🪴 Vik's Notes


Search IconIcon to open search

Fitness toolkit: Protocol and Tools to Optimize Physical Health

Last updated Dec 19, 2022

# What is a Foundational Protocol for fitness?

A foundational protocol for fitness is a workout routine that optimizes all protocol types (listed below). It serves as a basis to hit all the important requirements from an exercise routine, to optimize health and fitness. A beginner starting out, or an individual who is solely interested in staying fit, and not really training for specialized athletic performance should simply follow the foundational protocol for fitness. If you are trying to be more specific, like train for a marathon, or simply build muscle for asthetics, then the exercise routine required will simply overweight the equivalent protocol for that purpose (eg, weight training for muscular hypertrophy)

# What are the different fitness protocol types?

  1. Skill
  2. Speed
  3. Strength
  4. Power (Speed x Strength)
  5. Hypertrophy
  6. Muscular Endurance
  7. Aerobic Endurance
    1. Over 30 mins (high heart rate)
    2. Over 30 mins (lower heart rate)

# How can a weekly workout be designed to hit all these protocols?

# Day 1: Aerobic Endurance (Low heart rate)

The main purpose is to maintain Zone 2 heart rate for an extended period of time. You can get this from rowing, cycling or jogging for 60-75 mins. Alternatively, you can go on a long hike (2-3 hours) to mix it up. If you really find that easy, use a weighted vest or a ruck sack during the long hike.

# Day 2: Hypertrophy - Lower Body

Primarily focus on weights and do a heavy volume set to really push legs close to failure on 2-3 sets at least. The main purpose is to target the quads, hamstring and calves.

Leg muscles are very large musicles and working them out early in the week sets up for better metabolism and hormones throughout the week. But make sure that legs are not too tired from Day 1 exercise.

# Day 3: Heat and Cold Cycling (Recovery)

The purpose here is to activate various mechanisms involved in hot and cold therapy for which there is a lot of material out there. But essentially, do a 20 min sauna followed by a 45-50F ice bath. Do not go colder on this until you are sure you will not get hypothermia. This will also accelerate recovery from a leg workout the previous day. Maybe go for a walk to ensure that you hit a target of 200m Zone 2 cardio in the week.

# Day 4: Hypertrophy - Upper Body

Do a weight training session for the torso, where you will do bench / shoulder presses, bent over rows, pull ups, etc. Ensure that you getting both pushing and pulling (or eccentric and concentric) exercises. Do a good heavy volume set that will build your chest and back muscles. Note that we are not working out biceps / triceps etc here.

# Day 5: Aerobic/Muscular Endurance (High heart rate)

Do a run, row or cycle where your heart rate is much higher than Zone 2 and is typically about 80% of your heart rate maximum (calculated as 220-age). So for a 40 year old, that would be a sustained heart rate of ~145bpm.

# Day 6: Speed, Strength, Power (High intensity, Max HR, 2nd leg day)

Do a HIIT style training with a focus on working out the legs specifically. One simple example is you can sprint with maximum effort for 30s and rest for 10s, and repeat this for 5 times at least. The goal is to do explosive exercises for your legs generally, and keep the volume low. But you will aim to hit absolute maximum heart rate (~180bpm for a 40 year old) for at least a few minutes, till you feel your heart wanting to explode out of your chest. With the focus on legs, this will serve as a 2nd lower body workout too.

# Day 7: Hypertrophy - Arms, Calves, Neck

This is the second day of hypertrophy for upper body with an emphasis on biceps, triceps, calves, and neck. Yes, neck muscles are very important to be strong too. It may save you from whiplash and maybe even death.

Concepts are few, but methods are many Andy Galpin

# What are some general training guidelines useful for this?

# References