In this show I go over How to setup a fitness program, and more!
In this episode you’ll learn about… How to setup a fitness program, plus…
- What considerations you should have.
- How to setup the day to day variations.
- When to go long and when to do short.
- When random isn’t the best.
- And much, much more.
You can read the full transcript here
00:12 Welcome to the All Around Joe Podcast, where we optimize your human performance from my personal experience as an athlete coach and all around self boom, junkie.
00:19 On this edition of All Around Joe Podcast, I’m going to be talking about how to set up a fitness program and if you are listening to this, you can listen along and I’m going to be talking about how I set it up, but I’m also going to be doing a screen recording, so if you wanted to watch this, I would highly recommend you head over allaroundjoe.com/171, or head over to facebook.com/allaroundjoe and look on the videos and then there’s a little tab there for video podcasts
00:50 Because if you didn’t know this, I video all of my podcasts so hopefully I can get through this without my screen software crashing on me, which has done about three times so far. So this is the third start here, but today we’re just going to be talking about how to set up a fitness program.
01:08 Whether or not it’s for yourself or if you want to see how I am setting up fitness programs. For example, the get better project, which you can hop on board with and do my programming here as I program it by going to the https://getbetterproject.com.
01:25 And this show is actually brought to you by the get better project, so go over to thegetbetterproject.com and you can sign up for the get better project programming where I have videos set up for every single workout. You can ask questions on the private facebook group where the programming is published and you can get all of your basically questions answered and movement questions and videos and all that fun stuff all ready for you so you can just follow it.
01:56 The program is designed for somebody who is going to a gym or looking for body weight or I’m actually going to be throwing in a kettlebell program in as well, which isn’t quite up there yet as this is recording, but because I’m living in the van and doing a lot of the stuff that I am writing as a Kettlebell version, just because it’s easier right now.
02:16 If you can see this video, I am in the van right here and we do have about 400 pounds of bumper weights and barbells and all that fun stuff, but it is cold. It’s about 35 degrees right now in.
02:30 We are actually in Cookeville, Tennessee. Um, so it’s pretty cold, which means we don’t really want to pull out the barbells and the bumper weights in this weather, but it’s really easy to pull out a Kettlebell and do a Kettlebell version of the workout, which is super nice.
02:47 And actually it’s very hard guys, if you don’t do many kettlebell workouts and get creative with the Kettlebell, then you’re missing out because there’s a lot of interesting stuff. For example, I recently did a program where it was just 10 rounds of 10 kettlebell thrusters with one kettlebell. So you just have the one kettlebell.
03:07 You do five thrusters on one arm, you switch to the other, um, do five thrusters on the other arm. Then you take about two minutes rest and then you repeat that 10 rounds of 10. That was a rough one. I ended it with a 70 pound kettlebell. You can do it with whatever kettlebell works. You should do it on broken if you’re going to try that one out.
03:24 But it was very hard just holding that one kettlebell underneath in your front rack. There is tough to do. So what I’m going to be doing today is if you’re watching this, you can see that I have it set up so I’m programming Monday through Saturday and then I have it set up with the structure here, so monostructural, gymnastics and weightlifting and then in long short or I should say short, medium and long a sets or durations of the particular workout.
03:55 And I get all this. I’m a CrossFit level one coach. So I am a huge advocate of utilizing their monostructural, gymnastics and weightlifting, design of their programming and then looking at it from a constantly varied standpoint so that you can pretty much not know what you’re going to have thrown at you. But that being taken into account, we’re always looking at the wide majority of athletes that have particular issues with things so that we can program and make you guys better. And there will also be options if you’re following the get better project programming to do things or sub in and out, things that will be better for you and make you a better athlete so you’re not always doing things that you’re good at. Although you do want to do things that you’re good at every once in a while, just so that you keep basically keep the pump primed for that.
04:49 So the way that we’re setting things up is we, like I said, we have the mono structure, we have the gymnastics and we have the weightlifting, so if you would imagine that that just cycles through. So you do a mono structural day, then you do a gymnastics and a weightlifting day. Then you do a mono structural, a gymnastics and weightlifting day, and then it would flip over to gymnastics and then weightlifting and monitor structural gymnastics, weightlifting, mono structural, and then just weight lifting than monitor structural gymnastics. Then weightlifting, mono structural and gymnastics. And then what I like to do is mix in the duration as well so that although it’s supposed to be constantly varied at times it will come in and you don’t really know and if we wanted to make it completely constantly varied, we could just pull a number out of a hat, you know, like one through three for long short or medium.
05:39 But I like to have some sort of idea for how long you want that program to be. So I’m thinking, you know, for we’re going to do something with shorts going to be around, you know, five minutes or less if we’re going to do medium, medium who kind of cover a wide range there. So it would be like six minutes to let’s say 15 minutes. And then I would say that long is going to be 15 minutes or more. So if you’re looking at this video, what I have set up for programming right now, Monday, December third, which is coming up here in a few days, it would be a mono structural day and is set for long. Okay. So long mono structural day would have had something set up for you so that the time before it would have been medium or short, so you’re not repeating that same long, although it wouldn’t be bad to do that from time to time and every once in a while I’ll throw in a day where I don’t have anything in there and it will just be a completely random day and there’s nothing wrong with having a completely random day so that you can throw things off.
06:37 I mean, that’s the beauty of the constantly varied portion of CrossFit is that it’s okay to have something that’s completely different and it’s okay to do things that are different intensity levels as well. So that’s something that we may or may not get into today as the intensity levels that you program can be actually put in there, especially if you’re doing the program for yourself. Um, so this could be somebody that’s looking at, oh, I wanted to know how joe’s programming for the get better project, or I’m following the get better project and I want to know, hey, my WHOOP tells me this. I feel like I’m doing this particular thing, but it’s not necessarily, let’s say I feel like I’m kind of like trashed, so even though the workout looks like it’s gonna be really hard and intense, I’m going to take it to a lighter intensity and maybe I’m going to do that workout that Joe just programmed as an interval or I’m going to ask him, hey, how should I do this based off of my recovery and how I’m feeling?
07:35 As you know, tools like the WHOOP or the Oura ring are just tools so that they don’t always mean that it’s cut and dry. Hey, I woke up and I’m red on my WHOOP, but I feel great. I’m not going to do anything that day. So you have to take that with a grain of salt and you may end up doing something and I’ve heard people number of times say, oh, I was red that day and I started doing my snatches and then it actually felt really good and I PR’d.
07:59 So you have to know that it’s just a data point. It’s not an end all be all and sometimes you will follow it and sometimes you won’t follow it and that’s totally fine, but you have to have it as a data point along with other things like how you’re actually feeling, how you thought that you slept that night, you know, the amount of stress you’ve been taken on lately.
08:18 Taking all those things into account and if you are feeling trashed, it’s okay to not necessarily go as hard or you know, do something that is an interval or let’s say it’s a 10 minute piece. You just kinda go through the motions and you know, you groove your joints, you groove your positions so that you can get better at them, but you don’t necessarily need to take the intensity all the way up because sometimes your body doesn’t need all of that intensity. So getting back to this, let’s say we had Monday, December third, we’re going to do a mono structural long day.
08:48 So what that could look like is mono structural. We’re looking at something like running, rowing, riding the bike, something that’s like cardio. So if we want to go long, we could do something like, you know, a 10k row, let’s say, or you know, run for 30 minutes or something that would be cool about putting, you know, run for 30 minutes is that you could have the intensity set on there too.
09:14 So if like if you’re feeling really good for that run for 30 minutes day, you could have it set up where, sorry guys, there is a lot of police action flying by me right now. About 10 police cars just flew by. So anyway, you have the 30 minute running day and you could have some notes on the say like, hey, if you’re feeling great, I would like you to try and kick this up so that you’re at about, you know, 90 percent of your maximum effort and you’re just holding on just below that red line and try and see how far you could cover in 30 minutes. Or if you know you’re feeling okay, maybe you pull that back in your. Let’s say you’re, you know, you can’t really talk to somebody because you’re like right on the edge of being able to talk to them.
09:58 Let’s gauge it off of that and then if you’re not feeling so good, we’re going to do it as a complete cardio day where you’re just doing LSD style training, long slow distance, not the drug, so you are just going at a conversational pace, what they call it for 30 minutes and you’re just getting that very low’ish intensity more what they would traditionally call like a fat burning or base cardio building day, which is totally fine. I think we actually underdo that in CrossFit. We think too much about going intense, intense, intense, and if you are a very competitive CrossFit athlete, I think it’s necessary to add in more of these lsd or long slow distance cardiovascular days in order to build up that engine so that when you’re in the middle of a hard metcon, your body is actually utilizing oxygen to its maximum.
10:51 Okay, so that was what mono structural long day looks like. It could be 30 minutes rowing, riding, running… It doesn’t. It doesn’t really matter all that we want to have it varied somewhat and it’s funny, I’m going to mention this again as you want it to be varied, but as a program you’re still thinking of, you know, how can I put these things in that people need, so if we haven’t been doing a lot of running that I need to put in some running so that you have that as a sharp point to your program, meaning that you’re doing well with that, you know, what it’s gonna feel like when you get that in a in a competition or you know, just to be well rounded.
11:26 Not to say that you need to do a competition, but then the next day, gymnastics and weightlifting for short. All right, so that way that we’re looking at something that’s gymnastics.
11:36 Maybe we’re talking about a pull-up movement and then weightlifting. So for pulling. Then what do we want to do for weightlifting and do want to go to a different, like a pushing, do a push pull and do something like a bench press a for the weightlifting component or a push press or push jerk.
11:54 So it’s supposed to be short and fast. Maybe we’ll do like a 21, 15, 9 of… Well a good example of this one could be gymnastics and weightlifting. Like Fran would be 21, 15, 9 of thrusters and pull ups. We could do that. Um, or we could flip it around and do pull ups and thrusters or we could do something even faster and do a 21, 15, 9 of let’s say a push press. We can make it even heavier. You could do 135 and 95 push press with chest to bar pull ups or.
12:31 And that way it can be scalable, right? If you are an advanced at that and you can do 21 unbroken chest to bar pull ups and 21 unbroken push presses at 135, then that’s awesome. And that’s who we’d be programming it for because it’s supposed to be fast under five minutes. But it could also be scaled down. So the person that can’t do unbroken 21 unbroken chest to bar pull ups could pull that back and do regular pull ups or even abandoned pull ups or whatever they need to be doing. And you could lower the weight to weight that you think you do the 21 push presses unbroken.
13:05 Okay? So that’s how we’ve set that one up and we had the running the day before, then we get the short and then we have a mono structural gymnastics and Weightlifting Day at a medium and medium length.
13:20 Okay. So what we’re looking at then is we have mono structural. So let’s say we throw the assault bike at them, and let’s say gymnastics. We, yesterday we did shoulder to overhead. So maybe, I’m sorry. Yesterday we did. Yeah. Shoulder to overhead or push press. Um, we did push press and then weightlifting. We did the push press and the pull ups. Okay.
13:46 So we’ve got gymnastics. We could do gymnastics today. Something that’s different, let’s call it burpees. So that’s not as super taxing. Um, let’s say that those 21 and 15 and 9 were something that might make someone sore. So burpees are a good kind of cardiovascular tonight you’re riding the bike or hopping off the bike, you’re doing burpees and then you’ve got a weightlifting movement again. So what’s something that’s not going to be quite the same that we hit just the other day.
14:14 We could do some hip hinging so we can have that be cleans or snatches, let’s say with the barbell, since we’re doing weightlifting and get some heavy hip hinge in there. So we just rode the bike are quads are probably going to be tired from that. Burpees got our engine blown up and then we have weightlifting. So from going from the burpee, let’s call it some cleans and since it’s going to be medium length we can. And with the bike I liked the idea of saying, hey, we’re going to do 15 minute amrap put the bike because everybody is so different on the bike that it’s hard to do. I want to make it a specific range with a number of rounds. We could figure it out, but it’s. It’s easier to just say, hey, I want people to be working and they’re probably going to be working on this one, you know, without much rest because of the movements for that particular period of time.
15:06 So we’re going to do a little bit longer, 15 minutes because we wanted 6 to 15 minutes for the medium. Actually, let’s take it out of 12, like, 12 minutes and we’ll do a let’s do 12 calories on the bike. 12 and 8, 12 for the guys, 8 for the girls. And we’ll do again. Let’s do 12. Let’s keep it at 12. 12 burpees and then we’ll do 12 power cleans at 95 and 65. So this one’s going to be moving pretty good. You’re not going to have a lot of time there. And to rest with that particular weight should be that you’re moving, moving, moving.
15:43 You got to move it, move it. Um, so that was the three. We’ll do a 12 minute amrap of 12 and 8 on the assault bike. We’ll do 12 burpees and we will do 12 power cleans. So we’re going to keep people moving on that one.
16:00 And then the next day we have gymnastics work, it’s just gymnastics and it’s supposed to be longer. So we’re looking at gymnastics here and only gymnastic. We could put a couple different movements together if we wanted to. Making it long. So think about some gymnastic things that we haven’t worked on yet. We could do a muscle ups. We haven’t done any muscle ups yet or lately. We haven’t done any handstand walking. That’s a fun one. Handstand pushups, although those handstand push-up at handstand walking are kind of, you know, to have the same muscle group that we’re looking at there. We did do burpees already. Um, other gymnastics things that we are looking at doing. Um, I guess gymnastics depends on what you could be doing. Usually it’s a body weight style movement, so a sit up, a lot of people like sit ups and like to work on their, their abdominals so we can do sit ups or a toes to bar.
16:54 Um, and I like pairing a toes to bar with a muscle up for people that have their muscle ups because it’s really hard to do muscle ups after doing toes to bar. But it’s kind of a fun combination of things to do so we could put those particular things together or you know, we could go completely different and do some sort of a long interval piece that we want to work on gymnastics. So when you’re programming for a lot of people, sometimes there are people that will almost always that are people that could work on gymnastics unless you have a really high level gymnastics background. And what that means is we could set this up to be like a. Since it’s supposed to be long, we could do a 21 minute EMOM. So every minute on the minute you do x number of repetitions. So let’s say for the first minute we do five muscle ups, ring muscle ups.
17:47 Okay? Then on minute 2, we have you do 50 feet of handstand walking. All right?
17:55 Then on minute three we have you do 12 toes to bar. All right? So that’s a pretty good one. And then if you guys have problems on that, what you do is in the program you say if you can’t make it through the minute or you can’t get the desired number of reps the minute you just take the rest of the minute off, you finished those reps. so let’s say that on the second round who’s a little bit ambitious to do five muscle ups, so you get to 4 muscle ups but you rest, you hop up and you do the 5th muscle up, but your 10 seconds into the next minute you would just wait that additional 50 seconds and then you would get started on your handstand walking again because this one is going to be very, uh, shoulder and core intensive for a long duration, right?
18:41 We said 21 minutes and like it doesn’t necessarily have to be completely working for those 21 minutes, but you can see it’s a longer drawn out process. Okay. So then the next day we would have a short weightlifting and mono structural day. We could do something where you put a couple of things together here. We could do like kettle bell swings and running if we did running the last model structural day than we probably should pick another thing. I know that running can be hard on people if they’re not doing it all the time. Or You could say, hey, my athletes need to run more. It’s nice weather outside summertime, so let’s have them run more. Right?
19:21 So we’re looking at a short, so sprint ish type running and weightlifting or weightlifting or running day. So if we’re going to program something like that, we could probably do it where there is actually, you know, for the sprinting type thing we could do running.
19:42 But I say, you know, for a sprint, let’s do a bike or I’m sorry, a rower. So for a rower we will do a, let’s go with 150 meters on the rower and then we will do 10. Let’s do 10 snatches power snatches at 135. Okay. For, let’s see if it’s gonna. Take us 10 power snatches at 135. Um, we had 150 meters on the rower, those are both going to be hip hinging and they’re going to be kind of hard to do one after the other. So actually let’s take 135 down to five and let’s, let’s do. So we’ll do 150 meters on the rower. 5, a power snatches at 135 and we do that for five rounds. Okay. So we’re looking at like, let’s call it 30 seconds for the snatches and uh, the rowers going to change based off of how well you do with the snatches because the snatches are going to spike your heart rate.
20:45 It might end up being a little bit more than 5 minutes, but we’re going to be around. There’s the people that are doing that unbroken and doing it well. We’ll be probably under c probably significantly under five minutes for that 150 meter row and five power snatches at 135. So you see how well we’re doing this and we’re looking at, like I said, the structural, the gymnastics and the weightlifting and then we’re just breaking up long, medium or short. So that’s how I look at it. And then if you wanted to completely sub something. So what we haven’t talked about before is if we had a workout setup, like let’s bump back to that first one. I’m obviously the mono structural stuff. You can always, if you don’t have any equipment, you can always put it in running for that. And then you ended up doing a lot of running, which is fine as long as you’re taking care of your joints and making sure that you’re not over training any of those particular running muscles.
21:40 But let’s say that we had our gymnastics and weightlifting and we don’t have any equipment. So our first workout that we did, which was like I said, the push presses and the chest to bar pull ups. How are we going to sub those things if we only have a Kettlebell or we have no wait. So okay. First off, if we only have a Kettlebell, we can do 21, 15, 9. Kettlebell push press. Alright, so we got the Kettlebell. We could, we could do this a couple different ways. We could do 21, 15, 0. 21 right, 21 on your left or you can split that up and you could rather than doing it 21, let’s say that we find some even numbers there. So we’ll do like 22, so 11 on each side. And then we do a 16 eight on each side and 10, so 5 on each side.
22:32 And we could just because it’s kind of unusual, probably want to switch in the air so you do 11 on your right arm, 11 on your left arm. And then for pull ups, since you don’t have a pull up bar, we could do something like a bent over row row with the Kettlebell. So you essentially go from doing push presses to bending over and doing a flat back bent over row. So you’re doing the pretty close to the same muscle group right there. And that would be a pretty nasty one because you’re holding onto something the whole time without really letting it go. Ideally. Then if you didn’t have any weights, let’s saying you’re trying to do something like that. We’re looking at taking that same movement pattern and although the weightlifting were we were doing with a barbell or Kettlebell, we’re still looking at that same movement pattern. So we could do a 21, 15, 9 of handstand pushups or a pike pushup if you can’t do a handstand pushup. And I always liked to do strict handstand pushups instead of kipping. Excuse me, unless, uh, you were in a competition because I don’t like to put the pressure on the neck. And I would recommend if you can’t do a handstand pushup then you just do a modified version. So like a pike or you just do as much range of motion as you can to get that push up or a handstand up done.
23:53 And we’re looking at the pull up them. So you don’t have any. If you don’t have anything that you can use to modify a pull up. Even like a band, you know, anything like that, then we’re going to have to pick a completely different movement pattern. All right? So unfortunately it’s hard to do polling movements if you have no equipment, although sometimes you can figure out something to hang on so you could do a hanging style row. Um, that’s always a good one and a lot of times you can find something to do a row with. All right. So I’ve had people do it with a laundry basket. I’ve had people do it with jugs of water, you know, any of those things you can do as a for a bent over row will suffice to work. Those same muscle groups as you had with the pull up.
24:42 But let’s say you don’t. All right, let’s say you have nothing. You can do handstand pushups. And I like to put a, something that’s hard, multiple joint in there a lot of times for people. So like burpees. So what I would probably do with that one, uh, if somebody has zero equipment, I was programmed for zero equipment. I would say handstand pushups or pike pushups. A 21, 21, 15, 9 and 21, 15, 9 of burpees. Okay. So that’s going to be pretty darn hard but we’re just trying to get them moving. We know that we cannot train the back muscles as effectively as we would like to, but you know, we’re getting a great workout in. So that’s how I set that up. If I didn’t have any equipment and had to just go for it. Alright. So we went over setting up your program for you know, the full equipment, the Kettlebell and then if you had zero equipment at all, how would set that up and then how I program and some people don’t do it that way.
25:36 I’ve heard of different people programming, not using the mono structural gymnastics and weightlifting style, but actually just looking at you know, day to day and what did I do and what do I need to fit in there. And I’ve programmed like that before as well. And sometimes they’ll go back and forth if I get tired of using this particular format or if I see that there’s a bunch of weaknesses that people are having on a consistent basis, you can do things like that. You can really get out out there and program in a specific way.
26:01 You can also do weightlifting in conjunction with the metcon. And so like warm up weightlifting, metcon even like Cardio mono structural if you need to get ready for a competition or you’re competing and then cool down. There’s all these different ways that you can set up your program. Uh, but you know, like they keep saying CrossFit does work and you, I’ve found as well that I don’t need to spend quite as much time in the gym and as long as I’m using these mono structural gymnastics and weightlifting and the variations and constantly varied and doing different links of them, I find that I stay pretty darn strong and I can do a lot of different things in my body stays very, very fit.
26:44 So make sure that you keep that in mind. And let me know if you have any questions. I like to hear how you guys program, if you have any questions about any of this stuff or you wanted to, you know, make a note of some of this stuff that I’m doing, let me know. I think it’s cool. I think that there’s, there’s not a lot of wrong ways we can always argue one way or the other and figure out what works for you or what doesn’t work for you and you’re always programming for different people.
27:11 I should also note you’re always programming for the best person in your gym or program. Okay. And then you’re scaling down. You never want this program to the person that is not very good or that hasn’t. I shouldn’t say not very good. It hasn’t been doing CrossFit for a long time or has not been doing athletics for a long time because it’s harder for that other person to scale up.
27:31 All right, so scale for the hardest person and then go down backwards. All right. Let me know if you have any questions.
27:37 Remember all the show notes and everything that has to do with this podcast. Our over at https://allaroundjoe.com171, and if you would like to get started on my programming over at The Get Better Project, give it a shot. It is at https://thegetbetterproject.com. I also have my interview podcast over there with top CrossFit athletes, top strength athletes and top endurance athletes and coaches, so if let me know if you like it, let me know if you’d like to get started and I hope to talk with you soon.
28:11 The All Around Joe podcast, where we optimize your human performance from my personal experience as an athlete, coach, and all around self improvement junkie.
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– TheGetBetterProject.com for my daily fitness programing
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