I was doing some programming for a friend of mine the other
day who’s about to compete in a powerlifting meet.
He’s used KBs and OS to rehab some pretty severe injuries
and he’s feeling really good.
However, he’s a little more overweight than he’d like to be.
One of the things we decided to do is instead of trying to
cut weight / lose fat, etc, is to transform his appearance.
So I showed him one a world champion powerlifter –
… with 6-pack abs.
This is Dan Green. Multiple record holder.
Looks like a bodybuilder, right?
He trains HEAVY.
He trains for strength.
And he eats clean.
He eats for performance, like we talked about earlier this
I know, I know, it’s a mindset shift.
Hard to believe that “all” you have to do to lose fat – get lean –
Is to lift heavy (and explosively) and eat clean.
Now you may not want to look like Dan Green, especially if
you’re a lady (don’t worry – physically impossible).
I just use him as an example primarily because everyone
thinks powerlifters are fat.
You might find this whole “lift heavy, lose fat” premise
hard to believe, especially with all the marketing we are
constantly being fed –
Especially with all the late night infomercials of people jumping
around, sweating, grunting, grimacing, and groaning.
Sure, that stuff “works” – if you want to spend 60-90 minutes
a day, 6 days a week doing it. If you do, that’s fine. For a season.
But I don’t think it’s a realistic way to live. (Of course, I’ve been
known to be wrong.)
In fact, lots of stuff “works.”
It’s just how well does it work with your life?
What can you manage in your busy life?
Or as my good buddy Brett Jones says,
“What’s the least you can do and still make progress?”
I’ve been saying for the last 4 years that focusing on your
Type 2b fibers:
– lifting heavy,
– training explosively, and
– managing fatigue
… is the best way to lose fat, get lean, and transform
This is based on an understanding of exercise physiology
and what I have observed in strength and power athletes
that I’ve trained –
– They have low body fat
– They train for performance – focusing on generating the
absolute most force possible in the shortest amount of time
– They are not overly “diet-conscious” – they eat to perform
and their physiques are a result of their training and supported
by their eating
So here’s the science:
In a 2008 study done at Boston University by Y. Izumiya et al,
in Cellular Metabolism, researchers discovered the following
about Type 2b fibers:
1. Led to a reduction in white fat tissue
2. Led to improvements in metabolism
3. Both 1 & 2 occurred “independent of physical activity”
(In other words, there was no additional activity beyond
training the type 2b fibers.)
4. Both 1 & 2 occurred without changes in the level of food
5. Fatty acid metabolism in the liver increased (the liver burned
6. Increased overall health: Increased insulin sensitivity, reductions
in blood glucose, insulin, and leptin levels… despite a
reduction in physical activity
Here’s what Dr. Izumiya said:
“The metabolic improvement in this model cannot be entirely
explained by a reduction in fat-pad mass, indicating that type II
muscle counteracts the actions of excess adipose tissue on
whole-body metabolism. These findings indicate that type II
muscle has a previously unappreciated role in regulating
whole-body metabolism through its ability to alter the metabolic
properties of remote tissues.”
Training your type 2b’s not only gets you strong, but gets you
lean, and more importantly, keeps you lean.
Therefore, if you really want to focus on the biggest bang
for your getting lean buck –
Focus on getting strong first.
Work your get ups.
Work your double KB front squats.
Work your double KB presses.
Work your chin ups.
Then use your KB ballistics to train explosively – but NOT
how the majority of people are doing it –
Swinging for high reps letting their form go willy-nilly.
Rather, keep your reps low – 10 and below to start until you
can make each and every rep as explosive as possible.
Then, when you’re able to maintain that power, train for power-
endurance – let your reps go to 15 or 20.
Then, when you’re able to maintain that power-endurance,
start reducing your rest periods.
As a result, you’ll start to automatically strip off that body fat
– by training for performance.
(Ever see sprinters? They train for power and power-endurance.)
There are many different ways to program out strength
with your grinds and power-endurance with your ballistics.
I’m in favor of keeping it simple for the sake of time and mental
energy – both of which are virtually impossible to get back
once spent (time IS impossible to get back).
That’s why I put together the “STRONG!” program for strength
and the “One” program for power-endurance.
The science proves it:
You can either keep messing around with low calorie, restrictive
dieting and a bunch of high-rep swings and remain frustrated
and soft or you can start training those Type 2b’s as efficiently
You’ll never get your time back and you may not regain your