T Nation

Combat Conditioning & Androsol

I just wanted to give everyone an update on my recent exposure to combat conditioning and Androsol. Okay, my stats are as follows (prior to Androsol): 5’4", 145lb, ~11-13% bf (I didn’t take any other measurements - sorry!)

I started using Androsol two weeks ago. My daily diet is approximately 2,800-3,200 calories (based on Massive Eating meal combos), and at least 1.5g of protein per bodypart. I also began doing the combat conditioning exercises the same time I started the Androsol. In addition, I’m hitting the weights three days a week. Although, this week was my off week from the gym, so I did sprints and combat conditioning all week.

If you want details on specific workouts, just ask me. And my goal is to actually get leaner. I'm not cutting calories to do that. My caloric intake is higher than what it used to be, but it's not quite what I would need on Massive Eating (3,200 cals daily). As of today, I weighed in at 151 lbs and I have felt "fuller" lately, but can't tell where the weight is. My chest, back and legs look a little bigger. And this is actually while I'm trying to burn some fat to get lean and mean for summer and get my overall conditioning into tip top shape. This was also the first time I ever used Androsol.

Nate Dogg, I went to Matt Furey’s website and found some sample exercises such as the Hindu squats. I’m wondering, you think they work any better than just doing regular bodyweight squats the traditional way (without the toe raise and arm lifting)?

Maclar, the reason to do them on the toes is to keep your back straight and keep the tension on the quads. A normal squat with feet flat tends to not hit the quads directly, and there is more of a chance of the back not staying straight. That’s why Matt recommends doing them that way. It does work well. As I can feel the burn much quicker that way rather than traditional bodyweight squats.

Nate dogg - what other exercises make up your body weight conditioning programe and how many days you perform these exercises? Are Hindu Squats performed as regular squats but with the heels lifted? If you’ve got time can u run through your sprinting routine? cheers lew.

Lew, as for other bodyweight exercises besides the Hindu squats, pushups and back bridge, I also do a variety of pushups, handstands, wall walking, bear crawling, duck waddling, ab exercises, rope jumping, etc. I usually do the bodyweight exercises every day. On my gym days, I will only do 100 hindu squats, 30-40 hindu pushups and three sets of the back bridge holding each one for as long as possible.

On non-gym days, I’ll do the above and a variety of other exercises. Each workout is different. Some focus more on pushups, and others focus on overall body or just lower body. I do stadiums twice a week, doing a variety of sprints up the steps or walking to the top of the stadium followed by pushups after each set. Then I’ll go home and finish with bodyweight exercises.

On days where I do sprints, I'll do 10-12 sets of 25-40 yard sprints. I'll do a warm up jog and cool down jog as well. And I usually end my sprint workout with one long sprint. I basically try to do more each time, or work on sprinting faster.

The bodyweight exercises I use are from Matt’s book on combat conditioning. And I do end up working the same muscle groups almost each workout. I have not had any problems with overtraining. If I’m extremely sore or tired, I may take one day off each week. Usually, I can at least do the three main exercises at some point during the day. My workouts may take as little as 15 minutes, or as much as 45-60 minutes depending on what I do and what other exercises I mix in. If you want specific workouts for each day, just let me know.

Nate Dogg, what I don’t understand is how a person is able to do bodyweight exercises as you are, AND weight train! Perhaps, genetically, you have a superior recovery ability? I know that when I get in an intense workout at the gym, the next day not only are my muscles sore, but my nervous system is pretty banged up too. I just can’t see myself doing weighted squats, benches, or presses, and then continue to do bodyweight exercises EVERY day! Maybe I’m a wimp, who knows. Did you have the same problem, and then perhaps your body adapted? I mean, I was benching and stuff just Friday, and there’s no way in hell I can see myself getting in pushups and dips today without killing myself! Any comments? Does M.Furey say anything about that in the book?

I’ve gotten both Combat Conditioning and Combat Abs…and i’ve found that it effective to do the bodyweight exercises twice a week …i work out MTTF…and do the bodyweight exercises on wed and sat…on a side note, the ab exercises are really fantastic and none of them involve crunches (they’re supposed to be done everyday)…i personally found that doing the bodyweight exercises every day affects my weight poundages drastically…

Maclar, I definitely don’t have superior recovery ability. As four days in the gym would totally tear me up. But for some reason, I’m able to hit the gym three days a week (Mon, Wed, Fri), and do two days a week of stadium sprints followed by various bodyweight exercises. In addition, I still do one or two days of just bodyweight exercises.

I think that because I keep my volume low during my weight training workouts, I’m able to recover just fine. This isn’t to say that I’m not sore often. As some days leave me more sore than others. And on my weight training days, I will only do 100 squats, 30-40 pushups and a couple sets of back bridges. My non-gym days are when I do those exercises in addition to others.

But I’m also not doing two-to-three sets of all these exercises. I’ll go from one exercise to the next and do as many reps as possible. I might do 10 exercises, but only one set of each. The workouts will leave me gasping for air and sweating like crazy. But when I’m done, I feel great!

Think about this. Most combat athletes who compete regularly train six days a week. I've seen some of their training routines. Yes, they do that for a living, but they do three workouts a day six days a week. I do one workout a day six or seven days a week. And my workouts take 15 minutes to an hour. Where they might workout for an hour to three hours at a time. Also, gymnasts and many other athletes train on a daily basis using bodyweight exercises.

Charlie Francis trains many of his athletes five and six days a week as well. It’s just that they don’t do the same workout every day. Neither do I. Yes, I use bodyweight exercises every day, but I’m not always hitting the same bodyparts and doing the same exercises. For me, this stuff has really worked. I feel much better, my conditioning is getting better, and I’m feeling stronger and more muscular. Obviously, everyone will be different with their response to this.

Matt does recommend doing this stuff every day! And he said that you don’t have to give up weight training if that is what you like to do. But you could do weight training on certain days, and this stuff on other days. You have to figure out your body. :slight_smile:

Maclar, I also don’t do dips and chins daily. I leave those particular exercises for my gym workouts. I’m sure I could do one or two sets of chins for as many reps as possible a few days a week, but I’d rather keep them as a core part of my weight-training workout and do multiple sets and add weight when necessary.

Nate Dogg - how long have you been following ‘Combat training’ combined with weight training? Have you noticed strength gained through combat training has transfered to faster sprint times? One last point can you run through your current weight training routine 3 days a week, I was thinking of adding combat training to my routine. i’d change my weight routine to aim for a rep range of 4-6 using basic exercises Squat, Bench, Dips, Pull ups, Daedlifts and as you said keep the Sets low for each exercise and then aid the combat training 2-3 days a week to start with higher reps. Let me know your views on this. Cheers Lew

Lew, this is only my third week of combat conditining exercises. My first week it was combined with weight training. My second week happened to be my week off from weight training, so I went more intense on bodyweight exercises. And I’m now back in the gym and doing the combat exercises. This is my current routine. It is similar to what you are doing. At this point in my 12-week program, I’m doing about two exercises per bodypart for 1-2 sets of 6-8 reps. Also, you’ll notice a reversal in some of my exercises compared to what I was doing in previous weeks. I begin each workout with stretching and abs.

Monday: Close-grip bench presses, lying triceps extensions, cuban press, lateral raises, seated row and barbell row. At home, 100 hindu squats, 40 hindu pushups, three sets of back bridge.

Tuesday: Stadium sprints 5-8 sets of sprints up first set of stairs. Each set followed by various pushups as many reps as possible. Then I finish with 2-5 sets of walking up the stadium bench seats. When I get home, I do hindu squats, hindu pushups, back bridge, handstand pushups, ab exercises and a few other combat exercises.

Wednesday: (I’m not doing any quad dominant work at this time due to a knee injury, and the bodyweight squats are working my quads for now). Deadlifts, stiff-legged deadlifts, leg curls, seated and standing calf raises. At home, 100 hindu squats, 40 hindu pushups, 3 sets of back bridge.

Thursday: Stadium sprints (I usually do another workout similar to Tuesday, but not exactly the same. I may run up and down the steps around the stadium, or do a couple sprints followed by walking up the stadium steps). At home, similar combat exercises as done on Tuesday.

Friday: Barbell bicep curls, hammer curls, wide-grip chins, narrow grip chins, bench press, dips. At home, hindu squats and pushups, backbridge.

Saturday: Jump rope for one minute followed by combat exercise. Repeat rope jumping one minute followed by another exercise. Repeat for 7-8 total sets. Or I may use Saturday as a fun day: mountain biking, in-line skating, frisbee, football, etc.

Sunday: variety of bodyweight exercises and/or rest. It’s also my day to do fun stuff: Mountain bike, frisbee, in-line skate, etc.

That pretty much sums it up! Let me know if you have more questions. As for sprinting, I switched to stadiums, so I haven't had a chance to see if I'm faster now. Also, I may substitute sprints for stadiums for variety. Or if the weather is bad, I'll just do a home workout with combat exercises and rope jumping.