by Craig Hysell

It’s tiiiiiiime!!! The CTF Summer Strength Series is here.

You can hear all the dudes high-five each other while the girls all kind of cringe and say,
“Whoa, whoa, whoa? What did he just say?” Hang on a tick, girls. Read just a little bit further.
AND, PAY ATTENTION FELLAS…

Did you ever wonder why we are such big fans of getting strong at CTF? Well, first, let’s clear something up: getting strong DOES NOT MEAN getting BIG! This is a misconception carried over from bodybuilding.

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There is NOTHING wrong with bodybuilding. It’s a great sport or regimen, but it’s not how we train at CTF. Bodybuilding is (most of the time, not ALL of the time) based on one heavy compound movement (like a back squat) per session and then isolated movements at high repetitions to build hypertrophy (size) and symmetry.
So, a typical size-building leg day in a generalized bodybuilding program may look something like this:
Back Squat. Squat to a heavy triple.
Bulgarian Split Squats. 3×12/leg.
Leg raises on machine. 3×15
Hamstring curls on machine. 3×15/leg.
Superset:
Weighted calf raises. 3×21. :30 rest.
Leg Press machine. 3×21. 1:00 rests.

Then you need to EAT A LOT OF FOOD AND REST.

And this is where people commonly mistake a strength training program with a size-gaining program. But you, as an educated member of CTF, should know that what you eat, how much you eat, when you eat it, how much you rest, number of repetitions and certain loads, accessory work, and functional loading versus isolated loading all play a significant role in a training program.

This is all stuff CTF provides to you in our daily program. This is one of the HUGE values of your membership. We think of all this stuff FOR YOU. All you have to do is show up, have fun and listen to your coaches. The results will take care of themselves.

This strength program is NOT designed to GET YOU BIG (you have to eat that way. IF YOU WANT TO GET BIG, that’s fine too! Set up an appointment to meet with CTF’s Nutrition Specialist Christy Baroni next time you’re in the gym and she can get you all set up! You CAN get big on this program if you EAT TO BE SO).

INSTEAD, THIS PROGRAM IS DESIGNED TO GET YOU STRONG(ER), MORE TONED, A NICER BOOTIE, MORE WELL-DEFINED SHOULDERS, ARMS, LEGS, BACK AND CORE. Now, how’s that sound for a nice little summer?

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But why should YOU want to get stronger? Well:
- Muscle tissue burns more calories, even at rest, than body fat. The more muscular you are, the more lean you stay.
- Strength training can help you manage AND IMPROVE chronic conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, asthma, back pain and arthritis.
- Strength training increases bone density making you less susceptible to breaks… like superhuman almost… no big deal…
- You’re also easier on the eyes, have more energy, possess more confidence and a more positive outlook on life, and you’re usually faster and harder to kill.

On Monday we begin a Strength Training Program known as Wendler 5/3/1. Nothing major will change. Just pay attention to your numbers and the direction of the program and your coaches. The CTF Army achieved all those new and amazing PR’s last month for a reason; so you could base these next months on some solid math. (Don’t worry if you weren’t here in April, the numbers will work for you as well if you just keep some great notes in your notebook this first month.)

FOLLOW THE PROGRAM. STAY WITHIN THE NUMBERS. DON’T MESS WITH THE NUMBERS. STAY WITHIN THE NUMBERS. DON’T MESS WITH THE NUMBERS!!! STAY WITHIN THE NUMBERS!!!! DON’T MESS WITH THE NUMBERS!!!!! FOLLOW THE PROGRAM!!!!!

Enjoy the journey. Enjoy what these next few months will bring you. And DO NOT MIND if people think what you are doing is crazy or goes against the grain of the current status quo and methodologies. Your appearance and your achievements will speak for themselves in just a few short weeks.

If they still don’t believe you, show them a “before” picture. Which means you should probably go grab your phone and take one right now. Check back on it in a few months and be ready to high-five yourself.