TCB: Martial Arts Training Involution #197

TCB means “Takin’ Care of Business,” which is also the title of a great song by Bachman Turner Overdrive about how working hard at what you love isn’t work at all, whereas punching a clock doing something you hate is a “slaving job to get your pay.”

My redneck Bench Press set-up.

Sprinkled throughout this post are some shots of me lifting homemade weights at 6:30 AM in the crappy lean-to I put out behind my tool shed.  It was 30° F.

And yet it was a blast.   Because if you love what you’re doing it ain’t work.  It’s art.

If you love your art you will do whatever it takes to make it, including fashion your own weights from auto tires, decking boards, tarps, and old metal pipes.  And you will do it with joy and a sense of pride.  This whole set-up cost me just a little over $100.00.

This is my yoke for safely doing Back Squats solo.

I used to hate the thought of lifting weights.  But when I tried it and found out how much stronger it made me, and how more effective as a martial artist, I was hooked.   Now I love it.

Sometimes I do not want to do certain things.  For example, Bear Walks, Shots and Sprawls really suck.  But they make my art — my martial art — “prettier” if that makes sense.

I hope it does.  Because if you don’t find a way to love and appreciate the things you need to do in support of your martial arts, you’re training is going to be either laborious or lopsided.

TCB: Martial Arts Training Involution #197

  • Warm-up thoroughly for at at least 8 minutes. I generally do 8 minutes of MBF or either 2-3 minutes each of (a) something aerobic, like jogging of jumping rope (b) some light calisthenics like Half Squats, Push-ups on knees, Touching toes, Arm Swings etc. and (c) shadowboxing or light heavy bag work.
  • 3 x 8 Grappling drill.  Complete 3 sets of 8 reps each of Throws (I picked Seoi Nage), Clinch Maneuvers (I did Cross-arm Clinch Rear Lunges), and Bear Walks (15′).  Use a grappling dummy, floor bag, or weighted duffel bag for the Throws and Clinches.  Your final count should be 24 Throws, 24 Clinches, and 24 Bear Walks (300′ or 100 yards), all in about 10 minutes.
  • 11 minutes on the heavy bag — all-in for power.  Break it up into round lengths appropriate to your fitness level.  Beginners: 4 x 2:00/1:00, intermediates: 3 x 3:00/1:00, advanced: 2 x 5:00/1:00.  Go at your bag with the intent to do as much damage as you possibly can.  Punch it.  Kick it.  Body lock it and squeeze as hard as you can.  Don’t hang on it — but do practice clinching, stepping into cross-buttocks position, etc.
  • 10+ minutes of sacred reading.  Pick a book that’s good for your spiritual development and spend some time reading.  Doesn’t have to be overtly religious, like the Holy Bible or the Tao Te Ching — it can be something that promotes mindfulness, wisdom, or philosophy.  Read Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, Occidental Mythology, Modern Man in Search of a Soul or whatever you like.  Meditation, contemplation, prayer and spiritual reading are the four cornerstones of the spiritual life and none should be neglected.

If you enjoyed his training involution you’d probably enjoy my books and other products.  Why not check them out?


3 responses to “TCB: Martial Arts Training Involution #197

  1. Hey Mitch, Yeah, there’s nothing quite as satisfying as working out with homemade/DIY equipment. Speaking of which, do you have a post somewhere about how you designed and assembled the squat yoke featured above?

    • Agreed – I love the feel and the frugality (CF Vital Grace #3) of DIY stuff. I mostly stopped blogging my DIY training gear because it’s all going to my book “Martial Grit” that’s probably coming out next year. But if you like I will create a patron-only post on Patreon with measurements and close-ups. Will that work? Thanks for visiting!

  2. Sounds great-thanks! And I look forward to the book as well when it comes out.

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