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Old 08-22-2011, 11:26 AM   #1
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Default "Hard" Training

I thought I would share this with any younger lifters or novices lurking on the board.

A huge percentage of the guys on the average forum suffer from one major training deficiency...they are not training hard. They think they are training hard, but it's no where nearly the level required to achieve the goals they are after.

Now don't go rush out an do 72 more sets today. That's not what I'm saying.

A great first step is to comb through your exercise selection and weed out the fluff. Once you do that, add in the basics: compound, bodyweight and maybe some Olympic lifts. Some great choices include:

Squats
Deadlift
BB/DB Rows
Pull Ups
Dips
Bench Press
Overhead Press
Power Cleans

If you want ab/core work, don't do volume work...do heavy work. Weighted situps, heavy side bends or cable crunches. Stuff like that.

Once you have a good exercise selection, bust your nuts and maximize every set. Never waste a set. Push your body for as many reps as possible. Add weight to the bar when you can do a large number of reps per set.

Learn proper form. I guarantee the form you are using right now is severely lacking. It's simply not good enough to pick up a heavy barbell and hope you are lifting correctly.

Lastly, make it a goal to destroy yourself in an hour. With quality exercises, maximizing every set, and full throttle progression you will quickly pass up most everyone at the gym.
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Old 08-22-2011, 11:30 AM   #2
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This is solid advice. I have been doing sessions lasting 45 mins and giving it my all in every rep of every set and I am feeling more benefit and felling more beat up afterwards as a result than I have in the past on sessions lasting over an hour.

Why do curls if you can do Chins, why do cables when you can do Dips, why do lateral raises when you can do high pulls

Carl.
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Old 08-22-2011, 11:31 AM   #3
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Good post. It is especially true when it comes to squats and deadlifts. How many actually push those two exercises to their limits? I mean keep pulling until you absolutely fail or leave the squat bar on the pins because you can't lift it any more. You'll know when you hit it "hard" because you will not be able to eat enough for the next 24 hours.
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Old 08-22-2011, 11:33 AM   #4
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Awesome post BTB! That says a lot, and everyone can learn something from it.
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Old 08-22-2011, 11:36 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Off Road View Post
Good post. It is especially true when it comes to squats and deadlifts. How many actually push those two exercises to their limits? I mean keep pulling until you absolutely fail or leave the squat bar on the pins because you can't lift it any more. You'll know when you hit it "hard" because you will not be able to eat enough for the next 24 hours.
This is a real good indicator. I can NEVER eat enough after a hard squat or deadlift session

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Old 08-22-2011, 11:38 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Carl1174 View Post
This is solid advice. I have been doing sessions lasting 45 mins and giving it my all in every rep of every set and I am feeling more benefit and felling more beat up afterwards as a result than I have in the past on sessions lasting over an hour.

Why do curls if you can do Chins, why do cables when you can do Dips, why do lateral raises when you can do high pulls

Carl.
My of my personal mantras is that a trainee shouldn't add volume or sets to a workout unless they are currently able to destroy themselves/work hard in an hour.

Palms toward face chin ups are a great exercise as well. They are probably the best bicep builder. Mileage may vary.
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Old 08-22-2011, 02:26 PM   #7
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I see guys in the gym who sweat only because they mess around on a treadmill for 20 minutes after they finish lifting. During their workout, they are rarely out of breath, sweaty, or showing any other signs of exertion, unless they happen to be the one picking the bar up off their bro yelling "its all you"

Today was squat day, and I was dripping with sweat by the time I got to my working sets. Sure, the squats aren't huge, but I've never seen anyone squat or deadlift near their max without obvious signs of exertion.

Its hard, and a little scary, using weight that could damage you. Its a lot of work, and you don't get to do impressive flexing positions like you can when you're curling the lady's dumbbells. But when I'm standing with over 400 pounds in my hands, or in the hole with my bodyweight worth of iron on my back, there's no feeling that could ever compare. The sense of power and primal strength is worth the torn callouses and bruises and skipped gunz days.

Its hard work. I wouldn't have it any other way. It keeps the riff-raff out.
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Old 09-23-2011, 12:45 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BendtheBar View Post
With quality exercises, maximizing every set, and full throttle progression you will quickly pass up most everyone at the gym.
So right, man.
I can squat more than those bodybuilders at my gym.. they're doing squat WITH a pad so it "doesn't hurt so much" and use about 100 kg.
- rly?
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Old 09-23-2011, 02:00 PM   #9
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Felt good after reading the OP since I do every single one of those exercises. By 'soon' you'll be passing others in the gym I assume you mean a year or thereabouts?

As for the hungry after heavy compounds thing, yesterday was a hard session and I was getting hungry every 90 minutes for the rest of the day! Don't feel as hungry today but then again, it was a rest day

@Brute: I am usually wrecked after the last set of heavy squats or deads too.
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Old 09-23-2011, 02:05 PM   #10
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It does take a while to master 'training hard', this is why I'm such a big fan of quite rigid routines and cycling for beginner/intermediates. If the focus is on progression then everything falls into place anyway and hard work has to happen. They just need to follow what's on paper and do it.

For someone who's a bit more advanced it gets different, you may only do 3 exercises on any given day despite having 5 in your log book. If you kill yourself on those 3 it's highly unlikely doing much more will add anything. Also an advanced guy may switch exercises around a lot, but he knows when he's genuinely working hard and when he's loafing because he has a much broader range of 'whats heavy' through his years of training. So even in a new exercise he will get a pretty good handle within only a session or two of what he's capable of there.

I'd even go so far as to say this is one of the main reasons why HIT failed so hard with many people. You can't teach people to work 'hard just by writing about it'. Going to failure doesn't mean anything, could just mean they dropped the bar before it got really hard. The initial advice was probably fine, work as hard as you can. But try teaching that to a teenager who's only real main concern is abs to pick up chicks and hang around at bars most nights. Much, much easier to get them to focus on progression.

Last edited by Fazc; 09-23-2011 at 02:11 PM.
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