What is a barbell complex?
How do barbell complexes build strength?
Time under tension
5 Barbell Complexes for Your Next Gym Visit
The next time you’re in the gym give one of these barbell complexes a shot…
5 sets of 5 deadlifts + 5 hang power cleans + 5 front squats; rest 3 min b/w sets
10 sets of 1 strict press + 2 push press + 3 push jerk; rest 2 min b/w sets
6 sets of 2 front squats + 2 back squats; rest 1 min b/w sets
8 sets of squat clean + low hang squat clean + hang squat clean; rest 3 min b/w sets
4 sets of 3 deadlifts + 3 hang cleans + 3 front squats + 3 push press + 6 overhead lunges; rest 3 min b/w sets
Who: open to everyone; $115 stand-alone membership, $35 add-on to a CrossFit membership
What: 4-Week Olympic Weightlifting Specialty Class
Where: CrossFit 704
When: April 2nd – 30th; meets Mon & Wed 4:30 – 5:30pm
Why: to build overall strength through the Olympic lifts
In the CrossFit community, the months of February and March mark the beginning of CrossFit’s competitive season.
That means, for most of us, these months are our only chance to compete against other CrossFit athletes across the world.
In doing so, we learn a lot about our fitness. And maybe more importantly, we learn a lot about the holes in our fitness.
The period immediately following the CrossFit Open is the perfect time to begin to address those holes in our fitness that the Open pointed out.
And what’s the biggest hole in most people’s fitness?
Introducing a month-long specialty class dedicated to improving your overall strength. The 4-Week Olympic Weightlifting Specialty Class is perfect for anyone looking to supplement their training with strength work OR for anyone who wants to step back for a month and just focus on strength.
Either way, this class has something for everyone.
Click here to sign up.
I’ve got a confession to make.
I love challenges.
The “Do This Every Day for 30 Days” type of challenges. I love ’em.
We use them at the gym. I use them in my own training. I challenge random people I meet out in public to them…
There’s just something so magical about them.
Okay, not really.
But I do think they’re effective. And they’re overlooked by most people.
The gym challenge board
Thirty day challenges are practically fool-proof in their simplicity. As it turns out, more complex things are easier to avoid. Why do you think quitting cable TV is so difficult? Because they know you’d rather just pay the money each month than go through the complex process of quitting.
So, the basic idea of “do this one thing every day” makes the overall task of a thirty day challenge much less intimidating.
Thirty day challenges play on your own psychology. ASK me to go paleo for thirty days and you might get a weird look. Say what now? But CHALLENGE me to go paleo. And it’s game on.
Because most of us won’t really challenge ourselves on our own. That’s why sports and competitions bring out the best performances. We have a way of keeping score.
Thirty day challenges only last thirty days. It’s easy to go full speed ahead on things and burn out too quickly. It happens all the time. In all areas of life. The great part about a thirty day challenge is that it only lasts thirty days.
You can survive for thirty days.
I spent 13 weeks in Marine Corps boot camp. Navy SEAL’s basic training lasts 24 weeks.
You can eat broccoli for 30 days. Trust me.
The best part is, these challenges don’t have to be life-altering changes. You don’t need to rewrite your entire story in thirty days. You just need to challenge yourself to push a little harder. To reach a little further for your goals.
The trick is to pick something small and specific. It needs to be something you can do every day. Whether you’re at home, in the gym, on vacation, or celebrating a holiday. (Don’t let Grandma’s 90th birthday extravaganza throw you off your game.)
And it needs to be specific. Drink less beer – is not the same as – no alcohol for one month.
Here are 30 challenge ideas to help get you started. Just pick one. Stick to it for a month and see how you feel. If you felt like you made progress pick a new one and start again.
- Stretch for 10 minutes
- No soda (Yes, including diet soda.)
- Run for 15 minutes
- Take a 30 second cold shower every morning
- Perform 10 strict pullups
- No sugar
- Go paleo
- Cook every meal. E-V-E-R-Y meal
- Perform 30 situps
- Spend 30 minutes with no technology
- Squat 3 times per week
- Drink 64oz of wate
- Read for 30 minutes
- Limit social media to 10 minutes
- Sprint twice per week
- No alcohol
- Track your phone app usage
- Perform 50 pushups
- Run 2 miles
- No fast food
- Bike 5 miles
- Exercise 3 times per week
- Sleep 8 hours
- Perform extra ab work 4 days per week
- Weigh and measure your food
- Track your calories
- Row 1000m
- Practice a handstand
- Rehab your shoulders
- Try something new
At the end of the day, none of these challenges are going to change your life. Thirty days of stretching will not turn you into a gymnast. But it will get you closer than you are today.
So start small.
If you’re not exercising yet then start by exercising once a week. Then twice a week. Keep progressing as you feel comfortable. It doesn’t matter where you start. It only matter that you’re making progress.
And if you’ve been training for awhile then pick something you don’t want to do. Anyone can work on their strengths every day. What’s a weakness that needs improving? Start there.
Just. Do. Something.
Find a way to move closer towards your goals every single day.
One of the most common requests I get from people during our free intros is, “I want a six-pack.”
“Awesome! I’d be glad to help. This is how you do it.”
The initial excitement and intrigue wears off once they realize they actually already know the answer. It’s just not that fun.
You can definitely get a six-pack. But there is no magic bullet.
A six-pack requires two things. Low body fat percentage. And, to a much lesser degree, abdominal strength.
That’s it. Nail those two things and you’ll have a six-pack.
And that’s what I tell them.
But that’s the hard part. Wanting a six-pack and getting a six-pack are two different things.
It starts with decreasing body fat.
Everyone wants less body fat. So much so that the thought of it keeps millions of people up at night.
But how do you actually get less body fat?
How do you go from wanting a six-pack to getting one?
You do what most people are unwilling to do.
You fix your nutrition.
You get rid of processed foods. Cut out all sugar. Eat more vegetables. And make sure you’re getting enough protein.
You cook all of your meals. Take in zero calories from beverages. And limit your alcohol intake.
And you do that every day. Soon your body fat percentage will go down.
And that’s 80% of the work.
Because once you decrease your body fat enough you reach the magic number.
And that magic number is where all six-packs live.
For guys that number is 15. And for girls it’s 20.
At 15 percent body fat (20 percent for girls), guys can expect to see ab definition.
Fifteen percent. One. Five.
And no amount of crunches, sauna visits, or half-marathons will get you there. Nor will any cleanse, diet pill, or thirty day crash diet.
What will get you there?
More veggies and less junk.