In my last blog entry I made the groundbreaking observation that we should be doing strength training work that we enjoy less we stop strength training out of boredom. Otherwise, we run the risk of descending into the gym hades known as yoga, Les Mills bullshit, and random inquisition-imitating cardio machinery. So, if you find something that makes you strong that you enjoy, you should really do that.
The intuitiveness of this blog is off-the charts I know...
Still, some amount of adulthood has to creep into strength training. If you appreciate a healthy body then eventually you have to pay the bills with some lifts that keep shit balanced out. Long, long ago, in a galaxy far, far away, I decided to read anatomy and physiology books to learn about how the body works. The unfortunate problem with this facet of medical science is that if you don't use the knowledge, you lose it. It's an enormous amount of memorization.
One such takeaway that I gleaned from this experiment in drudgery was the something called tension integrity. What that's all about is basically your joints and float on muscular tension rather than bones directly interlocking with one another. So, keeping shit in proper working order is about making sure the pull between muscles is correct.
In other words, balance. Such a word might as well be written in an obscure, foreign dialect when talking to meatheads. It doesn't have to be a call away from the extreme though. It can be something as basic as doing either pull-ups, rope climbs, or rows as a supplement to pressing. That has been the approach I've taken since I upped my overhead pressing work to three days a week. As a result, I seem to have skipped the obligatory tightness I've heard others complain about with lots of weekly pressing work.
Please don't mistake this writer as someone who read a book and became magically smart though. One thing that you realize when you read anatomy books is that underneath your skin, there are tons of different cuts of meat with bizarre Latin names which you won't give a shit about until they hurt. I'm not nearly smart enough to work out muscles that don't impress women on a regular basis either.
This happened just recently when I was working out with sandbags mostly while traveling to Wisconsin. I had some routines I built around having simply a 160 lbs and a 250 lbs sandbag. After completing the job and eventually I got home, I stopped doing the shit I had been doing for months. After all, I did those routines since I couldn't do anything else and since I had a bit more sophisticated gear at my disposal, I had no need to bother with my sandbag routines?
Life has a sense of humor in that regard. Even I should have realized that crude doesn't mean ineffective. Among the regular flavors on the sandbag exercise menu were good morning and walking lunges. Around the time I dropped these out of my weekly hoisting, I started driving for work. A lot. Everywhere. The driving was remarkably effective in turning my hip flexors into violin strings. My deadlift took a major shit.
Realizing that this pain in my hips was really making my deadlift numbers vomit, I decided to start researching ways to stretch my hips out. One stretch that almost perpetually came up was one that looked eerily similar to something I used to do at least once a week...
So, these movements aren't the sexiest lifts on earth. They're not in a competition and they don't make it easier to lift hundreds of pounds. So, they may not make in on your worlds favorite lifts any time soon. Too bad. You're an adult now. That means your body isn't young. You can't do whatever you want since you sit too fucking much. You're going to have to do some PM to even out the fact that, generally speaking, we make dumb decisions with how we chose to move...or not move. You don't have to like it but you do have to do it.