By Rob Shaul
Last week I wrote an article, “How to Train When You’re Not Training For Anything.”
My most common recommendation for athletes in this situation who come to me for training suggestion is to recommend programming they haven’t done in a while, or ever. Something different to sport accommodation and stave off mental staleness.
Here are some specific, and unique, training suggestions from the MTI programming library:
MTI Relative Strength Assessment Training Plan– This is a really tight (5 weeks), efficient (45 min sessions) strength-focused program designed to assess and build an athlete’s relative strength – or strength per bodyweight. The program deploys MTI’s Density strength progression for the Front Squat, Bench Press, Power Clean and pull ups. Are you an endurance athlete who want’s to spend some time off the pavement and in the gym? This is the plan for you.
Super Squat Strength – This program isn’t appropriate for brand new lifters, but rather is one I’d recommend for long-term meatheads. Power lifters, or Olympic Lifters or others who’ve cycled through 531 strength programming again and again and want to train strength, but in a new way. Super Squat strength is built around a 20x rep back squat and a 20x rep bench press effort. It’s unconventional, super-intense, fairly painful (you’ll suffer) strength training – which is just a kick in the butt. Another 5, tight, 5-week plan.
Gladiator – Relatively new programming, Gladiator is built around the MTI Barbell Complex. Another short (4-week), very intense unconventional strength training plan I’d recommend for both new lifters and veteran meatheads. Heavy barbell complexes are quite an experience!
Kettlebell Strength – Working Strength – Sometimes it’s good to get away from barbells and do a strength plan using dumbbells and/or kettlebells. Despite it’s title, this plan can be completed with either. The major problem with deploying kettlebells/dumbbells for strength training is that few gyms have kettlebells/dumbbells heavy enough for many athletes to reach 1 repetition maximum, or even 5 repetition maximum. Here’s where our “Working Strength” progression comes into plan in this training program – it deploys a strength progression which can be used for most athletes in most gyms with the existing sets of kettlebells/dumbbells. Sick of the barbell? – Try this plan.
Resilience – This classic plan from our military-focused Virtue Packet, is specifically designed to build the “Combat Chassis” of soldiers – i.e. the strength/musculature between the knees and the shoulders. Think heavy rucking, heavy squatting, and lots of sandbag-inspired chassis integrity sessions. Very interesting programming.
Dolly – Bodyweight strength focus with a little endurance thrown in. Great programming for athletes who want to give free weights a break but still train strength.
Max Effort Strength + Bodyweight Strength Endurance – Strength plan designed to improve heavy barbell, “max effort” strength and bodyweight strength endurance, concurrently. The max effort strength exercises trained: Front Squat, Bench Press, Power Clean & Weighted Pull Ups. The Bodyweight exercises training: Squats, Push Ups, Box Jumps, Pull Ups.
Humility – One of MTI’s more well known training plans, Humility is a limited equipment training plan which also comes from our military-focused Virtue Packet. Lots of bodyweight strength, burpees, weightiest runs, etc., Humility has a “hardening” effect on the athletes who complete it.
Valor – Combine Gladiator with Humility and you’ve got Valor. Enough said.
Fat Loss Training Plan – Hard, short, intense work capacity efforts designed to burn fat. Combine this with MTI’s nutritional guidelines and you’ll shed fat.
Big 3 Strength + 5 Mile Run Improvement – A focused plan designed to increase max effort strength in the back squat, bench press, hinge lift (dead lift) and pull ups, combined with assessment-driven programming to increase your 5 mile run time. Solid, focused training which I often recommend for strength athletes who want to maintain strength, but improve endurance, and endurance athletes who want to maintain endurance, but increase strength.
Apex Fitness Standards Training Plan – Focused training plan designed to improve Back Squat strength, max rep Push Ups, max rep Pull Ups, 1 Mile Run time and 6-mile ruck time. Great plan for anyone who wants a multi-modal challenge and wants to improve across several metrics.
Alpinist Fitness Assessment – Step ups, dips, pull ups, bouldering V-Sum, and long endurance run. Interesting training designed around the primary fitness demands of Alpinism.
Sprint-Distance Triathlon Training Plan
5,000m Row Improvement Training Plan
Swimming Improvement Training Plan
Power-Based Endurance Training Plan (Spin or Row)
High Rep Kettlebell Snatch Training Plan
Run & Ruck Improvement Training Plan
All These Plans (And More) Are Available With Our Athlete’s Subscription