Friday, October 23, 2009

Random Friday 2009

1. I don't use "sport-specific training", I use human-specific training.

2. What you believe is a close 2nd behind what you do... and in some cases equally as important in the whole scheme of things.

3. Growing up... I came from a small town and our school didn't have much of a weightroom. So I spent my summer work's earnings on purchasing my own weight equipment. It was one of those old-school benches in which the dip bars were the racks for the bench (arms went on the outside of the racks to take the bar off to bench). Now I didn't have the knowledge I have now, but I knew that I had to train my lower body and that the leg extension and curl apparatus on the bench wasn't worth shit. So basically I rigged up the bench to raise the hooks to use the dip handles to set the weight for back squats. The bar barely balanced. I had to make sure I had a family member help me load the weight so the bar wouldn't tip off and had to be sure to weight down the opposite end of the bench so the bar wouldn't get dumped to the front. Regardless... I squatted.

Also, if any of you have been to northern Minnesota you know the winters are long, cold, and f***in windy, with lots of snow. My home was about 5 miles out of town, and often the gym wasn't open when I need to run/sprint. So I would bundle-up and head out into the sometimes below 0 temp and run in the snow. We lived next to a wooded area in which the snow would pile up to 2-3 feet deep in places. I figured this would be great training for myself as a running back. Sprinting high knees through deep snow, fighting through heavy duty snow apparel, it was like trying to break leg tackles for the entirety of every sprint. Plus the terrain was hilly, so I figured, 'Eat this Walter Payton! He maybe sprinted hills, but not with this much gear and snow to battle... wuss.'

Long story short; make due with the resources and environment in which you situated, and be sure to attack it with everything you've got. Maybe I wasn't training the "right" way with the perfect plan, but I was training HARD! As the good coaches I have had, have told me: "even if you're wrong, be sure to be wrong at 100 mph." ...just be sure to learn from the mistakes after.

4. I am often guilty of getting caught-up in arguing methods regarding training, but we all know,

Methods are many,
principles are few.
Methods often change,
principles never do.

Ultimately, regardless of the method, regardless of what you believe, believe in something... it's kind of like someone who once said something like, 'believe in yourself, or no one else will.' ... huh, pretty good advice...

5. The "orginal" Random Friday???

6. Want some great reading loaded with great information, insights and thoughts. Check out my good friend Josh Leeger's

7. No More Squats. While I might not entirely agree, Coach Boyle always has good insights and thoughts.

8. Play fast. Move with everything you've got. Good things will happen. I see this at the playground I go by on my lunch break each day. We need more of this stuff. Kids always know the answer to fitness: Don't think about it, just play... we, as adults, just need to get out of their way.

9. Sleep. Quality sleep. Lots of it.

10. If you're fortunate to have some sunny weather today and this weekend, get your ass outside and load up on the Vitamin D any chance you can get... while moving.

Have a good weekend!



Mark Young said...

"I don't use 'sport-specific training', I use human-specific training."

Great quote! As usual, I love reading your thoughts.

jleeger said...

Great post, as usual Aaron. And thanks for the kind words!

jleeger said...

Just watched Boyle's videos about 1-leg squats.

While it's good to 1-leg squat - rotate that into your program - I would be hesitant to say that the limiting factor in bilateral squats is low-back strength as a blanket statement.

It might be low-back strength for some, in which case, what are you going to do to strengthen their spinal erectors/etc.

But in others, it might be flexibility. In which case, how are you going to improve that ROM (whether it's thoracic, hip, knee, or ankle)?

Doing unilateral work because it shortcuts a movement dysfunction or lack or ability is the same type of reductionist approach that's getting us into trouble with scientific research these days.

Gotta consider the whole animal.

Bad practice to make blanket statements like that...didn't Coach Boyle learn that after his first book?!

Aaron Schwenzfeier said...

Thanks for the feedback Mark, always appreciated!

Aaron Schwenzfeier said...


I think you are absolutely DEAD ON with your comments regarding no squats.

Are we now training "glass" athletes?