Cardinal Sin of MMA Training

I’m sorry father, for I have sinned.

prayI know I’m not supposed to be doing this, because it is evil, evil, EVIL!

But I’m sorry. I couldn’t help myself.

I tried to stop myself but couldn’t, even though everyone is saying that I’m wrong for doing it.

Please, please, please, forgive me.

But before I’m damned, please give me 5 minutes to explain myself, I promise, once you see what I see, you might change your mind and forgive me.

Watch my 5 minute confession below:

aerobic-play

I’ve got another controversial topic to share with you that will change your training forever (that’s also straight from my Advanced MMA Power program) but if you want to hear it, I want to see at least 30 comments below.

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Jay
Jay

You are 100 percent right Eric. Nick Diaz who is known to focus on working his aerobic threshold in his training outside of the gym and works his lactic threshold an anaerobic explosiveness with his regular mma training and is arguably one of the most fit mma fighters in the game today. Old school boxers like Robinson, Frazier, (running in combat boots) Haglar (running on a beach) and even Ali were known for their grueling long road work sessions and always possessed dangerous power late into a fight (and they were fighting for 15 rounds) As a coach of mma fighters I make sure to work all three systems in a fighters conditioning program and I find most athletes I work with have a genetic predisposition to be really good in one energy system (anaerobic, lactic, or aerobic) functional in a second and then really weak in the 3rd. By… Read more »

Hire Magento Developers In India

Great Post, very infomational

mongkhon bangsaeng
mongkhon bangsaeng

Good post, my cardio sucks bad. will try to go for a 30 minutes run twice a week

Mike
Mike

Hi Eric! I coach grade school wrestling. I end most pratices with about a match worth of the bear crawl. They hate it! I never have kids gassing at the end of matches. Not to beat a dead horse but let me get this straight. You are saying I would be better off with less intense work drawn out over 20 min instead of 6? I was always told to mimic the match and let them build up tolerance to lactic acid. Love your stuff-thanks in advance

Dilly
Dilly

Dang for some reason the link isnt playing for me!

Peter
Peter

Why wouldn’t repeated high intensity exercise bouts cause left ventricular hypertrophy? I can see how continuous exercise ensures a no-fail stimulus, but surely if you’re motivated/pushed you could get the same benefits from more specific drills/circuits. I’m just not sure the left ventricle would be left behind doing RHIE when heart rate and BP would on average probably be the same.

Your stuff is great by the way, good holistic approach.

Eric
Eric

Hey Linda, glad to hear you’re using my stuff… I don’t mean to be a dick and not give you the exact answer you’re looking for in this reply, but the thing is that your situation is EXACTLY the reason why I put my program together… I’d get a ton of questions asking me pretty much the exact things you’re asking me right now… And really a program is not just a workout but a system that’s designed to progress and build workout upon workout for the end result of being in peak condition for a fight… From the sounds of it you’re really dedicated and it sounds like this is more than just a hobby for you and you’ll put the program to use – I really truly hope that you pickup my Ultimate MMA Strength and Conditioning Program and that I have you as one of my testimonials… Read more »

Linda
Linda

Hey Eric, I have been training for about a year in MMA. I am a professional fighter and just left pretty much to design my own training schedule! I have classes at my gym Mon and Thur evening from 7;30-9:00pm, I do confitioning Mon, Wed and Fri morning. I do Jujitsu Tues morn and Mon and Thurs evening from 6;00 to 7;00pm and Muay Thai on Wed evening from7:00 to 900 pm. I run at least three days per week, and all my conditioning drills come from your downloads. What should I be on a daily basis? I not sure how I am supposed to combine the conditioning with the other elements of training or if I am doing what I am supposed to do right now. Could you help me?

rillster
rillster

As we say over here in Sweden, Long distance running builts you stamina up, used mostly during off season traning and then anerobic training is for preparing for games or in this case for fights. Never heard the sience behind it earlier but thanks, it was intresting.
So opponents to long distance runnig.. “just do it”

Justin
Justin

Hey Eric,
I am sixteen and I in what I think is incredible shape for me. But I was wondering if it is okay to work out 1-4 hours a day 5-7 times a week?

aud acosta
aud acosta

i totally agree with you on this subject you have explained it simple enough for us to understnd thank you maybe you could put up some demonsrations to see your method of application

Taylor
Taylor

Thanks alot! This is really going to help my training!

Gavin(Scotland)
Gavin(Scotland)

Hi Eric,

I want to achieve a great level of aerobic fitness and strength without gaining huge muscles and losing mobility???

Im training mma at a good club with the hope of having my first fight next year sometime??

All your stuff is superb, keep up the good work, and thanks for your help.

chandan
chandan

i need vegan nutrition plan.. wic one shall i go for.. any reccomendation..i m not getting any..so i can start with tat n ur program

Gavin
Gavin

Hi Eric,

Got the videos working thanks to a tech friend??

Please excuse my lack of knowledge, say im starting from scratch on my fitness?

Whats the best way to record and set myself achievable targets, and how will i know if im getting fitter- a heart rate moniter??

Thanks

Eric
Eric

FIRST – what do you want to achieve?

heath
heath

Thanks for the post Eric. I always feel like i have more energy and life when im running 3-5 mile a few times a week. I’m coming from a marathon/half ironman tri. background i have been focusing most of my energy on gaining muscle size and some strength endurance. Im on a strict calorie counting diet and lifting hard 4 days a week to gain 10 lbs of muscle. Im starting wrestling and doing some heavy bag work also. If I start running 3-5 miles again a few times a week is that going to be to much for my weight gaining program. If not how many more calories should i intake for my run days.

Eric
Eric

Heath – if you’re coming from a marathon background, its A-OK to neglect aerobic work while you focus on other things, such as increasing lean body mass. My guess is that your limiting factor won’t be the amount of blood your heart pumps through your system – it’ll probably be strength and explosive strength, which requires lean mass to generate it, then proper neuromuscular development to express it, so focus on those things for now and if you want 10 lbs of muscle, you’ll need at least 12 weeks if you’ve a) got great genetics or b) are on a great training plan, eat a lot of quality foods, and you’re chilled out and sleep like a log. So it’ll probably take longer than that. With that being said, throwing some aerobic work in during a deload week might be good, which wouldn’t force you to up your calories too… Read more »

Youssef
Youssef

I had the same problem with the vids running on IE8 in Vista. Left click on the “Page” menu and turn on “compatibility view”. That resolved my issue.

Your tech friend,
Youss

rodney
rodney

hey eric thanks for the post man. i found that my rolling and spariing sessions were much more intense when i started jogging now i know why thanks for the science man.

Gavin
Gavin

Eric,

all your videos are not working???

Eric
Eric

They seem to be working for most. Get a tech friend to check it out!

Guy (South Africa)
Guy (South Africa)

Also check some bastard hasn’t blocked youtube on your router! Boss’s kid needs a whupping here where I am.

REnriquez
REnriquez

HI Eric, thanks for the latest post it is help full. I wanted to know if running on the tread mill with five min. intervols will increase my endurance. like run for one min. then increase the speed to about 90, then walk .30sec. then speed up to 110and so on. my weight is approx. 236lbs and i’m 31yrs. also i would like to know how i could get down to fight at 205lbs. any thing will help. oh yah when do you think you’ll come down to Las Cruces, New Mexico. we could use your help.

Eric
Eric

Hey man if I’m ever in New Mexico I’ll definitely get in touch. It would be a drastic change from up here in Canada! To increase ANYTHING, you need to progress. So whatever you’re doing now, in 3 weeks, you should be doing more. That goes for strength, power, endurance, intelligence – anything. Progression is a principle that is often forgotten when people start training loaded with too much info. So, if your total work time right now is 10 minutes, keep increasing it workout to workout and that will increase your endurance. Just add up all your work times now, and keep a log and keep increasing it. To keep workouts manageable, as you get more fit, you can also decrease rest times while increasing work times, which will go to further enhance your fitness. That is a very BASIC way to improve. But there is so much more… Read more »

Jess
Jess

Eric, Good post.. I did biology two years ago and this was making me start scratching my head again. One question – At present, I have 5 training days in a week, with a torn left shoulder I only work legs and occasionally my right arm. I have 2 weight sessions (in the gym or with kettlbells), 2 conditioning sessions, and 1 speed/agility session (I’m a tennis player btw, but I really enjoy your mma advice and try and incorporate mma moves into my programs). If now you said to have 2-3 aerobic training sessions, where I assume I just go out for a run, how should I fit that in? I also do some short HIIT sessions after my weights on 15% incline on the treadmill, so should I just use that for intensity conditioning and then on my other conditioning days, just go out for a run? I… Read more »

Eric
Eric

Jess, The most important thing to do is rehab that left shoulder. Focus on that first! How you should structure your training program first depends on your goals. Knowing your goals, you then know what you need to work on. Whatever you need to work on takes priority during a given 2-4 week period (mesocycle). From the looks of your program, it looks like you are trying to focus on too many things at once. If you can identify an area you need to focus on, then you’ll get better advice! Now the aerobic training can take place in the mornings, before you start your day. That’s generally the best time, as you don’t really need to warmup or do anything to get ready, just set aside 30 minutes, 2-3 days a week and you’re good to go. Also, because its low-intensity (it really should be somewhat enjoyable) it won’t… Read more »

Jess
Jess

Yeah that’s a good point. I guess I just wanted to work on all aspects of training at the same time. The things that I wanted to work on were usually all upper body stuff like improving my pullups and pushups. Now I’m just trying to get my fitness and speed/quickness up.

If you don’t mind just one more question – do you think that if for each week I focus either on HIIT work or aerobic work, it would have the same benefit? I did use to run about 30km each week until I started on trying to get more explosive, so I was thinking I wouldn’t have to put too much into it to start getting aerobically fit again.

Thanks!

Eric
Eric

To train properly and allow your body to adapt and make changes that you can keep, you can’t switch the training stimulus every week. You have to give your body at least 2 weeks, but usually 3-4 weeks of the same stimulus to cause an adaptation.

So it really goes back to your goals. What are your goals? What do you want to achieve and WHY? How is it going to help you?

Answer those, then you determine your weaknesses, the things that are keeping you from those goals, then you have a plan of action!

Guy (South Africa)
Guy (South Africa)

Hey there
I feel your pain, I have a torn quadricep, can’t run, kick, spar or anything. Only upper body weights and core and a little bag work. I’m curious, what exactly is HIIT training and what does it do?
Guy
South Africa

reven
reven

Hi Eric, thanks for the info on aerobic training. Some people say that long distance running is useless and some people still swear by it. So its nice to know exactly where it fits in, how often it should be done and at what intensity.

Tyler
Tyler

Wait a second… the left ventricle is the chamber of the heart that is responsible for systemic (throughout the whole body) circulation, so it is naturally the biggest muscle in the heart anyway. The whole rest of the heart is responsible for receiving the blood from either the body (right atrium) or the lungs (left atrium) and the right ventricle is responsible for pumping blood to the lungs (pulmonary circulation), so why would high intensity training increase muscularity in just the other three chambers and not the one most important for getting the blood to the working muscles (which work harder during high intensity versus low intensity training), the left ventricle? Is it because the oxygen debt from the high intensity training creates more demand for oxygenation than for muscular support? My apologies, Eric, but I just learned all about the heart in my anatomy and physiology class and this… Read more »

Eric
Eric

Now I’m not 100% sure I’m getting your questions right, but I’ll take a stab at it… hit me back if I misinterpret something… You’ve got it right – the LV sends oxygenated blood to the rest of the body and if you want to think of the heart having separate muscles, yes, the LV would be the biggest out of everything. Now with respect to the different adaptations to high-intensity (above Anaerobic Threshold) vs. steady-state (below AnT), here’s WHY they occur: High-intensity training such as intervals or even more so with weight-training causes a pressure overload in the heart. Because of the pressure overload, the heart muscle responds by thickening and getting stronger. Steady-state aerobic training causes a volume overload in the heart, because of the sustained high cardiac output needed, without getting into the high blood pressures involved in high-intensity or weight training. But in athletes, the development… Read more »

Andrew
Andrew

Excellent work, I totally agree with your reasoning.

Jorge
Jorge

Nice explanation Eric. Thanks!

Ferg
Ferg

Thanks Eric,

I always like to do steady-state aerobics, partly for the relaxing element of it (at least more so than high intensity stuff) and also just because it always seems productive to approach your training from as many angles as possible, but this video just gave me a fresh, more scientific perspective on it. Thanks a lot!

Eric
Eric

One thing that is important to note is that although yes, you want to be well-rounded and hit all components of fitness, you can’t necessarily train EVERYTHING at the same time.

Doing so will limit your body’s ability to adapt, because it’s being pulled in so many directions… more on that to come (if there are 30+ comments of course)…

mike
mike

Interesting explanation of the need for cardio and endurance and aerobic together

larry
larry

Hi Eric – I’m 54 and in addition to three 20 minute bw & kb sessions, do two 35-40 minutes of aerobic intervals with an interval timer as opposed to running/cycling/rowing at a constant pace. It is probably a matter of temperament, and a sense of getting more done. My constant heart rate over the aerobic session is 160+; and 3 minute recovery is 130bpm, 6 minute recovery is 80bpm and 8min is 68bpm. When I started in 2006 it took me 3 months to go from 8 minutes to 27 minutes and only 2 additional weeks to progress to 40 minutes.

A doctor’s exam prior to adding this routine and initially working with a buddy will reduce health risks.

Your videos and sound advice are terrific and much appreciated.

Eric
Eric

Hey Larry –

Sounds like you’re a fit dude!

It’s great that you’re in great shape, but there’s no getting around the fact that the heart adapts directly to the stimulus given – steady-state aerobic training causes eccentric hypertrophy which results in an enlarged left ventricle which will help bring your fitness up even more… if you can stand doing the road work… if not, I don’t think you’re much worse off from a health standpoint, so no worries there.

Aaron
Aaron

I love seeing the science behind the training methods. Thanks for the post.

Shawn
Shawn

Eric:

I trained years ago at an old school boxing gym in Detroit, where the coaches believed in running 3-5 miles a day and performing interval work with a heavy bag (16 oz gloves), a small amount of combination work, and a decent amount of sparring. The coaches believed that running outdoors in the winter and running almost everyday would toughen you up both mentally and physically. I always felt that when my mileage was high, I recovered much faster between rounds, my legs felt strong, and my punches were crisper in the later rounds. As a side bonus, making weight was usually not a problem. The old boxers (Rocky Marciano and Joe Lewis)swore by daily runs. Although their training might not have been perfect, I think there’s a lesson to be learned from their training style.

Eric
Eric

I totally agree. With all the new research, often we can lose sight of the fact that for a long time, some things just worked, despite the lack of science to back it up.

If you’re running daily 3-5 miles, its likely at a very low intensity, so the chance of injury is low, but you still benefit from the cardiac adaptations.

Jose
Jose

How beneficial would aerobic training be for freestyle wrestling? Wrestling matches are at most 3 rounds x 2 minutes per round. However you can have 4 matches in a span of several hours.

townley
townley

Jose..mma fights/rolling goes for 5 5minute rounds its typically alot harder then most sports mentally and phyically

for anyone whos interested i find training in the cold really good for your mind ya heart for the fighting and also works and strengthens your body i usually go running at 1 a.m when its 0 degress and go do chin ups it feels hard but u feel so good in the morning and great results

Eric
Eric

Jose:

Basically, any sport that lasts over 15 seconds will benefit from steady-state aerobic training.

That’s because anything over 15 seconds that is high-intensity (like wrestling, MMA, hockey, etc) requires use of the Anaerobic Lactic energy system.

I can’t go into the details of the 3 energy systems here (Aerobic, Anaerobic Lactic, Anaerobic Alactic), but the bottom line is that the more you can work using the Aerobic system, the less you’ll have to rely on the other systems, and the less you’ll experience burning and fatigue.

In wrestling, good aerobic (heart) conditioning will give you faster recovery between rounds, and will definitely improve your recovery throughout the day in a tournament.