MotivationMonday Pt. 5 (Common Fitness Phrases)

Goodmorning and welcome to The RAWRMY Motivation Monday. Here in New England it’s once again cold, icy, snowy, dark, and at the moment very early in the morning.

But as one of my favorite speakers has said; “I like these conditions, because if you can perform in these conditions you know you can perform in anything.”

So with that let’s move on to today’s topic: Commonly used phrases you hear gym goers and fitness buffs using, without really knowing what they apply to exactly. (Truth be told most people who are using the phrases probably don’t entirely understand them themselves.)

HIIT – High intensity interval training. The idea behind this is to alternate between very high heart rate activities, and very low ones. Example; all out sprint for 60-seconds, followed by 120-seconds of walking. (Also known as a 60-120).

Arguably one of the best ways to increase both your stamina, and your speed for running. Also a commonly used training method in the U.S Army.

Drop Set – A set in which you begin typically with 75-90% of your single rep max and execute until muscle fatigue stops you from performing another rep. Then dropping the weight by a small interval and continuing the set. Repeating this process until the weight is near 0.

Some people have been known to continue the set until they are lifting nothing but the weight of their own arms, legs, ect.

To Failure – The act of pushing an exercise until the related muscles cannot physically perform the action anymore. This comes after the point where most people tend to stop. Most often people stop when a set begins to hurt, performing to failure is to push past that into the point where you literally cannot perform another rep.

It’s believed this point is where forces muscle growth. Actions performed beyond failure are the stimulus for the muscles to become stronger.

Gains – The increase in muscle size, or more commonly just used to illustrate some positive step in training.

Super Set – Exercises performed one after another with little to no rest. Idea being to push your body to failure than increase the actions to the muscle by assisting it with complimentary actions to encourage growth.

DOMS – Delayed onset muscle soreness. This is the hangover of fitness training. The pain in your muscles a day or two after an intense workout. The process of your muscles recovering. Training during the effects of DOMS (micro tears in your muscles) is a debated subject. Most people tend to agree that you should allow your body a rest day to repair and rebuild itself.

The trick is to understand when it’s a mild soreness that you can realistically push through, and when it’s something more serious. This is the main reason for training different muscles at different times. Giving each the time between to recover.

Hypertrophy – This is the scientific word for ‘gains’. Same concept. It’s the act of muscles regrowing for size.

BCAA – Branched chain amino acids. Typically comes in a supplement but can also be found in food. These amino acids combat muscle soreness, assist repair, and help to prevent muscle loss during time spent without engaging muscles.

If you are forced to stop training hard for any length of time BCAA’s become increasingly important due to muscle atrophy setting in anywhere from 72-hours and on.

Beta Alanine – Mostly found in Pre-workout mixes, this amino acid is the basis for your feeling of being able to achieve more in your workouts. It quite literally allows the muscles to performing at a higher quality than they normally would by effecting a certain hormone that normally limits the load your muscle can take.

It also causes a tingling feeling which is the main reason a lot of people choose to avoid pre-workout mixes.

Pump – This is the feeling you get when you increase blood flow to specific parts of the body through engaging those muscles beyond failure. Similar to the feeling of adrenaline without the crash when it leaves your system.

Also the reason that after a particularly brutal set you stand up and feel like you could rival The Oak himself. Many people compare the pump to a “natural high”.

Bro Science – Advice on fitness from an unqualified gym goer. There are facts, and science, then there are guesses based on what you think worked for you, or what someone else says worked for them. That is bro science.

Don’t discount all advice given to you by fellow gym goers, but do your research and understand what works best for YOUR body. Bro Science can often be pointless at best, and dangerous at worst.

Perimeter Shopping – This refers to a diet plan that basically excludes items found in the middle isles of the grocery stores. The perimeter of the stores typically contain, proteins, vegetables, and dairy.


This is likely enough information for now but it doesn’t even scratch the surface on how much terminology there is to be learned in the fitness arena.  But let me take a step back for a second and just talk motivation.

We’re closing in on the last cold days of the year, and to me that’s meant two things;

The people who started the New Year strong but have given up on their plan are now starting to shrink back and the gyms are getting more and more empty. And it also means that with the good weather there’s going to be more opportunity to go outdoors and take on life.

To me the gym is only half the battle. Because what are we training for if we don’t go out and actually expose ourselves to what life has to offer. I’m talking beaches, road trips, dinners, hiking, even yard work is a beautiful thing.

So please as we make it into April, and the weather opens to more opportunities, take them. Do some things you’ve never done before. Say yes when you want to say no, and encourage other people to do the same.

Be kind, be fearless, be positive, and be healthy. I can promise you that all you have to do are those few things and everything else will fall into place.

Thanks again for reading and I’ll see you again next week.



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