"How A Certified Weightlifting Stud and Master Close-Combat Trainer Got His Ass Kicked By 3 Seemingly Simple Bodyweight Exercises..."
(Oh, And By The Way, Lost The Nagging Lower Back Pain He'd Lived With For 20 Years!)
By Tim Larkin
Founder of Target Focus Training
At 6'1", 225# with around 7-8 percent body fat there's nothing anyone can teach me about keeping in shape. I'm a master close-combat trainer with a Masters In Fitness Science from ISSA (the highest accreditation from that Personal Training Association). I've been through some of the most intense military training there is and have trained literally thousands of clients in hand-to-hand combat.
I've use weights since I was 13 years old and have done everything from bodybuilding to Olympic weightlifting. Most people look at me and think: "this guy knows it all when it comes to keeping in shape"... and so did I. Until I met Matt Furey.
But I'm jumping ahead. Let me back up and explain the challenge I faced...
How A Weightlifter Survived Without A Gym
My dilemma... for the first time in 10 years I was going to be without a gym for 8 full weeks. I was training a unit in my TFT system and we were going to be "out in the field" for an extended period.
I started to search for a callisthenic workout I could do but honestly was concerned I'd lose strength and power during that time.
I got a hold of some old programs from my Special Forces friends but it was the same ol' stuff we used years ago... stuff that I believe was truly designed more to bore you to death rather than get you in good shape. Then a buddy from the combat world told me to check out Matt Furey.
All I knew was that Matt had a reputation for pissing people off with his opinions on combat sport wrestling and conditioning for combat sports.
But I headed over to his site and had to admit... I liked the tone. It WAS politically incorrect to say the least... but it rang true. I figured I didn't have much to lose so I ordered his Combat Conditioning package, the one with the book and videos. Figured I'd at least give it a try before I left for my training contract.
Three Exercises, BIG Results!
Well, it arrived next day (yeah, I hate waiting; when I want something I want it now so I had it FEDEX'd) and while the info seemed sound I was surprised to see it centered around three main exercises... what Matt calls his "Royal Court." Skeptical, I figured "What have I got to lose?" and gave it a try.
I looked at the numbers Matt used to rate my level of conditioning and boy, was I off. Hindu Squats were first: 500 is the "gold standard" for a decent level of conditioning so I figured I'd knock them out with ease. Well, let me first say that I squatted 400#, rock bottom, the week before... but don't ask my totals for his the first time around. I think I patched together 75 Hindu squats in total.
Next was the Hindu Pushup. 200 was my goal. Reality: I managed 35! And this from a competition-standard, 375# Bench Presser!
Though humbled by the first 2 exercises I nevertheless pressed on with the third and most unusual -- the Bridge. This movement looked downright intimidating and I thought for sure it was going to kill my neck and back. But, hey, I was committed and not about to let some wrestler get me to give in here at the end.
So I tried it. The Gold Standard: feet flat, nose to the mat, arms folded across your chest for 3 minutes. My reality: on my tip-toes, my hairline might have touched the mat for a sec, my hands were helping to balance me... and I think I managed a couple of intervals of maybe 30 seconds apiece!
I came away from the experience both impressed with the workout and humbled by my less than masterful control of my own bodyweight.
But that was nothing compared to the amazing result I experienced the very next day. You see...
I Got Out Of Bed The Next Day Pain-Free For The First Time In 20 Years!
Yeah, I didn't mention I'd had nagging back pain from my years of military service and training clients in TFT ever since leaving the military. I always took a gut-it-out approach to getting up in the morning and just thought this was the price for my years of training.
Yet the next day... after just my first Matt Furey workout... I was up, out of bed and shaving before I realized I was pain-free! I just got up and got going. No stiff neck or back; no gingerly getting up as my back spasmed; no five minutes of gently walking around to loosen up.
Far from being dangerous, the Bridge actually started to immediately align my spine and give it the flexibility it hadn't had in years as did the other two exercises. In fact I had great energy that whole day.
8 Weeks Of Furey: Agile As A Cat And Strong As An Ox
Needless to say the next eight weeks were all Furey. I created my programs from Matt's original product and came back from client training not only with no loss of weightlifting strength but with a healed body. My definition was great as was my body composition.
Now I regularly take 8 weeks at least twice a year to do Matt's Gama Fitness (it's the ultimate program -- Matt's done everything for you, so all you need to do is workout).
Most importantly , I travel a lot and I can use Gama Fitness wherever I am in the world, whenever I have time to workout... even in my hotel room.
I have a lot of clients that travel and they all love Furey's Gama Fitness program. Some use it solely as their method of training the body; others for when they travel; and some, like me, use it regularly throughout the year to vary their training and master their own body weight.
If you haven't checked out Matt's entire product line, now's the time to do it.