Understanding Strength: My Journey So Far And The Types Of Strength

For a long time, I always really thought of strength as being strength. You either had it or you didn’t. Some people were strong and others weren’t.

Sure, that’s a simplistic breakdown of it–I understood that some were stronger than other strong people, for example–but I really figured that if you were strong, you were strong.

However, I’m ashamed to say that it took me this long to recognize that there are different types of strength. Continue reading “Understanding Strength: My Journey So Far And The Types Of Strength”

Why Diets Fail

Last week, a friend was griping about how their weight loss and ground to a halt. I talked to them a bit about it, but then I came across someone in a group I’m in on Facebook talking about hitting plateaus with their weight loss, and I figured it was time to talk about why diets “fail.”

First, let’s understand something. What most people call “diets” are really diet protocols. They’re sets of rules that we adopt in an effort to create a nutritional framework so we can achieve our goals.

Yet I’m going to let you in on something a lot of people will disagree with me on. That tidbit is that pretty much all diet protocols work.

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Study Looks At Kettlebells And Strength Gains

Kettlebells and strength gains. That’s a really big question and it’s not discussed nearly as much as I think it should be. After all, while we have tons of studies about how dumbbells and barbells can increase strength, there aren’t quite as many dealing with kettlebells.

And, to be fair, some of the kettlebell studies are flawed. I took a look at several studies here, and a look at another one here.

All in all, it looks like one can gain strength with a kettlebell, which stands to reason.

However, the science is far from settled on the matter, which is why a new study from August, 2020 deserves some attention.

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My New HEMA Training Plan

As promised yesterday, I kind of have a basic outline for my new HEMA training plan. What I have here are various phases. There’s no set period of time on how long a phase actually is. It takes as long as it needs to take and possibly even longer because, like most people looking at their training, I’m an idiot sometimes.

Remember, this is gearing an individual up for longsword fighting with an eye toward also performing grappling-style combat as well. That said, there are worse ways someone can get in shape than to follow something similar to this.

However, if you’re training for a completely different sport, don’t be surprised if this approach doesn’t work for you at all. Hell, this is something of an experiment anyway, so don’t be surprised if it doesn’t work for you if you compete in longsword.

So, without further ado…

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Planning My Training Part 2: Assessing My Needs

When I wrote Part 1 of this series, I talked rather vaguely about my needs for my training plan. I knew what I wanted from my training in broad strokes. I even talked about my “needs,” but again, those are all discussed in very broad terms.

The thing is, you can’t make a plan with that.

Don’t get me wrong, it helps to know where you’re going, otherwise, how will you know which direction to go?

So, it’s time to honestly assess my needs. This will not be fun in the least.

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May Sanity Soon Return

Over the years, I’ve picked up a fair bit of gear for my home gym. See, I like training at home because it allows me to train the way I need to train, not the way some gym owner thinks I should train. I can buy things like axle bars, landmines, farmer’s handles, and so on because I want to use them and not hope that an owner will see the wisdom of this kind of training.

I’ve even talked about just how easy it is to build up a home gym.

That, however, was well before COVID-19 closed every gym in the country and created a run on plates, barbell, dumbbells, and just about everything else fitness related.

I’m really ready for sanity to return.

Continue reading “May Sanity Soon Return”

The More Things Change, The More They Stay The Same

We are an affluent society, but that affluence has created certain problems. Namely, much of society is no longer forced to work on farms or in manual labor positions, which makes society much more sedentary than in ages past. This has led to many people gaining weight and other associated health problems that come with living a less vigorous lifestyle.

Now, reading the above, it’s not difficult to determine that I’m talking about this day and age. After all, all of that applies. We now have a society where two-thirds of the American population are classified as overweight or obese. This is a direct result of so much of our lives revolving around not having to exert ourselves.

Yet I wasn’t thinking of today when I wrote that blockquote.

Instead, I was paraphrasing a bygone era. I was actually thinking about the Victoria era, the age of people like Louis Cyr and Eugen Sandow. I was channeling and rephrasing comments made from the golden age of physical culture.

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Planning My Training Part 1: What I Want From My Plan

So, now it’s time to get into my new training plan. There’s just one little problem. I…uh…haven’t planned it.

See, I know I need to train, and I sorta kinda know where I’m going with a lot of this, but I’m not remotely read to say “here’s the plan.” Why? Because I’m going to have to go a bit beyond my comfort zone.

Continue reading “Planning My Training Part 1: What I Want From My Plan”

No Excuses, But I’m Back

It’s been another six months since I’ve published anything here and I’m not going to make excuses. I’d love to blame COVID-19, but besides the fact that a lot more people are running around the house on the day-to-day, I don’t even have that to blame.

No, I was just a lazy sack of shit.

OK, that’s not exactly fair. I’ve been busy, sure. Not too busy to write here, but I’ve been busy in other ways. I still haven’t trained worth a damn, though HEMA classes are back on the menu thankfully.

Yet over the last few weeks, I’ve felt that gnawing inside of me, that thing that tells me I need to train again. Not just with a longsword or some other weapon–and I’ve done some other weapons from Fiore’s treatises–but something far more physical.

So, it’s time to start easing back in.

Now, let’s lay everything out like it should be.

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Way Too Quiet Again

I haven’t written much here in…holy hell, six months.

Ugh. That’s…not good. Sorry about that. Despite that, there’s been decent traffic, but it’s all been for the fitness-related stuff I wrote about in the past. Which is great.

But, well, I haven’t really been training like I should. I don’t feel like I can talk about fitness because I haven’t been doing very much.

Well, not intentionally.

You see, since I got deep into HEMA a while back, I’ve been really focused on that. The problem is, equipment is expensive. However, being part of Schola Saint George, we have other options.

Continue reading “Way Too Quiet Again”