Wrestling with Inspiration
John Saylor is considered one of the best combat sports coaches in the U.S. for his strength, conditioning expertise, and accomplishments both as a competitor and a coach. He found that the only way to mimic the lactic acid attack experienced in a world-class judo match was to perform circuit-training workouts. Assuming that you have wrestling practice in the morning and evening, you need to train additionally before your morning practice and after your later day practice. You have 12 circuit-training sessions each week with four additional heavy lifting sessions. Max efforts and dynamic lifts take place at the beginning of the morning session since you will be less fatigued from wrestling at this time.
Max and Dynamic Lift Days
(i) Before any session, dynamically warm up your posterior chain, your abs, and the specific muscles involved in the lift you choose for that day.
(ii) Then, start with just the bar and warm up into your heavyweights, treating every set with utmost technical respect.
(iii) On maximum-effort, lower-body days, choose a variation of back squats, front squats, deadlifts, good mornings, or box squats and gradually work up to one peak set of two to six reps.
(iv) On a dynamic day, choose one of the lower variations and do 12 sets of two reps with 30 seconds of rest between sets, using 70 to 80 percent of your best weight in that lift.
(v) On maximum-effort upper days, choose overhead presses, push presses, jerks, bench presses, or floor press and work up to that one peak set of two to six reps.
(vi) Then, on the dynamic-upper day, choose one of the upper lift variations and do 10 sets of three reps with 30 seconds of rest between sets, using the same 70 to 80 percent range. Change your main lifts regularly.
(i) Always choose movements that improve your weaknesses and improve your wrestling. In your morning circuits, choose four to eight bodyweight gymnastics movements and perform each movement for one minute
consecutively, reaching as many reps as possible each minute.
(ii) At the end of the final movement, rest for one minute and perform three to six total rounds of this circuit. In your evening sessions, choose three to six weighted movements doing the same circuit structure, but at 30 to 45-
second intervals to accommodate for the added weight.
(iii) In a few sessions each week, substitute Tabata intervals, choosing four to six movements and completing each entirely before moving to the next.
Muscles and Lungs
(i) All later-day sessions should be full-body circuits. A circuit could involve heavy lunges, dumbbell clean and presses, overhead sit-ups, kettlebell swings, and weighted box jumps.
(ii) Two of the six-morning circuits are full body, while the other four focus specifically on the muscles that were most active in the main lifts on those days — abs, lats, posterior chain, and legs on lower mornings and abs, lats,
arms, and shoulders on the upper mornings.
(iii) If your lung capacity is suffering in training, finish all your circuits with the hill or flat-ground sprints — where you sprint roughly 100 meters in 15 seconds or less — and then jog back to the start line and repeat this on each minute
for 10 sprints. The key is getting down the course in under 15 seconds.
Leave No Stone Unturned
(i) In your circuits, use gymnastics, Olympic lifts, power lifts, strongman movements and tons of sled drags.
(ii) When your body feels overly fatigued, swim in a pool or the ocean to circulate blood and decompress your spine and joints.
(iii) Always force your body and your mind to adapt while remaining technically sound and safe. Also, leave no weaknesses.