Sunday, August 12, 2007

The Right Way

Is there a right way to train? Absolutely! What is it? Well, it may be the thing you like to do, or at least the thing that you will do. Whatever gets you moving. If you hate riding a bike, would riding a bike be the right way to train for you? No matter how good bike riding might be for your body, if you don’t like it, you won’t do it.

Everyone wants to know “What is the best way to train?” It’s really a loaded question that will take decades to answer. There are more effective modalities than others, but for what goals? There are movement patterns that are good for your body and there are movement patterns that are stressful on your body. But none of it really matters if a person can’t pull themselves up off the couch. None of it really matters if a person doesn’t like performing that particular modality. None of that really matters if a person doesn’t even know why they are training.

A better question might be “Which way will you train?”, or “What are you training for?” I’m a firefighter and I want to be ready for whatever. I like to train with kettlebells. To be fair, I’ve been training for 19 years. I’ve tried many different things. Powerlifting, bodybuilding, high intensity training (almost killed my body), all bodyweight training, isometrics, I’ve even tried flexing and moving like animals. Nothing I’ve ever done has been as fun, as effective, and as rewarding as training with kettlebells. Kettlebell training is the best modality of training out there; for me. But that’s me. On that note, however, as a trainer, I’ve never seen clients take to and enjoy training like they seem to do with kettlebells. People seem to fall in love with this beautiful little ball with a handle.

A question I always get is what makes the kettlebell so great? I have an answer for that. But set facts, physics, body mechanics, and whatever else aside. The real answer and the only answer that matters is once you pick it up, it hooks you. You’re addicted. You can’t help but feel powerful with that handle in your hand held high in the air after you’ve gotten up from a Turkish Get-up. You can’t help but be amazed at how hard you’re breathing after you perform your first set of 10 swings. You can’t help but notice how good your body feels after just a few sessions with a kettlebell. Best of all, it is fun. And, it’s hard to ignore the results training with a kettlebell brings.

YES, it’s just another tool in your fitness tool box. But it’s a tool that calls you out, it’s a tool that begs to be used. YES, kettlebell training is just another training modality. But it’s a modality that yields awesomely powerful results. NO, it’s not just a weight with a handle. It’s a kettlebell. It will make you stronger than you’ve ever been. It will give you the heart of a race horse. Don’t knock it till you try it. Pick it up. Swing it, Snatch it, Press it. Or, just look at it and wonder. Smirk at it because it’s not attached to a bench. It may be the right tool for you, it may not…

And yes, there are different styles and philosophies for training when it comes to all modalities. What matters is that you choose the style you enjoy. If you like running, do you like to sprint or do you like to jog? IF you are a sprinter, sprint. IF you are a marathon man/woman, run the marathon. Train for you, your goals and your style.

Oh, as I was saying when I started, there is a right way to train. It’s the way that fits you; the activity/modality that you enjoy. For me, it’s kettlebells.


Mark Reifkind said...

great post and this;

"NO, it’s not just a weight with a handle."

IS oh SO TRUE.It will do as you say but people just have to give it a try.

on your way my brother.

Tim Anderson said...

Thanks, Rif. I'm getting the "what's so great about it?" question more often lately. I'm trying...

Franz Snideman said...

Rock on Tim!

I would say your post is 100% correct!

Like you, I have found that KB training is best for my body, period! Why re-invent the wheel? If something works as well as KB's, why would anyone stop using them!

Great post brother!

I see that your favorite book is Wild at Heart! I love that book and must day it is a challenging and needed book for any man!

Rock on!

Tim Anderson said...

Thanks Franz, I like all of Eldrege's books. They've helped me tremendously. Now I'm not afraid to say I still like Superman. The Way of the Wild at Heart is awesome too.