Utilize Your Scarce Resources
02-14-2012 01:07 PM
Utilize Your Scarce Resources
During my days of Powerlifting for both the USAPL and ADAU (Anti-Drug Athletes United) sanctions, I was exclusively trained to perform explosive movements. Training for POWER is a whole lot different than most aesthetically based regiments; The plethora of my gym sessions consisted of strategy in form, deep/controlled ranges of motion, practicing pauses’ with calls/commands and low repetitions coupled with high set ranges. These sessions consisted most abundantly of squats, deadlifts and bench exercises. Occasionally I would supplement a shoulder workout or other accessory exercises but my main focus was to produce numbers. “If you want big numbers, train big muscles”... Anatomically, the largest of our muscles are assimilated in our LEGS. That’s right. WHEELS. GAMS. Or in some unfortunate gym-goers, STILTS! Although legs produce a vast quantity of our power, training ALL of my muscle groups under the application of this theory granted me the opportunity to display bigger arms, sweeping quads and a thicker/dense back musculature when in comparison to other competitors who did not train under a similar array of principals or background in Powerlifting. This mindset I adopted from my Powerlifting coach has shaped my physique into the stage presentation I debuted during my first figure competition and in my continued journey in this sport.
SQUATS & DEADS: Being the two heavy-hitting movements (aside from the bench press, these produce the greatest numbers when compiled into your overall score of the best lifts in each of the three movements) assessed in Powerlifting meets, you could imagine these practices were drilled into not only my head but into my tendons. Because my base was crafted using slow, controlled contractions monotonously over the course of my Powerlifting career, my tendon and ligament strength yields the potential to make greater gains. My coach emphasized training with a strong focus on the negative contraction, which is something that I believe a lot of fellow competitors in my current sport/training style often neglect. I mention this because many lifting advocates striving to sculpt lavishly lapping bulges of muscle onto their frames tend to share the common misconception in achieving this standard: that you must lift the heaviest weights possible. Without proper form, the muscle trained will not receive proper contraction. Without proper contraction, there is no stimulation to produce growth. In reality, training with this protocol will result in minimal progression (in both power and aesthetically), swift plateauing, and even worse, injury.
“When you enter the gym you must always remember your two scarce resources: Time and Energy.”- Derrick O'Connell. Through this advice, my coach instilled the root of purpose upon entering the gym. Train your MIND to be task oriented. YOUR TIME and YOUR ENERGY are limited; so always keep your goal precedent before initiating each training session. Whether you are training for power or training for aesthetics, stick to the basics and apply yourself with these habits: Practice controlled negatives, full ranges of motion, and complete contractions with weights you can manage. These principals will strengthen the tendons and ligaments which support any muscle you are desiring to develop. Keep in mind that in order to grow, we first must begin with a foundation... Build yours
02-15-2012 08:39 AM
Great post, Kate!
As someone who's recently discovered/competed in PL'ing, and someone who also watches 130lb. kids performing endless curls and benches with the same weights week after week after week, this rings very true.
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