Back in 1983, prior to afternoon wrestling practice beginning at the University of Iowa, Coach Gable had us sit in the stands for one of his legendary ‘war stories.’
Most of the time, Gable’s war stories referenced years gone by. They were biographical sketches highlighting the attitude, work ethic and training philosophy of the champions he’d previously coached or been around.
On this particular day, this particular war story was different because it wasn’t about how American wrestling champions trained. In fact, it wasn’t even about how wrestlers trained.
The story was about how a group of Bulgarian Olympic weight lifters trained, and how well they were doing.
“They’re training six times a day,” Gable stated.
What? I thought. How can anyone train that many times a day? How you going to survive?
Six workouts a day would doubl (or triple) the number of workouts most of the wrestlers engaged in each day.
True, some guys on the Iowa team only worked out TWICE a day. I don’t recall ever meeting anyone who only trained once a day. There was no way you would make it if that was all you did.
Yet now, Gable was making us feel better about how rough we supposedly had it, by telling us about athletes who trained six times a day.
The key was that all the Bulgarian workouts were brief, usually never longer than 30 minutes. Moreover, a lot of the workout was rest. The athletes made sure to get plenty of recovery time in between sets. The workouts weren’t continuous non-stop action.
I’ve written about this and I’ll write about it again: If you’re not making progress with a particular exercise, or if you find yourself rebelling against a workout because you think you need an hour or more for the workout to have any value, think again. Stop training to failure and stop doing long workouts.
Whether you do one workout a day, or six, none of them need to be difficult for you to make progress. If you opt for more than one session per day, a simple set of one exercise, stopping well short of failure, is the key to making this method work for you.
I go into much more detail on the above in videos on my membership site. In forthcoming videos, I will explain why this way of training is not only far easier, but far more effective and productive.
Keep in mind that less time spent in each workout equals more progress… and training to failure is pure folly.
Kick a$$ – take names,