WED: You’re Wielding a Double Edged Sword
Everyday you come to the gym, you are wielding a sword.
On one side, we have a blade that will yield development, the adaptations our bodies make. We get leaner, stronger, bigger, faster, better. We burn fat, improve our athletic ability, and strengthen muscle. On the other side of the blade, we have an opposing blade that will yield destruction. The chronic tax on on the body, the overdose of stress on our systems, the degradation of our connective tissue and joints.
The only possible way that we can have any long term success with an S&C program is to understand the duality of those opposing sides, and how to access the correct blade. The more you show up to the gym and the harder you go, the more you begin to use the destructive side of the blade. The less you show up to the gym, and the more you allow yourself recovery, the more you will begin to use the developmental side of the blade.
I’ve written before about how you don’t need to slam an entire bottle of tequila to get a buzz. The law of diminishing returns will kick in and you will get less from the results that you put worth when the stimulus is overdosed. In fact, any overdose worsens how you feel. Any stimulus follows that principle, and we can never forget that fitness is a stimulus. We challenge our body, we push it beyond its current physical limits so that it can temporarily break down and rebuild with a new capacity. Whether or not that stimulus nets out to be a favorable stress (eustress) or negative stress (distress) depends entirely upon which side of the blade you’re using.
That is what fitness is.
No one is free of this dichotomy. A runner can quickly go from the developmental side of the blade to the destructive side of the blade. Shin splints. Stress fractures.
I can tell you that in my personal opinion, the towing of the line begins as soon as your frequency increases beyond four days per week. It doesn’t matter where you are in your progress. Results are manipulated by intensity, not frequency, and four days will serve any fitness purpose assuming that your diet, the real driving force in health change, is where it needs to be.
There is never enough stimulus to feed any addiction, even the ones that we perceive as healthy. For some, if there were nine days in a week they would be in the gym for all of them and no doubt be making small daily incisions with the destructive side of the blade.
The difficulty is in getting hard chargers to flip to the other side of the blade, where doing less is actually more. Where blindly slashing is replaced with smaller, more precise, accurate incisions.
Which blade are you currently using?
First, for Strength.
5 Strict Press
5/s DB High Plank Pull Throughs
4/s Goblet Side Lunge
Complete 1 set every 5 minutes
for 20 minutes.
Then, for Conditioning.
60 BW Squats
40 BW Squats
20 BW Squats