Unconventional Training Methods: Part II – 10 MORE tips

Posted: August 17, 2013 in fitness, fun, Muscle Building
Tags: , ,

As with Part 1, I’ve been experimenting with some uncommon ways of training and they’ve a had very profound impact on my results…

TIP 1: Use a Mouth Guard

This is one that I use from time to time when I’m lifting insanely heavy. The ability to clamp down my teeth sometimes gives me the extra thrust I need.

TIP 2: Lockout Laterals

Press against the bars on a power rack at the top position of a dumbbell lateral raise. The trick with this is to mentally focus on shoving up with your delts ant not your arms.

TIP 3: Occlusion Training

This is a great way to train the muscles hard without training them heavy (which is great news for your joints!), and has been the subject of several university studies. The results of those studies have been overwhelmingly positive. Here’s a workout I created that incorporates this type of training.

TIP 4: Counter Intuitive Training!

This is something I do in a few different ways…

When doing crunches, use a decline bench and sit upright at a 45 degree angle. The normal thought is to rotate the hip upwards while contracting, but try doing the opposite, rotating it slightly DOWN while contracting and exhaling. While contracting visualize your bellybutton going in so far it touches your spine. Hold this contracted position for a couple seconds while holding your breath, then extend your spine while slightly rotating your hips upward.

Another way I use counter intuitive training is by using machines in the opposite starting position as intended. This works your muscles at slightly different angles. For example, for machine bench press put head where butt would normally be, or for a machine shoulder press face the back support. Reverse hack squats are one of the best ways I’ve found to obliterate my quads.

TIP 5: Use Smaller Plates on DEADLIFTS

When possible try to use more 25lb plates instead of fewer 45lb plates. This will extend your range of motion by a few inches. You can also perform deficit deadlifts to accomplish a similar effect by standing on a raised platform.

TIP 6: Power Strips

These also appear in my hormonal blast workout. It is an idea I came across when re-reading the Poliquin Principles. I have a feeling it is either not the most effective method around, or possibly too taxing to be used frequently since it has not really been used by many people since that book was published. So I usually reserve this for when I need a change from the norm. Because it focuses both on momentary as well as accumulated fatigue, it should provide a surge of growth hormone and testosterone most training methods won’t.

The idea is you do 1 rep at your maximum capacity, then drop the weight by 5-10% and do 1 rep, then continue droping until you’ve done 8-10 sets of 1 rep. By the time you’ve finished all the reps in this set you’ll have a new meaning of the word exhaustion.

TIP 7: Finish with Compound Movements

This is another plateau buster. Normally I prefer to start with compound movements as it activates the CNS, but this can be really effective, especially with muscle groups that are harder to “feel” like back.

TIP 8: Intelligent use of Music

In the part 1 I suggested unplugging music to become “one with the weights”; since that time I’ve continued my study of the affect on training and music and found some interesting information. It seems that the most effective music to have is music that creates arousal. The thing is this is different from person-to-person, so when picking out your tunes you should aim for something that helps create a state of mental arousal.

I will probably go more in depth on this in future blogs.

TIP 9: Manipulate Calf Position for Hamstring Movements

The calves can play a role in how well you recruit your hamstrings, so pay close attention to them. When doing stiff-leg deadlifts you can elevate your toes on a 5 or 10 pound plate. When doing lying leg curls try keeping your toes pointed for the whole movement.

TIP 10: Increase Grip Strength

This can be done by squeezing barbell clamps in between sets, or by using towel hangs at the end of a workout.

That sums up part 2. As I said in the first part, “Give these a try, especially one that sounds really weird to you… you might just be [pleasantly] surprised with the outcome!”

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10 Unconventional training tips that give massive results

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