Are you in shape or do you just have muscles?
Performance is so much deeper than aesthetics. Recently, I have found myself caught between two worlds. The world of anaerobics and the world of aerobics. On one side, I want to grow, build muscle, pack on weight. On the other side, I want to wrestle, run, grapple and increase my aerobic efficiency while maintaining a lower bodyweight to compete at. Two worlds completely opposite from one another. What I love about this dynamic is the variety of movements, positions, and stress my body is under due to the contrast of training styles.
Although a lot of people also follow similar training methods by mixing anaerobics and aerobics, I do see one major flaw in the world of weight lifting. Time and time again I see guys in the gym all jacked up bench press 4 plates, yet at the same time can’t run a quarter mile or do a one legged squat.
The muscles are there, the abs are there, all the shreds are showing but it’s really a fraud. Sure, the muscle is strong, but it’s not durable. If you only stress the muscle under one type of stimulus, expect to receive one type of result. If all you do is conventional weight lifting with no other movements, programs, or routines to fire other fast and slow twitch muscle groups, you lose. Yes, having big muscles is great for looks but looks have to match functionality.
Would you want to purchase a Ferrari with a Civic engine? I think not.
The same goes with our bodies. I’m a firm believer that overall health and aesthetics must be matched with equal commitment. It’s awesome that you can deadlift 600lbs one time but how sore do you get when you go skiing?
Apples to oranges?
No, my point is that it doesn’t matter how strong or big your muscles are if that’s the only style of training you choose to do. The real life relevance where you will ever be in a position to deadlift 600lbs is pretty rare, but, at the same time going skiing for a weekend in January with the family is very practical.
No, I’m not promoting CrossFit. I am promoting not being a meat head gym goer who is a one trick pony. How in shape you are has nothing to do with the size of your muscles, how lean you are, or even how much you can lift. Being in shape refers to the bodies ability to manage various types of stress with efficiency. If you bench 405 but can’t walk on your hands or last 15 minutes doing cardio, you’re not in shape, you’re just strong. If your body fat is 6% but you can’t last two minutes in high intensity training, you’re not in shape, you’re just shredded. Now, if you can squat a house then run to yours after, you’re definitely in shape.
I’m not here to bash anyone. I’m simply here to promote the training methods we feel are most beneficial to the masses.
If you are strong as an ox, lean, and have a killer gas tank, keep on keeping on. If you are strong as an ox, lean, and get winded playing grabass when you have few beers with your buddies, maybe it’s time to reconsider some of your methods? Perhaps?
6 For 30.
Get you some.