Tuesday, July 31, 2012

The top 4 things you could be doing better - Part 2

In part 1 of this series I wrote about fixing your diet and sleep issues.  The other 2 problems everyone chimed in about was conditioning and mobility.  So let's go over both of those.

Conditioning - 

 There's not a thing in the world, to me, that feels better than being "in shape".  I mean when my bodyfat levels are low, and I can just go and go and go.  That feels fantastic.  It feels even more fantastic when strength levels are solid.  That's when you really know you have training, diet, and conditioning dialed in and you feel like king shit.

That's magic right there.

For those of you who know you should be doing conditioning more, or making a bigger effort to get your conditioning in, let's go over some ways to do that.

Stop looking for great parking spaces - 

Every time you go to the store, park way the hell away from the entrance.  This is an easy way to get an extra 5 minutes or so in, plus walking around the store at a solid clip counts as well.  So don't lounge around walking at a snails pace while getting groceries or whatever kind of shopping you are doing.  Move fast.

So the next time you spent that extra 5 minutes trying to find the best spot near the door, remind yourself that this is a great opportunity get in an extra 5-10 of conditioning, and park way the hell away.

Take the stairs - 

Quit getting in elevators and walk the god damn stairs.  'Nuff said, fatty.

Finish the day up with a walk - 

Lots of people think they can't get conditioning in because "steady state has to be done fasted, blah blah blah".  Not true.  Just do it at night, for 30-45 an hour or so after your last meal, and a couple of hours before bed.  I actually prefer this method more times than not, as it gives you a chance to decompress from the day.

Make it part of your warm up - 

Hit the treadmill or just hit the block for 10 minutes before your training.  Use the first 5 minutes as a nice warm up, then walk like you're being chased by a guy on bath salts for the last 5.

In closing, making conditioning a bigger priority isn't that hard.  Just fit it in when you can and then have day or two set aside during the week where you just concentrate on conditioning work.  If you're really out of shape, remember the motto about "big picture" and just use the conditioning program I laid out in SLL.  Getting in shape is good, and good for you.  Just like doughnuts.  Wait........

Mobility - 

Writing about doing mobility work, for me, is like writing about doing Unix operating system work.  Dull, boring, and monotonous.  Blllaaahhh.

So let's make getting mobility work in easier, shall we?

Red pill or blue pill?  -

In the rehab section of SLL, I laid out a lunges matrix to use for rehabbing IT band problems.  You can use this same lunge matrix daily, or before a squat or lower body workout, or after it.  I suggest you simply write it in as part of your lower body day, and a big part of your lower body mobility issues will be fixed.

How hard was that?  Not hard.  Not hard at all.  Do 5 rounds of 10 of each type of lunge in the matrix after your leg work, and you will be fried.

Stretch after your conditioning - 

Hip flexor stretching is especially important.  Just do the stretching in between the different kinds of lunges in the lunge matrix and at the end of your evening walk.

See how you can combine shit to make it easier?  I know.....awesome.

Stretch before bed - 

Put up a little sign that just reads "mobility" somewhere in the bedroom as a reminder to stretch before you hit the sack.

Foam Roll your whole body everyday for two weeks - 

The first week use a normal foam roller if your shit is all fucked up and everything hurts something awful.

The second week get on the PVC pipe or the rumble roller if you have access to one.

After two weeks you will feel amazing in terms of mobility and/or tightness.

In closing, I want to say I hate all of your for picking mobility so much because then I had to write about it.  So get your mobility work in just in case I ask this question again, so that mobility is not an issue.


  1. I think you just made my morning comparing mobility writing to unix writing lmao. Thanks for that. So true.

  2. Hi Paul! I just started reading your website after I noticed your name on Wendler's website, and I have to say both of you are helping a lot for keeping my motivation up. Currently, I am recovering from a extended tummy tuck surgery (lost 130 lbs) and it's gonna be a lot of months without proper training. Surely reading your articles and Jim's are helping me to keep my goals clear on my mind. I bought your ebook yesterday and I have to say I like what I am reading so far, although I'll probably continue 531 after I recover, your philosophies will definitely play into my life.


  3. "...walk like you're being chased by a guy on bath salts for the last 5" I almost shit my pants laughing

  4. I'm doing the Starting Strength novice program and it is difficult to incorporate conditioning on any given week. I can only dedicate two or three days/month where I have free time to head to the gym to push the prowler or sprint up a hill...I simply cannot serve two masters. My focus is on getting brutally strong at the moment. When I move onto an intermediate program, I will take conditioning more seriously.


  5. Paul, last Friday I fucked up my ankle at Krav and it seems like I won’t be able to put any pressure on the foot for about a month. I just recently started the LRB Template and wanted to ask you what would be a suitable substitution for the leg days? On deadlift day I was planning on doing back and biceps only.

    1. From how you are explaining it sounds like only leg extensions might work.

    2. Ok thanks, Paul. Do you think it would be a good idea to dial it down to just 2 workouts a week and throw leg extensions on back days?

    3. I'd do leg curls and leg ext on a separate day if possible and do what you can to speed up the recovery of the ankle.

    4. Thanks, man. I'm trying to get it squat-ready but it's being a bitch. I know in SLL you said you don't believe in Icing...what do you recommend for a bad ankle sprain?

    5. Just let the pain subside first. Nothing you can really do except allow the body to do some work on its own right now.

  6. This is exactly the kind of practical,pragmatic approach most people need, Nice."Get off your arse" and actually do the things you're not doing/need to do/probably should is pretty much the key to all issues. On a unrelated and unbelievably retarded note could you consider this for roasting in the next podcast http://wodtoys.com/. Words fail me.

  7. So just rolling on a PVC pipe realy helps?

  8. We are talking a normal pipe what you can buy in a store right?

  9. Okay, thanks i ask it because i was screwing around with some gmail notifier apps ...stuff bla bla..no f...ing idea how that stuff works..shame on me..sorry man