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Old 07-21-2010, 12:22 PM   #41
Donald Lee
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Originally Posted by Grissim Connery View Post
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/sho...6&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.

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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.

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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.
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Old 07-21-2010, 12:25 PM   #42
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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.
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Old 07-21-2010, 08:06 PM   #43
Grissim Connery
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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.
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Old 07-21-2010, 08:13 PM   #44
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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.
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Old 07-21-2010, 09:11 PM   #45
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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.

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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.

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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.
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:37 AM   #46
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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.
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:44 AM   #47
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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...
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Old 10-03-2010, 08:52 AM   #48
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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.
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Old 10-04-2010, 02:44 PM   #49
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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.
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Old 10-04-2010, 07:21 PM   #50
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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.
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