Week eight marked the end of Integral Strength (IS).
As expected, it offered no surprises, being a continuation of the previous week. The emphasis remained on efficiency and building work capacity.
Over the past two months I have gathered many lessons from the team at GMB. Take a look back at the summaries from the previous weeks…
The message which resonated with me most strongly was the shift in mindset which IS elicited and that is, place less emphasis on reps and sets (though they have their place) and more focus on quality, mindful practice. This, I will carry with me for the rest of my training days.
Why is this so fundamental? Adopting this mindset helps to…
- Facilitate progression – Rather than compromising form to get through the allocated number of sets and reps, mindfulness encourages perfect practice. Over time, the most efficient and effective motor patterns are laid down rather than haphazard ones.
- Reduce frustration – Plateaus are part of the game. By focusing solely on the quantifiable it is difficult to gauge progress when you can no longer add that extra rep. In contrast, by being mindful with your training, even though your session might look identical to the last on paper, you’ll be able to recognise progress courtesy of an improvement in quality.
- Increased body awareness – Although it may sound wishy-washy, a conscious awareness of what your body is doing becomes invaluable. Like a thermostat, you develop an understanding of each body part, and are able to make fine adjustments on the fly, improving your movement quality.
Understandably, this program isn’t for everyone. In my opinion, it is suitable for those new to bodyweight training, looking to build a base. IS is not goal oriented though helps to develop the mindset mentioned above, as well as a reasonable work capacity.
Individuals coming from a traditional strength training background will find this program underwhelming, primarily due to the low volume. Also, people with some experience in bodyweight training, will likely feel the same way.
Good bye for now IS! Along with the lessons gathered over the course of the program, I have developed a better understanding of how to create a minimalistic program for traveling. GMB’s targeted programs, like floor skills, interest me and I may embark on such a program in the future.
What has your experience been with IS, or any of GMB’s programs for that matter? I’d love to hear about it. Leave a comment below.