Recovery- Part 2

Sleep and Athletic Performance

Sleep is one of the most important tools in the recovery toolbox. For athletic performance appropriate sleep will optimize strength adaptations, split second decision making, and technical capacity for sport specific movement. Utilizing sleep is most beneficial when we create consistent patterns in behavior around this prolonged rest period.

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Recovery - Part: 1

Go! Go! Go!

That’s an overwhelming mantra in the fitness industry.

But as we take into account the affects of fitness, it is important to note, that adaptations from exercise need time to manifest. It’s not only important that we manage our workouts, it’s just as important that we manage our recovery. Without proper recovery, the goals we work so hard for can be halted or impeded. Thee are several ways to manage your recovery, but 2 of the most important are sleep and nutrition.

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The Larger Picture

The Larger Picture


“This is it!! This one exercise will change your life,” or Nah. In fitness, rarely does one exercise make all the difference by itself. When one exercise fits within the context of the overall picture, it can have a large impact. As a fitness professional, I often get the question, “What exercise should I do for this…the best exercise?!” Exercise doesn’t work like that. Each exercise is a tool in the toolbox. Different tools can have the same result. Make sure you use the tool appropriately.

Here are a few tips in creating your own plan:

1)     Have an idea of your goal

2)     Brain storm exercises

3)     Be creative

4)     Have fun

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Creating Space - Part 2: Scheduled Chaos

Part 2: Scheduled Chaos

If you like structure, the thought of the unknown can be unnerving. However, it’s almost inevitable that something unintended will occur at some point in the schedule. Consider the following notion. Creating space for a disruption in your schedule can improve the efficiency of the schedule.

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Creating Space - Part 1 Free Spirit

Part 1 : Free Spirit

If you consider yourself a free spirit, the thought of a schedule or a routine can seem confining. “Who wants to stick to the same predictable routine day in and day out?” If you’re human, at some point in your life you’ve thought to yourself, “I’d like to do that, but I can’t find the time.” Think on this idea…Having some form of routine and predictability can create space for spontaneity.

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Respose & Reaction

Your First Response/Reaction

How often is your first response a string of thoughts that consider how bad something is

going to be or how many ways something won’t work? Let’s call this your first draft. If you’re

human, you can count on your first draft being rough (ha ha got ‘em ). Knowing that your

first draft/reaction can often be a rough draft is key to navigating through many of our

responses to new, adverse, or unknown circumstances. It is beneficial to ask yourself if your

first reaction is the most appropriate. - Jason Windley

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3 Fold Goals - Part 3

Part 3: Behavioral Goals

The third portion of the 3 Fold Goals approach is the behavior goal. After setting a

destination goal and determining the performance markers that will help you achieve the goal,

it’s critical to set the behavior patterns that will allow you to be successful. In a school setting,

if your goal is to get an A in the class that means your class test need to be within range. A

behavior goal that you might double down on is ensuring you have 7-8 hours of sleep at night.

It’s hard to achieve a goal if your habits and behaviors don’t match the destination. Set

your destination goal, determine the level of performance needed to achieve that goal, and

map your behavior to establish the habits to help you reach your destination.

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3 Fold Goals - Part 2

Part 2- Performance Goals

In the 3 fold goals approach it helps to start with Destination Goal. In the email, 3 fold goals part 1, we mentioned destination goals have a set end point and a plan. When pursuing the plan, it is important to have a standard of performance for each part of the plan. Performance goals will happen within the timeline of the plan and indicate the nature in which each step should be pursued.

For example, in weights this may be a percentage of weight lifted. In running, this may be a heart rate zone. In school, this may be chapters read.

Essentially, there needs to be a level of performance that appropriately prepares you for the desired outcome. The level of performance should be anticipated and planned.

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3 Fold Goals Part 1- Destination Goals

3 Fold Goals Part 1- Destination Goals

Part 1: Destination Goals

Setting goals is a common suggestion among everyone. One of the greatest risks of setting goals is not missing the mark, but making the mark and not knowing how to adjust to the new standard. In the last email I suggested a 3 fold approach. Using 3 different, but overlapping goals. Destination Goals, Performance Goals and Behavior goals. Today we will look at destination goals.

Destination Goals are the goals you set that have an exact end point. An example of a destination goal would be: weight lost, max weight lifted, or a specific time on a run. Often destination goals will have a timeline and a plan associated with the goal. Once the goal has been accomplished, you can say "I did it". - Jason Windley

What's Next?

What’s Next?

When you've worked really hard to accomplish a goal, once you've achieved a goal there could be an anticlimactic lull period. Your thoughts, "I did it! That's incredible...Now what?" The obvious answer is to keep going in the direction you were going. But where will that take you? Dilemmas...

When setting goals, try a 3 fold approach:

1) Destination goal

2) Performance Goal

3) Behavior Goal

Motivation vs. Discipline

Motivation vs. Discipline

All over the internet there are memes designed to motivate and inspire action. For the many motivational posts, there are just as many "motivation is crap" posts. They tout "You don’t need motivation, you need discipline." Sooooo... Which is it? Do you need motivation or discipline? The answer is BOTH! Motivation can inspire discipline, but instilled discipline keeps you going when your motivation lacks luster. – Jason Windley

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Failure

“Plans fail, actions fail, but you are not a failure.”

When we set out to achieve there is always an inherent risk, that we may not accomplish what we set out to do. We should not use our failed plan or actions to define ourselves. The most defining moment is in our response to undesirable outcomes. When faced with an adverse situation, get your chest up, chin up, and proceed despite nervousness. If your outcome is less than desirable, take a step back, assess the recent attempt, adjust your approach. – Jason Windley

New Year's Resolutions? But then "LIFE HAPPENED..."

New Year's Resolutions? But then "LIFE HAPPENED..."

You set a few goals a couple of weeks ago, and they were going well.  After 3.5 weeks you started sliding back into old habits. This tends to be your calling card. But now you’re tired of going back and forth.  Why do you get derailed when you start new goals?

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Several excuses include:

1)      Life gets in the way.

2)      It’s a bad time.

3)      I don’t have time.

In the fitness industry, we’re quick to say “Stop making excuses, just do it.” Or the infamous “You just don’t want it bad enough.” Aka, “Your why is not greater than you excuses.” There are times where these are legitimate gripes from fitness professionals. There are also times where you may not really understand.  Let’s try to clear some things up. Ask yourself a couple of questions…

1)      When did you start?

Starting a goal during a down time or break in your routine is very common. The idea is to start now and keep it up. As time progresses and pressure comes, your momentum will carry you through.

The hang up…

If you start at a down time and fail to address the behaviors that mess you up during a busy season, or “when life happens” you’ve set yourself up for disaster.

The Fix…

Start in a down time or break, but assess your busy time and take note of disruptive behaviors. Understand that life is more regular than you think.  If your co-workers go out to eat regularly, you need to plan for that one week to a month in advance. If your kids play sports, you need to plan your goals to move through it. If your job has meetings  every week make the plan fit your meetings.

Yes, life happens, but most of what you call unexpected is quite predictable. Don’t set your goals passively. Plan, prepare, proceed.

2)      Why don’t I have time? Or Why is this a bad time?

This is always an interesting conversation. Consider the following:  The reason you don’t have time, is probably the reason your health is an issue.  Without taking time to work on yourself , you allow time for yourself to breakdown.

3)      Is it time or inconvenience?

When you set goals to make changes, you have to take into account, some behavior patterns have to change.

-          If the gym opens at 5, but you don’t have to be a work until 9, -Is it time or inconvenience?

-          If you can’t work out in the morning, but have an hour for lunch – Is it time or inconvenience?   

-          If your friends go out to eat, but you have to prepare your food - Is it time  or inconvenience?

Time is one thing, but if making changes was a convenient endeavor, you would have done it already. Accept that the process may be inconvenient, and create new behaviors.

When you start new goals, be aware that it’s not going to always run smoothly. Remember, you have a lot to do with how well it will go. Ask yourself important questions addressing the behavior patterns you use as excuses.  Once you’ve done a legitimate audit of your “life happening”, plan, prepare & pursue your goals.   

Adult Athletes-What You Need to Consider

Adult Athletes-What You Need to Consider

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A little bit of competition can be fun. Sport isn’t just for the kids. However, if you’re an adult competitor there are a few more aspects of life you have to consider.

First, let’s define the adult competitor. The adult competitor competes in an event that does not produce their primary source of income. This is a broad definition, but the one binding thing about this definition is the fact that each athlete will have to deal with life before sport i.e. world, family, finances. Etc. 

While there are varying degrees of competition ranging from weekend warrior to nationally competitive and semi pro athletes, I will contend that each level should maintain a training program outside of the primary sport. This should include forms of strength training, mobility, cardiovascular, and recovery work.  Here are a few things to consider:

FREQUENCY OF COMPETITIONS

For many adult athletes, there is no regular practice schedule, so competition day is the only movement they get. Movement patterns in competitive sports can be performed at intense levels, but are often repetitive. Repetitive movement patterns without consideration for opposing patterns can lead to imbalances and injury. Training programs should include a goal of balancing the body and improving the body’s structural integrity that allows the body to perform and decrease chances of injury.

INTENSITY OF COMPETITIONS

With most adult leagues, there are divisions that help regulate playing intensity. Depending on your level of intensity, the body as to be able to handle the effort, impact, and/or force put on the body by the demands of the sport. Training programs should match the intensity of the level of play.

WORK & SOCIAL SCHEDULE

The most common factor among non-professional adult competitors is the fact that all of them survive by something other than their competitive sport. With that being said, each athlete has to create a system to prioritize the important factors of life. If a project is due at work, sport takes the backseat. If a family function arises, sport takes the backseat. Programming should be time efficient and consider work and social schedules.

AGE & RELATIVE ABILITY

The body changes and responds differently as we get older. While a specific age doesn’t set the bar for changes across all athletes, all athletes have to consider the changes to strength, ability, and recovery as they mature. Train programs should take into account the athletes age and current ability level.

Getting Started...Again (Part 2)

Getting Started...Again (Part 2)

Only you can determine how committed you want to be. Sometimes we tell ourselves we're committed to a decision, and we fully believe we're committed. However, everyone else finds out how...

Getting started...Again. (Part 1)

Getting started...Again. (Part 1)

Going through my routine was slightly different though. As I got dressed, I noticed my pants didn't button right away. It wasn't really noticeable until...

Ideal Body Weight

Ideal Body Weight

Your ideal body weight is the body weight and condition that allows your body to function the most efficiently. It's not always a specific number. If you find a number, that number may change. When determining a weight loss goal, make sure you have a plan and allow yourself space to make adjustments as you progress.

Nutrition: "The Only Piece of Advice You'll Ever Need."

Nutrition: "The Only Piece of Advice You'll Ever Need."

When determining what route you're going to take for nutrition, it helps to set your goals first. Then it helps to find the principles that most appropriately address the goal. Finally, determine what tools you'll use to make your progress.

"Determine your goal and deconstruct the process."

Lessons from Lifting Part 2 - Making Adjustments

Since the start of Bodyshop Athletics X, I've learned a lot about running a business. It's been fun, but it is a up and down. There are times when things are going great, and before you have time to smile, something else just went sideways. That's not a complaint. Of course it would be awesome if things were always up, but that's not realistic. I get a kick out of learning, adjusting, planning and overcoming.  But in order to do that, you have to be willing to start and adjust as you move along. Bodyshop X has had to do that. Start, and adjust as we move along.

The weight lifting parallel-

When I started weightlifting, I thought I would get it right away. There are a lot of things I've done, that I was able to pick up fairly easily. Weightlifting is not one of them. But the key is I started it. As I've progressed as a weightlifter, my start position has changed numerous times. I've adjusted my hand position. The catch in my jerk has changed. I haven't been lifting long, so I've had conversation and trained with other lifters and coaches who have lifted longer than I have. It was reassuring to hear, that those changes are fairly acceptable. Because there are so many moving parts, as one area improves it requires an adjustment in others. ie, I started out with a narrow snatch grip because I was not strong in over head position and my mobility was terrible. I'm not tall, but by weightlifting standards I'm long, so my snatch grip position should have been wider to decrease the distance the bar has to travel. At a seminar I attended, Coach Wilkes, suggested I move my snatch grip out wider. It was difficult in the beginning, but the adjustment has been beneficial.

Both scenarios (among others) have made the point clear to me. Being perfect shouldn't be the barrier to starting something. Be aware that consistent change is going to occur. As time passes you get stronger, learn new techniques, and new strategies.  Applying the adjustments can some times seem tough, but worth the effort.