This article is Part II of the series.
Read Part I: Power vs. Aerobic Responders: Which are You?
A Message of Hope to the Aerobic Responder
A quick review: An aerobic responder means you adapt quickly from aerobic (sustainable) work.
Aerobic Responder DOES NOT EQUAL Low-Levels of Strength & Power, it just changes the way you must work in order to elicit a strength adaptation. There’s more good news! Most of the top competitive Functional Fitness athletes are aerobic responders…and those guys and gals are not weak. The average 2018 regional athlete snatched 262 (M) & 168 (F).
Most of the top competitive Functional Fitness athletes are aerobic responders.”
A bold statement, I know. The bottom line is most of the high-level functional fitness athletes face respiratory limiters more often than cardiac limiters.
If you want way more on this sort of thing check out Training Think Tank’s courses.
So you know you’re an aerobic responder and you know you can continue to get stronger.
The question becomes…
How Should I Train Strength as an Aerobic Responder?
First of all, realize the biggest driver of ALL strength for any type of responder is intensity.
But as an aerobic responder realize you will also respond very well to higher volume (more total work).
These two things are at opposite ends of the spectrum. It’s a dichotomy. You must be rested in order to do high intensity work, but you must have volume in order continue to respond optimally as well.
Some people attempt to solve this issue by lifting more and more in the main lifts. While effect in short cycles, if this is used as a long term plan it often only beats up joints, drains the central nervous system, and leaves sub-par performances.
The key is keeping the nervous system fresh and hypertrophy and muscle mass high.
So this is what we have created and seen work in the industry…
ZOAR’s Strength Training Model for Aerobic Responders:
- High-intensity, Low-Volume Main Lifts (to keep neural qualities high)
- High-Volume, Low-Intensity Accessory Movements (to build supporting structures & systems)
Applying the Model | Client X
(Aerobic Responder, Male, Age 28) Full Day of Training
4 Steady Rounds
-30s Banded Glute Activation
-10 Push Ups
-5 Strict Pull-ups
A2) STRENGTH PREP
4 Rounds, for Quality
-5 Jump Squats (for height)
-10 Ring Push Ups (on Low Rings)
*Control eccentric, speed on concentric*
*Big range of motion*
Back Squat (5×3) @87%
Back Rack Step-Up (3×7/side)
(rest between sides) to 16″ Box
Find 5RM Jerk Grip Bench Press
-4 Warm-up Sets before 5RM set
*After each set (x5) complete 8 strict Chest-to-Bar Pull-ups*
AMRAP 7 (70% Effort)
-50’ Yoke Carry 450lbs
-15 Power Snatch 95lbs
-15 Strict Handstand Push-ups
4 Rounds, for ROM
-12 Kettlebell Front Rack Stationary Side Lunges
-6 Kettlebell Goblet Sotts Press
4 Rounds, for Load
-12 Front Foot Elevated Double DB Front Rack Reverse Lunge
-12 Alternating Dumbbell Snatch
4 Rounds, for Quality
-12 90-90 Raises
-24 Banded Torso Twists
Valuable Remarks on the System
You may have noticed there was very little programmed that kept the heart rate up for an extended period of time.
There was only one real Met-Con the entire day and it wasn’t meant to be long or particularly taxing. The bulk of the training must be directed towards strength. Make the body go towards that adaptation and make everything else unacceptable.
However, don’t completely cut out Met-Cons…after all it is the “sport.” Put most of the volume for Met-Cons later in the week after most of the real high quality strength work has been completed. That way you are able to maintain your fitness as your strength increases.
Also, this model is best used during a blocked off period of time where you are specifically dedicating training time to gaining strength. This is not the ideal way to get ready for a competition (in the short term).
The biggest thing is putting in quality work over the long term while staying injury free. Those who train hard and are healthy year after year will become supremely strong.
And above all remember the words of stuntman Rod Kimmel, “You must believe if you wish to achieve.”
Related: Rowing for Calories versus Meters
Bulletproof Body: Accessory Work for Functional Fitness (Program)
Your workouts are intense & your body takes a toll.
Build a body that won’t break down when you go hard and fast.
The accessory work in Bulletproof Body focuses on 3 key avenues of development:
Add Muscle Size + Strength
Potent Protocols Stimulate Muscle Growth
Increase Mobility + Positions
Fix Asymmetries with Unilateral Work
Improve Tendon + Joint Health
Prevent Injury & Address Neglected Areas