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The Best Overall Fitness strategy?

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  • The Best Overall Fitness strategy?

    We all have our beliefs and opinions for achieving optimal fitness. I have dabbled in various types of strength, endurance, sport-specific, and other types of training. There have certainly been some things I would do again, and some training techniques I would stay away from. Ultimately, I am looking for YOUR opinion of the best fitness "protocol" to be the fittest, strongest, and most athletic a person can be, while keeping health in mind. What are YOUR thoughts?

    Obviously, training methods will differ based on your goals. So, like I mentioned above, the goal is: to be the fittest, strongest, and most athletic I can be, while promoting optimal health of course.

    I'm not looking to be on a fitness magazine, deadlift 8x my body-weight, flex for an audience, swim across an ocean, or set the world land speed record. However, I would like to be able to jump into a basketball game, throw a couple weights around, or run a few miles from time to time (get my drift?). *I'm guessing I'm not the only one in this category, so hopefully this discussion can help others too.

    I know in the Primal Blueprint, Mark says this can be achieved through Primal Fitness, and his strategy seems to work fairly well for me. I just wanted to throw the question into the abyss that is MDA Forum and see what all of you primal fitness enthusiasts had to say. Maybe you completely agree with Mark's suggestions? Or maybe you add in a little of this or that on top? I'm curious to hear YOUR thoughts, whatever they may be.

    So, let the discussion commence!

  • #2
    I mix everything. I do body weight exercise in a grease the groove fashion most days of the week, a body by science big five workout once a week, a couple times a month I'll do dead lifts, sprints 2-4x/month, and I shoot for 3-5 hours of work (usually jogging) at a bout 75% my max heart rate each week.

    I think the above works for fitness and health FOR ME. But, Marks program alone is actually plenty for fitness and health. I just like a bit of variety. As far as athleticism is concerned I'm currently not doing any skills work so none of what I do is geared to any specific sport. To be "athletic" you need to do skills training in that particular athletic event.
    Last edited by Neckhammer; 12-04-2012, 12:40 PM.

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    • #3
      I think the princibals in PBF have it pretty much spot on, certainly it seems to be working for me.

      Personally I would add in some higher level cardio once a week, a swim, a run, a bike ride, instead of some of the move slowly.

      I also think you could add in something like interval training once a week - burpees, step jumps, fast, explosive full body stuff.

      And once you've mastered the basic moves of LHT there is a world of progressions and alternative bodyweight stuff to try, or you could lift something other than yourself.

      A bit of Movnat, parkour type stuff would also, I think be really benifical to push you into what is IMHO the most impressive thing I have seen a human do with their body.

      So really, Move Slow, Move a bit less slow, Lift heavy, Sprint, Intervals and gymnastic stuff - that gives you 5 things to do in a week, and I think would cover pretty much every aspect of fitness.
      You know all those pictures of Adam and Eve where they have belly button? Think about it..................... take as long as you need........................

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Tribal Rob View Post
        I think the principles in PBF have it pretty much spot on, certainly it seems to be working for me.
        me too. i do add things to the specifics of mark's program, but mostly i strength train, sprint, and move. i know that i can move myself, or other things, through space. i can sprint if i need to. i can play sports, climb trees, hike all day long.
        i'm not ready to compete in an iron man or anything, but i'm wholly confident that i could easily do a sprint triathlon, a spartan race, and help a friend move all back to back this weekend.
        http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread60178.html

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        • #5
          I use PBF for the generic framework, and have used a number of different programs for the LHT.

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          • #6
            First you say... "I am looking for YOUR opinion of the best fitness "protocol" to be the fittest, strongest, and most athletic a person can be, while keeping health in mind. What are YOUR thoughts?"

            Then you say... "I would like to be able to jump into a basketball game, throw a couple weights around, or run a few miles from time to time"

            2 very different things... you don't need to be the "the fittest, strongest, most athletic you can be" (statement 1) to be able to play a pickup basketball game, lift weights, and run a couple of miles (statement 2)... not even close.

            Which goal do you want to accomplish?

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Tribal Rob View Post
              I think the princibals in PBF have it pretty much spot on, certainly it seems to be working for me.
              So true and really emphasize the play - my grip, pullup strength, extreme deep squat strength have all improved from climbing more than training would have taken them!
              Last edited by Dirlot; 12-04-2012, 08:10 PM.
              Eating primal is not a diet, it is a way of life.
              PS
              Don't forget to play!

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              • #8
                The PBF principles have been working pretty well for me! Strength train, sprint once a week, and go hiking as often as I can.
                "Itís not about how strong you are, itís how well you can move with that strength."

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                • #9
                  I've dabbled in a lot of stuff before, but right now it's agility agility agility. I want to move well. I want to move like a panther on a hunt.

                  I'm doing BJJ, I take salsa and swing lessons, I juggle, I try various tricks with my bike, I might buy a longboard soon, I do some parkour once in a while, and when I go to the gym (doesn't happen often anymore, not enough time), I go with gymnastics stuff or moves that require a lot of skill.

                  It's mostly an accumulation of small skills, but overall, it's starting to make a big difference. I feel much better than when I was doing various strength or endurance training protocols in the past, and I'm learning new activities faster and faster. I'm also surprising myself. Walking on my hands isn't some obscure dream anymore, and I can do a long jump face first, land smoothly in a roll and keep running afterwards.

                  The only downside is it's almost impossible for me to put on muscle without lifting weights. Because of it I might go back to olympic weightlifting some day, or indoor climbing.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by arthurb999 View Post
                    First you say... "I am looking for YOUR opinion of the best fitness "protocol" to be the fittest, strongest, and most athletic a person can be, while keeping health in mind. What are YOUR thoughts?"

                    Then you say... "I would like to be able to jump into a basketball game, throw a couple weights around, or run a few miles from time to time"

                    2 very different things... you don't need to be the "the fittest, strongest, most athletic you can be" (statement 1) to be able to play a pickup basketball game, lift weights, and run a couple of miles (statement 2)... not even close.

                    Which goal do you want to accomplish?
                    arthurb999 - you're right I do say those things within my post. However, I do believe it is quite clear of my goal as I say it twice.

                    1. Ultimately, I am looking for YOUR opinion of the best fitness "protocol" to be the fittest, strongest, and most athletic a person can be, while keeping health in mind. What are YOUR thoughts?

                    2. So, like I mentioned above, the goal is: to be the fittest, strongest, and most athletic I can be, while promoting optimal health of course.

                    While these 2 statements are not identical, I believe the main difference is I mention (I) myself in #2. After I stated my goal (twice), I then mentioned a generalization that I would like to jump into a basketball game, etc. All I wanted to do was initiate a discussion on the best overall fitness and training techniques to be an all-around athlete. I'd love to hear your perspective.

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                    • #11
                      So, it appears variety and spontaneity are common trends here. I suppose I can add a little of my story here as well.

                      I lift myself usually around 3x a week through various venues (SimpleFit protocol, PBF, burpees, etc.)
                      I will usually throw in a sprint workout 1x a week.
                      I typically play a pick-up game of basketball at least 1x a week.
                      Walking/hiking are staples for me when I have time.

                      Some weeks I go hit the squat rack or do some deadlifts at the gym. I will also add in some biking and swimming to spice things up. I really enjoy doing some bouldering on the climbing wall as well.

                      Overall, I have loved working out like this and I would never go back to the rudimentary style I have adhered to in the past. My workouts are now much more intense and a heck of a lot shorter.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Winterbike View Post
                        I've dabbled in a lot of stuff before, but right now it's agility agility agility. I want to move well. I want to move like a panther on a hunt.
                        I love the panther metaphor.

                        The only downside is it's almost impossible for me to put on muscle without lifting weights. Because of it I might go back to olympic weightlifting some day, or indoor climbing.
                        This is one thing I have noticed as well. I don't necessarily put on any (minimal) sort of mass doing this routine. I'm sure some people are looking to put on mass, but for me I can handle being lean and strong without the extra mass on my body.

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                        • #13
                          I would suggest you strength train 2x a week using barbells hitting heavy compound movements, 1x a week sprints or conditioning specific to basketball, and 1x a week yoga at a studio (it seems to plug holes in my training with core, flexibility, offsets sitting all day int he office, etc). The rest of the days hike, practice basketball, walk, run a couple of miles, etc...

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by tcoop2232 View Post
                            I love the panther metaphor.
                            Actually, it's a panther simile!
                            "Don't go in there, General, it's a trap! That's a grain chamber. It makes people like you into people like me."

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                            • #15
                              tcoop...I wish I knew the answer or I probably wouldn't be on this forum.

                              In all seriousness. I understand you identified a few measurables for "fitness strategy" but I believe every person has their own definition of success. Ultimately I think you have to look at it as an equation and we all have the same variables: rest, sleep, sprinting, weight lifting, slow movements, stretching, polymetrics, body resistance, diet, water. Unfortunately we all have constraints as well: kids, social life, injuries, work, soreness, pain tolerance, sleeping problems, etc.

                              I think your “fitness strategy” depends upon your definition of success. I guess my point is to determine your exact goals. Based upon research create a plan that you think best mixes those variables that will help reach those goals. Determine the weighting, coefficient or effort you put forth to each variable based upon what your constraints allow.

                              Monitor your progress and if you are having issues reaching your goals, modify the importance or mixture of those variables.

                              Unless the constraints are too many, I think everyone can reach their goals: body weight, fat percentage, max lifts, etc. I think each person has their own formula but quit and become frustrated if they don’t see quick results and refuse to modify their plan.
                              Last edited by TTBlue21; 12-05-2012, 08:56 AM.

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