T Nation

Dedicated Conditioning Day Questions

I’m on a roll, 2 threads in 3 days. I’m seeking a bit of a change in my programming so I’m starting to look for more ideas.

So, while I’ve been incorporating light conditioning in my workouts for a while, I’d be lying if I said it wasnt half-assed. And I definitely feel like it takes me away from the lifting. Think, 3 sets of 8 burpees and some battle rope every lifting day, mixed in with some super/giant sets to keep the momentum going. Or something with similar exhaustion.

So I’m going to switch it up and use Wednesday and Saturday (previously rest days) as a light, then heavy conditioning day. But I’m unsure of… I guess how hard to go, really.

Example of what I did today:

3 sets:
Burpees: 3, 5, 7
s/s Pullups: 5, 7, 9
s/s Battlerope: 20s, 30s, 40s

Light BB Complex @ 75lbs with 45s rest
Reps: 6, 5 , 4 , 3 , 2, 1
BB Row
R. Deadlift
Front Squat

I’d like to lean up juuust a bit, but not enough to sacrifice my lifts, more importantly I just want to keep my cardiovascular health above the baseline.

I know “exhaustion” is about as subjective as it gets, but for conditioning, should I be drilling myself into the ground, or should I take it a bit easy and use it to supplement my main focus, which is just moving heavy shit?

I just dont really have a baseline to compare this to, since I’ve never dedicated whole days to it.


If it’s just straight cardio, I’d take it like there is both a quick diminish on the return and a super easy recovery (for the most part).

What I mean by that is that for a given rate of exertion when say, running- once you are warmed up and in the oxygen cycle (cardio) you can pretty much just keep going like that for An Incredibly Long Time. So if you run 3 miles in like 20 min. or what ever, it would be better to keep using that 20 minutes to run farther than to use that pace to run for longer time.

Recovery from cardio really is as simple as rehydration and some carbs (some water and potato chips) to replace what is lost, and relatively brief amount of time, like an evenings rest and a good night sleep.

At least that is how it was explained to me, and matches very much what I’ve observed in myself for the past 11 months.

I wouldn’t (haven’t) run myself into the ground, and have seen some good improvements. My last stress test took about 15 minutes of running my butt off at an increasingly steep grade just to hit 85% of max hr.

Why are you doing conditioning training? Fat loss? Health? Improved recovery?

Different goals will indicate different conditioning methods.

If you would like to read a whole book on the subject: https://www.dropbox.com/s/21x98zxkgex3wd2/Concurrent%20Aerobic%20and%20Strength%20Training.pdf?dl=0

This will answer 99.99% of the questions you have on incorporating conditioning into a broad overall plan. Parts of the book are geared toward “combat athletes” (mma, grapplers, wrestlers, boxers, etc) but there’s a large section dedicated to strength training and conditioning which is worth the price of the book alone, plus you get a video content with a ton of great info as well.

If you don’t want to spend the $15 for Full Throttle, Ross is selling “Never Gymless” for $1 as an ebook.
This will also answer ALL of your questions if you take the time to read it. http://rosstraining.com/blog/never-gymless/

Obviously, I can’t read, please excuse my earlier post.

If that’s your goal, why kick yourself and your recovery in the ass with hardcore conditioning? I’d prioritise aerobic systems training 3+ times per week. Relatively “light” exertion, less than 60-70% HRMax for 15+ minutes will do a world of good, and not fuck up your actual training

I’d still keep one whole day off from exercise. Personally find hard 45min HIIT session on the bike or other girly cardio machine is really good active recovery from the weights