productive and fun.
And here's picture of sexy Kim Kardashian to boost some serious testosterone.
Rough Strength Is Online
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If you interested in obtaining rough strength you should check this blog often as I will be posting no bullshit info on how to accomplish your goals as fast as humanly possible. This includes info on training, nutrition, restoration, videos, tips, motivation, new ideas, old-school solutions, reviews, random thoughts, recommended reading and much more
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Stay tuned for more info. And to fuel the interest, the next post will be on heavy sandbag training.