In the newest 180 book, Diet Recovery (which you can now order a printed copy of until I run out of them – click HERE for more information), I coin the cheesy name “MAXercise” to describe the basic concept (with a few tweaks) of what Phil Campbell, founder of the Peak 8 or “Sprint 8″ exercise system, discusses in the following interview with Joey “Mad Dog” Mercola. The Lady Krill-a!
This interview came out recently and I found it to be pretty good. Plus it’s just hilarious for a nerd like me to watch Mercola butcher things like “Tabata” exercises, calling them “Tinata.” I wonder if he’s also heard of the Mexican interval training known as Pinata? And Mr. Campbell? Well, his voice is just so damn money. He even mentions the motherland in the video (Nashville).
I must admit, I really like the concept here. I was first introduced to it through Scott Abel, who specifically likes to train muscles in an oxygen-deprived state. In this oxygen-deprived state, the heart is pounding and the body releases more growth hormone. As Campbell mentions in the video, he suspects that there is a synergistic effect when you do standard strength-training for muscle development and what not, but do so in a growth hormone-rich environment. Campbell’s Sprint 8 has supposedly shown an average increase of 771% in the growth hormone department. I have taken this message to heart and am trying it on myself a few times per week.
I have certainly noticed a dramatic difference in the past when it comes to doing muscular work while sucking desperately for air vs. your average, casual weightlifting routine. I can only attribute this to growth hormone, a hormone that has a huge impact on fuel partitioning – determining whether food energy ends up fueling muscle growth/hypertrophy, shuttled into fat tissue, or otherwise.
Anyway, if you are looking for a brutal but short, efficient, and generally metabolically-favorable workout, try a session of MAXercise (very similar to Campbell’s program, but relying on your own biofeedback, not a clock, to determine the total duration of your exertion period and your recovery period – preferably on an Elliptical machine or Versaclimber because they incorporate more muscle groups and are therefore the most effective), followed by some basic weightlifting moves.
Today for example I did 5 rounds of maximum intensity sprints to failure on some weird machine I had never used before, but similar to an Elliptical (heart rate reached over 190 BPM by round #5). Afterwards I did a little superset of basic chest press (machine) and bicep curls, 5 rounds with several minutes in between each set, until I was about to pass out or vomit or both. It sounds easy, doing 10 chest presses and 15 bicep curls with moderate weight. But do 5 rounds of sprints to your maximum heart rate before it and you’ll see what I mean.
If you are not looking for a hard workout, take a nice nap. The above interview, with the soft sounds of Phil Campbell, will help to put you to sleep. I did tell a woman doing Crossfit with obvious signs of low metabolism (anemia, low B-12, yada yada) that she should look into Crossnaps. And eat lots of pastries and ice cream. Yeah, I’m funny like that. Although I don’t think she saw the humor in it at all!