Having found himself actively involved in exercise and fitness from an early age, Austin, Texas-based health and wellness entrepreneur Mark Alexander is the Founder and President of Efficient Exercise; a co-founder, investor, and executive board member of the well-regarded Paleo f(x); and he is the CEO of Adaptive Resistance Exercise (ARX), which is pushing the boundaries of HIT and how people train by using innovative resistance training technology that is computer-controlled, adaptive, and data-driven, allowing a measure of stimulus and control that previously was not available.
Contact Mark Alexander:
- ARX on Facebook
- ARX on Twitter
- ARX on YouTube
- Efficient Exercise
- Mark Alexander on Linkedin
In this episode, we cover:
- Mark’s views on HIT and how it has changed over time
- Marks thoughts on the future of large gyms, fitness facilities, and high intensity training
- A deep dive into ARX – how it works and how it’s different from everything else out there
- NASA’s interest in ARX and resistance training in microgravity and outer space
- … and much more!
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- Listen to it on iTunes.
- Stream by clicking here.
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This episode is brought to you by ARXFit.com, ARX are the most innovative, efficient and effective all-in-one exercise machines I have ever seen. I was really impressed with my ARX workout. The intensity and adaptive resistance were unlike anything I’ve ever experienced. I love how the machine enables you to increase the negative load to fatigue target muscles more quickly and I love how the workouts are effortlessly quantified. The software tracks maximum force output, rate of work, total amount of work done and more in front of you on-screen, allowing you to compete with your pervious performance, to give you and your clients real-time motivation. As well as being utilised by many HIT trainers to deliver highly effective and efficient workouts to their clients, ARX comes highly recommended by world-class trainers and brands including Bulletproof, Tony Robbins, and Ben Greenfield Fitness. To find out more about ARX and get $1,000 OFF software licensing fees, please go to ARXfit.com and mention Corporate Warrior in the how did you hear about us field.
This episode is brought to you by Bill DeSimone. Bill has appeared on the podcast twice and is one of my favourite personal trainers. Bill runs Optimal Exercise, a personal training studio based in central NJ, USA. Bill is incredibly knowledgeable about exercise, strength training, and in particular biomechanics and rehabilitation, and is the go-to guy for a lot of top HIT trainers like Dr Doug McGuff.
Bill is the author of Congruent exercise: How To Make Weight Training Easier On Your Joints. I loved this book and finished it in a few days. I learnt how to select safe and effective exercises and gained a better understanding of how to construct productive workouts. It gave me much more insight into exactly how the joints and muscle operate specific exercises, and does so in a very elegant manner. To pick up your copy of Congruent Exercise, head on over to Amazon.com, where you can buy a copy in print or on Kindle. The Kindle version contains links to various videos where Bill demonstrates the exercises, which being a visual learner, I found this particularly helpful.
Watch out for Bill’s next book: Joint-Friendly Fitness: Your Guide to the Optimal Exercise Program. Having seen a draft, I am very excited about this book and looking forward to talking to Bill to learn all about it. To connect with Bill and learn all about his upcoming book, product and services, go to optimalexercisenj.com
To subscribe via email and get my FREE eBook with 6 podcast transcripts with guests like Dr Doug McGuff, Drew Baye and Skyler Tanner – Click here
During the course of our conversation, Mark spoke in detail about ARX in action, though it’s a bit of a challenge to simply leave things to the imagination. That being the case, here’s a video that shows ARX in action.
QUESTIONS OF THE DAY: Have you tried using negative accentuated training in your routine? What were the results? Please let me know how it turned out in the comments at the bottom of this post.
Click the link below to listen from the exact time stamp on Overcast:
- Skyler Tanner asks Mark about his childhood deadlifting obsession [6:58]
- What is Mark’s definition of High Intensity Training, and how has his view of HIT evolved over the years? [9:01]
- Does Mark think there’s any one protocol that can get a person to 100% of his or her genetic potential? [13:52]
- What is ARX and what makes it different compared to Nautilus, MedX, X-Force, and everything else? [22:09]
- Are there any studies that support the idea of reaching failure on the eccentric portion of a rep as being superior in terms of getting results? [29:24]
- What is the primary goal of a typical ARX-based workout? [39:00]
- How real is the risk of cheating to see an improvement in your numbers versus gaining true results when everything in a workout is counted and quantified? [44:21]
- How does ARX differ from MedX (and others) in terms of minimum effective dose and volume? [47:39]
- A look at Mark’s ARX workout routine [52:51]
- Does Mark have an ARX machine at home? (And on NASA’s interest in ARX) [54:19]
- Has the data aggregated from ARX workouts to this point surfaced any interesting insights? [1:02:13]
- Is there any recent literature or study that addresses the matter of the optimal number of sets, and what does it say? [1:07:18]
- Do Mark and Skyler argue about single sets versus multiple sets? [1:12:40]
- What insights has Mark gained from his own ARX workout data? [1:14:10]
- Mark talks about the business decision of integrating ARX into Efficient Exercise (and what he sees as being the future of big gyms and fitness facilities) [1:19:00]
- What has Mark changed his mind about on health and fitness in recent memory? [1:28:39]
Selected Links from the Episode
- 21 Radio | The Business of Fitness | ARX Fit CEO Mark Alexander on 21 Radio
- Negative Accentuated Training
- Authors’ Reply to Ribeiro et al.: “A Review of the Acute Effects and Long-Term Adaptations of Single- and Multi-Joint Exercises During Resistance Training”
- Bosu Balance Trainer ( Amazon US / Amazon UK )
- Doug McGuff’s Big 5
- MedX Exercise Equipment
- Super Slow
- Inroad Theory of Exercise
- Hyper Repetitions
- Study: Eccentric-Overload Training in Team-Sport Functional Performance: Constant Bilateral Vertical Versus Variable Unilateral Multidirectional Movements
- Mario Kart | Mario Kart Ghost Car
- 4-Hour Body – The Principle of the Minimum Effective Dose
- The 4 Hour Body: An Uncommon Guide to Rapid Fat Loss, Incredible Sex and Becoming Superhuman by Tim Ferriss (Amazon US / Amazon UK)
- The Pareto Principle / The 80/20 rule
- NASA | Official Website
- Advanced Resistive Exercise Device (ARED)
- Big Data
- Single vs. multiple sets of resistance exercise for muscle hypertrophy: a meta-analysis by James Krieger
- How Many Sets Do You Need to Perform to Maximize Muscle Gains? by Brad Schoenfeld
- Beware the Meta-Analysis: Is Multiple Set Training Really Better than Single Set Training for Muscle Hypertrophy? by James Fisher
- Study: Effects of regular and slow speed resistance training on muscle strength
- Infrared Sauna
- Cold Tub Exposure (Ice Bath)
- Hammer Strength
- National University of Ireland Galway
- Mint Fitness
- Study: Foam Rolling for Delayed-Onset Muscle Soreness and Recovery of Dynamic Performance Measures
- Cryotherapy (Cryo Exposure)
- Effects of blue light technology
- Bulletproof Radio with Dave Asprey
- Skyler Tanner (Listen to previous episodes with Skyler here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, and Part 5)
- Arthur Jones
- Mike Mentzer
- Dorian Yates
- Ken Hutchins
- Doug McGuff (Listen to our episodes here: Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3)
- Keith Norris (Listen to our podcasts here: Part 1 and Part 2)
- Mark Houghton
- Paulo Gentil
- Dr. Ellington Darden
- Matthew Nairn
- Dr. Dominic D’Agostino
- Brad Schoenfeld (Listen to our episode here)
- Dr. Wayne L. Westcott
- Dave Asprey
Kamen Stranchevski says
Well, that interview was really Awesome! Thanks Lawrence and thanks Mark! I’d love to try ARX first hand! I have two questions to Mark:
1. Please, share ARX locations in Europe and continental Europe in particular, so I can more easily visit;
2. How “the second set” approach disqussed is compared to rest-pause in Mark’s opinion? In other words, what seems to be the “necessary” rest between sets (to prime the central system etc.) if one would like to try and shoot for the second set approach?
Mark Alexander says
Glad you enjoyed the interview Kamen!
1. You can try ARX at Mint Fitness in Brighton UK or The Resistance Institute in Barcelona.
2. As for the second set approach, I’d recommend minimal rest between exercises of the first superset/circuit (15-30 seconds) and just a little bit longer between the first and second superset/circuit (60-90 seconds). So essentially, you’d do a typical big 3 or big 5 type of workout with minimal rest between sets, then, repeat the entire circuit one more time after at least a minute of rest. I’d recommend experimenting with this approach with 3 exercises initially (i.e. starting with 6 total working sets). Hope that helps! 🙂
Kamen Stranchevski says
Thanks Mark, sure helps! I’ll give it a fair try. As for ARX technology, me and my partners have a very serious discussion about bringing it to BG. I am already in touch with your staff, so if we figired it out, we’ll be proud to be your next location in EU 😀
Mark Alexander says
Sounds great Kamen! Stay strong…ARX strong! 🙂
Andrew May says
Great episode, lots of food for thought. I really liked Mark’s lack of hubris, no really sensational claims and what seems like genuine passion for benefiting public health and working with genetically average trainees. After listening and watching I’d be interested in giving the ARX a go, I might have a bit of work in Brighton at some point so would be interested in dropping in to Mint.
One little snippet that jumped out at me was Mark’s mention of core stability and isolation movements as an adjunct to the big compounds. For someone training at home without fancy equipment I’ve found the most efficient method is to do unilateral upper body exercises; overhead press and especially, heavy shrugs with a single dumbbell for example can really tax the obliques. Modifying a body weight squat into a “goblet” squat is a decent technique too in my experience.
Lastly, one clarification. Does Mark advocate doing two full body workouts per week each doing two sets of every exercise to failure? That would work out to potentially double the volume of say, Drew or Doug’s recommendation.
Andrew May says
Oops, just read Mark’s other reply “big three” sounds doable with two sets. I fancy the recovery would be killer though!
The whole way the ARX works and what it allows and helps the user do, makes a great deal of sense. Maybe get to try one out someday.
I’m no exercise machine aficionado, but I was very impressed with ARX. The level of inroad and fatigue it can create is intense. Obviously one may have to be careful not to overtrain.
Kamen Stranchevski says
Hey Lawrence, not sure if this is the right place for this comment, but I actually made my plans for visiting Mint Fitness in Brighton and try their ARX machine in person. It will most probably be on 7th or 8th of Decmeber. Staying in London from 7.12.17 till 11.12.17 I already have almost everything aranged. So, in case that you happen to be somwhere in the vicinity… and have the time, I’ll be more than happy to meet you there in person 🙂
Nice one Kamen. Matt Nairn is a great guy and you’ll get he full ARX experience with him!
I would love to meet, but sadly I’m unable on those dates. I’m interviewing Shawn Baker MD on the Mon which is a few days after his appearance on Joe Rogan! Also interviewing Dr Wayne Westcott on the same day!!
Would love to meet in the future though. If you’re up for it, I’m at the Resistance Exercise Conference 9/10th March 2018, use coupon code corporatewarrior10 for 10% off ???????????????? I’m sure you’ve heard that already (a few times …) hahaha
Kamen Stranchevski says
…Either that or…when you decide to do your Booze vacation in Bulgaria…Ha ha. In the recent years a lot of Englishmen take this option ;D
In any case, I’ll share my experience with ARX afterwords!