Picking your Poison

Everyone wants the magic bullet.

That one thing that gets them in the best shape of their lives, all in three short workouts per week.

But there’s no such thing.

You see, what may work for me won’t necessarily be right for you. Because everyone’s body responds differently to training, everyone needs different training programs if they are to reach the best possible shape they can be in.

Before I go too much further I need to clarify a few things. If you haven’t done any structured exercise for a long time and are way out of shape what you need right now is to start following some kind, any kind, of structured plan. Simply eating the right foods at the right times and turning up to do some exercise will get you in muchy better shape than where you are right now.

But I’m talking about the people who are already in decent shape. Maybe they work in the fitness industry, or they compete in some kind of sport. These people are looking for that edge that could be the difference between gold and not even making the podium.

Using me as an example – I love lifting weights, always have. Doesn’t matter what kind as long as they’re free to move and not machine based. But these days, after a ton of bad injuries and a couple of big surgeries, I find that some lifts just aren’t for me. They just stress my body out so much that the reward for the lift is not worth the price I have to pay. Lately I have been experimenting with Olympic lifting and the results have been interesting. Most noticeably two things have happened – I gained 6kg – and my hips are in pain. The most obvious cause for this is the full squat snatch. This lift requires and enormous amount of flexibility and strength and quite honestly it may be beyond me these days to do it on a regular basis.

Does that mean Olympic lifting is bad? No. In fact, I think it is one of the best ways to get strong, requiring a unique blend of suppleness and strength making it an ideal training method for many sports. But sadly I just don’t have the hip flexibility to do it well because of some previous injuries.

So the answer is to back off the Olympic lifting, or at least off the snatches, and find other ways to get the same result without the problems it has been causing.

The same can be said of many of the best known kettlebell programs out there from Enter the Kettlebell to Kettlebell Muscle. They are going to be a great fit for many people, but for some will just not get a great result. This is where a good trainer comes in, or a having a lot of personal experience and being able to modify programs on the go to meet your needs.

It’s also why I’m really happy that on March 20 Senior RKC Shaun Cairns and I will be running  Kettlebell Programming workshop to teach people the ins and outs of the incredible variety of ways to get stronger, leaner, fitter, all while using kettlebells. Have all your questions answered about strength and programming methods.


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One Response to “Picking your Poison”

  1. Dale Says:

    Andrew, Great article, keep up the great info like this.

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