A brief summary of my N+1
I have often said that the buy-in to strength and conditioning program is a 2-3 year transition. Why so long? Your body has to learn the new program, you have to assess, then tweak, assess, and re-tweak. Learning is a process. For most of us the process involves re-educating due to outdated information and/or misinformation. The truth is that this is not 30 day trial. 30 days is just enough time for someone to try it, realize it’s hard, and use mental bargaining or excuse making to find a way out. It has been over 3 years since I have transitioned from 15-20 hours of cardio per week as an ultra-endurance athlete to the athlete I am today. I have lost so-called “friends” and the support from entire groups of people because I chose to challenge the "norm."
Here is a brief summary and some basic pre and post data.
Year 1: Physical and nutrition rehab
Phase 1a: Addressing the overuse injuries that started to transition from an acute to a chronic condition from the hours of long distance training coupled with the inflammation caused by nutritional pattern. The rehab was done by reintroducing weight training to re-educate and recondition the body to its old but neglected friend, Hypertrophy. The volume of training was reduced from 15-20 hours per week down to 3-6 hours with 3 days of total body conditioning w/ a varying % of resistance
Phase 1b: Addressing the excessive consumption of processed and refined carbohydrates. During year 1, this change to nutrition still involved rewarding w/ comfort foods like pancakes on the weekend.
Reflection of year 1: Positive: Change to fitness program resulted in a rejuvenation of my love of weight training. Removal of the majority of processed and refined foods was a step in the right direction
Negative: I spent the first 6 months training myself in a globo gym. My engine (heart and lungs) was above average and my strength was descent. I needed to scale more often than not because of the combination of the increased intensity and volume. In turn, I spent the next 8 months after ECC opened scaling workouts to reduce injury. Plus, although improving I was still had internal inflammation from the reward meals.
Year 2-3: Transition to TQN
The majority of my own fitness program has transitioned away from CF workouts that take 15-20+ minutes. Early on as an endurance athlete these were the workouts that I loved because I was able to excel. However last November (2010), I made the decision to get Thick, Quick, and Nasty. I shifted my programming to a smarter style (smart = one that works best for me). I would care less about long workouts, the clock, AMRAP, or any of those things.
The week's workouts look like 3-5 days per week w/ a strength component starting each workout. 2-3x per week, I finish with a couplet or triplet of complementary movements to that of my strength component. I use rounds, work: rest, and a variety of other factors to manipulate the stress on the body. The longer CF style met-cons may be done zero times per week, once per week or every other week depending on the phase of my training cycle.
For the last 2 years my nutrition has continued to improve and all cravings for highly processed/refined foods have vanished because I removed the reward meals. Looking at year 1, I realized that the mental bargaining was a crutch. It was making the quest for quality nutrition an uphill battle. Highly processed/refined foods are like drugs and drug addicts need their fix. Only after a few months of "no excuse nutrition," the unnecessary aches and pains associated with consuming highly processed/refined foods dissipated.
Currently, look, feel, and perform better with less effort than any other time in my life. I credit the shift in nutrition (mostly dead animals and cabbage and the removal of highly processed/refined foods) coupled with the 3-5 days of training smart w/ weights, reps, and movements that work well with my body. I know that N+1 is by no means something that can change the minds of academia or even those reluctant to seek out and utilize what may possibly a better or more efficient way to achieve the end product. However, it matters to me because I am N+1.
Look: lean but bloated/TQN
That's correct no change in scale weight. Compare the photos and tell me why.
Feel: broken and beaten/fit, fast and focused
Snatch: 95/185 (ass to earth)
Nancy: 11:18 Rx
Amanda: 10:15 Rx
U.S. Army Physical Fitness Test: Scored 299 out of 300
Yes, slower but on less than 2 miles per week (if that)
Train Smart, Eat Clean, Smile Often,