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    1. #1
      peaceful warrior tkdyo's Avatar
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      cardio not improving

      Hi guys, Ive had a problem with my cardio for as long as I can remember, it just doesnt seem to increase significantly well at all.

      I played soccer since I was 6, and I always had more problems with distance running than other team mates. I dont have asthma or other heart related issues, but I really could only play in the defense if I wanted to play the whole 90 minutes.

      I bring this up because Im also in mma and I am thinking about competing, but in order to do that, I need better cardio. Right now, I feel pretty tired after just one 5 minute sparring match. Granted they are usually fairly intense, but that is not the point. Ive been going to class 4 times a week always leaving every class sweating bad and breathing hard, and while my technique, distancing, timing are all excellent, my cardio hasnt seemed to improve at all.

      has anyone else had this problem, and if so , how did you overcome it? I feel like I do all this running, sparring, grappling and my cardio doesnt improve at all, Ive always had this problem and I really would like an answer ><
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      A warrior does not give up what he loves, he finds the love in what he does

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    2. #2
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      I've noticed that guys coming from stand-up arts (like boxing, kickboxing, karate, tkd) get winded in the clinch and on the ground, even when they are in great shape. That just requires different type of conditioning than your usual striking sparring.

      What kind of running do you do?
      Do you do any conditioning apart from that (sparring doesn't count)?

      Have you tried doing push-up burpees? They are my favorite conditioning exercise.
      You could also make a sandbag and start working out with it.

    3. #3
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      Cardio for MMA requires intense training.

      Running is good, Swimming is slightly better because you are holding your breath and still working. Sprinting is really good for MMA cardio. Wrestling a lot would help too. Jumprope is also good.

    4. #4
      peaceful warrior tkdyo's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by grasshoppa View Post
      Cardio for MMA requires intense training.

      Running is good, Swimming is slightly better because you are holding your breath and still working. Sprinting is really good for MMA cardio. Wrestling a lot would help too. Jumprope is also good.
      hmm, I may try swimming, I havnt really used that as a conditioning tool before.

      Quote Originally Posted by SnakeCharmer View Post
      I've noticed that guys coming from stand-up arts (like boxing, kickboxing, karate, tkd) get winded in the clinch and on the ground, even when they are in great shape. That just requires different type of conditioning than your usual striking sparring.

      What kind of running do you do?
      Do you do any conditioning apart from that (sparring doesn't count)?

      Have you tried doing push-up burpees? They are my favorite conditioning exercise.
      You could also make a sandbag and start working out with it.
      I dont believe Im familiar with push up burpees lol. The conditioning I have right now is circuit training 3 times a week for 25 minutes. 5 stations with 45 second breaks. Stations are: using a medicine ball, punching bag, jump rope, tire and hammer and either a punching bob or one of those jujitsu dummies that you ground and pound/arm bar.

      I use to also do a lot of distance running as well when I played soccer. That was every day, and it always felt like I only got better at, say, the first 2 miles of a 5k and my body never got better at running that last 1.3 or whatever miles.
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      A warrior does not give up what he loves, he finds the love in what he does

      Only those who attempt the absurd can achieve the impossible.

    5. #5
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      Well it sounds like distance running doesn't work for you, but that is somewhat of another time of thing. It seems like you might want to try interval training which would make logical sense. Sprint 1-2 minutes and walking 1-2 minutes on and off. etc. etc. Hit intensity interval training, HIIT look it up.

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      Do it with proper form and do the jumping version.

      Try one of these two workouts:
      15 burpees (don't be too ambitious for the first few times, it will make you puke)
      30 s rest
      14 burpees
      30s rest
      13 burpees...

      or

      Do burpees for 30 seconds and then "rest" for a minute by intensive shadow boxing. Repeat this for 5-10 times
      Last edited by SnakeCharmer; 11-17-2009 at 11:38 PM.

    7. #7
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      Damn that looks hard.

    8. #8
      peaceful warrior tkdyo's Avatar
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      Oh, I see. That burpee routine looks like it is the HIIT approach wasup is talking about. I may have to try this, and document it in that before and after thread ^^
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      A warrior does not give up what he loves, he finds the love in what he does

      Only those who attempt the absurd can achieve the impossible.

    9. #9
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      What you want to work on is called your "VO2 Max." Google some techniques for that. My favourite is one that my high school distance coach gave me called the 3x3x3 routine. Do a 300 in about 45 seconds (which is fairly fast, but not sprinting.) Then walk 100 meters, then repeate twice more. Walk 800 meters, do some situps, then repeat the whole thing two more times.

    10. #10
      peaceful warrior tkdyo's Avatar
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      some sit ups? like, just as many as I can do then? and thanks for that idea, It does make sense that I actually need a way to become more efficient with my oxygen. It seems like any varient of HIIT is also geared towards this indirectly. So maybe Ill do the burpee routine along with this running routine and see what happens.
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      A warrior does not give up what he loves, he finds the love in what he does

      Only those who attempt the absurd can achieve the impossible.

    11. #11
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      Not just oxygen, also lactic acid. Your body needs to learn how to break it down and get used to it. Sparring matches are not tiring because of their length, it's because they're fast. Distance running doesn't produce very much lactic acid because you haven't come close to your vo2 max. You need to burn so much energy, so rapidly, that your body can't keep up aerobically, and has to supplement it's energy with anaerobic, a byproduct of which is lactic acid.

      The 3x3x3 is a great way to get your body to learn how to handle lactic acid, as you build a lot of it. Because you're using so much energy, it also forces your body to open new blood vessels and maximize o2 efficiency.

      And no, not as many as you can, 20 will be enough. While your'e doing them, they won't feel like much, but you'll feel them by your 2nd 300.

      When you do distance, wear a bandana over your face. It's a runner's trick, it gets less oxygen to your body because breathing is harder. It's the poor-mans high altitude training

    12. #12
      peaceful warrior tkdyo's Avatar
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      ah, ok I see better now. I really cant wait to make my cardio better, Im so tired of not being able to just go and go like I want to >.> Ill start tomorrow!
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      A warrior does not give up what he loves, he finds the love in what he does

      Only those who attempt the absurd can achieve the impossible.

    13. #13
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      So a burpee is just a squat thrust? It sounds like there is a lot of verations with the two. In highschool pe we always did squat thrusts, with pushups, and instead of a jump at the end we did a jumping jack.

      Of course with kids a lot of time you get half assed pushups and jumping jacks. Though its still a workout, even when you do that.

    14. #14
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      Before my last boxing match I had a routine that worked very well for me.

      My fight would be 3x2 minute rounds with 1 minute breaks so I downloaded a programmable round clock and set it for 24x3 minute rounds with 30 second breaks. I would do 3 rounds of ultimate burpees, then 3 rounds of sit ups to cool down, then 3 rounds of ultimate burpees, then 3 more of sit ups and continued until I finished all 24 rounds like this. I did this every second day, doing distance or sprints on the off days, lifting/kettlebells on Saturday, and resting Sunday. I also did an hour or two of sparring 2 nights a week.

      By doing the hardest conditioning exercise I could find using more and longer rounds and shorter rest periods than I would need to perform at I was able to outwork and recover faster than anybody at my gym.

      Now considering an MMA fight will likely have 5 minute rounds you will need to tweak this a little or at least work up to that level, but the idea is to train to work longer and harder than you have to and rest less than you are allowed. When it comes to fight time your body will think it's on vacation.

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