Safety Tip #2 – Warm Up Your Muscles

Turbulence Training for Fat Loss eBookHey folks, were back to day with Patrick McGuire, founder of Empowered Nutrition. In part 2, we talked about exercise alternatives that will help you to stay injury free.

Today, I would like to share with you another activity that is just as beneficial to finding alternatives to your exercise routines. I would say this an essential part of all Turbulence Training programs.

So, let’s get started


Patrick McGuire: What is one of your favorite things or something you can say to keep people safe?

Craig Ballantyne: I would say never skip the warm-up. In fact, the best training is done when you’re warmed-up. When you begin your workout you should start with a warm-up and doing it a little longer would be better.

A really famous strength coach named Martin Rooney down in the United States would do a 25 minute warm-up before they would get into the training. The comments he gets from all his clients is, “I thought that was the workout, but it was just the warm-up.” It’s really interesting. Going back to the gym, some of the big old guys who have been in there for years, they go in and probably only did one warm-up set in lap pull downs.

I saw a biker guy doing that today.  He just goes right to almost a heavy set and pull downs or does a leg press or whatever, he’s doing.  I don’t know what’s holding that guy together after all these years, but he’s got to be in some type of pain. People like this just go into the gym and start with the first set without a warm-up. I think long term; that guy probably won’t be able to sprint in ten years.

So again, going back to how most people evolve out of the meathead thing into something where they want to be able to move. They want to be able to keep up with their kids. So, you got to do the warm-up stuff.  Do it twice. I noticed when I went through it the second time I felt a lot looser, I really felt better. So that’s the other thing I would add. Just don’t cheat yourself on the warm-up. It really, really will help you.

Patrick McGuire: That’s amazing. I agree with that. This is really not TT for Meatheads. This is TT for smart meatheads. Nowadays, we all have other stressors in life. The cholesterol levels are all over the place and jumping into an exercise. You could have damage already waiting to happen. This is why Craig, stress the importance of warming up.

Ok, you’ve got different warm-up circuits,what I am looking at is right on page five of the TT for Meatheads bonus items with our mass building meal plans. You clearly state the warm-up circuits are TWO TIMES through the circuit using a 2-0-1 tempo for each exercise and resting for 30 seconds between the circuits.

So you start off with prisoner squats, for 12 reps. Then Pushups, for 12 reps, next is a forward lunge, for 12 reps and lastly stick ups for 10 reps. That’s a pretty good all over body warm-up.

Craig Ballantyne: That’s kind of the gist of it. It’s just an allover body warm up. I’d like to think that the body has four hot zones when you’re training it. So you’ve got your pushing muscles, your torso or your abdominals, the back of your legs and your upper back. If you hit those four areas, you’re going to hit everything else like your lats and quadriceps. If you think about it, it’s pretty hard to hit the front of your legs without hitting the back of your legs when you’re training your legs.

So with the prisoner squat we get the upper back, and we get the legs. With the pushup, you should be bracing your abs really hard and then obviously you get the pushing muscles. The stick up is shoulder mobility, so you’ve really got the upper back warmed up in there. With the forward lunge you’ve got a bit of stretching in the hip flex area which is usually a tight area. So it is pretty much an overall comprehensive warm up.

When I mention the 2-0-1 tempo, its simply means control. Not bouncing. You can do a prisoner squat in about a second up and a second down if you really wanted to. But that’s not what we want to do in the warm up. Especially for some guys who are training at four, five, six in the morning, they’re probably going to be pretty stiff just getting out of bed, or if you’re an old meathead like me, you’re going to be stiff probably up until about noon. So you definitely want to start off with the first round of the circuit just to get things going. In the second round, you should really start to loosen up, and then you get into the real workout.

In fact, here’s a video that shares more details…

Patrick McGuire: Yeah, that’s awesome. It’s funny – stiff until noon. I’m sure other people can relate to that. So, can you describe a stick up so that we can have an idea how to do the exercise?

I know people can do a prisoner squat. A push up and a forward lunge. However a stick up just sounds new and different.

Craig Ballantyne: Well it’s nothing exciting, I tell you that much. Nevertheless, it’s something very valuable for your shoulder mobility because so many of us who sit down at a computer or driving in a car try to have good posture, but we don’t, we’ve got that  forward rounding shoulder posture.

Even years of being a meathead, you probably got that forward rounding shoulder posture from benching and all that type of stuff.  So with the stick up exercise it starts to work on some shoulder mobility with the goal is to improve shoulder mobility and postural control. Stand with your back against a wall. Your feet should be 6 inches away from the wall and your butt.

Upper back, and head should all be in contact with the wall at all times.  Stick your hands up overhead. Keep your shoulders, elbows, and wrists touching the wall.

Slide your arms down the wall and tuck your elbows into your sides. This should bring your shoulder blades down and together, contracting the muscles between your shoulder blades as well as the shoulder muscles.

From the bottom position, try to slowly slide your arms up until they are straight and in a “stick-em up” position. Try to improve your range of motion each week.

So this it sounds really easy. However, when you try you’re going to find it’s very difficult. In fact, for some people it’s going to be literally impossible to keep their arms up against the wall.

If you feel a real amount of pain in there, a real sharp pain, then you’ve got a real problem. You should see a physical therapist or someone who can find out what’s wrong with your shoulders. If it’s just difficult, then you just have regular shoulder mobility problems.

Patrick McGuire: That’s really good, Craig. I like the whole stick up –That’s kind of a cool reference point for everybody to visualize. This is really going to help with the development of the rear deltoids and tie in all the rhomboids – everything. Even the traps get involved in keeping your shoulders squared back.

We can both relate I’m sure to our moms used to give us little slaps and  tell us to sit up straight, whether it’s in church, school or dinner.

Well, that’s all for today. So if you’ve got problems in your shoulders, the stick up is a phenomenal warm up that you can do.  Next up, were going to get into some serious training in part 4.