It feels like there is a new workout technique, diet, piece of ‘revolutionary’ equipment or quick fix being released or promoted every day.

And with each new idea or theory comes a new catchy name or sound-bite.

OK, things need names. And if it truly is new and revolutionary, it stands to reason you want the name to be memorable. That’s just marketing. Problem is, marketing is coming at the expense of content.

There’s little new or revolutionary.

It might be new, but useless (I refer you to the shake weight, ‘shape up’ shoes, slender-tone etc). Or it is simply a well marketed version of the same old garbage. See my post on Zumba, Body Pump and Vibroplates.

Back in the day, exercises might get associated with the person that invented or popularised them, as in the Arnold Press or the Zercher Squat.

Nowadays it seems the label is the most important part.

How many Thor, Captain America or Wonder Woman workouts have we had?

In the past few years 300 & Spartan or Spartacus workouts were all the rage.

Thing is, they mostly end up just being big circuits with no real difference to any other circuit training or drill based workouts.


Because then they can be performed for groups which can bring in more money than training an individual.

Does anyone honestly think Spartacus trained, not only with little dumbbells and in a circuit format but, to the dance music that invariably comes with these classes?

Did anyone really believe that the 300 workouts were the one key secret to getting the cast to their 6 pack physique ready for that film?

And do we honestly think Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth or Gal Gadot had one secret workout that no one else has ever tried that was key to their physiques in Captain America, Thor or Wonder Woman?

Are people really that gullible?

Unfortunately, the answer must be, in part anyway, a resounding yes. Otherwise, why would these things keep popping up, getting quoted and being used?

It’s only a matter of time before we get the Aquaman workout.

Then there are ‘descriptive’ titles.

Now, forgive me for being Mr Picky, but surely a descriptive title should tell you what the workout, technique or theory does that others don’t?

The one I have heard a lot over the past 5 years or so is ‘Metabolic Training’.

What the heck does that mean?

Is it suggesting that if you use this training you will raise your metabolism?

Is there any form of training that doesn’t raise your metabolism?

Getting out of a chair or going for a walk will raise your metabolism!

If we are talking raising it and keeping it raised beyond the scope of the workout, then any anaerobic training, HIIT or heavy resistance training will do that (a lot more than these faddy workouts ever will).

What it is really referring to is EPOC (Excess Post-exercise Oxygen Consumption) and the creation of an Oxygen Debt. But, there is no one ‘magic’ metabolic training method that makes that happen above all others.

Another is ‘Endurance Training’!

Could you be a bit more specific?

Mostly this is used to describe high reps. But sitting in a freezer to prep for a trip to the Arctic would be endurance training, or hill walking could be endurance training.

In fact, almost anything that will last (or endure) could be considered endurance training.

Endurance for what?

And then there is ‘Functional Training’!

Are there actually programmes and workouts that are planned to be dis-functional?

Ok, there are plenty of ‘coaches’ out there who deliver such things, but they think they are doing something positive. It’s just the reality is they are just being weird and dangerous for the sake of individuality.

Then there is ‘slim-a-size’, ‘yummy bummy’, ‘slimfast diets’… and on and on…

In the end, it is just sticking fancy labels on things to hide the fact that there truly is no substance to it.

It just sounds good.

Training is not done just for the sake of it.

It is done to achieve something.

So, there should be some thought behind why you are doing things.

Just realize, there is very little that is truly new.

Things that work are the things that last, not fads or gimmicks.

If it has been done for decades there is likely a reason. If it is shiny and new, it is likely either a re-hash of something old or is untested garbage with a well marketed visual image.

Even the tried and tested stuff can get irritating when people walk around the gym talking about their latest 5/3/1 routine, 5×5, German Volume Training or Russian Strength Sets as if they are something new that they just invented.

If you haven’t heard of any of these, you may want to check out Jim Wendler’s 5/3/1 programme as a solid option if you don’t know where to start with your strength training.

These are all reasonably good workouts with solid benefits, but to treat them like they are the latest ‘miracle’ and the fast track to a ripped physique, huge growth or a shredded six pack, that’s just bull crap and cause me switch off.

So, here’s a shiny new technique for you.

It’s called ‘Metacolonic Training’.

It is where you take your metabolic training, your Superhero Workouts,  faddy diets, gimmicks and your quick fix solutions and you shove them up your…

And relax!

That’s my view anyway – perhaps you like these gimmicks, or you have actually seen some staggering results from them.

Or are you as frustrated as I am with hearing this nonsense day in and day out?

I’m sure, regardless, you will have heard of at least a few of them.

What a load
Of Metabolics by Mark Tiffney

What say you?

How much stock to you put in terms like metabolic training or functional training?

Is there anything here of validity or is it simply more layers to convince people that there are ‘easy’ fixes available and that hard work, effort and dedication can simply be bypassed?

Comment below and let me know.


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