Here are 4 ways to improve your training program:
Add Carries to Your Training
I admit I am late to the party when it comes to carries. For the longest time I thought they were really overrated but carries can do a lot for core development – and your traps will be screaming at you the next day! Carries like a suitcase carry is basically a walking side plank while something like a goblet carry is a walking front plank. And lets no forget about the benefits that carries can have for shoulder health, which are many. There are a decent amount of carries you can add…try some, you’ll be surprised how effective they are. This last fall I added some type of carry to some teams at New Hampshire and was pleased with the results.
Use Push-ups as Your Major Pressing Exercise
Shoulder issues are pretty common these days yet people continue to bench press heavy and often. Talk about trying to fit a square peg into a round hole. Try doing some push-ups for your main pressing movement – with a little creativity you can do a lot to make the push up as challenging as a heavy set of benching. Add some chains or weight vests, do eccentric reps, drop sets, max rep sets, the options are endless. Plus, your shoulders will feel better because of it. If you train overhead athletes (baseball, volleyball, swimming) I don’t think benching is necessarily wrong (pitchers probably want to skip benching altogether in my opinion) but I also don’t think you need to bench, making push-ups a great alternative.
Listen to Your Body
Some days and weeks you’re just plain tired. Listen to your body and step off the accelerator a little bit. Using some lighter weights and skipping a tough conditioning session may be better for you in the long haul then beating yourself into the ground. I wouldn’t recommend skipping a session altogether though as something is still better than nothing. Get in, move a little bit, and get out, but listen to your body, it knows better than you!
Don’t Be Afraid to Try Something New
Don’t be scared of change. If you aren’t seeing the results you are looking for, change something. Try a completely different program. Try exercises that you haven’t been doing for quite some time. Maybe you need to start eating a little better? Who knows, but make some changes, it’ll make a difference. It doesn’t have to be earth shattering or completely change a program, just something small. For example, the last couple years smart people have been endlessly talking about the importance of get ups, so I try to do them everyday myself and try to make sure all my athletes do them at least twice a week.