Simplifying Exercise

June 01, 2016

Exercise is Simple

Let’s be honest, exercise is simple and only made to sound complicated by the industry so it can sell poor grade services at exorbitant prices. That will offend many but then again I haven’t been in this industry to make friends and have never been a part of the endless affiliate programs or secret affiliations that underscore much of the exercise media, hence so be it. Let’s deal with the facts because if you think exercise is complicated you are ill-prepared to manage a career much less the endless trials of daily life.

Exercise is simple.

On the other hand, mastering a sport is complicated and quite honestly after writing twelve books and a ten-thousand or so articles I can safely say it is near impossible to discuss technical requirements of sports in the written form with any level of effectiveness.

Exercise is simple. Sport is complicated.

Say it a few times and after being annoyed with my request and ask yourself why few in the exercise industry talk little of participating in a true sport and instead what they do in a gymnasium. Have the answer yet?

Simply because sport is complicated and the majority grew up in an era where participation waned, the family unit is on life support and physical activity past the teen years is primarily resigned to, you’ve guessed it, the gymnasium. This leads to an interesting observation and conclusion because given that the majority are not training for sport why is there exercise program complicated? The basic answer to this question is that ‘it sells’, hence why the proliferation of complicated exercise equipment and vast sums of money spent in areas that shouldn’t exist. Exercise is simple and thus there is no need to complicate matters.
USPlabs Simplifying Exercise
The foundation of “Renegade X” stems for the Renegade Concepts of Training™, which are as follows:

  • – Movements trained, not musculature
  • – Efficiencies of movement reinforced
  • – Motor patterning and grafting of movement
  • – Postural alignment is emphasized and perfected 
  • – Stabilization in the most destabilized training environments
  • – Force developed such that it can be projected, accepted and redirected at maximal levels
  • – Adopt to chaotic environments


By adhering to the ‘concepts’ all exercises are performed with emphasis correct technique, which is a by-product of proper postural alignment.  Physical development utilizes a balanced approach such that the individual develops power, speed, strength and grace.

All resistance training is governed by the “Renegade Concepts of Training™ as follows:

1. All resistance training is pushing, pulling, squatting or pressing (as well as lunging, reaching and extending).

2. To add to this simplified view, there really are only three forms of muscular contraction: isometric, eccentric/yielding and contraction/static.

3. External resistance is heavy, constant or a volume based system.

4. You can either lift a heavy weight slowly for low repetition, a light weight for many repetitions, a light weight explosively for low repetitions or volume based system of moderate loading for repeated repetitions (i.e. sets of eight to fifteen).

5. No piece of equipment is the panacea and a good exercise regime can be adapted to suit most environments (excluding those particularly in strength sports such as Olympic Weightlifting)

6. The greatest issue an individual will have in resistance training, once they learn how to perform movements properly, is adaptation. As you perform a movement on a regular basis, you will adapt to the exercise and the benefits lower (i.e. as in the “law of diminishing returns”).

7. To avoid the “adaptation curve” you must vary exercise selection, medium, setting, tempo, repetition, associated energy cycle or start/finish points. This will differ from typical “everyday exercise enthusiasts” of four to six weeks, whereas elite athletes can adapt very quickly (i.e. within a one to three-day period).

8. Compound lifts are the most effective route to resistance training as they work the body in unison and recruit the greatest amount of muscle fiber.

9. Given you are using compound movements; the force is driven from your legs. As your legs and hips develop it will create a super compensatory situation as your upper body growth accelerates to accommodate the load. In simple terms to develop a great upper body, use your legs in compound movements.

10.When performing compound movements, even though the weight is in your hands you must propel the movement with your legs.
Team USPlabs Chris Duffin

Prior to reviewing the Renegade X plan it is imperative to understand Renegade Training™ utilizes a very orderly approach within the resistance training section of the broad exercise regime.

Resistance training is divided into two major sections of movements:

Focus Lifts

Make use of the classic Olympic lifts and the many variations. These lifts are the most effective route in resistance training approach to promote teaching the body to move as a single harmonious unit within a time sensitive manner. Naturally there are many variations, particularly when you consider making use of different mediums which ostensibly provide materially the same benefit. This final point is crucial to understand as training equipment may vary and should suit your environment as well as financial budget. Do not be lured into the idea that a particular piece of equipment provides a “magical benefit” and further realize this is one of the great problems of the modern exercise sector as professionalism has dropped to untold levels with many more focused upon the “quick sale”. However, in returning to the original concern these movements are:

  • • Squat (many variations including Back, Olympic, Front, Overhead, High-Box, Step-Up, Bulgarian, Barbell Hack, Box as well as concentric starting positions, pause reps and supplemental resistance such as bands and chains)
  • • Clean (with Power and various Hang starting positions)
  • • Snatch (with Power and various Hang starting positions)
  • • Deadlift (Snatch and traditional)
  • • Push Press / Push Jerk / Split Jerk
  • • Bench Press (should also consider high repetition Push-Ups)

Supplemental Movements

These  are sub-divided into:

  1. Olympic hybrid movements

• Clean / Snatch Pull

• Clean / Snatch Hi-Pull

• Clean / Snatch Hang Pull

• Clean Snatch Jump Shrug

Good Mornings (various types, i.e. Good Morning Squat, seated Good Mornings)

Glute Ham Raises (natural and machine), Russian Split Jumps, Rx Ham hold, etc and other

• Bent over Rows (under and overhand grip variations)

• Pull-up / Chin-Ups (considerable variation)

Furthermore within Focus and Supplemental Hybrid lifts programming must be balance bilateral and unilateral lifts.

(b) movements from the Renegade FIX™ program (STS™)

The STS™ pre-hab system respects that all training has a baseline requirement of maintaining proper posture whilst under duress. Maintaining proper posture is paramount to success and in this specific case, the shoulder capsule. Training for a healthy shoulder capsule is quite possibly one of the most important areas within overall development but rarely is it covered in the modern exercise facility. There a host of movements to use in the proper training the shoulder capsule, each with some slight variation but likely none better than the four step STS™ model from the Renegade FIX™ rehabilitation program.

Holding a tennis ball, which is looped over a therapy band and under the foot, perform the following pattern of movements for six to ten repetitions each and in continuous movement. All movements are smooth, with constant tension.

• Standing on band with the opposite foot you are holding the tennis ball create a lateral arcing of the hand across such that the arm is at a forty-five degree angle as the elbow comes to near ear level.

• Place the near foot over the band and perform a classic lateral raise by raising the elbow up with thumb pointing downwards.

• Perform a Cuban Press by first pinching the shoulder blades back and down, then raising the elbow until the upper arm is parallel to the ground and then pivot the upper arm upwards to create a ninety-degree angle.

• Repeat the above first step of the Cuban Press before continuing the hand straight as high as possible to perform a Muscle Snatch.

For all the trophies, for all the accolades, the greatest victory of my career is being able to positively influence others to which the reward comes from them spreading this message. Be the beacon of hope, open your arms with earnest fellowship and together we can make a difference.

Sow the seed.

– John Davies


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The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of USPlabs or any employee thereof. Examples used within this article are only examples. USPlabs is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the authors of this article. Content contributors are not employees of USPlabs. Authors may have been remunerated by USPlabs.


The information provided in this article, as well as this web-site blog is intended for informational and educational purposes only and should not be interpreted as medical advice for any condition. Always consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any nutritional program or exercise program. By reading this disclaimer, you hereby agree and understand that the information provided in this column is not medical advice and relying upon it shall be done at your sole risk.


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