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#1 sking

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Posted 24 August 2011 - 02:13 PM

There isn't really a forum for conditioning, but I am posting this in the Advanced Programs forum, because after reading the "Appropriate Conditioning" article, it seems more likely to consider conditioning after one has given a novice strength program a considerable amount of time on its own with nothing at all inhibiting recovery.

Ever wonder what is the best way to add conditioning to a strength program? Excellent, excellent, article here:
http://startingstren...ng_sheaffer.pdf

Best methods for condition? Aside from spending the money on a Prowler, pay attention to alternative methods, and particularly, conditioning programming in this article:
http://startingstren...er_reynolds.pdf

If you have a Kindle, this might interest you as well :)

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Favorite quote:

We don’t do kipping pull-ups, kettlebell swings, burpees, thrusters, softball throws, or anything of that nature for anaerobic conditioning, because it’s gay.


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#2 Mike

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Posted 24 August 2011 - 03:10 PM

i have my eye on a gym that has a prowler. Now I'm really excited for it!. (They also have a reverse hyper)
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#3 Beasley

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Posted 25 August 2011 - 01:27 PM

When I saw 'conditioning' and a link to SS, I knew right away that it would be the Prowler. They seem to be true beasts, I hope I get to use one sometime.
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#4 ScottT

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Posted 25 August 2011 - 11:19 PM

I have been seriously considering building a prowler. The Econo version looks like an easy enough build. Although it will have to wait until I catch up with my folks sometime.
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#5 Jimbo

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Posted 03 September 2011 - 02:31 PM

What do people think of hill sprints?

Has anyone done them?

How did they affect your lifting?

There's a hill that's literally a 2 minute walk from where I live that is perfect for it. I'm hoping to add them to my training soon. I'll start very easy with maybe just a couple of sets once a week to see how it affects everything else.

Would it be wise to get as much out of my novice strength program first and then add them in afterwards or start right away?

Jim
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#6 Mike

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Posted 03 September 2011 - 02:54 PM

I haven't run hill sprints. But when I cut I run interval sprints (taper up to 11mph) on the treadmill. I personally don't like to mix strength training and conditioning, but it's really up to you. If you have the energy to do some conditioning after you lift, then go for it. Just don't use your off days to stress your body with intense conditioning.

We're always happy to have a guinea pig test new things out though. So if you end up doing this, let us know how it goes :)
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#7 sking

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Posted 03 September 2011 - 06:53 PM

Although I have not done them myself, I have known others that incorporate hill sprints as their conditioning in addition to strength training. If you read the first article above about appropriate conditioning, John lists what he feels are the truly appropriate reasons for adding conditioning...fat loss not being one of them.

The Prowler article makes some very good points that the lack of eccentric contraction allows the conditioning not to interfere with strength training, and it seems to me like hill sprints are a very good substitute.
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#8 Ghost

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Posted 06 October 2011 - 03:30 PM

Uncle is pretty good conditioning. Pick a lift, and 85-95% of your 1RM and do as many reps as you can in 30 mins for example.

Another good one is supersetting deadlifts and squats, doing doubles with weights as close to 1RM as possible for as many sets as possible.
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#9 Growler

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 02:11 PM

I have to say hill sprints are definitely challenging, and were giving me pretty good results in conditioning and fat loss. I found two hills to work on, one it took 20 seconds to sprint to the top and one it took around 40-45 seconds to sprint to the top. The short, steeper hill seemed much more workable in the long run.

Word to the wise, though, good footwear is a must. After doing them all summer and getting a lot out of them, I pushed for too long in run-down shoes and have ended up with a nice sprain/tendonitis in my left foot.

I have a feeling same would be true for prowler/sled work. These aren't things you'd want to do with bad shoes or probably not barefoot either unless you very carefully ease into the load.
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#10 jpez

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 03:32 PM

This is from a faq about 5/3/1 by Wendler at elitefitness

30. Everything you could want to know about running hills

There are two downsides about running hills:

• It sucks balls.
• You have to find a good hill to run.

The first is easy to overcome — just man up. The second, not so much; but I live in the very flat state of Ohio and still found a great hill. Now this took about two years of half-ass looking and testing out many duds before I found my Big Mother. The first thing I did was ask some of the locals as I'm not from this area. The second thing I did was Google search "Sledding Hill" with a couple different cities that I live near. There were half a dozen that were good but all were a long drive. This is fine for weekend training, but I didn't want to lift, travel, go run hills, travel back, and be home at 11pm. I eventually found a great hill at a man-made reservoir, an option that I wouldn't have thought of had it not been for some friends. Whatever the length and grade of your hill is will be fine, mostly because it has to be. You're going to be limited by what is available to you. But to give you an idea of the hills that I run:

• The small hill is about 40 yards.
• The big hill is about 75-80 yards.


I don't know about the grades of the hills but they work for me. If you're in doubt about your hill, just ask yourself this question: Will this hill give me a hell of a workout and make me awesome? If the answer is yes, you're fine. If not, keep searching. Now the key to starting hill running/sprinting is simply going out there and doing a few and seeing how you feel. You don't have to make the first day into Hell Day. Make a goal for the day (my first time out I wanted to do 8) and do it. Don't worry about rest periods. Don't worry about how long it takes to do. Just get it done. Do this for a few sessions and see how your knees, ankles, legs, and lungs feel. Once you get a handle on your body and your conditioning level you can start setting goals, progressions, and how many days/week you want to do them. All of these things are going to be dependent on your specific goals.

When I began running hills again I knew for an absolute fact that my lifts were going to take a beating. I'm not an idiot. You don't run up and down a hill four days a week and expect your lifts to suddenly increase. So once I began my hill running, the first thing I did was lower my training max significantly on my 5/3/1 workout. I did this on ALL lifts. I also cut back on all lower body assistance lifts. Running up and walking down the hill is taxing on your legs — the workout you give your legs (and really your entire body) is phenomenal.

My workouts were very simple: I'd go to the weight room first, train my main lifts, do limited assistance work and drive to the hill. This was done four days/week. After about three weeks, my legs started to feel a bit better and got used to the demand. Don't be fooled, the first couple squat workouts were far from impressive. What was once a warm-up was now shaking violently when I walked it out. Mentally, it's hard to handle but you have to start thinking differently-your legs are getting stronger but just aren't able to display it during a squat. So in conclusion: • Find a hill • Take three weeks to adapt to it — find out how out of shape you are. • Adjust weight room work to accommodate the extra running. • Once your body adapts, figure out your goals and execute. If in doubt, squat and run hills. A lot. Your body will thank you. And buy some cleats.
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#11 sking

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Posted 16 October 2011 - 11:13 AM

Nice write up, John. Thanks!
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#12 aqslnb

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 03:49 PM

The Wendler quote is pretty much my feelings on it. There is almost no legitimate reason to not do some hard conditioning. If you need to add some weight, dial it back. If you need to drop some, increase it. Adding conditioning for fat loss is appropriate. Hard conditioning will up the calories burned post-workout and if you bust your ass will curb your appetite a ton. There aren't any fatties out there busting it on conditioning on a consistent basis. Forget all the over analysis.
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#13 TheDemon

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 04:01 PM

I think running hills etc is great on a program like 531 when you're only squating and DLing once a week. Wouldn't fancy it on SL or SS, though.

I'm guessing it was Wendler who said something like, 'You don't get fat running hills four times a week.'

If you haven't got any hills near you, interval incline sprinting on a treadmill works well (detailed in one of the 531 books).
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#14 sking

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 09:46 PM

If you haven't got any hills near you, interval incline sprinting on a treadmill works well (detailed in one of the 531 books).

+1
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#15 Art

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Posted 30 March 2012 - 06:50 PM

Im also going to chme in and say anyone who thinks swings for conditioning is gay has either 1. never done them 'on the miniute' or 2. pussied out on the weight of the 'Bell. I can do a 10 minute session and make myself sick using the right weight and lower rest periods
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#16 David

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 10:25 AM

I am running 2-3 days a week along with doing 531 and have never felt better. I had been running regularly before starting SL but stopped because of the "you will need the rest in between" advice. Did not work for me. Maybe its my age, maybe its my previous lack of general fitness, but i find I am recovering better, have more energy for lifting and just feel happier when I run on my non lifting days. Sprints one day, longer distances (3-5 miles) one day each week minimum. The lesson for me has been listening to my body and finding what fits for my situation. FWIW
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#17 Samir

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Posted 14 April 2012 - 02:40 PM

I run steady state on Saturdays (about to go now, actually) and hills on Sundays. When I have time, I do either / or on Friday too (sometimes I just take a walk though).

I've definitely noticed an improvement in my training recovery since I started, but my lifts are now crawling forward. That's ok, I am trying to lean out a bit for summer (eeeessssthetttixxxx!!!) but once winter comes around I'll probably cut it out totally again and go back to lift big eat big.

Many of my friends came for week 1, week 2, but about 95% dropped out after week 3. Hills make you awesome, apparently not many of us are ready to bear that mantle :D
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