My Training Methodology

October 20, 2015   

Set your vision.

I have a vision of where I want to be in the future. Not too specific, but I want to be a master of my own bodyweight, an expert “mover” and extremely functional - in that I can pick up any activity or sport and give it a really good go.

Focus on a few movements at a time.

Focus on the process, not the goal. These are movements which I want to nail, and, instead of setting a goal as to when to achieve them - I will work on improving these few movements every week.

  1. Handstand push-up
  2. Hanging L sit
  3. Pistol squat I picked these as they are movements I’ve wanted to get for a long time now. When I am happy with my progress in each, I will swap them for others and then add the nailed movements to the filler movements below.

For some of these movements I won’t be able to complete them first time. That’s part of the point. It’s something I’m working towards. I’ll focus on progressions for each of the above and movements related to them (e.g. for handstand pushups I’ll spend lots of time upside down, doing wall walks and push ups).

Fill up your time with everything else!

I’m a fitness addict so I don’t want to restrict myself. Once I work on my focus movements above during the week, I am free to “fill” my days with filler exercises and activity to keep me sane. This includes snowboarding, hiking, running, CrossFit, yoga, climbing and all recreational activities. For home workouts I will pick from these filler exercises, mixing and matching for short intense workouts:

Pick a random one:

Think about and question your movement.

Thanks to reading and studying loads on movement lately (I still have mountains to learn, but that is half the fun), I have become fascinated with how I move. I encourage you to question everything - why do you move in that way? Can you squat down and then move right or left under load?

The one example I always give is my glute activation work. Before performing pistols I like to ensure my glutes are firing. To do this I used to do conventional RDLs. However, a few weeks ago I thought to myself “why am I only moving in this plane? Can I twist left, right, up and down under control?”. I fell over but kept at it - I felt muscles in my glutes I never knew I had, and am more stable than ever. Question everything and move everywhere. Listen to your muscles, tendons, joints and body. Trust yourself.

If you are interested in learning more I’d recommend checking out Carl Paoli’s book Freestyle or the work of Ido Portal.

Introduce small habit changes.

I have introduced small habit changes to aid my movement and progress. Think about small things that you can “tack” onto existing habits. For example, I now:

  • Brush my teeth using my left hand
  • Drink using my left hand
  • Do a pike sit up when I wake up in the morning
  • Drive with my scapula active and shoulders in good position
  • Set up shoulders and posture before texting (watch this video)

I would recommend reading this for anyone interested in habits and using triggers to implement new ones.

Mobilise in 7 minute increments.

I know I should mobilise more, but often neglect it due to “not having the time”. So now I mobilize in 7 minute increments. I have put together about ten 7 minute mobilisation sessions which has me mobilising more than ever (often two or three 7 minute sessions a day) - “sure it’s only 7 minutes”.

On a side note I’m working on a mobilisation app which I hope to be able to share soon.

Reward yourself.

For example, every Sunday, if I have followed the above to a point I am satisfied (I am very strict on myself), I am rewarding myself with $30 to spend on training equipment & clothing. This is a good one for me, as the more gear I get the more I want to train!

Credits: The above is based on my own opinion, experience and learning to date. This has come about from learning from some incredible people, not limited to: CrossFit 353 (Pete, Gary and Royce), Kelly Starrett, Carl Paoli, James Clear, Charles Duhigg. Huge thanks to them for sharing their knowledge with me - be it in person, through books and articles or through videos.

Disclaimer: The above is based on my own opinion, experience and learning to date. This is not professional programming - I’m just showing you what I do. Always consult a physician or qualified healthcare provider before beginning any exercise, training or fitness program.