There is a quote from old time strongman Earl Liederman that I like to use often when explaining my philosophy on training, "Train as often as possible while staying as fresh as possible."
It is pretty straight forward and stands as true today as it did back in his time. Basically, train frequently. Meaning several times a week and even several times a day. But, keep the sessions short. 30-45 minutes is an ideal amount of time to lift heavy stuff once you are warmed up. The problem is, once you get pretty good at lifting, you need to do even more of it to improve in terms of size and strength.
This brings us back to Earl's concept. Add more sessions but keep them brief. Let me give you an example. On the weekends my buddies and I do strongman training. Upper body drills are practiced (I write practice because strength is a skill) on Saturday and lower body drills are practiced on Sunday. We go hard and heavy and the workouts are brutal.
Several meals and hopefully a nap later I go into my spare room and play with my kettlebells for a bit. I train the same muscles groups on the same day (upper body on Saturday, lower body on Sunday) but in order to prevent burnout I mix it up. Firstly I am using kettlebells instead of heavier weights, but also I focus on higher rep drills to work different motor units. So AM is heavy, PM is light. This prevents me from avoiding the PM sessions because I am beat up and feeling like a wimp. Instead I just tell myself I am going to play with my kettlebells for a bit and quite when I am tired.
I learned this concept from Charles Poliquin's site , which is full of great training ideas, and thought I was the only guy around doing this until my training partner asked me what I was doing tonight. It turns out all 245lbs of him trains twice a day as well, and has been for years. He is Mongolian so we don't talk too much, hence my ignorance, but he told me that he likes to get a pump in the evening. You see, he understood this concept already, heavy in the morning, light in the afternoon.
You may not want to put the time in, and I don't blame you, but the fact is twice a day training works. You will get stronger due to practice, remember strength is a skill, and you will get bigger due to volume, PROVIDED you follow the second part of Earl's wisdom, STAY FRESH.
I am not talking about Mike the Situation fresh, I am talking about preventing burn out from over training.
Stay fresh by
mixing up the lifts
mixing up the loads
mixing up the set/rep schemes
napping (this is huge)
eating a ton of quality food
sleeping 8-10 hours
taking your vitamins
getting sports massages
doing concentric only lifting at times
What do you think? Am I out to lunch or do you see your squat PR going up already?
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