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Importance of Strength Training for MetCons

At BearFitness, a lot of our “outcome measures” to tell us how we are doing with regard to our fitness level are based on conditioning-based workouts, aka MetCons. By doing conditioning workouts, we get better at conditioning workouts. There is no denying that. But there does come a certain point where the missing link to perform better and reach higher intensities in these workouts is dependent on improving strength. Read below to understand how:

Lean Body Mass – As mentioned in previous articles, strength training helps to lose fat and build muscle. With regards to gymnastic movements (pull-ups, push-ups, air squats, jump rope, etc.), fat can be thought of as added “resistance” to the movement (as it does not aid in performing the movement). Losing body fat decreases the “resistance” of gymnastics movements, making them more efficient to perform.

Relative Intensity – A lot of benchmark workouts have a set Rx weight for men and women. To make these set weights easier to perform we can either improve our conditioning with that specific weight or increase our strength with that movement. Both are helpful. But as we increase our one rep max of that movement, the set weight used in the benchmark workout becomes a smaller percentage of our one rep max, which leads to improved tolerance to higher reps at a time with the benchmark weight.

Core Stiffness – Under fatigue we all begin to lose our ability to maintain a neutral spine. We can improve our ability to maintain that neutral spine by strength training. Strength training does a few things for helping us keep our core stiff and maintain the neutral spine. When lifting heavy, we must practice the skill of bracing our core. Strength training is better for this than conditioning because:
1. You must brace to be successful with heavy lifting.
2. You are moving slower, which allows you to focus on the brace your core.
3. With lower breathing rates, it is easier to practice the brace. All of this skill practice will also transfer to improved endurance of the core muscles as well.

Want to know more about how our strength and conditioning program can help you break through fitness barriers and give you the results you are looking for?