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1 Insanely Powerful Training Strategy That Incinerates Fat & Builds Speed!

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Posted by RobbieFarlow - May 14th, 2017

Would you get excited if I let you in on a little-known strategy to burn more fat in less time? And what would you think if I told you this secret fat loss strategy was used by the greatest running back in NFL history? And that by adding this exercise to his game plan, this NFL player was able to stay leaner in the off-season, while building massive lower body strength and power.

I mean, you'd like to get ripped for summer while also getting stronger, right? If the answer to this is yes, then keep reading, my friend. If not, then you can return to that Buzzfeed questionnaire that will determine which Kardashian you’re the most like.

Why Should I Use This Strategy?

This explosive exercise helps you increase muscle fiber recruitment, shocks your metabolism like never before, and builds lower body strength and power that will translate to the weight room. Plus, you'll also become a bit faster.

Maybe not as fast as The Flash, but you'll be a lot faster – and leaner – than you are now. So how are you going to unlock this next level of fat burning, physique changing power? By using the same strategy of the great Walter Payton, running hill sprints.

The GOAT: Walter Payton

Walter Payton used hill sprints as his primary mode of training all year round. And thanks to his dedication to running up a hill every day, Payton became the greatest RB in NFL history. During his career, he won numerous awards:

  • 9-time selection to the Pro Bowl
  • 2 MVP Trophies
  • Winner of Super Bowl XX
  • Offensive Player of the Year in 1977
  • 7x First-Team All-Pro

Known to most football fans as "Sweetness," Payton was one of the most mesmerizing players to ever strap on a helmet. And, until 2002, he held the record for the most rushing yards in NFL history.

Suffice to say, Payton knew what it took to be a champion. His secret training strategy of sprinting up hills made him one of the most dominant and highlight reeled players of all time. And if you're ready to blast body fat like Payton smashed through linebackers, then hill sprints are your MVP for this fat loss season.


Jack & Jill Went Up The Hill (Fast) & Got Ripped

Sweetness returned home to the banks of the Pearl River in Mississippi during the off-season. It was there that he trained on his custom designed obstacle course, which included running up steep sandy banks. During the season, however, he used a hill in the Chicago suburb of Arlington Heights that the city has now dedicated and renamed as Payton’s Hill.

So why are hill sprints so epically awesome? For starters, they’re better on your joints, muscles, and ligaments than running on a flat surface. The angle of the hill reduces the impact on your knees, feet, and hips. Lessening the impact also helps to prevent you from pulling hamstrings or tearing your Achilles. And if you're worried that one night of debauchery at The Cheesecake Factory will throw you off your fat loss goals, try getting injured and not being able to train.

  • Besides decreasing your likelihood of getting injured, hill sprints give you the same benefits as lifting weights:
  • Stronger connective tissues
  • More powerful strides
  • Improved muscular efficiency
  • Increases in lean muscle mass

Think about it like this: If lifting weights is a fight against gravity, hill sprints are the cardio cousin to barbell training. The angle of the hill forces your body to exert more force as you oppose gravity. To accomplish this, you need more than just your quads or glutes firing. You need every single muscle in your body to work in tandem to keep you ascending.

Maintaining balance through your feet, hips, core, and legs as you run up the hill requires a tremendous amount of muscle fiber recruitment. This does two things for you:

  1. The more muscle fibers you recruit, the more muscle you’ll use in hill sprints or similar weight lifting workouts in the future. And,

  2. The more muscles you stimulate, the more calories you burn, which means you get leaner, faster.

What You Need To Know To Hill Sprint Successfully

Sprinting, and all workouts in general, should never be done without a warm-up. Spend five minutes doing some lower intensity drills like prisoner squats, butt kicks, lateral jumps, skipping, and high knees.

After your stretches, now it’s time to spend a few minutes sprinting at sub-max capacity. Elite athletes know when they’re running at 100%. If you’ve never sprinted before, you’re not going to know what 100% full effort feels like, so go slow.

Make your first warm up set a brisk walk up the hill. This will not only prime your nervous system, but it will give you a general lay of the land (more on that below).

Now that you’ve briskly walked up the hill, you’re ready to increase your intensity for 3-4 sets. For more experienced athletes, that means you need to run up the hill at 60, 70, 80, and 90% of your full effort. For everyone else, make each warm up run a little bit faster than the last.

Once you’ve hit 3-4 warm up sets at varying intensities, you’re ready to show that hill who’s boss. Because hill sprints are a high-intensity workout, you don’t need to spend a ton of time running them. It should only take you 10-15 seconds to run from the bottom to the top. Before we go any further, though, let’s cover some basic technique tips.

Hill Sprint Technique Tips

At first, every single person reading this is going to want to look at their feet as they run. Don’t. The ground isn’t going anywhere. Keep your head high and look forward as you run up the hill. And remember: hill sprints are a full body exercise, so pump your arms like pistons at your side. This will help you to gain a little extra momentum as you glide up the hill.

With that said, though, don’t let your arms cross the midline of your body – imagine that your arms are pulling your body through space as you move up the hill. Your hips should also remain parallel and pointed toward the top of the hill – imagine you have two lasers pointing out from your hips and that you can’t let the beams cross (NEVER CROSS STREAMS!).

When you follow these two tips, you'll maintain core stability through the hips, abs, and shoulder girdle. This will help you run more efficiently and recruit the most muscle fibers possible. Because in the end, that’s what we want – efficient movement that produces the most muscle(s) used.

Rest: The Most Crucial Part Of Sprinting

As a weightlifter, it’s common to assume that 60-90 seconds of rest is sufficient for most exercises, especially when fat loss or hypertrophy are the goals. And if you’ve been lifting for a few years, you know that when it comes to lifting for strength, you need longer rest periods. Somewhere between 2-3 minutes between sets.

Sprinting's rest periods are similar to strength training. The longer you rest, the more time your muscle fibers have to recoup their energy stores, which means you'll recruit more muscle fibers on the next set. And the more muscle fibers you can recruit, the more potential you have to move more weight, and burn more calories.

All that muscle recruitment sucks up a ton of ATP, the energy source for your cells. And replenishing ATP can take, according to one study, up to four minutes during maximal sprints. Hill sprints will tax your energy systems. And unless you want to run up the hill with the swiftness of Jabba the Hutt, then you need to make sure you’re taking your full rest periods.

Remember: this isn't about getting reps – it's about recruiting all the muscle fibers you can to jet you up the hill. So longer rest periods are necessary to refuel your ATP energy systems for explosive exercises like sprints.

NOTE: Yes, walking down the hill can be considered active rest. Which is another reason why hill sprints burn more calories, you're going to be moving more than if you finish a set and sit on a bench in the gym.

How To Choose Your Hill

You don’t need to choose a large hill. Or one with a massive incline. Ideally, you want a hill that has a 5-7% incline. But unless you’re a surveyor, I doubt you have a theodolite laying around to measure the angle of a hill. So how will you know if you have the perfect hill to sprint up?

Well, if you get a little out of breath, or start breathing pretty heavy while leisurely walking up the hill, then you’ve found the perfect hill for your sprints.

Once you’ve found your hill, there’s one more thing you need to do before you don your Flash costume and run up your chosen patch of sloped Earth. Always make sure to walk up the hill before you start to pick the path you’re going to traverse. Try and find an area of the hill that’s as smooth as possible. You want to avoid anywhere there might be holes, rocks, or other things you could trip over and injure yourself on – no one wants to run up a hill and jam their foot into a hole and either twist an ankle or end up with a mouth full of dirt.

Conclusion – Say Goodbye To Stubborn Fat!

You're probably not the next awe-inspiring NFL running back. But when it comes to getting leaner, improving lower body strength and power, and increasing your metabolism, why would you not train like one of the greatest ballers of all time?

Hill sprints are short but effective workouts that get you outside of the gym and into the warmer Spring/Summer weather to train. The high intensity of the hill sprints will tax your energy systems while recruiting more of the muscle fibers in your legs, hips, core, and arms as you dash up a hill.

If you’ve been struggling with burning those last few pounds of stubborn belly fat, crank up the intensity with hill sprints and gain more power, strength, and send your metabolism to the next level!

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posted by RobbieFarlow
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Robbie Farlow, King of the Gingers and Protector of the North, is an uber nerd who loves all things Star Wars, video games, Marvel, and 90s music. Oh and tacos and whiskey. When he isn’t hosting his podcast, Side Quest Podcast, where he interviews the smartest people in fitness, or helping his online coaching clients discover their inner superheroes, or fighting white walkers, you can find him playing video games, deadlifting, munching on tacos, and living by his motto: Scotch and Squats!

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You can do this type of practice with just about any antagonistic activities and body pairings. Biceps and triceps and pushups quads and hamstrings assignment writing company squats and stiff-leg deadlifts abs and back front delts or rear delts beginning raise and bent-over raise.