Today I got a chance to steer the topic of training in a slightly different direction by interviewing Atlanta’s own Pro Kickboxer and MMA fighter Warren Thompson. We have a lot of mutual friends, but this is the first time I got a chance to connect to Warren and by the looks of this interview it was long overdue. I’ll think you’ll enjoy the conversation.
- Do you feel that your fitness level and conditioning have hit a plateau?
- Do you feel like you’re not improving with your MMA and Combat skills as fast as you should?
- Aside from being functional for fitness, MMA, and Combat are you also frustrated that you aren’t leaning out and developing a lean body composition from your training?
- Are you familiar with HIIT workouts?
If you answered YES to any of the above questions then this article (particularly with question 4 relating to HIIT Workouts) then this should be of great help to you. So everybody is hung up on the high intensity programs these days and as a strength coach I’ve always had a love–hate relationship with this because I think some training fads tend to get blown out of proportion. I think this is because with the tremendous influx of information due to the internet it often seems like people tend to offer solutions to training by painting with a broad brush, or by defaulting to metaphorically trying to use a hammer for both nails and screws.
So lately I’ve been working hard to demonstrate to people the significance of dynamic strength drills and how they play such a huge role in not only building athleticism, but also in helping people to develop a truly optimal level of fitness. This can be communicated by looking at how the practice of martial arts has influenced this and how it has bled into the fitness community and helped to forge some of the fittest individuals the world has ever seen. If you don’t believe me then just take a look at Bruce Lee, or any high level MMA fighter for that matter. The proof is in the pudding.
I’ve been very fortunate in my career to have trained a variety of different athletes. When it comes to being able to compete and to get to the next level the only thing that separates the good from the great is doing just a little bit more. Of course in terms of training, fitness, and physical competition this is a challenge when you think your heart is going to beat out of your chest. It is without question the proverbial kick to the balls and it is what us strength coaches refer to as Physical Work Capacity.
I’m a big a believer in sprinting and sprint variation when it comes to conditioning and training the body for performance. In my experience the key to any successful strength and conditioning program involves moving with intention and purpose. As far as fine tuning the gait movement and working towards building on the skills of coordination and reaction time the agility ladder can be a valuable tool for us to employ to achieve this end.