12 Quotes For Workout Motivation.  Workout Quotes to Fire You Up

12 Quotes For Workout Motivation. Workout Quotes to Fire You Up

Looking for some workout quotes for motivation? Let’s see what we can do.

I was feeling a little unmotivated today and needed something to get my mind flowing in a positive direction.

I’ve always loved badass quotes.

They have a way of providing that little spark that can remind you why you do what you do, even when you aren’t seeing the light.

I found these workout quotes to be particularly badass.

If you like these, check out my high-level training programs that hundreds of people have had success with.

If you think lifting is dangerous.. Try being weak.” –Bret Contreras

inspirational quote lifting

Fate Loves the Fearless

badass quotes about working out

No citizen has a right to be an amateur in the matter of physical training… what a disgrace it is for a man to grow old without ever seeing the beauty and strength of which his body is capable.” -Socrates

badass workout quote socrates

“If it’s important, do it every day. If it isn’t.. Don’t do it at all.” -Dan John

badass workout quote dan john

The fight is won or lost far away from witnesses, behind the lines, in the gym, and out there on the road, long before I dance under those lights.” -Muhammad Ali

badass quote fight ali

Training gives us an outlet for suppressed energies created by stress and thus tones the spirit just as exercise conditions the body.” -Arnold Schwarzenegger

badass workout quote arnold

“People have become separated from their bodies. They are no longer whole.
I see them move from their offices to their cars and on to their suburban homes.
They stress out constantly, they lose sleep, they eat badly. And they behave badly.
Their egos run wild; they become motivated by that which will eventually give them a massive stroke.
They need the Iron Mind.”

Henry Rollins

Read: 35 Badass Motivational Quotes with pictures

If you want to learn to swim, jump into the water. On dry land, no frame of mind is ever going to help you.” -Bruce Lee

badass workout quote bruce lee

“To feel strong, to walk amongst humans with a tremendous feeling of confidence and superiority is not at all wrong. The sense of superiority in bodily strength is borne out by the long history of mankind paying homage in folklore, song and poetry to strong men”.

Fred Hatfield

“The good lord gave you a body that can stand most anything. It’s your mind you’ve got to convince.” -Vince Lombardi

motivational quote

“Your love for what you do, and willingness to push yourself where others aren’t prepared to go is what will make you great.”

-Laurence Shahlaei

The road to nowhere is paved with excuses.” -Mark Bell

badass workout quotes

Conclusion

I hope you enjoyed these badass workout quotes.

Hopefully you’re out there getting after it today.

It only takes a spark to set in motion some amazing things.

Hopefully these badass quotes helped you get that spark and put it into action.

Here are a couple other articles I think you’d enjoy:

Note: This article contains affiliate links to products I believe in. They come at no additional cost to you.

Mike (Supastrong)
Mike (Supastrong)

ISSA Tactical Conditioning Specialist and trainer/coach. Creator of Swole Town and Forged Female, Author SupaStrong.net. Former Army 11B Infantryman.

Heart Rate Variability Can Improve Your Health and Fitness

Heart Rate Variability Can Improve Your Health and Fitness

Heart Rate Variability (HRV) can be a game changer for you. 

With just a few minutes each day,  you can gain some incredibly important information about your health and fitness. 

Let’s first understand what HRV is. Then we can learn how to use it to improve our performance and health.

What is HRV?

In the simplest terms, HRV is a measure of your current state of resilience and adaptability.

More specifically, HRV is a measurement of the time intervals between heart beats, measured in milliseconds. 

The heart does not beat in perfect rhythm, but instead beats with tiny variations between each beat. 

When we’re under stress, these variations between beats become smaller and smaller, indicating that we’re in a sympathetic (fight or flight) stress state.

When you’re in a fully relaxed state, the variation between beats becomes larger, indicating a parasympathetic dominant state.

Thus, a higher HRV correlates to recovery and adaptability, and a lower HRV signifies a lack of recovery and stress.

How Do You Meausre Heart Rate Variability?

heart rate variability tracking

In order to analyze your own HRV, you must establish a baseline for yourself. This means taking daily measurements to establish that baseline so you have something to compare to.

There are several Apps that do this for you, such as Elite HRV (free) and Morpheus. All you need is 3 minutes of your time and a chest strap heart rate monitor.

I use the Polar H10, and it is fantastic and very accurate for both workouts and measuring heart rate variability.

Most importantly, you MUST take your daily measurement as soon as you wake up each day, and in the same position. It can be laying in bed, or sitting back in a chair… as long as you use the same position each time.

Taking the measurement right after sleeping is ideal, as you can get a snapshot into your current state, minus any new stress, caffeine or other outside influences. It’s okay to use the bathroom and drink some water first.

How Heart Rate Variability Can Improve Your Workouts.

heart rate variability for workouts

Several studies have looked at working out based on heart rate variability scores vs just following a training program.

The results indicate that decreasing workout intensity when HRV is low, and training with more intensity when HRV is high results in improved performance (improved adaptation to the training).

Trying to push your body when it’s in an over-stressed state is counterproductive. If you notice your HRV score is trending low, that means your body is struggling to deal with stress. You can then take a rest day, do some light cardio, or use relaxation techniques. That way, you can get your body back into an optimal state.

Heart Rate Variability and Your Health

Studies have linked Low HRV to several different diseases, including; depression, heart attacks, and increased risk of death. It’s important to realize that HRV is not the Cause of these issues. It is a symptom of underlying issues taking place in the body and mind.

Take control of your health by learning to better manage stress. Use tools such as meditation, cardiovascular workouts and HRV monitoring. This can have a dramatic impact on improving your overall health and resilience to stress.

Nutrition Affects HRV

nutrition and HRV

Studies have begun looking into how what we eat affects our heart rate variability and overall risk of disease over the course of our lives.

These studies are finding that what we eat has a very big impact on heart rate variability. That should tell you that your ability to handle stress and remain resilient has a lot to do with what you eat.

Stick to whole foods and natural ingredients. Eat fruits and vegetables and avoid the processed garbage on most shelves. This will allow your body to be more resilient in fighting off diseases like cancer and heart disease.

How Do You Improve Your Heart Rate Variability?

Studies have shown that while HRV is genetically influenced, it can be improved.

There are two primary ways you can go about increasing your heart rate variability:

1. Cardiovascular Training

cardio HRV

Light to moderate cardiovascular training can improve the strength, size, function and efficiency of your heart. This can result in a lower resting heart rate, which is itself a huge indicator of health and fitness.

Your heart will be stronger and under less stress. This means your body will be better able to deal with both physical demands and psychological stressors. The result being increased heart rate variability, improved energy and a host of other benefits.

The best way to get these adaptations in the heart is to perform cardiac output workouts, meaning:

  • 30 – 90 Minutes of Light to Moderate cardiovascular training.
  • Maintain a heart rate between 130-150.
  • Use jogging or any cardio machine, circuit training, anything that elevates your heart rate for at least 30 minutes.
  • perform 3-6 sessions per week, depending on your fitness level.

Yoga and other relaxation techniques

yoga improves heart rate variability

Yoga has been shown by research to lower resting heart rate. It does so by training the mind to relax, nudging the body into a parasympathetic state.

HRV is a measure of the health of your parasympathetic nervous system, and of the balance between stress and resilience.

Yoga can improve heart rate variability by teaching the body to be more resilient.

Practicing Yoga, or other relaxation methods regularly can reduce stress and help flip the switch from stress mode to recovery mode.

If you’re stuck at home, check out Yogadownload below for awesome yoga sessions you can do from anywhere.

Use Both Methods to Achieve Maximum Health and Fitness Benefits

The best way to improve HRV and give a huge boost to your health and fitness levels is to improve both your cardiovascular fitness AND your ability to relax and deal with stress.

This holistic approach will result in a stronger, more resilient body and mind. It will only naturally be reflected by improved HRV scores, which will tell you that you’re doing something right.

All About Stress

It’s really important to understand that “stress” can come at us from many angles. Stress is any stimulus that causes a sympathetic response from the nervous system.

Work stress, physical stress, relationship stress. Lack of sleep and poor nutrition. Any life stress we encounter can push the body into a sympathetic stress state.

Being in a constant state of stress, be it from too much high intensity training or from life stress, or both.. results in the overproduction of stress hormones by the body. This keeps us in a revved up state until the parasympathetic system can put the brakes on and nudge us into recovery and relaxation.

The trick is in being able to recognize this and take action to make it happen faster. That is the real value of tracking your Heart rate variability.

The True Value of Tracking Your Heart Rate Variability

The real value in keeping track of your HRV is in identifying trends in your data. After tracking your HRV for several weeks and months, you’ll notice that it is either:

  • Trending upwards, indicating improved fitness and ability to handle stress
  • Trending downwards, possibly indicating that you are over-training or just plain over-stressing.
  • Remaining consistent, indicating you may want to work out a little harder to stimulate cardiovascular improvements.

Conclusion

Using free apps that are readily available on your phone, such as Elite HRV, you can track your heart rate variability, sleep, weight, and other variables to get some really great insight into which way your health and fitness are trending.

Improving your cardiovascular fitness and learning to better deal with stress by practicing Yoga and other relaxation techniques can have a dramatic impact on your health. Take control of your health and fitness and give up 3 minutes every day to track your HRV.

It’s your body, your mind, your responsibility. The knowledge is out there, now it’s on you to make it happen.

As always, I hope this article helps you get a little closer to that best version of YOU!

*Note: This article contains affiliate links. Anything purchased comes at no additional cost to you.

Mike (Supastrong)
Mike (Supastrong)

Bioforce Certified Conditioning Coach and personal trainer. I’ve run boot camps and served as the wellness coordinator for a fortune 500 company. Currently a Federal Agent in San Diego, CA, and an Infantryman in the Army Reserve.

20 Minute Workout #1  Build Muscle and Improve Conditioning

20 Minute Workout #1 Build Muscle and Improve Conditioning

You Don’t need 2 hours at the gym.  In fact, I’d argue that if you’re spending more than an hour or so working out, there may be a problem with your training.  Too much talking maybe.  Too much narcissistic mirror watching, or messing around on your phone.  I cannot relate.  Training is sacred, and when I train I’m all about getting down to business, being focused and getting something specific done.  With just a couple dumbells and 20 minutes, there are endless possibilities to hammer out a great, productive session. 

Below is one example from my YouTube Channel (SupaStrong).  I was able to hammer this out in 20 minutes (5 x 4 minute rounds), while building up a decent amount of volume, and also giving my heart a workout similar to running a moderately fast 2-3 mile run.  I’ve attached my HR data from this session to demonstrate. 

You can see below that along with a pretty decent amount of lifting volume, I also had my heart rate in the upper training zones (150-168) for about 13 minutes.  I also burned over 330 calories (likely significantly more than that considering the “afterburn” effect of intense sessions).. in just a 20 minute workout.

Check out 20 Minute Workout #2 COMBAT READY

Heart rate from this training session

Notice how each interval creeps the heart rate up higher.. this reflects the fact that when you train in intervals, each interval becomes more and more aerobic.. the body becomes increasingly more dependent on the aerobic system to keep you moving.. this is as true for interval sprints as it is for lifting like this.

Building these types of sessions is pretty simple.  Choose 4-5 compound movements, using whatever implement you have available (kettlebells, dumbells, small children).. and choose how much volume (reps) you’re going to perform for each.  I always choose at least one movement that will really drive my heart rate up, such as clean and press, to really challenge my conditioning with a full body movement.  The possibilities are endless. 

I highly recommend training with a heart rate monitor.  It can be a game changer, but I’ll save that for another article.  Till then, go get some!

Do Training Masks Really Work?

Do Training Masks Really Work?

Makers of the Training Mask, (also known as elevation or altitude masks), claim that an athlete can reap the benefits of working out at altitude by wearing a mask while they train. But what does the research say? Do training masks really work? Or is it just a gimmick?

Note: This article contains affiliate links, which come at no additional cost to you.

Altitude Training

do training masks work

I recently took a short vacation with my wife to Flagstaff, AZ. It’s a really beautiful place, and just happens to sit at over 7,000 feet elevation.

My second night there, I decided to do some interval training on the hotel treadmill. After two rounds, I felt noticeably more fatigued than normal and was breathing much heavier than I usually would be.

This was because at over 7,000 feet elevation, the air is thinner and there is less oxygen available. Spending prolonged time working out in this environment would cause the body to adapt to the limited oxygen supply by producing more red blood cells, which transport oxygen to working muscles.

How Does Altitude Training Improve Your Performance?

It is well established by research that in order to accumulate any physiological benefit from training at altitude, an athlete must spend at least 2 weeks in that environment.

The limited oxygen at high altitude stimulates adaptations in the body, such as an increase in red blood cell production, which improves the body’s ability to transport and use oxygen. Training at elevation has real, measurable physiological benefits for an athlete. But does wearing a training mask work in the same way?

Read: How To Run Faster. 4 Methods and Full Program

Research on Training Masks

Studies done to test the effectiveness of the training mask show clearly that wearing the mask does NOT simulate training at altitude.

6 week studies have shown no physiological benefits of wearing the mask vs. a control group in trained athletes. No change in red blood cell production was observed, nor was lung function improved.

do training masks really work pin

The group training with the mask did, however show one important improvement. 

The Group training with the elevation mask showed a 15% improvement in Power at ventilatory threshold.  The ventilatory threshold is basically the point at which anaerobic processes are beginning to take over, and lactate is beginning to accumulate faster than it can be cleared out. 

Improving power at this threshold would certainly be an advantage. However it remains unclear exactly why the mask induces this response. 

Researchers believe that the mask likely acts as a resistance trainer for the respiratory muscles, as wearing the mask forces you to work harder to pull air into your lungs. So, in this regard, the mask may provide some benefit.

A Better Approach to Use:

do training masks work?

If you’re looking to improve your cardio-respiratory abilities, and overall endurance.. I have a better approach. It’s simple. You don’t need to go into the gym wearing a mask. You simply need to go through your workouts while breathing only through your nose.

It’s harder than it sounds, but regularly training while breathing only through the nose would yield far better results than wearing a training mask.

This concept is broken down thoroughly in a really interesting book called “The Oxygen Advantage” by Patrick Mckeown. In the book, Mckeown breaks down how we’re supposed to be breathing vs. how most of us breathe. He makes a strong case that learning to breathe properly can help lose weight, have more energy and perform better in all areas of life.

The book is really great and well worth reading. I’ll post the link here if you want to check it out.

Read: How to Lower Your Resting Heart Rate: Specific Methods

Conclusion

So, do training masks work? The answer is, “not really.”

Studies show that training masks do not offer the benefits that they claim to. They do not simulate training at altitude, but may act by strengthening the muscles used during breathing, thus stimulating some improvements in performance.

For most people in the gym who aren’t even close to their natural conditioning potential, the mask is completely unnecessary and unlikely to provide much benefit.

Learning to breathe properly, intelligently programming your training, and spending some workout sessions breathing only through the nose should pay dividends to your conditioning, all without spending a dime.

10 Things you Must Do to Improve your Fitness

If you still want to check out the training mask, read reviews, etc.. then I’ll post that link as well right here.

 

Mike (Supastrong)
Mike (Supastrong)

Bioforce Certified Conditioning Coach and personal trainer. I’ve run boot camps and served as the wellness coordinator for a fortune 500 company. Currently a Federal Agent in San Diego, CA, and an Infantryman in the Army Reserve.

Build Your Traps.  Ditch the Shrugs.

Build Your Traps. Ditch the Shrugs.

Every skinny, weak guy has abs. Traps are the true sign of strength.

Paul Carter

I’d like to help save the weight-lifting world from the over-reliance on shrugs to build your traps and upper back.

Aside from the fact that half aren’t even shrugging properly, there are far more effective methods that can be utilized to build thick, powerful traps and a powerful looking back.

3 Moves to Build Your Traps

I want to give you 3 movements you can integrate into your training to really build your Traps and look YOKED.

Nothing screams strength and power like a set of big, thick Traps and a big upper back.

At the end of the article, I’m including a sample training session you can try out if you want a fresh approach to Back training with an emphasis on building bigger, thicker Traps.

All of these methods and more are included in my programming, SWOLE TOWN, available through the TrainHeroic app. Check it out for free here.

The Snatch Grip High Pull

build traps

This movement is hands down the number one most effective way to build your upper back and traps quickly.

The trap muscles are busy all day being utilized in a support capacity, and then we normally work them by shrugging… a slow movement done usually for medium to high reps.

Maybe it’s time to ditch the shrugs.

The High Pull is at the opposite end of the spectrum.

The explosive nature of the movement targets and stimulates the fast twitch muscle fibers of the upper back, which are far more capable of explosive growth.

I have witnessed growth in the traps and upper back after just a handful of sessions, and that’s no BS!

Highly recommend Bulk Supplements. You get more, pay less, and the ingredients are pure.

High Pull from the Hang Position

How To Perform

I first learned this movement by reading an article on T-Nation.com by Christian Thibaudeau many years ago. I’ll post a link to that article at the bottom of this post.

My goal is to help you, the reader… not make myself out to be some sort of guru.

The article is fantastic, and worth reading after this one if you’re serious about taking your back training to the next level.

I normally prefer to perform the movement from a standing position (hang position), as I am looking to target the upper back/Traps and not necessarily accrue the fatigue from pulling from the floor.

Be sure to really focus on the explosive pull of the traps, and keep the bar close to your body, elbows high (higher than the wrists).

When your traps are sorer than you thought possible the following day, you will know I wasn’t kidding!

Try 3 sets of 5-7 reps to start. Use straps, and use a weight where you can be explosive with proper form, yet still challenged.

The bar should reach at least to your lower chest on each pull.

When you’re pulling some decent weight in the high pull, you will be amazed at the results. It’s a game changer.

There are plenty of other ways to build up the traps and upper back, but I like this movement so much and I’ve seen such great results from it that it is definitely number one on the list of Trap Builders.

#2 – Hise Shrug

Ok, ok… I know I said ditch the shrugs.

But this is not the typical shrug most people are performing in the gym.

Hise shrugs put the weight on top of the Traps.

This can be accomplished with a barbell on your back, or by using the calf raise machine.

How To Perform

Put a barbell on your back, right on top of the traps.

Brace your trunk and Flex the Glutes for stability..

Shrug up, hold, and back down nice and slow.

In my opinion, it is better to do these with the calf raise machine. It’s far more comfortable.

Why are They So Good?

Hise Shrugs load the Traps and Upper back directly, and in a unique way that they are likely not used to.

The feeling of fatigue in the Traps from performing these is much different than traditional shrugs.

The new stimulus these can provide can be a solid way to induce some additional growth.

#3 – Farmer Carries

bigger traps farmer carry

Farmer carries are one of the absolute best, and least utilized builders of the Traps and Back.

The key word here again is TENSION.

Holding onto heavy implements and walking for an extended period of time (20-60 seconds) puts tremendous tension on the Traps, Back, Arms and Trunk.

That tension will lead to muscle growth, improved grip strength, improved Core strength and stability, and for sure some thick ass Traps.

How to Perform

To perform Farmer Carries, simply grab 2 heavy implements (Dumbbells, Kettlebells, Farmer Carry handles, etc..) and walk.

Be sure to:

  • Keep the chest up and stay upright. Do not hunch forward. If you can’t keep your posture in line, the weight is too heavy.
  • Challenge yourself. Like any other lift, you want to use progressive overload on these. Always look to get stronger and challenge the body by increasing weight, reps, distance, or all of the above.
  • Take small, choppy steps. Taking long strides will increase the risk of injury by putting one limb at a time under a heavy load.

Sample Workout For a Big Back and Huge Traps.

*Using this style of training, I would typically hit Back twice in the training week. This session would be one, and the other would be more traditional back training, comprised of Rows, Chin ups, etc.

SETSREPSREST
Deadlift33-53 Mins
SG High Pull3-45-72-3 Mins
Farmer Carries3-540yd
(30 sec)
2-3 mins
Rear Delt Partials1-2Max RepsAs needed

*See video below for Rear Delt Partials if you aren’t familiar.

Conclusion

There’s a lot more to building up that YOKE than just shrugging yourself to death.

Shrugs can be effective, but you need a lot more variety than that to really build an impressive upper back and to really make your Traps look scary big.

The three movements I’ve listed here are the ones I believe to be the absolute best bang for your buck when it comes to building thick, strong Traps. I hope you’ll give them a try.

As always, I hope this article helps get you one step closer to your best self. Keep pushing!

Join hundreds of others, Take a Tour of Swole Town (free week).

If you want to check out the SWOLE TOWN training program, it’s right here.

Worth Reading:

High Pull for the Power Look – Christian Thibaudeau