5 Articles to read and digest this week

Article 1 and Highlights

Author: Jacqueline Whitmore

Title: 5 Ways Weekends Can Boost Your Productivity Monday Through Friday

1. You need rest, relaxation and rejuvenation to be refreshed and ready to work. Weekends are an ideal time to recharge your depleted energy reserves by reconnecting with the power sources that fuel your mind, body and spirit.

2. On the weekend, give yourself the gift of time. Sit in a quiet space and find some inner peace. A few minutes of meditation, journal writing, stretching and other forms of calming contemplation can provide a replenishing respite that brings you back in touch with your true self.

3. Move. Get outside on the weekends. Do it early before anyone is there. You’ll probably sleep better.

4. Get nourished. Take time to make and enjoy home cooked meals

5. Reduce time in front of electronics. Read articles (online ha), books, etc.

6. Get together with friends and family

Article 2 and Highlights

Author: William Wayland

Title: Aerobic GPP Circuits

1. When we kick off a training cycle in will generally start with General Physical Preparedness. I like to think of it as the program before the program! This is period that should serve as break from “hard” training but provide stimulus and lay foundation for harder work to come.
What is GPP? Those of your familiar with training parlance may have heard the term before. Many often talk about it but what they often mean is ‘cardio’ or ‘conditioning’.

2. “GPP is the initial stage of training. It starts every cycle of training from the macro-, meso- and microcycle after restoration and recovery. It consists primarily of general preparatory and some specialized conditioning exercises to work all the major muscles and joints. This preparation prepares the athlete for the more intense training such as explosive plyometrics. This period is also used for rehabilitation of injured muscles and joints, strengthening or bringing up to par the lagging muscles and improvement of technique.” – Dr Michael Yessis

3. A simpler definition would be improving your quality of movement, fixing weakness that have cropped up during previous training camps and enhancing your ability to handle greater workloads. Now often GPP just means more undirected hardwork. Often taking the form of old school circuit training, running and pushing a sled till you puke.

4. What GPP should be used for is the capacity to do work when the harder training gets going, fixing imbalances and mobility and reinforcing movement quality, its important to note however the training is not really sports specific.

5. We take simple compound exercise pairings and put them together and have the athlete alternate between them for 5 minutes at about 50-60% loading going rep for rep. Each session the athlete will try and do more reps within the same amount of time or try for more reps within 30s chunks of the whole 5 minutes. Some of your might recognize this as EDT style training. Between 5 minute work block we can schedule 5 minute mobility and balancing work. Got tight shoulders mobilise those and strength your upper back. Got tight hips look to add a yoga flow or some bodyweight lunge and leg stretches.

6. Pairings should try and hit as many muscle groups as possible and work well as upperbody/lower splits and upper body, upper body split. Having lowerbody exercises paired would probably be too fatiguing and defeat the point of aerobic intent of this type of training. You could always try Sumo Deadlift/Weighted Pushups or Overhead Press/Barbell Rows. Hopefully now you have enough to build your own 2-3 week barbell based GPP program.

Article 3 and Highlights

Author: Cassie Dionee

Title: The Real Way to Train Your Stabilizers (Not 3 sets of 10)

1. Have you ever been to a physical therapist and been told you have something going on with your shoulder? Maybe the therapist calls it impingement, maybe tendinosis, or maybe he or she says it’s postural. Regardless, you’re told something is going on with your rotator cuff muscles and that you need to strengthen them.
The therapist then proceeds to show you some exercises with an elastic band and tells you to do 3 sets of 8 or 10 reps for each. You know, to increase the strength of those muscles.

Sounds logical, right?

Here’s the thing: stabilizers aren’t strong in the first place, nor are they meant to be. And unless you’re rehabilitating from a surgery, then training them in strength sets and reps is actually a waste of time. I know you’re likely disagreeing with me, so read on and I will explain the function of our stabilizing muscles and how to properly train them so you can see the light.

2. Postural stabilizer muscles work at the reflex level. They are anticipatory muscles, which means these muscles should be on and working before any movement actually occurs. In fact, they should be on before we even think about movement. This is different from our prime movers – those we have to think about.

The rotator cuff muscles need to beat the contractions of the lat, pec, and deltoid so they can suck the ball of your shoulder into the socket to stabilize it in order to allow the bigger prime movers to move the arm about its axis. They don’t need strength to do this; they need stability and motor control.

3. The problem is that people tend to associate stability with strength, when in fact strength work is absolutely not stability.

Simply activating and strengthening postural muscles does not mean they will start to work at the reflexive level. This means you can have an incredibly strong rotator cuff, but if it is slow to work, then you will still have pain and dysfunction. It also means you are wasting energy training strength when what you really need to be training is stability.

You can have fantastic stability, or motor control, in one position, but have it go to hell in a handbasket in another. This is why we need to focus on motor control and movement. We need to know which pattern is dysfunctional. That pattern is the weakest link, and that is the breakdown in the system.

4. The most common causes of compensation and poor processing (in other words, things that negatively affect motor control) include:

Sedentary or deconditioned state (if you don’t use it, you lose it)
Previous injury, instability, or structural deformity
Predisposition to hypermobility (the joints don’t communicate as tightly with the muscles)

5. Therefore, the best way to train these muscles is to do so in a way that drives our reflexes to kick in. Looking again at the rotator cuff, the best way to do this is through traction or compression.

Traction – This is where things like loaded carries come in. A suitcase or farmers carry forces the rotator cuff muscles to fire by reflex simply by holding something heavy.
Compression – The same thing happens to the joint during compression that happens during an overhead carry or Turkish get up.

Article 4 and Highlights

Author: Mike Dewar

Title: The Best Warm-Up Routines to Improve Your Fitness, Workout, and Health

Article 5 and Highlights

Author: Dan Bell

Title: Pain of Discipline or Pain of Regret


When we are all in, we are committing ourselves to doing the things we always don’t want to do. We are going to face pain, we are going to hurt, whether it is emotional or physical pain. But do we want to face it in practice or competition?

If we face the pain and discomfort in practice, it is the pain of discipline. If we only face the pain during competition, it usually turns into the pain of regret.

Note: All material is taken from websites provided. Highlights are taken word for word unless otherwise noted. Quotes are not used as a result.


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