I am sure many of you have heard the story of the Old Bull vs the Young Bull.
Due to our audience, I am slightly changing both the characters and the plot.
Either way, the moral of the story is still the same.
High on top of a mountain sat an old lion and his young cub.
As the cub looked down the mountain, he spotted a bunch of zebras.
The cub said to his father, "Hey dad, let's run down the mountain and eat one of those zebras."
The lion calmly responded to his son, "Why don't we walk down there and eat them all?"
WHAT DOES THIS HAVE TO DO WITH STRENGTH TRAINING?
In the gym setting, the young cub is the athlete who constantly rushes to add more weight.
He overlooks technique, sacrifices range of motion, and tries to "max out" every time he steps into the gym.
This young cub either gets injured or burns out very quickly.
The lion is the athlete who gradually adds weight over time.
He understands that while learning a new lift, it is not "soft" to use a lighter weight.
He understands that you can still generate a great deal of force simply by moving light weight faster.
He incorporates regular de-load weeks into his training program.
The lion seldom gets injured and always feels "fresh".
Cubs at Advanced Training
Advanced Training certainly has its fair share of cubs.
While the main goal of most trainers is to motivate their athletes to push themselves harder and harder, you cannot take that approach with a cub.
In all honestly, I feel like my role with the cub is to make sure he doesn't seriously hurt himself.
One minute he is using the weights you prescribed, the next he is trying to double his PR (personal record).
If I am not vigilant, things could get ugly.
Strength Training is a marathon, not a sprint.
Gradual progress is a much better option than quick gains followed by a long term injury.
For those of you in Advanced Training who are cubs, stop trying to throw paint on the Mona Lisa.