Doing This One Thing Will Make Your Workouts 900% Better

You’ve probably heard the phrase “History repeats itself”.

You’ve most likely said that out loud to someone, thinking that you sounded pretty wise and globally aware.

I make it a point to say this any time I’m approached on the street by someone who wants a donation to help build schools, or feed some Amazonian river tribe that has had their land taken from them and burned by an American shadow corporation.

After a long awkward silence where I stare off into the distance through my knockoff RayBan Wayfarers, most of the time, those people leave me alone.

That being said, i believe that history repeats itself in the world, and also in smaller (but still equally important) cases, like my workouts.

My training often follows a cyclical pattern, engaging in the same ebbs and flows as it has had at many points in the past.

My body type is slightly strange, and it’s taken a long period of time for me to come to the realization that for the most part, I’m pretty fragile. One time I got a shoulder injury from having a dumbbell too close to my desk for a long period of time.

I compensate for this by being emotionally distant and trying to never form connections with humans or animals. I believe it gives me a competitive edge.

So if you’re like me, and you’re a little beat up, over 35, or just have a few nagging injuries, go ahead and print this article out in a size 16 Helvetica font, bring it to your closest tattoo parlor, and have them ink it right on your stomach.

The one thing that is a predictor for injury or pain/discomfort during a workout more than anything else is what your warmup looks like.

I go in cycles, I’ll start strong with a 10-20 minute warmup where I dynamically stretch all the muscles I’ll be working, make sure I have a pump in the muscle tissue that surrounds my shoulders/hips/knees, and I’ll work out any major knots with a foam roller or lacrosse ball.

This 20 minute process isn’t your mom’s calisthenics though, I’m generally sweating pretty good, and have done roughly 10-15 sets of different exercises that prep me for a workout.

Here’s a caveat: If your workout is 3 sets of bosu ball step ups and 5 ab exercises, don’t worry about a long warmup. Spend 5-10 minutes getting your core temp up and blood moving, and you should be OK.

 

Here’s an example workout of mine from Monday:

Find 5 rep max on Front squat
Back off weight by 25% and do 3 x 15

4×20 barbell lunges with 135#

5×3 high box jumps

4 rounds of: 10 squats/10 lunges/10 jump squats/10 jump lunges
No rest between rounds.

Long stretch lunges

Long stretch lunges

Now here’s what my warmup looked like before I even started the workout.

Lacrosse ball trigger point therapy on glutes/upper back/Lats/IT Band/Quads/calves

10 inchworms

2 minute hip openers each side

100 band pull aparts

10 shoulder dislocations

10 overhead squats

20 long stretching lunges

3 sets of 50 leg extensions

3 sets of 50 hamstring curls

14 sets of 5 reps of front squats, starting with 95# and working up by 10lbs each set.

warmup is workout

 

This took me roughly 25 minutes, and really enabled me to be warm and ready to crush my workout.

What generally happens to me is that I start feeling good from all the warming up and trigger point therapy, so I STOP DOING IT. This is becuase I’m stupid. No other reason.

I’ll try to jam a workout into 45 minutes, and sacrifice my warmup in order to get started doing the “important” stuff. This ALWAYS lead to some sort of injury/strain/sprain, and while that’s not the end of the world, it definitely derails my progress for a week or two.

Here are two awesome warmups you can do for your upper and lower body days to help keep you feeling super milky. Just remember:

Motion is lotion.

 

Upper body warmup. AKA Gun Show

Foam Roll: Upper Back/Lats/Pecs/Triceps

Jump rope/Jumping jacks x 2 minutes

Band Pull aparts 2 x 50

Shoulder Dislocation with band/dowell 2 x 10

YTL with light dumbbell 1 x 15 each

Pushups 2 x 15

Light DB Side Raise/Rear raise/Overhead press 2 x 10 each

 

If you’re doing a chest day, and really want to make sure that your workout is the hotness, you can add in 3 x 50 cable flies in different planes.

If it’s more back focus, you can super-set 3 x 50 straight arm pull-downs and rear cable flies

 

Lower Body Warmup aka DOWN WITH THE THICKNESS

Foam Roll: Upper back/ glutes/quads/IT Bands/Calves

Jump rope/Jumping jacks x 2 minutes

Inchworms x 10

Striders x 10

Dynamic Half Pigeon x 10

(IF THOSE DON’T MEAN ANYTHING TO YOU, WATCHING THIS VIDEO WILL EXPLAIN THE MYSTERY)

Band Pull aparts 2 x 50

Shoulder Dislocations 2 x 10

long Lunges with rotation 1 x 20

Leg extension (on machine or with band) 1-3 x 20-50

Hamstring curl (machine/sliders/GHD) 1-3 x 20-50

 

After all this, you should be feeling super frisky, and ready to rumble.

Feedback or GTFO.

 

One response to “Doing This One Thing Will Make Your Workouts 900% Better

  1. Forget about all the practical stuff … your intro makes my day when I laugh out loud! I’m going to start using “History repeats itself” in awkward situations!! I love you, Nate!!

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