T Nation

What Kind of Conditioning

What kind of conditioning do you all do, if any?

I’ve been thinking about trying to enhance my conditioning to a point where I could run the Tough Mudder, but I don’t know if that’s actually realistic while still maintaining 100% possible strength.

Right now I have work capacity training and strongman event conditioning after my lower body days.

I am on a college track team as well as powerlift so i do a bit of conditioning lol. But Im a jumper, I think it helps but avoid doing too much distance work. I would suggest running some miles as a base, and then doing plyometrics and sprint intervals 2-3 times a week with a 1-2 mile slow jogs on off days.

None, but back when I did crew (last year) it didn’t negatively affect my lifting.

I honestly cannot figure out how people can run more than 5 minutes without stopping, ha-ha. It really hurts myhip joints for some reason. It’s not like my lungs/heart can’t handle it, it’s my stupid legs feeling uncomfortable.

I push the prowler sometimes. I should probably do it more often though.

I like this concept of weighted vest walking though. I need to get a weight vest…

In the meantime, I am counting all my walks home from the grocery store with XXX lbs of frozen meat in my backpack as conditioning, ha.

Condition for the demands of the sport. There is nothing wrong with being just a powerlifter. There is nothing wrong with running a tough mudder. Trying to be great at both will make you shitty at both. Or, even worse, it will make you ok at both and you will never reach your potential on either.

Conditioning is relative. Having the conditioning to produce maximal force and effort 9 times at a competition is a whole hell of a lot different then trotting around for 3 miles and crawling through a muddy ditch (why the hell do people pay to get all dirty? Come over to my house with a bottle of Maker’s Mark and half of whatever the entry fee is and I will throw sand and shit all over you and then you can run away while I order a pizza and drink my bourbon).

You can run a tough mudder right now. All recovery from anaerobc activity (lifting really heavy shit over and over and over) is done via aerobic energy systems. Not only would you do well without having to do a single session if sigh cardio, your aerobic capacity is probably beter than 80% of the skinny-fat fitness enthusiasts that go to those things.

Conditioning for powerlifting is easy:
General- Early in training- sprints, sled pushes, thorws, sledgehammer stuff, sled drags, barbell complex’s that don’t include the competition lifts, etc., etc.

Specific- Closer to the meet- Shorter duration, higher intensity movments that more mimic the competition lifts.

Conditioning for a tough mudder:
Anything but jogging.

Farmer’s walks, tire flips, sled drags, prowler pushes. My DE days are all done very quickly with few rest periods. I also usually go in once a week on an “off” day and do 6-7 accessory movements for high rep sets with little rest periods. I started doing farmer’s walks at the end of my bench days, I’m using it as a conditioning exercise as well as a way to get extra upper back / grip work in.

It probably wouldn’t hurt for me to invest in a weight vest and walk my fatass around my neighborhood a few times a week too.

If you ease into it, your lifts shouldn’t suffer too bad.

[quote]StormTheBeach wrote:
Come over to my house with a bottle of Maker’s Mark and half of whatever the entry fee is and I will throw sand and shit all over you and then you can run away while I order a pizza and drink my bourbon).

[/quote]

HAHahAHAh!!!

[quote]frankjl wrote:

It probably wouldn’t hurt for me to invest in a weight vest and walk my fatass around my neighborhood a few times a week too.

[/quote]

I like how we all call ourselves fat asses. It makes me feel better about being a fatass.

[quote]StormTheBeach wrote:
Condition for the demands of the sport. There is nothing wrong with being just a powerlifter. There is nothing wrong with running a tough mudder. Trying to be great at both will make you shitty at both. Or, even worse, it will make you ok at both and you will never reach your potential on either.
[/quote]

Are you saying it’s not possible to run them and have just as much strength as if I hadn’t run them? I’m not trying to be an endurance athlete. Just make it through them in an hour or two.

I always thought that you could have a fairly large base of muscular/cardiovascular conditioning even while powerlifting. I heard a story once about a Westside athlete who ran a stadium in the morning and squatted 700 at night for some charity event.

[quote]StormTheBeach wrote:
You can run a tough mudder right now. All recovery from anaerobc activity (lifting really heavy shit over and over and over) is done via aerobic energy systems. Not only would you do well without having to do a single session if sigh cardio, your aerobic capacity is probably beter than 80% of the skinny-fat fitness enthusiasts that go to those things.
[/quote]

But to run the tough mudder you’d have to be able to run 3 miles. How do I take my aerobic capacity from lifting maximally and make it carry over to aerobic ability to running for distance? Right now I can’t run 3 minutes without my legs burning and breathing hard. 25x2x50% box squats isn’t hard anymore, Hill Sprints take a while to get difficult, but constant jogging kills me.

[quote]StormTheBeach wrote:
Conditioning for powerlifting is easy:
General- Early in training- sprints, sled pushes, thorws, sledgehammer stuff, sled drags, barbell complex’s that don’t include the competition lifts, etc., etc.

Specific- Closer to the meet- Shorter duration, higher intensity movments that more mimic the competition lifts.

Conditioning for a tough mudder:
Anything but jogging.[/quote]

Same question, how can I train to run a 3 mile race/obstacle course without jogging?

Why wear a weighted vest when you can just gain 50 pounds? Your lifts will go up, and then it’s like you’re always wearing a vest.

[quote]Spock81 wrote:

[quote]frankjl wrote:

It probably wouldn’t hurt for me to invest in a weight vest and walk my fatass around my neighborhood a few times a week too.

[/quote]

I like how we all call ourselves fat asses. It makes me feel better about being a fatass. [/quote]
fat powerlifter syndrome - it’s brought on by not having an arm day

Just finished the tough mudder, and i havent straight jogged more than a mile or two since high school (2004). If you are in reasonable shape compared to normal people, and you know what a weight room looks like, you will be fine. Might take ya 4 hours though.

Also no joke, i brought a flask of makers mark along, un fortunately i decided to ditch it after the first taser obstacle. Steel flask and 100k volts dont mix. Running 10-12 miles through the sticks/mud and bourbon mix quite nicely though.

Put a harness on a monster truck or massive tractor tire. Sprint while draggin it. Die. Youre welcome.

[quote]louiek wrote:

[quote]StormTheBeach wrote:
Condition for the demands of the sport. There is nothing wrong with being just a powerlifter. There is nothing wrong with running a tough mudder. Trying to be great at both will make you shitty at both. Or, even worse, it will make you ok at both and you will never reach your potential on either.
[/quote]

Are you saying it’s not possible to run them and have just as much strength as if I hadn’t run them? I’m not trying to be an endurance athlete. Just make it through them in an hour or two.

I always thought that you could have a fairly large base of muscular/cardiovascular conditioning even while powerlifting. I heard a story once about a Westside athlete who ran a stadium in the morning and squatted 700 at night for some charity event.

[quote]StormTheBeach wrote:
You can run a tough mudder right now. All recovery from anaerobc activity (lifting really heavy shit over and over and over) is done via aerobic energy systems. Not only would you do well without having to do a single session if sigh cardio, your aerobic capacity is probably beter than 80% of the skinny-fat fitness enthusiasts that go to those things.
[/quote]

But to run the tough mudder you’d have to be able to run 3 miles. How do I take my aerobic capacity from lifting maximally and make it carry over to aerobic ability to running for distance? Right now I can’t run 3 minutes without my legs burning and breathing hard. 25x2x50% box squats isn’t hard anymore, Hill Sprints take a while to get difficult, but constant jogging kills me.

[quote]StormTheBeach wrote:
Conditioning for powerlifting is easy:
General- Early in training- sprints, sled pushes, thorws, sledgehammer stuff, sled drags, barbell complex’s that don’t include the competition lifts, etc., etc.

Specific- Closer to the meet- Shorter duration, higher intensity movments that more mimic the competition lifts.

Conditioning for a tough mudder:
Anything but jogging.[/quote]

Same question, how can I train to run a 3 mile race/obstacle course without jogging?[/quote]

  1. Yes. You can’t have as much strength as you possibly can and train aerobically. You can most certainly have a large conditioning base. The ability to handle higher and higher training volumes is a key characteristic of getting stronger. Even though this is governed by the increased development of absolute strength, youe conditioning/aerboic ability/recovery ability must improve as well.

Aerobic capacity improves in strength and power athletes due to all recovery being mediated aerobically. The opposite is not true because in aerobic activty, factors like load, force production (maximal, not repeated average force production like in jogging, contraction speed, substrate usage, etc. are all being determined by the duration of the event and usually remain constant the whole time.

I am not familiar with the example you used but this is not a surprising thing if it is true. 2-3 a days are not uncommon for higher level strength and power athletes. Again, and adaptation over time that is a result of better aerobic capacity (ability to recover) while strength is being developed.

  1. You can’t run for three minutes because your running technique is terrible. This is the seperation between every sport. Squats are GPP for football. Squats are technical training and SPP for Powerlifting. A mastery of squats is key for PL. A mastery of football is key for football. Just like in running. The best runners have the best technique and running economy. You don’t have either of these qualities well-developed because, hopefully, you are no where near the 10,000 hours of practice it takes to develop an acceptable level of form.

Your aerobic capacity, due to your recovery time between workouts and the GPP work you should be doing, is the same if not better than a lot of the other runners. Your ability to showcase that ability, however, is now where near the assholes that wake-up and get 3 miles in every monring before their skinny-fat ass gets to work.

Probably the most important question after reading what you responded to me: Why the fuck do you want to do this in the first place if running is so difficult for you? Doing these assisnine themed races that seem to now pop-up every weekend in every city on Earth have become some supreme measure of fitness. That’s stupid. I have so many conversations with people about this bullshit. “Oh cool man, I lift too! I train for tough mudders.” I always have to bite my tongue because the first question I want to ask is “Cool. What actual sport did you suck at so bad before you started settling for expensive fun runs?”

Just don’t be the guy that shows up, does shitty, and then goes “Well, I did pretty good for a Powerlifter.” Then a monthe later, do shitty at a powerlifting meet and say “Well, I did pretty good for having run that tough mudder a month ago.” You know? I can’t stand that bullshit.

  1. Training for a tough mudder (or ANYTHING that requires muscular effort):

Find the average time it takes for people to do the event from start to finish. Figure out the common muscular contraction qualities involved in the event. Train those qualities, in that amount of time, ande get more specific and intense as the event gets closer.

So, let’s say a tough mudder takes 30 minutes to finish (is this even close? I have no idea). You run, climb, roll around in the dirt, and fart your way through the 3 minle course. If I were training for something like this, which I never, ever, ever, will because I cherish my strength too much, I would build a circuit of 10 exercises, got through them all 3 times at an interval of 20s on/40s off for a few weeks. Then work up to 30s/30s. Then do a week of 40s/20s.
I would do that at least twice a week (if three times, you need a whole new circuit with different times and more of an orientation on speed of movment). On off days I would do prowler marches, push-ups, and pull-ups.

Again, I wouln’t ever do this, but this is what I would do or have someone else do. You want to still powerlift too? Go for it. You will be mediocre at both.

Just for the love of God, don’t jog.

I used to race. 5Ks, 10Ks, and sprint triathlons. I got into lifting to get faster. Funny thing happened though. I started hating races and loving lifting. I kept up both for awhile. But only busted through plateaus when I gave up the serious aerobic training. Maybe it’s just me. But running/biking really chew into my 1 RM. I now do minimal cardio. Just a hike every now and then.

If I were you I would ask someone who has run a tough mudder what they would do to train for it. People are giving you advice for something they have never tried. How effective is that advice going to be?

james

Id guess average time to finish one is around 3 hours. However no one is even gonna really notice if you take half or twice that. It’s just simply not a race. Half the people there literally can not complete the obstacles without help, and that’s the point. Also most people walk the last half anyways.

The “be able to run 3 miles” thing is a pretty loose guideline. There is no place in a tough mudder where you just jog a flat 3 miles.

[quote]StormTheBeach wrote:

[quote]louiek wrote:

[quote]StormTheBeach wrote:
Condition for the demands of the sport. There is nothing wrong with being just a powerlifter. There is nothing wrong with running a tough mudder. Trying to be great at both will make you shitty at both. Or, even worse, it will make you ok at both and you will never reach your potential on either.
[/quote]

Are you saying it’s not possible to run them and have just as much strength as if I hadn’t run them? I’m not trying to be an endurance athlete. Just make it through them in an hour or two.

I always thought that you could have a fairly large base of muscular/cardiovascular conditioning even while powerlifting. I heard a story once about a Westside athlete who ran a stadium in the morning and squatted 700 at night for some charity event.

[quote]StormTheBeach wrote:
You can run a tough mudder right now. All recovery from anaerobc activity (lifting really heavy shit over and over and over) is done via aerobic energy systems. Not only would you do well without having to do a single session if sigh cardio, your aerobic capacity is probably beter than 80% of the skinny-fat fitness enthusiasts that go to those things.
[/quote]

But to run the tough mudder you’d have to be able to run 3 miles. How do I take my aerobic capacity from lifting maximally and make it carry over to aerobic ability to running for distance? Right now I can’t run 3 minutes without my legs burning and breathing hard. 25x2x50% box squats isn’t hard anymore, Hill Sprints take a while to get difficult, but constant jogging kills me.

[quote]StormTheBeach wrote:
Conditioning for powerlifting is easy:
General- Early in training- sprints, sled pushes, thorws, sledgehammer stuff, sled drags, barbell complex’s that don’t include the competition lifts, etc., etc.

Specific- Closer to the meet- Shorter duration, higher intensity movments that more mimic the competition lifts.

Conditioning for a tough mudder:
Anything but jogging.[/quote]

Same question, how can I train to run a 3 mile race/obstacle course without jogging?[/quote]

  1. Yes. You can’t have as much strength as you possibly can and train aerobically. You can most certainly have a large conditioning base. The ability to handle higher and higher training volumes is a key characteristic of getting stronger. Even though this is governed by the increased development of absolute strength, youe conditioning/aerboic ability/recovery ability must improve as well.

Aerobic capacity improves in strength and power athletes due to all recovery being mediated aerobically. The opposite is not true because in aerobic activty, factors like load, force production (maximal, not repeated average force production like in jogging, contraction speed, substrate usage, etc. are all being determined by the duration of the event and usually remain constant the whole time.

I am not familiar with the example you used but this is not a surprising thing if it is true. 2-3 a days are not uncommon for higher level strength and power athletes. Again, and adaptation over time that is a result of better aerobic capacity (ability to recover) while strength is being developed.

  1. You can’t run for three minutes because your running technique is terrible. This is the seperation between every sport. Squats are GPP for football. Squats are technical training and SPP for Powerlifting. A mastery of squats is key for PL. A mastery of football is key for football. Just like in running. The best runners have the best technique and running economy. You don’t have either of these qualities well-developed because, hopefully, you are no where near the 10,000 hours of practice it takes to develop an acceptable level of form.

Your aerobic capacity, due to your recovery time between workouts and the GPP work you should be doing, is the same if not better than a lot of the other runners. Your ability to showcase that ability, however, is now where near the assholes that wake-up and get 3 miles in every monring before their skinny-fat ass gets to work.

Probably the most important question after reading what you responded to me: Why the fuck do you want to do this in the first place if running is so difficult for you? Doing these assisnine themed races that seem to now pop-up every weekend in every city on Earth have become some supreme measure of fitness. That’s stupid. I have so many conversations with people about this bullshit. “Oh cool man, I lift too! I train for tough mudders.” I always have to bite my tongue because the first question I want to ask is “Cool. What actual sport did you suck at so bad before you started settling for expensive fun runs?”

Just don’t be the guy that shows up, does shitty, and then goes “Well, I did pretty good for a Powerlifter.” Then a monthe later, do shitty at a powerlifting meet and say “Well, I did pretty good for having run that tough mudder a month ago.” You know? I can’t stand that bullshit.

  1. Training for a tough mudder (or ANYTHING that requires muscular effort):

Find the average time it takes for people to do the event from start to finish. Figure out the common muscular contraction qualities involved in the event. Train those qualities, in that amount of time, ande get more specific and intense as the event gets closer.

So, let’s say a tough mudder takes 30 minutes to finish (is this even close? I have no idea). You run, climb, roll around in the dirt, and fart your way through the 3 minle course. If I were training for something like this, which I never, ever, ever, will because I cherish my strength too much, I would build a circuit of 10 exercises, got through them all 3 times at an interval of 20s on/40s off for a few weeks. Then work up to 30s/30s. Then do a week of 40s/20s.
I would do that at least twice a week (if three times, you need a whole new circuit with different times and more of an orientation on speed of movment). On off days I would do prowler marches, push-ups, and pull-ups.

Again, I wouln’t ever do this, but this is what I would do or have someone else do. You want to still powerlift too? Go for it. You will be mediocre at both.

Just for the love of God, don’t jog.

[/quote]

Makes sense, thanks. My primary goal is being a better athlete in Strongman. But Tough Mudder just looks fun. Not fun enough to give up strength though. And I’m glad I asked someone because I’ve been adding in some jogging, 5+ hours after my workouts. I’ve heard a lot about endurance running being fucking horrible for you. Don’t know the science behind it. Something about hormones, cortisol, shit like that. Any thoughts on that?

So if technique/practice was not an issue, you’re saying that strength athletes (who do GPP training and all that) can be just as good at running as the average person who actually runs distance? That’s just nuts to me because I’ve never heard that shit. I’ve always had my goal for being that athlete who can run stadiums and squat 700 in the same day. But I never heard the whole strength/anaerobic capacity making your aerobic capacity better. I need more books.

I am not much of an expert, but I do believe that there is a difference between running 1-3 miles 3-4 times a week and “serious distance training”. It will prob. have some affect on your 1RMs and may slow progress, but I doubt it would be much that a deload after the race will solve.

And, agian, this is not expert advice, the best way to get good at running miles is to run miles, at least until. As a Marine I have seen plenty of folks who could move serious weight, and could still run 3 miles in less that 23 minutes, the two skills do not need to be mutually exclusive