Scientific Nutrition and Strength Training Principles that Every Athlete Must Know

“I swear everyone is looking for a weird technique correction that adds 50lbs to their squat or a food they can eat that just zaps bodyfat, and they are going to spend lots of time in an almost completely futile effort. Train hard and smart, eat well, and try to get a bit better every month. After a while you are a completely different person, but it takes time. It doesn’t happen overnight and there are no quick tricks.” Dr Mike Israetel.


Dr. Mike Israetel of RP Strength has determined 7 fundamentals for strength training. These consist of the following:

  1. Specificity
  2. Overload
  3. Fatigue Management
  4. SRA
  5. Variation
  6. Phase Potentiation
  7. Individual Differences

These principles are taken from his book “Scientific Principles of Strength Training.” For a full and comprehensive understanding, please refer to that. The summaries below outline his principles. They are ordered into a hierarchy that places the most important principle at the top and descends in order of importance when applying the principles to your own training.  

Strength training Bk GudmundssonSource: Renaissance Periodization
BK Gudmundsson is fueled by Renaissance Periodization


“ALL body systems adapt in the direction of the training stimulus, often countering one-another’s adaptations.” Dr Mike Israetel.

What this means is that you must train for the sport that you want to get better at. Specificity often cause imbalances, as getting better at one thing may make you worse at another. For example, a triathlete would not spend the majority of their training deadlifting, whilst an elite powerlifter does not spend half their training hours on a bike.

Specificity in Practice

With powerlifting and improving strength in general, the following are important:

  • Add size to powerlifting muscles
  • Make powerlifting muscles stronger
  • Practice the technique of powerlifting lifts

These are all specific to achieving a particular goal. When it comes to CrossFit®, this concept becomes much trickier, because the idea is to be good at everything. The specificity principle is important when targeting specific programming cycles (such as strength phases) within the context of the wider arsenal of your skills.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Renaissance Periodization™ (@rpstrength)

Latest articles

Related news