Welcome to another week. This week’s classes are brought to you courtesy of Alex – and they look amazing! Really keen to get into some focussed lower back foam rolling combined with tea drinking – performed (of course) whilst wearing oversized shorts! Although based on today’s (Sunday) session it might be a simple combination of every cardio station we have managed to accumulate in the gym!
Before I go much further, don’t forget about the ‘MAY 2K’ – a little mini-challenge which involves each of us having a go at doing our fastest 2km time on either the ROWER or the SKI-erg. And writing that time down on the white-boards inside the office of the gym (kind of in the way so many people had a go at the 1-hour bike challenge last year). Hopefully (given I want to run this throughout the month) we will have people having a few ‘cracks at it’ to try and improve their time over the month. At the end of the month, we will do a raffle up for all participants (so your 8-minutes of work will be your entry ‘ticket’) and award a prize pack of some sort…that’s all in the details but man-o-man it is gonna be good! As an aside, my time is ‘on the way’ – unfortuntately the flu knocked me around last week and an 8-minute, flat-out cardio effort was a bit beyond me…I am hopeful that this week will be MY week though!
This will sound a bit stupid but ‘training’ (aka ‘going to the gym’ is a skill. And it is a skill that improves when you do it regularly and CONCENTRATE whilst you do it. I know, I know – I have been know to say that at least half of the battle is ‘just showing up’ – and that is also kinda the truth. But when you treat your training with the same casual air that you use to order your morning coffee, you are not going to get the outcomes that you are looking for.
As an example of what I mean, I am going to use one of my football examples. At the start of this season, I put together some ‘how to’ videos for the players to use for their skil;ls ‘practice’ (aka training). There was (well, there is) a kicking video and a ‘hands’ video. If this example of football isn’t resonating with you, think instead of each video as being related to the maths work you did at high schools – one video is for ‘basics’ (imagine arithmetic fundamentals like multiplication tables) and the other is for trickier stuff (imagine algebraic equations).
The idea with the videos was that the players would spend 20-minutes each day on their skills ‘practice’ (maths practice) and – in theory – benefit from that. I guess taking the maths example, I wonder if you would think that doing your ‘exercise’ once per week would yield better outcomes than doing it 3x per week? Whether you think 3x per week would be better than 5x per week? Whether 5x per week would be better than every day? The answer in each instance – and I am pretty confident of this – is NO.
I actually think what I am saying here makes almost TOO much sense. But for some reason, we never seem to want to talk about the simple fact that ‘practicing’ more is going to lead to ‘better outcomes’ (and so is training more).
On an ‘unrelated’ note, I have a couple of players who have yet to play a game of footy this year (not selected) and when I asked them how often they had been doing their skills practise they said ‘I don’t know – every now and again’. When I asked them how that was working out for them, they really didn’t have much of a response.
In short, frequency of training MATTERS. I know when you first start out at the gym that coming along twice per week seems like a LOT. And if your baseline is ‘ZERO’ sessions, it IS a lot. But as time goes by – if you want to keep improving and getting better – performing better, being faster, feeling stronger, improved core, more ‘resilient’ (less injuries and ‘niggles’) then you need to ‘up it’. 3-4 times each week will be the minimum you want to get in once you are ‘rolling’…and not 3-4 times per week for a few months (that wont do anything) but a LIFETIME habit that has you ‘training’ 3-4 times each week. Again – I don’t want to be critical of anyone because I believe in giving full. credit to EVERYONE who is taking the time to make it into the gym, but a training program that is 1-2 times MAX each week is not going to lead to improvement…at the absolute MOST it will lead to ‘not getting worse’. 3-4 times each week with occasional 5+ session weeks? That’s how you plough ahead. It sucks I know but it’s the truth.
‘STUFF’ takes practise and ‘STUFF’ takes work. And practise and work take time. If you want to get better at anything – Maths, football, driving (Marshall is doing his ‘L’-plates at the moment), guitar, boxing, lifting weights – you have to commit time and energy to DOING IT. And that’s how you get better.
That’s it. Don’t forget the May2K – and I will see you in the gym,
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