The Busy Trainer Principles
Mike Robertson-Creator of The BulletProof Athlete
Chances are if you’ve trained clients (or owned a gym) for any period of time, you’re familiar with a simple truth.
You are the last person to get a training session in.
You are the last person to get a legit training program written.
Isn’t that weird? After all, most of us get into this industry because we love training, and now we actually train far less than we did back in the day!
I remember when I opened Indianapolis Fitness and Sports Training in 2008, I thought I would easily get into the best shape of my life, considering I worked at a gym all day, every day.
Boy was I wrong!
What I developed over the last 5 years are basic rules and principles that I live by to make sure I stay in shape.
Sure, there are times of the year when I can train for 1.5-2 hours and get away with it. But those are the exception versus the rule.
What do you do when you only have 30 or 45 minutes to train?
What things do you focus on?
Here are a few principles and rules that I always come back to. I hope they will help you, too!
Rule #1 – You Can’t Skip the Warm-up
This is a rule that I have with my clients, and I stick to it as well.
You know when you get injured lifting? It’s those times when you’re rushed and have to hop right into a workout.
So even if it’s condensed and/or watered down a bit, I always warm-up.
Foam rolling is a must, as it gives you a few minutes to shift your mindset from “work” mode into “training mode.”
Next, perform a few big bang stretches and mobility drills for target areas. Obviously the more time I have the more exercises I will perform, but even if you get 3-5 good mobility drills in you’re far ahead of the curve.
I would never let a client roll into my gym 30 minutes late to a session and just start pumping iron. So why would I do that myself?
Rule #2 – You MUST Do Something Compound
This is as much a staple in my training session as #1. You must warm-up, but you must do a big lift as well.
And when I say a big lift, I mean a big lift. I’m talking about a squat, a bench press, a deadlift, an overhead press, a chin-up or a row.
Dan John uses the following analogy (which I will paraphrase):
Imagine you’re in a detention center and you can only train 15 minutes a day. What will you focus your time and energy on?
15 minute of direct arm work?
Or 15 minutes of squats? Or deadlifts?
When you start to think about training in this way, it makes your exercise selection far simpler.
To take this one step further, one of my favorite protocols is something I stole from my business partner Bill Hartman. I just call it a triples accumulation cycle and it looks like this:
Week 1: 6×3
Week 2: 8×3
Week 3: 10×3
Week 4: 12×3
Let’s say you choose squats. On week 1 you’re going to do 6 sets of 3 reps with one minute of rest in between.
The next week, it’s 8 sets of 3. You get the picture.
Using a cycle like this you can get a ton of high quality volume in, in a very short period of time.
Rule #3 – There Must Be Some Energy System Development in There
If you would’ve asked me about recommending ESD a few years back, I probably would’ve laughed at you.
Coming from a powerlifting background I understood the value of ESD for heart health or getting lean, but that was of no concern considering my only goal was to pick up heavy things and put them back down!
Now as I get older, I realize that taking care of my heart and staying lean are of critical importance for my long-term health. As such if you’re pressed for time, simply get in a quick warm-up, a compound exercise, and some energy system development.
And what you choose is totally up to you. It could be longer duration, lower intensity work for 15-20 minutes.
You could do shorter, more intense intervals with longer rest (1:5 work: rest ratio). This is my personal favorite as it works the aerobic system, without too much lactic acid build-up/metabolic fatigue. Plus, I have a love/hate relationship with the Prowler, so this is a good opportunity for some quality time!
Last but not least, you can perform ESD that’s more focused on density (1:3, 1:2 or 1:1 work: rest) if time is an issue, or if you are looking to shed body fat.
Regardless, I realize now, as I get older that ESD is a critical component of my training program, and it’s something I rarely ever skip.
While they aren’t necessarily hard and fast rules, these are the things that I’ve based my workouts on whenever times get really busy.
As a trainer, coach, and/or business owner, you know exactly what I mean. There will be times when you don’t feel as though you can get a good training session in, so why bother?
Use the rules I’ve discussed above, and I guarantee you can get a kick-ass training session in in a minimal amount of time.
Good luck and good training!
Don’t forget check out Mike’s brand NEW Bulletproof Athlete Training System here http://georgettepann.com/bulletathlete
Here’s what you get when you pick up a copy of Bulletproof Athlete training system:
16-weeks of done-for-you training programs. Mike has written every rep of every set for all of your workouts. All you have to do is show up and train!
3 Programs for 1 Price! Mike realized that the one-size-fits-all training approach doesn’t work, so he created three workouts that you can choose from to determine which is best for you given your needs, goals, and time available to train.
160+ Exercises in the Video Database. Every exercise in the program is coached and cued on camera to help make sure you’re doing things right. No guessing on how to perform movements – just follow along and you’re good to go!
Weekly Nutrition and Recovery challenges and MORE!