Today’s post is going to be an interview with Rusty Moore of Fitness Black Book. In case you have never heard of Fitness Black Book, it is a site aimed at helping men and women achieve the slim Hollywood physique.
Rusty just finished a 56 page free report called the Vacation Body Blueprint which is an ebook on getting “event ready”…when you want to look exceptionally good for a vacation or special event.
Rusty advocates a mix of intervals and body weight training along with lifting weights to get a “complete” look. This past year Turbulence Training has been a big part of his personal workout as well as what he recommends to the readers of his site. In this interview I want to discuss with Rusty why training with weights alone isn’t the way to get a detailed physique.
CB: Rusty, there seems to be “two different types of good looking bodies”. You have folks that look good in the gym with the inflated muscles, and then folks that look good on the beach with tight torsos. What are your thoughts on how these are different and what type of workouts are required to look good on the beach?
The traditional “gym body” is one which displays a lot of mass and gets a big pump when working out. The way to accomplish this is to follow the typical mainstream fitness advice of doing multiple sets of 6-12 reps with a medium amount of rest. The goal is to push the muscles to failure (or past that point) and aim to break the target muscle down.
Each muscle is trained hard with a high volume of sets and total reps. The reason why bodybuilders need to do 3 day or 4 day splits is that they need a lot of time in between training body parts for full recovery. The mentality is to push each muscle as hard as possible, then get adequate rest and nutrition to rebuild that muscle. So it is based around blitzing and damaging a muscle and then allowing for adequate nutrition and recovery.
Contrast that with someone who aims to stay lean and trains for strength and performance. The men in the Navy Seals are a good example of this. They are strong and lift weights, but focusing on strength-to-weight ratio insures that they keep their body weight down.
Traditional strength and performance training is not based around blitzing a muscle with massive amounts of sets and reps and then resting…it is about perfecting a lift or movement multiple times per week.
Since the muscles in the body are going to be trained many times each week, workouts have to be brief and lower volume. Training to failure and doing forced reps is to be avoided. Again…think of elite military units…they are doing things like pushups and chinups several times per week. They can’t really afford to break the muscles down with too much volume of sets and reps done at any one time.
CB: You’re a big fan of my body weight workouts. Why do you choose to use that when trying to attain a a more balanced and natural look? You don’t feel you can get that with weights alone?
Using you own body as resistance is superior to lifting weights in a lot of ways. When doing body weight workouts, many muscles have to work in unison…so it exposes “weak links”.
In order to get stronger at a body weight lift, the weak link has to improve and get stronger. Because of this, someone who uses a lot of body weight work has less weak links, than someone who just lifts weights. I’ve seen a lot of guys who are impressive with weights, but with serious imbalances on their body. Body weight exercises almost insure that the body remains balanced and this creates a natural, and complete look.
Also…the most impressive physiques are people who maintain a high strength-to-weight ratio…and body weight training is the way to accomplish this. I think people can instinctively tell that a massive bodybuilder isn’t as agile and functionally fit as a person who has that slim elite “special forces” type of physique.
I like to use the analogy of a high end sports car -vs- a pickup truck. Which is more impressive, a Ford F250 Truck or a Porsche 911 Turbo? Both have similar amounts of horsepower, but the Porsche is more agile and “athletic”. The towing capacity of the Ford is like the guy who can bench a lot. It really depends upon what you are after, but I prefer the Porsche 911 Turbo.
CB: Interesting analogy. Going back to those folks that think they look good in the gym…a lot of them find out the hard way that they don’t look that good on the beach. Why is that?
So lets talk about the concept of the “beach body”. Surfers are a great example of men and women with outstanding beach bodies. The big reason for this is that it takes almost every muscle in their body to paddle to catch a wave and then stand up to ride that wave. None of their muscles work in isolation.
The result is balanced muscle development over the entire body…no particular muscle stands out from the rest. As long as they stay lean through following a good diet, they almost always look outstanding.
Here is a common problem with the traditional “gym body” approach…when training for the pump the muscles display “temporary” muscle tone. What happens is that when the muscles are pumped up, it masks the appearance of body fat to a certain extent (since the size of the muscles increase when pumped and the body fat remains the same).
The person is given a false sense of looking better than they actually do. They look great in the mirror in the gym, but once those muscles are deflated down to normal size, they look much less defined. Also, when someone follows a typical bodybuilder approach, their muscles tend to have a soft “puffy” appearance when not pumped up. Many of these men and women are in for a rude awakening a few days into a vacation or away from the gym.
One reason I’m a big fan of Turbulence Training workouts, especially the body weight circuits…is because they don’t blitz any particular muscle group. These workouts mimic what a surfer or member of an elite special forces unit would do to get in shape.
Also…training the muscles with compressed rest intervals boosts the metabolism and increases the HGH response…creating a balanced look to all of the muscles of the body, while helping the body burn body fat at the same time. Hard to beat that!
CB: I agree with that!
Thanks for the interview. If people want to find out how I incorporate Turbulence Training to get “event ready” they can download my free 56 page report. I even included a case study of two guys that I helped get as lean as Cam Gigandet…the guy from “Never Back Down”. Hopefully they will get a lot out of this Vacation Body Blueprint