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The IAO Complex (Aye-Eh-Oh)

posted by coach Jay D

“IAO” is JD Training Geek Talk for “It’s all Over”. If you still don’t get it, or aren’t hip enough to know, I’m talking about It being all over (Our Heads).

Let’s face it, we don’t include enough of the essential and important things in our training. We don’t work on our weaknesses as much as we should, because human nature dictates that we do what we’re good at and what we can see in most cases.

Myself, included!

At the same time, we have to keep our goals in mind – whether those goals are Fat-Loss, Strength, Hypertrophy/Muscle Building, Endurance or Zombie-Slaying-Oriented.

I’m constantly thinking about how our training can be more Efficient and Effective. I want the most bang for my buck, and your’s, too. When training myself, I’m personally not interested nor desire spending more time at the gym than I need to. Alongside letting my goals direct my training, I also like to exploit any and all of my weaknesses.

Here’s a little inside tip: if you were to challenge good ol’ Coach JD to an Overhead Pressing/Lifting game, you’d probably leave him in the dust. I suck at overhead work and it’s become my focus of training this summer. This includes, but is not limited to:
Military Pressing, Push Pressing, Jerking and Snatching (in all of their forms, whether that be via barbells, dumbbells, kettlebells, sandbags or mountain goats).

In training as in any endeavour in life, if you want to get better at something – the only way to get better at something is to do that something, so here’s my answer; here’s where the IAO Complex Comes In.

IAO Complex
(for use with Kettlebells, Dumbbells, Sandbags and anything heavy you can find)
Clean and Press
Snatch
SOTS Press
Reps: 3-8, 3-5 Sets, Rest 60-90s

Q: Why the IAO Complex Works?
A: Because you’re throwing crap overhead. We do a lot of bench pressing – that is, pressing off of our backs and even pushups (a better choice, mind you) – that require pressing our bodies away from the ground. “IAO” work forces us to push OVERHEAD – where most, if not all of us are weak. Our bodies both hate and crave overhead work. Our bodies NEED overhead work.

Let’s break down this complex’s benefits…

The Clean and Press
The Clean requires you to pull an object from a hang or off the ground with your entire body. Not only are cleans great for teaching you how to utilize the power of your hips and surrounding musculature, cleans teach you a pull other than the old bicep curl and its variations that we’ve been performing for way too long.

The strict Press phase of this movement reminds us to pack our shoulders into their sockets, fire up our ‘core’ and even utilize our lats to stabilize the shoulder when pushing (sounds paradoxical, but makes tons of sense when performed right).

The Snatch to Windmill
Once again, we’re putting stuff overhead. Scary but fun. The snatch, like the clean, teaches us, once again to pull. Pull fast…faster and even faster as we move through the movement, using our hamstrings, glutes, lower back, and shoulder girdle. Where we might be limited in pressing a weight overhead, the Snatch will enable us to use our hips and surrounding musculature in a Movement NOT unlike a jumping motion, which is useful in bringing out the inner athlete in all of us.

The Windmill portion of this movement gives us a great lesson in shoulder and core stability, not to mention mental focus and toughness. At the same time, Windmill lifts teach us our who ‘hip hinge’ and mobilize our hips in angles that we don’t include in our training enough.

The SOTS Press
The SOTS Press (an overhead press in the bottom ‘hole’ position while in a deep squat), once again mobilizes both, our hips and shoulders while teaching us to be crafty in putting heavy objects overhead. The Olde Time Strongman used any methods they could, often contorting, ducking and twisting their bodies, all in the means of completing a lift where the most weight extended over the skull mattered. Let’s honour them and add this interesting lift to our toolbox.

At this point, you’re wondering, “how will this crap make my training more effective and efficient?”

For one, you’re off your ass – you’re not seated or on your back. You’re standing and you’re standing straight — the way your body was meant to be and what your skeleton and muscles crave after a long, tedious day at work or on your phone and iPad hunched over.

Next, Pressing overhead uses your entire body in conjunction as one piece. Putting something heavy overhead fires up your core, strengthens the ligaments and tendons of your shoulders and rotator cuff and loads your spine skeleton, making its bone density adapt to heavier loads in the future.

Finally, Overhead work corrects any imbalances. Where our shoulders are internally rotated via bad posture and too much benching, overhead work along with more pulling and direct external rotator work, prehabs and rehabs your body without having to go a physic clinic (no disrespect to Clinicians, btw).

Be sure to add JD’s “IAO Complex” to your training diet, soon. It’s organic with no preservatives or fillers, added.

When all of these movements are performed together, they not only give you a some great strength endurance, metabolic and fat-loss benefits, they ‘flow’ and look badass, too.

Have Yourselves A Strong Day.
Keep IAO (Your Heads).

Roots of Fight: “IRON” Mike Tyson Short Film

posted by coach Jay D


Amazing piece on one of the greatest athletes of our generation.

My Russian Grandma Trains Harder Than You

posted by coach Jay D

How are YOU training?
This 72 Year Old Russian Grandma Knows a Thing or Two about the pursuit of Movement and Strength Seeking.

Strength. It’s Way of Life at ANY AGE.

Big Thanks to Friend and JD Training Advocate Collin for this link.
Have A Strong Day.