What exercises should I do if I want to get stronger and faster without gaining too much muscle?

Strength, agility, flexibility and power is attainable with practice and perseverance

The body you are describing to me, is one of a gymnast. Strong, lean, agile, powerful, highly coordination and balanced. All part of the physique generated from body weighted exercises and flexibility training. This type of body is the result of a side effect of training, not the goal in order to do the training.

Here are some drills that gymnasts use to develop their strongman physique, minus the bulk of muscles and body fat (remember, they become leaner and therefore muscular structure is a lot more defined)

For the caliathletics/gymnastics sessions

Exercise 1. Work on your core. It’s important to strengthen the core and lower back muscles as much as possible, and perform conditioning exercises such as hand stands, leg lifts, crunches and planches. Using your core to push yourself through different positions and directions is needed to perform other exercise, and protect your back.

Exercise 2. Interval training. This kind of training builds stamina, whilst also decreasing your levels of body fat. You want to keep your body fat low in order to generate the most power from your body and keep your energy levels as high as possible. Interval training wont diminish your muscular gains either, therefore, it’s a perfect way to shred down without negative consequences.

Exercise 3. Focus on body weight training. This includes pull ups, chin ups, dips, body weighted squats and different planche positions. This promotes strength throughout the whole body. Being able to lift your body weight and engage your core consistently, will give you more power, strength and coordination as a whole. These exercises can be done in the comfort of your own home, but must be practiced consistently in order to generate the best results. Of course, it’s best to use this in conjunction with gym equipment in order to build strength at a faster rate.

You are probably wondering what a planche is.. Be warned, this is really hard and you will need to practice this daily as a ritual in order to become stronger and flexible.

Image courtesy of caliathetics.com

These kinds of drills can be practiced in a park or in a gymnastics training faculty. caliathletics also concentrates on this form of training, building you up to complex movements that require exceptional core strength.

For the gym sessions

Exercise 4. Lifting heavy at the gym. This encourages recruitment of the fast twitch muscle fibres, which increase power and strength. There is a downside, as these muscles tend to fatigue very quickly. Use exercises such as dead-lifts, squats, overhead presses and pull ups. Try and move the weight as fast as possible during these movements.

Exercise 5. Explosive lifts. These include box jumps and speed drills. These are great for developing power and agility. Again, we want to move as fast as possible. You can also indulge in clean & jerks, snatches and pulls. Alternate between medicine ball slams or throws, and kettle bell work.

Exercise 6. Tone down your volume. Lower them to 2–3 sets focusing on bar speed, enhancing strength and explosive power. Lift heavy, it should be a strain to get to the rep range (less reps are best)

Exercise 7. Rest more for longer. When training for strength, you must rest for longer periods between repetitions. This can be up to 2–5 minutes, depending on what you are doing. Longer rest periods are needed because of the higher loads you are lifting, and to complete the required volume of lifts.

Here is a huge variety of training that will get you a lean, strong and powerful physique minus the larger volume of muscle.

Leave a Reply