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In the first edition of our Featured Trainer series, The The Body You Want's Josef Brandenburg leads us through his weekly workout schedule.
About Josef: "Josef Brandenburg is a Washington D.C.-area fitness expert with 14 years of experience and co-author of the international best-selling book "Results Fitness." In 2004, he started The Body You Want personal training program, which specializes in helping you get the body you want in the time you have available. Josef holds certifications from Precision Nutrition, American Council on Exercise, National Academy of Sports Medicine, Functional Movement Systems, Corrective High Performance Kinesiology, and the National College of Exercise Professionals. Learn more about Josef on his blog, follow him on Twitter, or check out his fitness videos on YouTube."
"Contrary to popular opinion, owning a gym gets in the way of your own workouts - my life is proof that you can spend 20 hours in a gym and do no exercise at all. With that, this what I try very hard to make my week look like.
Monday: Small group training session. I'm not only the founder of The Body You Want (TBYW, a training center in Georgetown), I'm also a client. My staff and I do the same programs (individualized for us) that we train our clients to do. These are total body programs that rotate through high, low, and medium rep ranges.
Our programs have three parts to them:
- RAMP UP
- Resistance training (this has the core work, resistance or bodyweight work, explosive work, etc. in it)
- Conditioning work (a.k.a. finisher, cardio, intervals... whatever you want to call it)
The 15min RAMP UP is there to set you up for success - it gets you warm and gets your muscles working the way they're supposed to be working to maximize results and safety. This is roughly five minutes of foam rolling, and ten minutes for correctives and patterning work.
The resistance portion of class consists of groups (or pairs) of non-competing exercises as a superset. An example would be a goblet squat and a pull up. This maximizes time management in your workout because (for the most part) the muscles that got worked during the squat get to recover during the pull ups, and vice versa. This allows for a lot of local recovery to keep intensity high, safety up, and time spent sitting around to a minimum.
We like to keep our metabolic finishers to 4-6 minutes because people expect to get in and out of here in an hour or less. This is some sort of very hard conditioning work - an example would be do a mile on the airdyne bike in less than 3 minutes (ugh!), or the "fun" battling ropes for various work:rest ratios depending on how fit you are.
Tuesday: Off. I might foam roll for 5 minutes, but Tuesdays are non-stop working from 4 am to 8 or 9 pm between the baby and work. (Speaking of the baby, here's a photo my daughter putting together equipment for us at our most recent upgrade!)
Wednesday: Push/Pull preparation. A few months ago a member wanted to enter a power lifting competition, so I decided to do it with him. One thing led to another and we ended up with a power lifting team. This is our team picture from our last meet where we took home eight trophies. I'm not wearing my singlet because I sliced off a chunk of my thumb while cooking and couldn't really dead-lift or bench.
The current phase is really simple: RAMP UP, and I bench for 4-5 sets of 5 reps (doing some sort of t-spine mobility work on a rest break). Next, I do the same for the deadlift (doing some sort of mobility work on my rest breaks). Every week I'm trying to raise the load, and when I can't then I am at my "sort of" 5 rep max and we can use this to run something like Wendler's 5/3/1 or Lilly's CUBE.
Thursday: Interval work. We all know that interval training is superior to steady state aerobic work for fitness, for heart health, and for fat-loss. I am very excited about my future here. I'm excited because our members have asked for an earlier Metabolic Acceleration Classes (what we call interval training), and this schedule change means I will be able to finally fit one of our classes into my schedule on a regular basis!!
Here's a video with an example of a class. Coach Matt is leading and explaining:
Friday: Strong First Level 2 preparation day. On my list of goals for 2014 is to pass the Strong First level 2 kettlebell certification. There's a long list of requirements - teaching skills, a written test, technique, as well as strength and conditioning levels. The last task for me to master is to be able to clean and press a 44kg kettlebell with strict form. This day is more of a "practice" session than a regular workout.
This day is mostly consumed by what Pavel Tatsouline calls a "pressing ladder." (For the record, I am proud to say that Pavel told me I had a nice snatch in Salt Lake City.) In the ladder I take a relatively heavy (for me) kettlebell - a 28kg or 32kg - and work my way up and down a ladder. So, that would be - press 1 rep per side, then 2, then 3, then down the ladder, and repeat for 3-4 ladders.
After this I spend a few minutes make sure that all of my skills are up to par - double swing, double clean, double front squat, double snatch, turkish get up, windmill, etc.
Last but no least is my finisher, which is maintaining my snatch test performance. For the snatch test you have to do 100 snatches with the 24kg in 5 minutes. I don't got 100% effort because pushing that hard on a weekly basis in anything is counterproductive. I go at 80% - so I can get an "easy" 70-80 reps, or 100-120 with a lighter bell like a 20kg.
Saturday: Small group training session. Again, this is what we coach our clients to do. We follow the same rules.
If Monday was the low rep day with the knee dominant (goblet squat) and vertical pulling (pull up) exercise as the first lifts, then Saturday would be a hip dominant movement (like a single leg deadlift) and a horizontal push (like a push up) as the first movements. Saturday would also be in a different rep range - high (12-15), or medium (8-10).
Visit The Body You Want's website for more information on training with Josef. The Body You Want is located in Georgetown.