PDA

View Full Version : Ultimate MMA Conditioning


Anton Emery
01-01-2010, 12:42 PM
I just picked up Joel Jamieson's book, Ultimate MMA Conditioning, and am reading through it. So far its great, and i am learning alot. When i picked up the package i was initially worried about the value of my purchase, as the book seemed kind of thin. But its 160 pages of all text, not one photograph or ad.

He goes into alot of detail on the three energy systems used for MMA and a ton of different protocols on how to optimally develop them. The training approach is centered around focusing on one fitness quality over an eight week block with additional maintenance on a secondary quality. Then you deload for a week or so and move onto to the next fitness quality. I'll admit when i first read this it seemed like old fashioned block periodization, which i thought had been deemed less effective.

I am enjoying the book because its more than just a bunch of exercises thrown together with no explanation of the how's and why's. Once i get through it and digest it all I will giving this programming a shot. Joel has trained a bunch of high level MMA guys, and was the S & C coach for Pride, which are pretty impressive credentials.


Anton

Donald Lee
01-01-2010, 05:25 PM
I just picked up Joel Jamieson's book, Ultimate MMA Conditioning, and am reading through it. So far its great, and i am learning alot. When i picked up the package i was initially worried about the value of my purchase, as the book seemed kind of thin. But its 160 pages of all text, not one photograph or ad.

He goes into alot of detail on the three energy systems used for MMA and a ton of different protocols on how to optimally develop them. The training approach is centered around focusing on one fitness quality over an eight week block with additional maintenance on a secondary quality. Then you deload for a week or so and move onto to the next fitness quality. I'll admit when i first read this it seemed like old fashioned block periodization, which i thought had been deemed less effective.

I am enjoying the book because its more than just a bunch of exercises thrown together with no explanation of the how's and why's. Once i get through it and digest it all I will giving this programming a shot. Joel has trained a bunch of high level MMA guys, and was the S & C coach for Pride, which are pretty impressive credentials.


Anton

I'm glad you are enjoying the book. Lyle also has a review of the book somewhere. I tried relocating it a bit ago, but I could only find it pasted on IGX. When you mention old fashioned block periodization, I think you're thinking of linear periodization.

The block periodization that Joel espouses is the periodization that Verkhoshansky helped form and test while in the Soviet Union. It's also the form of periodization that Lance Armstrong's coach Chris Carmichael endorses. Block periodization is also known as conjugate-sequence periodization or simply conjugate periodization. Conjugate periodization is a confusing term in America because Louie Simmons also calls his WSB programming conjugate periodization. If I understand WSB and Louie Simmons correctly, WSB's use of the term conjugate is because exercises are being switched every week. According to traditionally understood periodization terminology, WSB would be weekly concurrent periodization and not conjugate. With Verkoshansky's conjugate periodization, the various qualities are transitioned into seemlessly. Conjugate periodization or block periodization is very organic in that the training and progression all supports each other. Everything builds on each other; hence, why it's also called conjugate-sequence periodization.

The Block Periodization article, that I think Gavin linked to, took the literal block periodization from Issurin's book and applied it to Powerlifting. It was unnecessarily complicated in my opinion. In my opinion, for strength training, the more basic form of block periodization applied by RTS is more appropriate.

Anton Emery
01-01-2010, 06:26 PM
Whoops, yea, thats what i meant, linear periodization. Where there is an adaption phase, hypotrophy phase, speed strength, etc.

Thanks for the explanation on conjugate vs concurrent. I get those terms confused.



Anton

Yael Grauer
07-11-2010, 09:49 PM
I've been reading this book, too, and lurking out on Joel's forum a bit... can't even say how impressed I am. The guy is a genius.

Anton Emery
07-12-2010, 07:41 AM
Yea, i like it alot. A ton of great information to put into practice.

I like that Joel goes into the why's behind the workout protocols.


anton

Grissim Connery
07-13-2010, 11:14 AM
i was watching the video on their site with jens pulver and the other guy talkin. what is that rope contraption they are pulling? it looks like it cycles like a treadmill, but it's also vertical. are they just making a circle out of it and looping it through a pully or something?

i think i'll order this book when i feel better about money.

Joe Hart
07-13-2010, 01:44 PM
Its a vector or viper or some such. Its an endless rope machine. That way you can climb a rope in a small room. THey look nice and they should for 1500-2000 dollars I think.

I have Joel's book too. It has some good info. Some things you need to be creative about if you don't have the machinery.

Donald Lee
07-13-2010, 02:27 PM
The book is even more worth it now that he's making BioForce available for free for anyone who buys the book.

Has anyone here noticed any substantial results from implementing some of Joel's stuff?

Joe Hart
07-13-2010, 03:26 PM
BioForce? Haven't seen that and I have been lurking more often lately. What is it.

Donald Lee
07-13-2010, 04:22 PM
BioForce? Haven't seen that and I have been lurking more often lately. What is it.

It's the customized training and assessment program, based on OmegaWave (http://www.omegawave.com/), that Joel wrote about in his book.

This is from his latest newsletter:

My Big Announcement...


If you've read my book, Ultimate MMA Conditioning then you know just how much value I place on assessment when it comes to strength and conditioning for MMA. You also know that I've been working hard on a project designed to take all the guesswork out of programming and finally give you the training solution you've been looking for.

After nearly two years of creating, tweaking, testing, analyzing, changing, retesting, etc. I'm VERY excited to announce that the first phase of the program is just about ready to launch!

The official name of this new program is "BioForce Training" and if you've read my book, you know why the name fits.

Now here's the best part...

After much thought and deliberation, I've decided to make the first phase of the project (I'll be giving you all the details of how it will work very soon) absolutely FREE to use forever to anyone who has purchased my book.

Make no mistake about it, what BioForce offers and the online tool I'm about to launch will be absolutely invaluable to every single MMA athlete and coach and there is absolutely nothing else like it out there today.

I guarantee it will be incredibly powerful and it is the result of literally years of my own research and hours upon hours of my time.

I'm sure I could charge a good deal of money for it, but giving it away to use for free forever is my way of saying thanks to everyone who has invested their hard earned money and time in my book. So far, Ultimate MMA Conditioning has been purchased by people in over 40 different countries and almost daily I get success stories and emails from those who have read it.

What I'm about to launch will bring everything in the book together and really help you maximize your results with it. It's the missing link I've been working on for so long. If you have already bought the book, just sit back and wait and I'll be telling you shortly how to sign up and get lifetime free access to my new program.

If you don't yet have a copy of my book for some reason, you'll want to grab one ASAP so you can take advantage of this special offer when I launch the program. The only way you'll be able to get free lifetime access to BioForce is if you own the book.

Part of the reason for this is because you won't be able to get the most out of the program unless you've read the book and part of it is because I appreciate everyone who has bought and want to say thanks and make it even more powerful for them.

I am literally just a couple of weeks away from being ready to put it out there for everyone to use and am just working out the last minute details and getting rid of the bugs.

If you don't yet own my book, click here and get it now.

BioForce is something I am incredibly excited to tell you more about and launch and it is the result of many years of hard work.

Stay tuned to learn more very soon...

Joe Hart
07-13-2010, 07:17 PM
That is way cool. Glad I bought the book way back. Filled full of notes already.

Derek Simonds
07-14-2010, 07:05 AM
I went ahead and ordered the book.

Donald Lee
07-14-2010, 06:30 PM
I went ahead and ordered the book.

IIRC, reading Joel's stuff regarding conditioning a couple years back is what started turning me off from CrossFit methods.

BTW. This is unrelated, but does anyone know if it's true that Brian MacKenzie of CrossFit Endurance hasn't been finishing his races?

Shaf wrote this over on Lyle's forum:

Brian MacKenzie, of Crossfit Endurance, has failed to finish almost every race he's started SINCE training that way, including a recent 40 mile solo run in Death Valley that he was filming for a project and last year a 100 miler.

Why? Because to run that far requires actually RUNNING THAT FAR. It doesn't require intervals, muscle-ups, hill sprints, prowler pushes, or kipping pull ups. It requires RUNNING THAT FAR.

So, for Crossfit Endurance, the DNF = the new standard of winning.

I do recall a while back that it was hyped up that he would be running the 100 miler (whatever it was called) and competing in the CrossFit Games within a couple weeks. I remember that he wasn't able to finish either, but I didn't know it was a recurring thing.

A couple years ago, I tried an interval method advocated by Brian MacKenzie to get back into running shape, and I was sorely disappointed when it had almost zero transferrence to a timed 3-miler.

After reading Joel's stuff, I started doing cardiac output work and HICT with weighted stepups, and that was all it took to get my 3-mile time where I needed. My exposure to endurance training until that time was running 4-6 milers as fast as possible through the military (I guess this would be called threshold training) and intervals/CrossFit. It's surprising how I was able to get such good results without ever running hard.

Allen Yeh
07-15-2010, 04:02 AM
Hict?

James Evans
07-15-2010, 04:24 AM
Every result comes at a price: if you just go through the motions you are rewarded with a shallow or empty prize, if you do mindful, hard work the result will be genuine, and satisfying. Pay the entry fee. Take the ride. If you train 1000 hours per year you might have a shot at the world champion. If you give training 200 hours of casual attendance you canít expect the same. In 2004 we hoped the shortcuts being marketed by a particular fitness company would produce the meaningful results they claimed. Our own testing and experiments proved those shortcuts didnít lead where we wanted to go and it changed the nature of our project forever.

Mark Twight @ http://cjs-fitness.blogspot.com/2010/05/interview-with-mark-twight-of-gym-jones.html

Nice dig.

Yael Grauer
07-15-2010, 12:56 PM
That's some funny shit.

Donald Lee
07-15-2010, 03:02 PM
Hict?

High Intensity Continuous Training

If you want to burn fat like none other then get on a versaclimber, crank the resistance up as high as possible and go for 2 sets of 20 minutes keeping your heart rate in the 160s. Nothing will stimulate fat loss more than that because the high resistance will mean you're using a ton of fast twitch and slow twitch fibers and it's upper and lower body. Believe me it's brutally hard but it works. It will also improve your aerobic conditioning very effectively too.

...

If you don't have access to a versaclimber you can use a spin bike with the resistance cranked way up so you're only able to manage 20-30rpm and accomplish the same thing but without the upper body's involvement. It's not as effective as the versaclimber but it still works. I'm going to order a Jacobs Ladder soon and experiment with that, I think it could be harder and more effective than the versaclimber possibly but we'll see.

...

Yes they are brutal but very effective. Keep your heart rate under your anaerobic threshold, which will be about 5-10bpm lower than it is when running. Essentially what you're accomplishing is the same thing as an interval but for much longer periods of time. One of the principle reasons intervals are effective is that the shorter higher intensity work recruits the fast twitch fibers but since it's high velocity they also fatigue quickly and you have to rest. The method I'm describing is such low frequency, i.e. low velocity, that you can do it for a long time and the fast twitch fibers are recruited because of the high resistance. It's a very effective method but yes it is not fun either. I'll call it HICT for high intensity continuous training or something like that, ha. Now if only I could get Tabata's marketing agent.

...

HICT is not targeting the heart so much as the muscles oxidative abilities themselves, specifially the fast twitch oxidative-glycolytic fibers to be exact. It's different than cardiac output work. Remember there is two sides to energy production, supply from the cardiovascular system and demand from the neuromuscular system. You need to develop both sides of the equation together in the right order and with the right methods to really improve your conditioning.

I never got up to 2 sets of 20 min. I think I've done up to about 2 sets of 12 min. I still got great results. I did step-ups because I didn't have the VersaClimber or Jacob's Ladder. It sort of felt like rucking slightly uphill.

James Evans
07-16-2010, 03:52 AM
Could this be done on an airdyne or an erg or would the upper body resistant not be enough? I think I've seen Joel asked this before but can't remember what he said.

Donald Lee
07-16-2010, 08:02 AM
Could this be done on an airdyne or an erg or would the upper body resistant not be enough? I think I've seen Joel asked this before but can't remember what he said.

I don't remember what was said about an airdyne, but I know an erg doesn't provide enough continuous resistance. HICT is supposed to be sort of like a slow grind. Real rowing could be used, but ergs don't provide continuous resistance. I tried doing HICT complex style, too, but it never really worked out too great. Grip would give out on RDL's, even with straps. Shoulders and arms would give out on thrusters. If you don't have one of the machines Joel recommends for HICT, I think the Tempo Method is better for the upper body.

James Evans
07-16-2010, 08:42 AM
How does real rowing provide continuous resistance when an erg does not? Or have you just exposed a blatant flaw in my coaching practice?

I see Gym Jones have been experimenting with the ski erg but this just works the upper body, no? Anyone ever try one of those Nordic Ski machines that were popular 15 years ago? I remember them being quite challenging.

Donald Lee
07-16-2010, 11:22 AM
I don't have much experience with rowing, so you can ignore what I said if it contradicts what you know.

Derek Simonds
07-16-2010, 01:46 PM
Really wish I had pulled the trigger on the versa climber I saw on craigsList last year. I am really interested to read and try to understand why a rower doesn't work. I think based on what Donald posted I get it but... rowing sucks over 20 minutes if done at the right intensity. I can see that you pull hard then no tension then pull hard again but my heart rate is definitely not falling during that period of moving forward.

Donald Lee
07-16-2010, 02:31 PM
I can see that you pull hard then no tension then pull hard again but my heart rate is definitely not falling during that period of moving forward.

HICT isn't designed for cardiac adaptations. It could create positive cardiac adaptations in people new to endurance training though, and it could help maintain some cardiac adaptations for a while.

HICT is designed to make those middle range threshold fibers more oxidative-slow twitch and fast twitch, but not the highest threshold fibers. HRI (High Resistance Intervals) make your highest threshold fibers more oxidative. I did HRI only once prior to OCS, because I didn't have a sled or prowler or hills to run, and every hill totally trashed my legs.

Your heart rate is only an indicator of intensity level. It doesn't determine intensity, as just getting excited or looking at NASCAR drivers will show you. HICT is supposed to be done at about 10 BPM below your lactate threshold.

So, in other words, there's the supply side (heart) and the utilization side (muscles). HICT is primarily for the utilization side.

Also, when you guys play around with this stuff, you'll notice the different effects of speed vs. resistance level on your heart rate. Speed tends to elevate your heart rate more. In CrossFit terms, Fran will probably elevate your heart rate much more than Heavy Fran. It's easy to see this stuff on a bike, since you can change resistance levels rather easily.

Derek Simonds
07-19-2010, 02:53 AM
The book came on Saturday and I am about half way through. There is a whole a whole lotta information in there. It is eerily similar to how I used to train for triathlons. Obviously he has some different methodologies but there is definitely some carryover.

It isn't light reading by the way...

Grissim Connery
07-19-2010, 10:28 AM
what are the similarities?

Yael Grauer
07-19-2010, 08:18 PM
Hardest part for me is to figure out which phase to do when... to figure out how to adapt it for BJJ... that kind of stuff.

Anton Emery
07-19-2010, 09:57 PM
I have just been following the program as its laid out, in the indicated order. I am just doing BJJ as well, no MMA.


Anton

Derek Simonds
07-20-2010, 06:47 AM
what are the similarities?

I am only through the aerobic phase about page 85'ish I was tired when I put it down but somewhere around there.

The two things that popped out immediately was the targeted heart rate training and the tempo training. I will dig up an old spreadsheet from triathlon training just to confirm. Each week I would have a focus sport. That sport would get three workouts that week. I would do one longer slower targeted heart rate day, one tempo day and one brick where I would work just under race pace (usually 5 to 10 BPM less) in conjunction with my other sports (a brick would be a swim then bike or bike then run workout). This was my off season style training and as I approached the season I started doing a lot more intervals and more work at a higher HR.

Grissim Connery
07-20-2010, 08:33 AM
i guess i'm gonna have to get the book

i've always been a jump rope fan. is he not in favor of them?

Donald Lee
07-20-2010, 09:47 AM
i guess i'm gonna have to get the book

i've always been a jump rope fan. is he not in favor of them?

For the cardiac output work, basically LSD, you can use any modality or mix it up if you're getting bored. It's only targeting heart rate, so as long as you're in the target heart rate range, the exercise choice doesn't matter.

Jump roping works well for the active recovery that's prescribed in many of the workouts. Joel has you rest for like 5-10 min. between many of the circuits or series, as I think he calls them.

Derek Simonds
07-20-2010, 09:48 AM
i guess i'm gonna have to get the book

i've always been a jump rope fan. is he not in favor of them?

From what I have read jump ropes are cool. I am no means an expert on what he is writing. I bookmarked several pieces to come back to read when I was fresh. The only really equipment focused parts so far are the heart rate monitor and when doing HICT he advocates the versa climber or spin bike.

From what I have read most of the training can be like Anton has said where you are doing mma or bjj specific drills while maintaining your specific HR for that time period.

Donald Lee
07-20-2010, 11:44 AM
From what I have read most of the training can be like Anton has said where you are doing mma or bjj specific drills while maintaining your specific HR for that time period.

That's not quite accurate.

Joel follows the model of genderal conditioning followed by specific conditioning.

To get the most out of your aerobic training, it's ideal to train 4-6 days/week. During the aerobic/cardiac output (whatever it's called) block, you can get some of that from your mma/bjj training. The rest you fill in with cardiac output and/or whatever else.

Closer toward a fight or competition, the blocks get more specific. In the last 8 weeks, most of the S&C encorporates specific technique drills.

Stuff like running, VersaClimber, and Tempo method pushups/lat pulldowns all fall under general conditioning.

In blocks without an aerobic component as either the primary or secondary focus, aerobic adaptations are maintained through your mma/bjj training. If you aren't able to maintain them b/c you're not doing enough mma/bjj training or whatever, then you have to do some separate maintenance work.

Yael Grauer
07-20-2010, 01:04 PM
I have just been following the program as its laid out, in the indicated order. I am just doing BJJ as well, no MMA.

I think what I'm going to do is pick the areas I am weakest in (such as metcon right now, actually, since I've been doing Max Strength) and focus on those phases first.

Derek Simonds
07-20-2010, 01:20 PM
That's not quite accurate.

Joel follows the model of genderal conditioning followed by specific conditioning.

To get the most out of your aerobic training, it's ideal to train 4-6 days/week. During the aerobic/cardiac output (whatever it's called) block, you can get some of that from your mma/bjj training. The rest you fill in with cardiac output and/or whatever else.

Closer toward a fight or competition, the blocks get more specific. In the last 8 weeks, most of the S&C encorporates specific technique drills.

Stuff like running, VersaClimber, and Tempo method pushups/lat pulldowns all fall under general conditioning.

In blocks without an aerobic component as either the primary or secondary focus, aerobic adaptations are maintained through your mma/bjj training. If you aren't able to maintain them b/c you're not doing enough mma/bjj training or whatever, then you have to do some separate maintenance work.

Like I said I am only through the aerobic stuff so far. I am going to try and finish the book tonight so I can see the big picture.

Joe Hart
07-20-2010, 02:24 PM
I had to re-read it a few times for stuff to sink in. The thing that was weird for me was the fact that you strength trained 2x a week and conditioned probably 2-3x a week that was not MMA related.

It seemed that if you use an MMA / BJJ skill to condition with it was better. Yeah its a bummer some of the stuff requires things that I don't have (versaclimber, spin bike). There are always lunges up a hill for 10 min. :D

Donald Lee
07-20-2010, 04:16 PM
If you read all of the ridiculously long Sherdog thread that Joel started and all the articles on his site before reading the book, things make a bit more sense when you read the book for the first time.

You guys might benefit from reading this thread over on mixedmartialarts.com. Joel doesn't get into any specifics, but you should get a better sense of his approach to MMA based on his arguments.

http://www.mixedmartialarts.com/mma.cfm?go=forum_framed.posts&forum=24&thread=1650816&page=1

Anton Emery
07-20-2010, 04:31 PM
Yesterday i did Helen using the Threshold training guidelines. Kept my HR in the appropriate range, stopped when it got to high, and rested to HR 130 between rounds. It was easy enough to manage.

I really wish i had access to a spin bike for the HICT training. I suppose i could just do 10 min of box step ups, but that sounds totally mind numbing.


Anton

Donald Lee
07-20-2010, 09:36 PM
Thought you BJJ guys might like this. Here are a couple responses by Joel about whether BJJ is aerobic-lactic.

It's going to depend a lot on an indvidual's style. Some guys are higher pressure and faster paced than others. Some will sit there and hold position and slowly work until they get something then they'll explode, while others work work work until their opponent makes a mistake and they capitalize. There is probably more lactic system that comes into play than MMA, but how much more has a lot to do with someone's technique and tactics.

Look at your average heart rates while you're rolling BJJ to get some ideas. Keeping in mind all HR will be lower because of the positions of BJJ compared to standing. The better people get in BJJ, the more aerobic alactic they tend to become. Less experienced grapplers often try to use muscle more than technique and are not nearly as fluid as they should be so they waste a ton of unecssary energy.

Top level grapplers are masters at efficient energy expenditure and it seems like they can go on and on and maintain their strength and power simply because they are very effective at controlling how much energy they are using. I'm sure I've used this analogy before, but It's like trying to play raquetball against an old person who has been playing it forever. You can be younger, quicker, more athletic, and even better conditioned, but you'll be running all over the court chasing everything down while they will barely be moving out of a 5'x5' box in the middle of the court. You'll be gassed and barely moving while some guy with a beer gut in his 50s or even 60s stands there laughing at you.

Grissim Connery
07-21-2010, 09:13 AM
The thing that was weird for me was the fact that you strength trained 2x a week and conditioned probably 2-3x a week that was not MMA related.


now that i'm able to train 5x/week again, this makes sense to me. strength training is harder when everything just hurts

Grissim Connery
07-21-2010, 09:50 AM
Yesterday i did Helen using the Threshold training guidelines. Kept my HR in the appropriate range, stopped when it got to high, and rested to HR 130 between rounds. It was easy enough to manage.
Anton

i was kinda wondering about something like this. you guys mentioned that the versa climber or bike are preferred b/c you can crank the resistance so that strength is maintained in the long run even after doing a lot of cardio and the upper body is taxed. why can't somebody just deadlift as their cardio if they maintained the heart rate and had a weight that limited them to like 4-10 reps per minute? after i would think that this would cause one to get really sore, but then wouldn't one get just as sore on a bike or something if the resistance was just as hard?

Donald Lee
07-21-2010, 12:22 PM
i was kinda wondering about something like this. you guys mentioned that the versa climber or bike are preferred b/c you can crank the resistance so that strength is maintained in the long run even after doing a lot of cardio and the upper body is taxed. why can't somebody just deadlift as their cardio if they maintained the heart rate and had a weight that limited them to like 4-10 reps per minute? after i would think that this would cause one to get really sore, but then wouldn't one get just as sore on a bike or something if the resistance was just as hard?

The versa climber of spin bike is only used for HICT (High Intensity Continuous Training), which is one of many methods in the book. The goal of HICT is to make both the slow and fast twitch fibers more oxidative. It works quite a large range of muscle fibers. You do this by doing continuous work at a high intensity that can be maintained.

The highest power output that can be maintained is usually at about your lactate threshold, which tends to be in the 170-180 HR beats/min for most folks. Threshold training is done at close to this power output/pace/HR (depends what you're using to measure). Threshold type training is more specific than HICT or general cardiac output work because it's bringing all the other adaptations together at a race pace. This is speaking more for someone training for an endurance event like running, but the principles still hold.

Like I stated in an earlier post, HICT is not about the heart:

http://performancemenu.com/forum/showpost.php?p=78346&postcount=23

HICT is done at about 10 beats/min below your lactate threshold. The relatively high heart rate indicates that you're working at a high intensity, which ensures that your higher threshold fibers are recruited. Also, as you perform at an intensity higher than your lactate threshold, you begin to exponentially rely on your lactic system more.

And, HICT isn't about speed. Speed elevates your heart rate moreso than resistance level. Higher speed can potentially skip the lower threshold fibers and recruit exclusively higher threshold fibers. I'm actually pretty sure this doesn't occur in anything requiring endurance, but the fact remains that the slow, grinding type of work done at about 10 beats/min below your lactate threshold is probably the most effective for making a large range of muscle fibers oxidative.

you guys mentioned that the versa climber or bike are preferred b/c you can crank the resistance so that strength is maintained in the long run even after doing a lot of cardio and the upper body is taxed.

I'm not sure I get what you're saying here. The versa climber allows you to use HICT for both the upper body and lower body at the same time. I think Joel has tried out another machine as well, but I'm not sure if he recommends it. The spin bike, weighted step-ups, and uphill lunges are other options for HICT, but they only work the lower body.

why can't somebody just deadlift as their cardio if they maintained the heart rate and had a weight that limited them to like 4-10 reps per minute? after i would think that this would cause one to get really sore, but then wouldn't one get just as sore on a bike or something if the resistance was just as hard?

4-10 reps/min is not continuous. HR is an imperfect indicator of power output. Even if you were able to maintain the desired HR, you're not getting the desired adaptation by only performing 4-10 reps/min. You could try to do deadlifts light enough to maintain for 5-10 min, but then you wouldn't be recruiting your higher threshold fibers. Your grip would also give out, even with straps. HICT only works with a few things.

If what I wrote sounds like jibberish, I'll try to clarify.

Grissim,

Do you understand the size principle and what making your muscles more oxidative means? If you don't understand those two things, what I wrote might not make much sense.

Donald Lee
07-21-2010, 12:25 PM
I forgot to mention that your HR lags, so using your HR to monitor anything above your lactate threshold kind of sucks. If you try the HRI method, you'll see what I'm saying.

Also, it takes about 2-3 min of continuous work for your heart rate to steady, so you should probably do a steady state warmup before using your heart rate to monitor your training.

Grissim Connery
07-21-2010, 08:06 PM
That clarified most all of it. Any more, and I just need to buy the book (which I'll do in a month when I start my new job).

For the most part, I've always felt that if my conditioning was off, I just needed to roll more. I would do cardio bouts for fat loss, but gassing out was never really the issue. Thus I mostly focused on strength. Now I'm curious to see if I can have some improvements by doing more actual focused conditioning.

Grissim Connery
07-21-2010, 08:13 PM
oh and that weird sentence i wrote got answered. I understood that the HICT was meant to stress the fast twitch fibers as well, but i misunderstood the purpose. i thought it was to prevent them from much atrophy after weeks of excessive cardio. you cleared that up.

Donald Lee
07-21-2010, 09:11 PM
I understood that the HICT was meant to stress the fast twitch fibers as well, but i misunderstood the purpose. i thought it was to prevent them from much atrophy after weeks of excessive cardio.

By doing cardio, you don't become a marathoner. The longest you'll probably do cardiac output/steady state work for in a session is probably 60 min. Some like to do up to 90 min and do it fewer times per week, but cardio adaptations tend to respond better to higher frequency.

Also, irrespective of recovery issues, cardio doesn't affect your maximal strength that much unless you're doing high intensity cardio. This is partly why walking/jogging a ton doesn't negatively affect bodybuilders' muscle mass when they're cutting.

Once the volume and intensity of your cardio starts increasing, that's when it'll start interfering with muscle mass/strength.

For each block, you have a primary emphasis and a secondary emphasis. If you're weak in two areas, you can improve in two areas at a time. You need to understand what different adaptations occur with different types of training though. For example, aerobic and glycolytic adaptations are contraindicative. Generally, the secondary emphasis is something you want to keep at maintenance. Joel allows quite a bit of flexibility in designing your own blocks, but if I recall, he gives enough options to be able to follow whatever's in the book. You could follow the entire progression (1st block to the last) or you could do the 1st and 2nd and repeat, etc. Like Yael was saying, it's kind of hard to figure out all that on your own. Reading Issurin's Block Training book helps to organize your own blocks because he explains all the different adaptations and what complement each other and how to sequence adaptations.

One of the good things about block training is the secondary emphasis and the smooth transition between blocks. It's an improvement from linear periodization because you're not switching focus abruptly and you're not losing as many of your adaptations. It's an improvement from complex or concurrent periodization because it allows you to concentrate/focus more on 1 or 2 adaptations at a time. Like I said, some adaptations interfere with one another, so if you keep on working them together, you don't get anywhere. Also, some adaptations don't improve very much, and some benefit from having developed other things prior.

For the most part, I've always felt that if my conditioning was off, I just needed to roll more. I would do cardio bouts for fat loss, but gassing out was never really the issue. Thus I mostly focused on strength. Now I'm curious to see if I can have some improvements by doing more actual focused conditioning.

Conditioning has two components like I said earlier: the supply side (heart) and the utilization side (muscles). That's sort of simplified, but it's a good enough working model. Exercise physiologists debate which component is the limiting factor for endurance, but the fact still remains that you need both sides developed. Rolling will work both components somewhat, so even if you did a lot of cardiac output (LSD) type stuff, you're still liable to gas. A crude way to tell which area you're weak in is whether your muscles tire first or whether your your heart/lungs feel like they're on fire first. You could need to develop both equally or emphasize one over the other. Also, try testing your resting heart rate. A resting heart rate of about 45-low 50's is good enough for MMA. I'd test is seated or lying down, and consistently at the same time of day, preferably in the morning. It'll be about 5-10 BPM lower when you're lying down than when you're seated.

Oh yeah, Joel doesn't really think most MMA guys need much strength. His BioForce program will let you compare yourself with some other top MMA guys' numbers, but I think he's said that a deadlift of 2x bodyweight is sufficient.

I just need to buy the book (which I'll do in a month when I start my new job).

I'm sure you'll enjoy it. You don't really need to wait to start implementing some of his stuff though. He has a few articles on his website, and he has a couple sample endurance templates on his forum. There's also the long Sherdog thread where he outlines a lot of his methods.

Leon Robotham
07-22-2010, 07:37 AM
Great thread and a very interesting read. Funnily enough Joel has just sent one of my BJJ coaches an article to be published in fighters only magazine. He's not managed to read it yet, but will be sending me it on his return to the office. I'm going to get a copy of the book, and if he's okay with (Hywel and Joel) it I will post some of the text here if it is relevant to the discussion of course.

Derek Simonds
07-22-2010, 07:44 AM
Thought you BJJ guys might like this. Here are a couple responses by Joel about whether BJJ is aerobic-lactic.

So that is why me and my beer gut can get some wins against these young whipper snappers...

Yael Grauer
10-03-2010, 08:52 AM
Just wondering if anybody on here's done Joel's Bioforce beta testing yet? I just got my results this morning and everything was between 2.5 and 4. Since I'm being compared to guys and train recreationally, I decided I'd be happy with amateur/average scores (4-6). I got 4's in strength and explosive power and lower scores (3 + 3.5) in aerobic and anaerobic fitness, which makes sense to me since I haven't been training (just worked on powerlifting for the past 16 weeks) and know that's an area for improvement. But I was really surprised by my low muscular endurance score (2.5). My boyfriend got his results too with everything between 4.5 and 7 (go him!) with very high aerobic fitness, decent explosive power and 5's for strength and and anerobic fitness (again, makes sense since he's done 16 weeks of powerlifting with me, plus he's a long-time runner). But we were really surprised by his muscular endurance score (4.5) since he did 72 max pushups and 15 max pullups.

Anyway curious about other people's scores/reactions/etc.

Gant Grimes
10-04-2010, 02:44 PM
That seems a little off. My overall index was 6.5. At 218 lbs., I had 7.0 in strength and explosive power, 6.5 for aerobic and anaerobic fitness, and 4.0 for muscular endurance (with a pitiful 35push/17 pull). I have been doing very little conditioning off the mat lately and would consider myself 4-5 hard weeks out of a judo tourney.

Yael Grauer
10-04-2010, 07:21 PM
I asked Joel and he said the numbers were fairly average for 165 lbs. because he can do 20-25 pull-ups and 100 pushups and 90 situps and weighs 210. I'm not really sure I agree with the pullup being based on weight thing--unless you are a big guy with huge legs and small arms or something. Also he said the breath hold was a factor.

Jarod Barker
10-05-2010, 07:42 AM
I haven't seen the testing guidelines, so unless they have very specific instructions for the breath hold, it's very technique based. Sitting still and just taking a big breath and holding it is not going to give you a great score. But if you know how to prepare for a breath hold, the way free divers do it, even an untrained person can hold their breath for much longer. You could literally double your time.

Allen Yeh
10-07-2010, 11:54 AM
Entered my results into the website and man I suck:
Strength - 5.5
Muscular endurance - 3.0
Aerobic Fitness - 4.5
Anaerobic Fitness - 6.0
Explosive Power - 6.0

Overall 5.0

Yael Grauer
10-07-2010, 11:20 PM
Yeah, I love Joel and he's smart as hell but I have to say that I'm thinking his muscular endurance scale might not be entirely accurate.

Peter Dell'Orto
10-08-2010, 05:55 AM
I asked Joel and he said the numbers were fairly average for 165 lbs. because he can do 20-25 pull-ups and 100 pushups and 90 situps and weighs 210. I'm not really sure I agree with the pullup being based on weight thing--unless you are a big guy with huge legs and small arms or something. Also he said the breath hold was a factor.

Hmm...my breath hold is what probably brought up my (aerobic) endurance number. I did a pretty-good-for-me 1:42 in the breath hold, but my pushups, situps, and pullups are nowhere near Joel's numbers and he outweighs me. Some of that was expected because I tested while injured, but even my best-ever numbers aren't going to match 20-25/100/90.

I pulled an overall 5.0, which is fine. Mostly it just highlighted things I already knew I needed to work on, and made me run 1.5 miles for the first time in my life. That was kind of fun in retrospect but with asthma I won't do it again until the next test day. :)

Yael Grauer
10-08-2010, 04:39 PM
Yeah, the run kicked my ass... I need to work on my cardio for sure.

Peter Dell'Orto
10-09-2010, 07:41 AM
Yeah, the run kicked my ass... I need to work on my cardio for sure.

My cardio is actually fine for actual competition or for biking.

But running? Well, let's just say it was an interesting choice. It was a raw test of my 1.5 mile running ability unbiased by actual running technique or experience on my part. :)

Yael Grauer
10-30-2010, 09:35 PM
Joel's line of thinking on slow long-distance is really different than a lot of S+C coaches who work with MMA fighters who really push things like intervals... Not that anyone is right or wrong but he's the only one I've seen really emphasize it. I had Troy Andereson (former wrestler) write me a six-week program to get in shape for BJJ (before I train again--long story) and it has no running in it other than hill sprints; a bit of walking for active recovery though.

Derek Weaver
10-31-2010, 03:45 PM
Thought this may be relevant. Bret Contreras did an interview with Joel.
http://bretcontreras.wordpress.com/2010/10/26/interview-with-mma-trainer-joel-jamieson/

Derek Weaver
11-03-2010, 12:52 AM
If anyone was wondering what the Sherdog thread Donald was referring to is, I believe it's this one:

http://www.sherdog.net/forums/f13/how-finally-solve-your-conditioning-problem-788235/

First couple of pages are the standard Sherdog foolishness, gets better later on.

James Evans
11-03-2010, 03:37 AM
Is that when Joel announces himself as the new sheriff in town and all that they hold dear is in fact a lie?

Derek Weaver
11-03-2010, 04:52 PM
It's more like Joel comes in with a solid post, everyone craps on it because it's Sherdog.

that place is stupid on a nearly epic level. It's basically what the CF forums would be if you were allowed to be a dick.

James Evans
11-04-2010, 03:18 AM
It's more like Joel comes in with a solid post, everyone craps on it because it's Sherdog.

that place is stupid on a nearly epic level. It's basically what the CF forums would be if you were allowed to be a dick.

I think you are allowed to be a dick at CF, in fact it's heartily encouraged. It just has to be in the confines of the AUP.

Grissim Connery
12-18-2010, 02:28 PM
i got my copy today as an early christmas present. can't wait to dig in.

Grissim Connery
01-11-2011, 11:57 AM
took me a few weeks to get to it. i was too busy reading fantasy novels and playing video games.

i have the same problem as other people: i'm not sure which block would be best to start with. on the other hand, i think i might wanna compete in arnolds this year, so i could just do the fight prep block cause it's about 8 weeks from now.

is the bioforce test used to find your deficits? i feel pretty average in all categories. thus i'm leaning towards an aerobic block because it seems the most fundamental to increase first. on the other hand, i don't know how good my explosiveness is. it's always seemed ok, but then again i've had to use it that much.

i was curious if people tried doing 2 of his methods in a workout as long as they worked the same energy system, like tempo method and cardiac power intervals.

Gant Grimes
01-11-2011, 04:51 PM
I have been his methods to prepare for a judo tourney. I am two weeks out. I missed a week a couple weeks ago due to injury. I'm liking it so far. I'm back to strength and tempo work, which, together, is a bitch.

E.g.

Press
135x2, 155x2, 175x2, 185x2, 190x2
195x1, 200x1, 205x1, 195x1, 195x1

95x10x3 @ tempo 2020, rest 40 s.

---

Squat
225x3, 275x3, 315x3, 365x3, 385x3

185x10x3 @ tempo 2020, rest 40 s.

This are incredibly grueling but incredibly useful.

Early on I did a lot of explosive repeats and aerobic plyos. For recovery, I just do sandbag walks (walk 30-40 min. with a 70# sandbag).

At this point, I'm doing a bit of strength work and a lot of threshold training (1 min. rows, 500m rows, with 5 min. rests).

After two weeks, my randori (sparring) dramatically improved because I was able to maintain posture. And, of course, the best conditioning for judo is continuous hard randori. Other than the injury from a 2-hour wrestling session, I've been really pleased.

Leon Robotham
01-12-2011, 07:47 AM
I have been his methods to prepare for a judo tourney. I am two weeks out. I missed a week a couple weeks ago due to injury. I'm liking it so far. I'm back to strength and tempo work, which, together, is a bitch.

E.g.

Press
135x2, 155x2, 175x2, 185x2, 190x2
195x1, 200x1, 205x1, 195x1, 195x1

95x10x3 @ tempo 2020, rest 40 s.

---

Squat
225x3, 275x3, 315x3, 365x3, 385x3

185x10x3 @ tempo 2020, rest 40 s.

This are incredibly grueling but incredibly useful.

Early on I did a lot of explosive repeats and aerobic plyos. For recovery, I just do sandbag walks (walk 30-40 min. with a 70# sandbag).

At this point, I'm doing a bit of strength work and a lot of threshold training (1 min. rows, 500m rows, with 5 min. rests).

After two weeks, my randori (sparring) dramatically improved because I was able to maintain posture. And, of course, the best conditioning for judo is continuous hard randori. Other than the injury from a 2-hour wrestling session, I've been really pleased.

Looks like being able to maintain posture could be more to do with the sandbag carry than anything else, but maintaining posture for the tempo lifts could also have something to do with it..... Either way you've improved on the mat so who cares.

I agree, hard continuous randori is the best conditioning (in my case for BJJ).

Grissim Connery
01-12-2011, 10:10 AM
I have been his methods to prepare for a judo tourney. I am two weeks out. I missed a week a couple weeks ago due to injury. I'm liking it so far. I'm back to strength and tempo work, which, together, is a bitch.

E.g.

Press
135x2, 155x2, 175x2, 185x2, 190x2
195x1, 200x1, 205x1, 195x1, 195x1

95x10x3 @ tempo 2020, rest 40 s.

---

Squat
225x3, 275x3, 315x3, 365x3, 385x3

185x10x3 @ tempo 2020, rest 40 s.

This are incredibly grueling but incredibly useful.

Early on I did a lot of explosive repeats and aerobic plyos. For recovery, I just do sandbag walks (walk 30-40 min. with a 70# sandbag).

At this point, I'm doing a bit of strength work and a lot of threshold training (1 min. rows, 500m rows, with 5 min. rests).

After two weeks, my randori (sparring) dramatically improved because I was able to maintain posture. And, of course, the best conditioning for judo is continuous hard randori. Other than the injury from a 2-hour wrestling session, I've been really pleased.

i tried tempo yesterday with squats, ring pushups, and ring rows. the squats sucked. every impulse in me wants to rocket out of the hole as hard as possible. i think i might do it with lunges next time because i'd like to squat heavy for my secondary goal/maintenance workout (i can't BB squat more than once every 7-9 days).

i definately noticed a deficit in my tempo rows. i've known that there's been a problem with it for a while, but my pulling strength seemed to work fine for most tasks, probably because my hips could take over. i think i have very little aerobic capacity of my upper back muscles.

i'm gonna stick with more of the general endurance block because of this deficit primarily. i think my shoulder issues may stem from a lack of endurance as opposed to a lack of strength in my upper back.

for my secondary goal, i might actually pick explosive rather than ME (i'm getting a bit bored with doing ME for so long), but i still want to do ME squats, so i might try his complex method and do box jumps after squats.

basically:
day 1:
cardiac ouput/threshold/hict (depending on block a or b)

day 2:
tempo + some cardiac output (not as long)

day 3:
explosive + complex method for squats

i might start this after arnolds and do the general fight prep for the tourney first.

Peter Dell'Orto
01-12-2011, 10:24 AM
I've had some really great aerobic recovery improvements from doing HRIs with a sled or a Prowler, and with HICT (done with high step-ups). Even though I already had a very good aerobic conditioning level, I found after my coach added those to my training my between-round and between-match recovery improved dramatically.

We haven't done quite as much with the power-generation end of the spectrum yet but we've done static-dynamics, circuit training, and (of course) max effort strength work.

All in all it's be extremely useful stuff. Sometimes it's hard to get a picture in your head of exactly what he wants in a given exercise or how it would look when you do it, but everything I've tried so far has given results as advertised.

Grissim Connery
01-12-2011, 11:29 AM
do you use weight with the high step ups? i'm gonna try these next week for hict. i tried doing renegade row for hict, except that i was more piked instead of planked so that i could go for a long time.

i was curious about wrapping an elastic band around a concept 2 rower and trying hict with that in addition to the handle. that way it might keep a more constant tension

I think i need a heart rate monitor before i work on his interval stuff more. i tried it one day, and i felt like i wasn't doing anything. i think i recover pretty quickly between rounds, so the actual heart rate monitor would be better than the general time recommendations.

Peter Dell'Orto
01-12-2011, 12:15 PM
do you use weight with the high step ups?

Just before the last NAGA I did 2 sets of 20 minutes with no extra weight. It was as much recovery work as anything else.

More recently I've been doing 1-2 sets of 10-15 minutes with a 10# vest on. Since I'm also walking around 10 pounds heavier than my weigh-in weight this is a big weight jump. We mostly did this so I could get to my target heart rate much sooner, but I'm not sure it's necessary.

i'm gonna try these next week for hict. i tried doing renegade row for hict, except that i was more piked instead of planked so that i could go for a long time.

The thing about step-ups to a high box is that they are utterly technically simple. Even when I'm 19 minutes into a second 20-minute set of them I'm still doing a proper step-up. I'm not sure I'm doing a proper pushup 19 reps into a 20 rep set. ;)
So I'd suggest picking something that is so technically simple that you can do a good rep even when exhausted.


You do need a heart rate monitor. I did them once by feel (forgot the monitor) and it just wasn't as good. Too hard to gauge. Even if you spend only $30 or so on one that does nothing more than show your current rate it's worth it. So much so I'm starting to consider saving up for a better model that will show my overall performance so I can better track it. My coach started to experiment with this stuff on me and nagged me to get one. I resisted for a while but when I finally did it the methods suddenly became more clear and their benefits were instantly noticeable.

Donald Lee
01-12-2011, 12:57 PM
I used to have one of those mini bars with about 50-70# on my back when I did step-ups for HICT onto a bench.

Grissim Connery
01-12-2011, 10:23 PM
The thing about step-ups to a high box is that they are utterly technically simple. Even when I'm 19 minutes into a second 20-minute set of them I'm still doing a proper step-up. I'm not sure I'm doing a proper pushup 19 reps into a 20 rep set. ;)
So I'd suggest picking something that is so technically simple that you can do a good rep even when exhausted.


You do need a heart rate monitor. I did them once by feel (forgot the monitor) and it just wasn't as good. Too hard to gauge. Even if you spend only $30 or so on one that does nothing more than show your current rate it's worth it. So much so I'm starting to consider saving up for a better model that will show my overall performance so I can better track it. My coach started to experiment with this stuff on me and nagged me to get one. I resisted for a while but when I finally did it the methods suddenly became more clear and their benefits were instantly noticeable.

i didn't do a pushup in the renegade row. i just did alternating arm rows while one rested on the KB on the ground. i piked to take some weight off the support hand so that i could go for a long time.

by definition, does a renegade row normally include the pushup?

i was able tune out a bit and still pull with decent form. i prob did around 30-40 minutes total with a few breaks here and there. i didnt' really time myself, i was just listening to some doug stanhope bits on youtube before i had to go to BJJ.

so what is the real benefit of the expensive heart rate monitors over the cheaper ones? are the cheap ones accurate enough?

Peter Dell'Orto
01-13-2011, 06:13 AM
I dunno, I thought a renegade row always included a pushup. I also thought a burpee also included a pushup, which made the first pullups/burpees/ring pushups tri-set I did suck at a level that's hard to describe. :)
But if you're just rowing, I could see it for HICT. Although I personally doubt my ability to stay in that position without any bowing, arching, or twisting, which is why step-ups make so much sense for me. Even exhausted I can do one correctly (drive the foot down, hips forward, stand tall, etc.).

I got an Omron heart rate monitor. It seems accurate enough; it gives me consistent results and comes within a few beats of my own count. The more expensive ones like the Polar RS100 that Joel recommends have more features, but I haven't tried one yet. Deep down I'm a bit miserly so if the one I already have works, why not wait a bit before I buy a new one?

James Evans
01-13-2011, 07:35 AM
Over here a burpee is what you call a squat thrust and a squat thrust is a mountain climber. I do burpees US style but I notice Ross Enamait didn't always add the push up.

Sometimes people call a US style burpee a 'Bastard'. If only:

Squat down & kick the legs out
Push Up
Bring legs back in
Star Jump from the squat
Land and squat back down and up
1 rep.

I think Renegade Rows were originally just the rowing portion back when John Davies pulled the world of xtreme S&C out of his arse while standing on a space hopper. Guys like Mike Rutherford denote DB Push Up-Rows. You kind of know what you're doing then.

Leon Robotham
01-14-2011, 05:25 AM
Over here a burpee is what you call a squat thrust and a squat thrust is a mountain climber. I do burpees US style but I notice Ross Enamait didn't always add the push up.

Sometimes people call a US style burpee a 'Bastard'. If only:

Squat down & kick the legs out
Push Up
Bring legs back in
Star Jump from the squat
Land and squat back down and up
1 rep.

I think Renegade Rows were originally just the rowing portion back when John Davies pulled the world of xtreme S&C out of his arse while standing on a space hopper. Guys like Mike Rutherford denote DB Push Up-Rows. You kind of know what you're doing then.

Burpees have always been burpees up here in Newcastle. In the Royal Marines they were called "bastard", because your PT gave you them and at the top of the rep you had to shout out "bastard" as loud as possible, not shouting loud enough resulted in motivational consequences. What could be more of a motivational consequece then doing them in full kit? Plenty!!

Squat thrusts up here are hands on deck, kick your feet back to a plank position and back, basically a burpee, but without the push-up element.

Mark Fenner
01-19-2011, 05:04 AM
I had a few minutes over the holidays and decided to (re-)read the sherdog thread of great fame. I also cut and pasted the better parts. Enjoy.

Note, the attached file is a pdf. Just rename from "notes.wmv" to "notes.pdf". I pulled that trick to get around the file size limit and b/c compression was insufficient to get below the limit.

Best,
Mark

Gant Grimes
01-19-2011, 08:51 AM
so what is the real benefit of the expensive heart rate monitors over the cheaper ones? are the cheap ones accurate enough?

Expensive HRMs have more features. You can do splits, time spent in each zone, download options, etc. I have two cheap watches and one on my bike that measure time and HR, and, at the end, the average HR. That's all I need. If all you need is to monitor the zone you're in at that moment, you don't need to spend a lot of money.

Donald Lee
01-19-2011, 09:01 AM
Also, with the cheaper heart rate monitors (~$45), you only have 1-2 buttons. It's very easy to accidentally delete the HR info before recording it b/c nothing gets saved. The ones closer to $100 will at least save your last data. They also usually come with nicer heart rate straps. My cheaper one came with a strap that was mostly made of some plastic material, while the more expensive one came with a softer material. I thought the ~$85 one (the one Joel recommends) that I paid for the nicer one was a worthy upgrade. I don't think that exact model is made anymore though.

Grissim Connery
01-19-2011, 06:47 PM
i think the one joel recommends is like $110.

my birthday is coming up and i think my gf is just gonna get me a cheap omron like peter suggested. in the future i'll throw down if need be.

i tend to break little gadgets like this, so the cheap one wouldn't bother me so much if it busted

Grissim Connery
01-20-2011, 05:59 AM
i tried HICT w/ box step ups set almost to groin level. i tried using a regular bar for as much as possible, but my traps would die after a while. i had to keep cycling the bar on and off until eventually somebody suggested using a 30# chain. that was much nicer.

i did 2 rounds of 20 min. my knees don't really have problems, but they felt worn out later that night. i might limit that to 1 set and maybe less minutes next time.

i considered doing HICT w/ alternating 1 arm DL (DB, BB, KB; whatever feels best). anybody have an opinion on this? i figure alternating would allow the upper body to not burn out before the lower body, and as long as grip maintains, a decent weight could be used. i'd like the grip work.

i should be getting som fat gripz soon. that could be nice for this

Donald Lee
01-20-2011, 06:25 AM
I've tried doing HICT complex style in the past, and grip strength was usu the limiting factor, even with straps. You could try doing GM with that 30# chain.

Also, 2 sets of 20 minutes is your ultimate goal. You can start with 1 set of say 12 min and work your way up. Without a HR monitor though, it may be hard to gauge either you're at the appropriate intensity level.

Grissim Connery
01-21-2011, 07:46 AM
You could try doing GM with that 30# chain.

what's GM?

Also, 2 sets of 20 minutes is your ultimate goal. You can start with 1 set of say 12 min and work your way up. Without a HR monitor though, it may be hard to gauge either you're at the appropriate intensity level.

that's good to hear. i felt like a slug after finishing. i think i'll do hict after tempo work. i came in with the plan of just doing hict that day, and thus i tried to dedicate a lot of time to it. a nice 12-15 min session after tempo or strength work would be nice.

hict should be renamed to mule, cause that's what you feel like. you're just sitting there, trudging for a long time.

Samuel Hughes
01-21-2011, 07:58 AM
GM = good morning, I think 20 mins of that might put me out of commission for a few days though

James Evans
01-21-2011, 08:37 AM
GM = good morning, I think 20 mins of that might put me out of commission for a few days though

That crossed my mind too!

Peter Dell'Orto
01-21-2011, 09:21 AM
I think 20 minutes of good mornings would put me down for months. Even the tiniest fatigue-induced form error is going to add up over the course of 20 minutes, and my low back can't take that.

That's why personally I'm going to stick to step-ups and if possible cardio machines. No sense turning my aerobic work into a chance to screw up my form and then screw up my back. But if your body can take it, don't let me stop you. :)

Donald Lee
01-21-2011, 10:40 AM
Yeah, the GM could be a very bad idea, but it might work out with a very light weight, a comfortable ROM, and not being too anal about knee flexion. I don't think I ever worked up to anything near 2 x 20 min with the GM though.

HICT is supposed to feel mind numbing and not feel like the CrossFit-style muscle and heart bursting. If you're able to achieve this mind numbing state with the GM, then it's probably at approximately the right intensity.

Grissim Connery
01-21-2011, 11:29 AM
yeah i felt pretty mind numbed. my breathing felt like it would for a long, slow run. i was able to talk to a friend of mine who was sitting near by.

Grissim Connery
01-31-2011, 07:02 PM
been playing with some of this. here's some thoughts:

i feel that doing tempo work and hict the same day works well. for one, it just seems hard to find a decent upper body version of hict w/o the legendary versa climber. second, i've been skipping tempo squats since i can't squat heavy later in the week if i do tempos (i'm a bitch, i know, but i can't squat more than once a week at all unless i cut out everything else i do). thus i hope that hict box step ups w/ a little added weight gives a similar aerobic benefit of tempo work to my posterior chain. meanwhile the upper-body tempo work takes care of aerobic benefits up there.

i'm gonna try tempo SLDL, but that might suck really hard.

explosive repeat is just fun, but doing 8 minutes of light aerobic work between every series or exercise is a little boring. at most i do 3 minutes of jump rope. it does seem to fire you up for the next series though.

Peter Dell'Orto
02-02-2011, 07:45 AM
I've been doing the explosive repeats with shadowboxing in between. That seems to work really well - I find my last set is more explosive than ever before, and I feel more energized after 3 minutes of shadowboxing.

Yael Grauer
02-06-2011, 12:48 PM
I want to experiment with it as well. I have a tournament in about 9 weeks so thought I could do the 8-weeks out protocol. It is totally confusing though. For example, for week one it says to do just 2 sessions of cardiac output, tempo, HICT, HRI, aerobic plyo and explosive repeat. But when you look at those actual sections it says you can do all of them twice a week except for cardiac output which can be more often and tempo which is only once a week. So do I do a session of say cardiac output, tempo, HICT, HRI, plyo and explosive repeat and then another session of cardiac output, HICT HRI, plyo and explosive repeat?

Also, I still wanted to lift weights (high volume, lower weight) until I was about 4 weeks out but it's not mentioned in his program specifically but I think it's still okay?

Grissim Connery
02-06-2011, 03:46 PM
reading each section alone, i think it's just the recommendation as if you were just going to do that section that week. for example, you should do explosive repeat no more than twice a week. that doesn't mean you need to do 1 or 2 a week. it's just saying the max sessions really. whether you do 0, 1, or 2 sessions that week depends on the volume of the other workouts you're picking.

so for week 2, if you did 3 conditioning days and wanted to do most of the 6 recommended methods, you might do hict + tempo on day 1, explosive repeat and high resistance intervals on day 2, and cardiac ouput on day 3.

on the other hand if you wanted to focus on the top three methods (what he recommends if you're well conditioned), you could do explosive repat + HRI on day 1, aerobic plyometrics + explosive repeat on day 2, and aerobic plyometrics + HRI on day 3.

i only picked 2 per workout because an hour of doing any of these methods intensely seems to be enough. i'd only go above an hour if you were doing cardiac output.

so basically just pick the few you think you're weak in or the ones you'd get the most benefit from, and try to do them with the most recommended frequency you can per week within 2-3 workout days and an 1-1.5h max per workout.

Yael Grauer
02-06-2011, 05:00 PM
Ooh, interesting. Well I suppose I should focus on cardiac output, tempo and HICT since I scored the lowest in aerobic threshold and muscular endurance way back when I took Joel's test.

But you are only supposed to do tempo 1X/week and HICT 2X/week, so I could do 1 day of tempo/HICT/cardio, one day of HICT/cardio and one day of cardio... and then I could add HRI, plyo or explosive repeat if I feel like it... But I think I'll need to do cardiac output every day for a while to get up to snuff. At least I figure it can't hurt. I guess I could do cardiac output until week 4 when I switch to cardiac power, as rx'ed.

I guess what I'm wondering though is if it's be overkill if I also did my weight workouts, which is db power cleans, db straight leg deads, db squats and plyo squats on day 1, assisted pullups, pushups, db bent row and ab exercises on day 2 and then presses, pushups, tricep db kickbacks and abs on day 3. Was going to do those for the first 4 weeks and then stop for 4 weeks. Or are you supposed to stop everything and just do the program?

Manuel Jericho
02-11-2011, 02:49 PM
How would guys structure a basic routine for muscular endurance 1-2x week?looking to compliment doing lsd 2x week 90mins along with my mma training

Grissim Connery
02-13-2011, 12:59 PM
i got a heart rate monitor for my birthday last week. i'm havin fun adjusting it to different methods. the highest my heart rate got was during hict in which it got to 177 at one point. i'm 24, so using the basic calculation my max heart rate should be 196. i'd like to find out what it actually is without getting one of those expensive tests. i'll have to search and find the best method

Grissim Connery
02-13-2011, 01:11 PM
Ooh, interesting. Well I suppose I should focus on cardiac output, tempo and HICT since I scored the lowest in aerobic threshold and muscular endurance way back when I took Joel's test.

But you are only supposed to do tempo 1X/week and HICT 2X/week, so I could do 1 day of tempo/HICT/cardio, one day of HICT/cardio and one day of cardio... and then I could add HRI, plyo or explosive repeat if I feel like it... But I think I'll need to do cardiac output every day for a while to get up to snuff. At least I figure it can't hurt. I guess I could do cardiac output until week 4 when I switch to cardiac power, as rx'ed.

I guess what I'm wondering though is if it's be overkill if I also did my weight workouts, which is db power cleans, db straight leg deads, db squats and plyo squats on day 1, assisted pullups, pushups, db bent row and ab exercises on day 2 and then presses, pushups, tricep db kickbacks and abs on day 3. Was going to do those for the first 4 weeks and then stop for 4 weeks. Or are you supposed to stop everything and just do the program?

if you're doing 3+ bjj/mma days per week, i think the rx of just 1 main S&C goal w/ one possible secondary goal is enough. to be honest, if you're putting a good effort into each bjj/mma session, then you should be struggling to have greater than 3 workouts in addition to all this. that is unless you're only doing cardiac output; i know i could do cardiac output around 5-6x a week in addition to bjj if that's all i did. i would definitely get weaker and i wouldn't get any benefits (based on what i need right now), but i could do it.

basically, if you think you need endurance, just follow his rx of keeping that the main goal with only 1 day devoted to strength. i would probably keep the strength to just blunt ME of the big 3. if you're doing multiple cardiac output sessions during the week, i probably would not do any cardio after the strength workout.

you can return to your strength work after the block is over. i was skeptical when i started this, but after retesting my strength near the end of this experimentation period, i've actually had improvements. i think it's just because i took a break and gave a rest to all the prior work. thus, you may just benefit from switching gears altogether so that you rest what needs rest and build what needs to be built.

Yael Grauer
02-14-2011, 04:22 PM
To be honest, we do a lot of drilling in BJJ. And even on open mat days, it's usually some kind of game like a guard pass game with resistance, and we don't get to go for very long. Not a lot of live roll time and when we do it's not for very long. I feel like I can work out twice a day (weights in the morning, BJJ at night) and do cardio on all my non-BJJ days, and since all of my weight work is with dumbbells it's not like I'm lifting huge amounts. Anyway, I'm still trying to figure out how to approach all this.

Grissim Connery
02-15-2011, 02:14 PM
i guess i would just try to adjust your str exercises to complement you cycle. IOW if you're working endurance, adjust them all to be tempo, hict, etc. so that you'll build some of the same mechanics, but just maybe increase different metabolic pathways.

i normally just like to heavy DL, but i forced myself to do them as tempo the other day (had to do them SLDL to work better with that method). it's not as fun, but it's not like i'll be doing them that way forever.

that sucks that you don't get to roll more in bjj. i need at least 3 live rolls a night (typically 7+ minutes, i need 4 if it's below 7min)

Donald Lee
02-16-2011, 12:05 PM
Yael,

Have you tried asking questions on Joel's forum? I'd try to help, but I haven't been doing Joel's stuff or looked at his book for a while.

Yael Grauer
02-16-2011, 02:14 PM
Yeah, I wish we got to roll more but being the smallest in a gym full of wrestlers I'd probably be a lot more beat up if we did.

Well, I think the problem is that I have too many goals at the same time. Was just talking to a friend/coach I really respect and he said that you can work strength, endurance or sports-specific technique, but not all three at the same time. He told me to pick two. Obviously, technique has to be one of the two. I'm torn between the others. Just found out I'm competing in a month AND in two months, so I thought I'd do a month-long strength cycle (lots of posterior chain work and some of my other weak spots) and put all the supplements I've got to good use (creatine, glutamine, protein powder) and do tournament #1, and then stop doing the strength cycle and really ramp up the conditioning for tournament #2--because by then it'll be spring and I can go outside and run, bike, etc. without freezing. I don't have a gym membership right now so that'd be my best bet I think. I do have a heavybag but I feel like I really need a treadmill, indoor track or Airdyne if I'm going to ramp up my cardio. So I guess I'll just wait. Plus by then I'll have a bit more muscle which will make cutting easier. I guess I'll put 8WO on the backburner for now so I won't be trying to do too many goals at once.

Grissim Connery
02-21-2011, 10:58 AM
i am considering starting a new thread regarding heart rate training, but i'll keep it here for now.

so i am having fun playing with my heart rate monitor doing different tasks, but it's caused me some confusion. yesterday, i did an LSD day and didn't want to go too hard b/c i was pretty sore and worn out from the past week. i noticed that when doing a rowing machine or jump rope, my heart rate was generally bouncing around 125-150. to keep it at 150, i would have to put in effort, nothing crazy, but i just had to consciously remind myself to push the pace a bit above comfort. if i didn't remind myself to go a bit faster, then i would hang around 130-135.

i also ran yesterday, and my heart rate easily ranged from 155-173. what confuses me is that it didn't take any considerable "perceived effort" to keep my heart rate at around 163. the only other time i maintained this kind of heart rate for extended periods was with hict box step ups (these were performed a week or so ago).

the only real difference between exercises that i can notice is the amount of upper body contribution. i feel that both jump rope and rowing are limited by your upper body's ability to generate power. it makes sense to me that exercises where the lower body is doing a lot of work jacks up your heart rate more. what confuses me is why the perceived effort was so different. my assumption would be that when you're HR is higher, fatigue would onset faster regardless of exercise. yet i felt that i could have maintained a heart rate of 170 running for a relatively extended period, while hitting that 170 jumping rope would have required A LOT of double unders which i could only maintain for a short period, followed by some sort of rest.

i figured the rowing machine may be tricky to analyze since you're sitting, but the jump rope threw me off.

if it is true that you can keep your HR higher for longer periods with running or other predominately lower body exercises, then how would this affect programming? is the only real purpose of including upper body motions in conditioning just to build local muscle mitochondria changes, or is there some special or equal benefit to cardiac output that cannot be generated from a lower body limiting exercise alone?

Samuel Hughes
02-21-2011, 11:27 AM
i am considering starting a new thread regarding heart rate training, but i'll keep it here for now.

so i am having fun playing with my heart rate monitor doing different tasks, but it's caused me some confusion. yesterday, i did an LSD day and didn't want to go too hard b/c i was pretty sore and worn out from the past week. i noticed that when doing a rowing machine or jump rope, my heart rate was generally bouncing around 125-150. to keep it at 150, i would have to put in effort, nothing crazy, but i just had to consciously remind myself to push the pace a bit above comfort. if i didn't remind myself to go a bit faster, then i would hang around 130-135.

i also ran yesterday, and my heart rate easily ranged from 155-173. what confuses me is that it didn't take any considerable "perceived effort" to keep my heart rate at around 163. the only other time i maintained this kind of heart rate for extended periods was with hict box step ups (these were performed a week or so ago).

the only real difference between exercises that i can notice is the amount of upper body contribution. i feel that both jump rope and rowing are limited by your upper body's ability to generate power. it makes sense to me that exercises where the lower body is doing a lot of work jacks up your heart rate more. what confuses me is why the perceived effort was so different. my assumption would be that when you're HR is higher, fatigue would onset faster regardless of exercise. yet i felt that i could have maintained a heart rate of 170 running for a relatively extended period, while hitting that 170 jumping rope would have required A LOT of double unders which i could only maintain for a short period, followed by some sort of rest.

i figured the rowing machine may be tricky to analyze since you're sitting, but the jump rope threw me off.

if it is true that you can keep your HR higher for longer periods with running or other predominately lower body exercises, then how would this affect programming? is the only real purpose of including upper body motions in conditioning just to build local muscle mitochondria changes, or is there some special or equal benefit to cardiac output that cannot be generated from a lower body limiting exercise alone?


For me, the perceived difficulty would be about the added resistance. Rowing and jump roping have added weight. Try running with ankle weights (don't really do this) and you'd probably have the same effect.

Ben Byram
03-01-2011, 03:41 AM
I'm planning to use the block training template in the Ultimate MMA conditioning book from July onwards. I have no specific goal or plans to do MMA in this 8/9 month period (although I'm toying with restarting Judo or trying boxing).

Perhaps asking in the fighting forum is not the best idea, but regardless has anybody used his methodology without actually doing any martial arts? Would you recommend any modifications or alterations to the template? More emphasis on strength endurance perhaps...

I'm doing this just for fun and I enjoy programming, so this seems the best option for 'general fitness' whereby I can introduce variety effectively. (No discussions of Crossfit necessary).

I'm interested to hear any views / comments.

Donald Lee
03-01-2011, 07:24 AM
I'm planning to use the block training template in the Ultimate MMA conditioning book from July onwards. I have no specific goal or plans to do MMA in this 8/9 month period (although I'm toying with restarting Judo or trying boxing).

Perhaps asking in the fighting forum is not the best idea, but regardless has anybody used his methodology without actually doing any martial arts? Would you recommend any modifications or alterations to the template? More emphasis on strength endurance perhaps...

I'm doing this just for fun and I enjoy programming, so this seems the best option for 'general fitness' whereby I can introduce variety effectively. (No discussions of Crossfit necessary).

I'm interested to hear any views / comments.

I used it a little bit to train for the military. It worked out very well for me.

Joel didn't write out a set plan on purpose. He gave guidelines. If you want to do more strength endurance work, you can do that. You're supposed to have a goal and use block training to meet that goal. If you're deficient in strength endurance, then you'd put that as your primary focus and secondary focus as often as possible into your blocks.

If you're just doing this for fun though, you don't need to make it into something overly complicated. Conjugated-sequence programming (the block training model in the book) is an advanced model of programming that isn't for everyone. For non-athletes/competitors, I'd recommend that they not worry too much about smooth transitions between blocks or even the timing of blocks. If you feel that you want to work longer than the prescribed time for a block, I don't think it matters much.

Ben Byram
03-01-2011, 08:44 AM
Thanks, I will use his suggestions to form the framework for different blocks without being too rigid. That is a good point.

EDIT: I had a quick look at the book and I think strength endurance would develop just fine during the power endurance block and I could always add some more circuit training, complexes perhaps I reckon.

Yael Grauer
04-13-2011, 04:31 PM
Just started working on this program starting with the conditioning block... question about tempo. It's not circuits, right?

Also, assuming I do BJJ 3-4 days/week, is this too much for off days to work towards?

Workout A: Tempo, HICT, cardiac output
Workout B: HICT, cardiac output
Workout C: low volume HRI, cardiac output

Starting out (beginning of phase) it's looking more like this:

Workout A: cardiac output
Workout B: tempo
Workout C: HICT, HRI

With jits of course on 3-4 additional days and 1 rest day. (Probably will do jits on the cardiac output day if I had to double up at all.)

My only problem so far is that I am having a hard time keeping my heartrate steady for cardiac output (I'm biking, and there are hills and flat areas so hard to stay in range instead of zigzagging) and for my HRI attempt I couldn't get my HR up to 150 even doing hill lunges... I don't have access to a spin bike ATM, so need to figure out how to do this. I think burpees even or bagwork might be a better choice...

Donald Lee
04-13-2011, 08:26 PM
Just started working on this program starting with the conditioning block... question about tempo. It's not circuits, right?

Also, assuming I do BJJ 3-4 days/week, is this too much for off days to work towards?

Workout A: Tempo, HICT, cardiac output
Workout B: HICT, cardiac output
Workout C: low volume HRI, cardiac output

Starting out (beginning of phase) it's looking more like this:

Workout A: cardiac output
Workout B: tempo
Workout C: HICT, HRI

With jits of course on 3-4 additional days and 1 rest day. (Probably will do jits on the cardiac output day if I had to double up at all.)

My only problem so far is that I am having a hard time keeping my heartrate steady for cardiac output (I'm biking, and there are hills and flat areas so hard to stay in range instead of zigzagging) and for my HRI attempt I couldn't get my HR up to 150 even doing hill lunges... I don't have access to a spin bike ATM, so need to figure out how to do this. I think burpees even or bagwork might be a better choice...

HICT and HRI may be hard to do on the same day, esp. if both are using your legs. You can do tempo for just upper body and HRI on the same day. I also wouldn't do HRI and cardiac output on the same day, but if that's all you can do, then I'd make sure that you're not pushing the volume of cardiac output on that day.

I only attempted HRI once, b/c of a lack of access to anywhere or any tools to do it, and I suffered the consequences when I went to OCS. I was doing fine on everything except running up hills. I actually had to be pushed up one hill the first time. I thought that HICT and lifting weights for my lower body would allow me to be decent at running up hills, but it wasn't so.

Yael Grauer
04-28-2011, 01:45 PM
Well, the cardiac output is pretty easy, I can keep my HR at 130-150 either jogging or just doing drills and bagwork. No prob for 3X/week. Tempo is also easy, it's just regular weight work at tempo. I've done 1-legged deads, assisted pullups, rows, etc. Still need to work my HICT and HRIs in.

Donald Lee
04-28-2011, 03:14 PM
Well, the cardiac output is pretty easy, I can keep my HR at 130-150 either jogging or just doing drills and bagwork. No prob for 3X/week. Tempo is also easy, it's just regular weight work at tempo. I've done 1-legged deads, assisted pullups, rows, etc. Still need to work my HICT and HRIs in.

I don't think Tempo is supposed to be easy. It should be done to near failure.

Grissim Connery
04-28-2011, 04:37 PM
I don't think Tempo is supposed to be easy. It should be done to near failure.

yeah, i think tempo is harder mentally than ME a lot of times. tempo squatting just sucks. i think it's because during ME, i try to blast through the sticking points while, in tempo, you have to stay in them.

Yael Grauer
04-29-2011, 11:45 AM
Weird. I'm doing Romanian deads and pullups and rows and have the metronome on, and it doesn't seem hard at all.

Yael Grauer
05-05-2011, 10:19 PM
I used my Gymboss timer instead of the computer metronome and definitely felt the exercises were harder...maybe my counts were off before. Thanks for the heads up.

Allen Yeh
09-29-2011, 05:54 PM
http://www.8weeksout.com/2011/09/28/never-gas-out-mma-interval-training/

Just got that article yesterday, interesting read, I'm sure if you already have the book he goes into things a lot more extensively.

Yael Grauer
10-24-2011, 04:05 PM
The book is very extensive, but I found it quite confusing...and I couldn't make the workouts work for me without totally overtraining. It's not always practical to try to work different tempos (etc) into BJJ classes you attend--unless you're teaching the class, I guess!

John Kimbrough
03-14-2014, 03:54 AM
I#ve just picked up a copy of this and looking forward to getting into it at the weekend. Seems like people here enjoyed it!

Travis Hansen
04-25-2014, 05:46 PM
This book is awesome! I love all of Joe's material and the unique science he brings into discussing the various human energy systems as well as his recovery methods, and of course HRV!

http://thespeedencyclopedia.com

Joel* sorry:)

diaz janne
04-25-2014, 06:28 PM
Thank you Travis
:) http://portalpark.net/10204/15/w.png

Travis Hansen
04-26-2014, 09:23 AM
You bet Diaz.