What I Learned in My Week Off From Training
I took a week off from training and started back today. I did play some tennis and also one round of golf while I was in Rehoboth Beach. We had amazing weather and the surf was perfect. Great water temperature and enough of a curl that body surfing was equally good.
The last day I trained was at the Delaware Kettlebell Workshop we had at Saint Andrew's School on June 21st. I hadn't taken anytime off since I was in New Orleans at the beginning of last June. Here's what I learned:
Taking time off for me isn't that worthwhile. I know for many people this isn't the case but I didn't get weaker and I didn't get stronger. My absolute strength work out today was the exact replica of the one I did two weeks ago. Same rep count, same resistance and then the "back down" sets until form denigrates to the point of a repetition that lacks "hardstyle" quality.
I was hoping to somehow get stronger while off the kettlebells and other resistance training for a week. It seemed that the extra time off would give me a chance to have extra recovery. Here's what I found for me with "Hardstyle" Training we do enough "Same but different" work as Pavel puts it, that I don't seem to get stale and I seem to increase my strength too. I am rarely if ever sore. Soreness really doesn't indicate the level of work you've done. In most cases it means you are working muscles that you haven't worked in awhile. Since "hard style" work is essentially full body work then soreness isn't an issue.
So what is "same but different" mean exactly? Well for the snatch it may mean that after a MVO2 cycle you do a Secret Service Snatch Test Cycle. The operative phrase is "Complete a cycle."
Or instead of doing heavy swings you could do a cycle of overspeed eccentric swings. Same but different doesn't mean you jump from one exercise to the next. A lot of this is covered if "Power To The People." This book is an absolute "must" if you desire to understand and implement the RKC system of strength.
Please share what you have learned when you take time off from training. I'd love to know what you have found out!
Sandy Sommer, RKC
P.S. Be sure to read my take on the Delaware Kettlebell Workshop. I will post that tomorrow.