Thoughts on strength & conditioning: pushing the volume

 Ok, so my next fight is coming up in march at the [open polish championships] in Czestochowa. That gives me roughly three months to prepare. My plan is to finish another three 5/3/1 cycles (without deload weeks), then take a break for regeneration and go to Poland at my strongest. I hit the gym on Wednesday and Friday. Sparring is Saturday and Monday. Over the week, I do quite some technique practice. Also, this week, I’ll take up my Judo practice again. That’ll do a lot in terms of lactic acid tolerance.

Now although that’s quite some training volume already, I’m adding in another bodyweight S&C session on Monday.  You see, I’m currently in off-season. After I fight in Poland, there’ll be some kickboxing bouts here in Austria in April and Mai. After that, I don’t have a plan yet, but I’m fairly sure there’ll be some interesting fights to pick in June as well. Hence, I’ll have to decrease my S&C training volume soon enough.

All that being said, I’ll briefly outline my bodyweight conditioning routine. You probably noticed that I’ll do it on Mondays, while Monday is also a sparring day. Furthermore, I’ll try to take Judo classes on Monday whenever possible. Busy day. Therefore, I need my routine to be short and not overly taxing. Now when it comes to time efficiency, few trainings forms can beat a good, old fashioned strength circuit, so I’ll stick with that. Exercise-wise, I want the bodyweight session to augment my gym sessions, so a push, a pull and a hip hinge need to be implemented. Basically, this brings me to something quite [naked warrior]-like. What I do is the following circuit:

  1. Chin-Ups (8-12 reps)
  2. One-arm push-ups (5-10reps / side)
  3. Pistol squats (8-12 reps / side)

I repeat the whole thing three times, with no rest in between exercises and no rest in between rounds. Of course, I stop every set a rep short of technical failure. Greasin’ the groove. If you’ve been reading my [last post], you might have noticed that Chris and I decided to drop pistol squats from our “vertical” session and instead to barbell overhead squats in their place. Since pistol squats are a requirement for taking the Shinergy[black belt] challenge, however, I feel it’s not particularly smart to neglect them. A definite date isn’t set up yet, but I’ll be taking my black belt challenge pretty soon now, so it’s worth the time to prepare. You know the saying: “failing to prepare is preparing to fail”… Besides the pistols, pull-ups are a part of the physical test for potential black-belts. Minimum requirement is 15 reps (bodyweight only, so no additional weight). I’ve been stuck at 12 for quite a while now. So, adding a second weekly pull-up session (weighted tactical pull-ups on Fridays, bodyweight chin-ups on Mondays) won’t hurt.

As I’m writing this, I’ve just finished today’s session. Established a base-line from which I’ll work up – just hit the bare minimum on every set (8/8/8 on the chins, 5/5/5 on the push-ups, 8/8/8 on the pistols). For the next couple weeks, I’ll just work on getting my sets to 12 reps. After that, I’ll decide on a smart progression. Now, I’ll be off for my classes and some sparring – maybe I’ll even meet some of you there!

So long,

take care

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