Data Driven Performance testing is no new thing in fitness. From High School weight rooms to the Olympic Fields, we look to measure performance. As a Sports Science Student there are a number of variables that I can point to; from blood markers, muscle biopsies, and the most prevalent... Heart Rate Variability. Monitoring your heart rate has always been the gold standard for cardiovascular fitness assessment and training programs.
Success in Sport is defined by not just speed or strength. Underlying athleticism is in Position and Posture. The best athletes are those that can seamlessly perform a given task no matter the circumstances. Often this means having the utmost control over the position of the body in space. Isometric Training is crucial for developing the strength and flexibility necessary for optimal body control. The following are 5 Proven facts about Isometrics and why you need to be putting them in your training.
Each year in December I like to round up my thoughts, reestablish my center and focus on the short, medium and long term goals for the next year. In doing so I re-vist my 3 P's for success. I don't know exactly where or how I came up with them but If you ask anyone who has known me for a while they will likely tell you that I am as concerned with developing mental toughness as much as I am about Nutritional Health. That is what these three 'cornerstones' of success represent; a better grasp on who you are is the first step in developing true mental toughness!
It is no surprise that fitness and training can fall off the rails during the holidays. If you are like 90% of us, I feel like the days are busier now than they were when we chased every minute of summer. Much of the problem is not only the race to get ready for the upcoming holiday but we also have less hours of daylight which really can mess up your schedule and drive. But, we can always get a win if we plan our Nutrition. Here are 5 of my top tips you should use to be successful.
Put your Protein Shake down, stop instagramming your favorite cross fitter and listen up... Some day you are going to die. Thats right, I said it; some day the breath will leave your lungs, your heart will stop beating, your consciousness (as we know it, respective to your education and spirituality) will cease and your body will begin its process of reverting into the same materials from which it was created. This description MAY have startled you, you may have a sinking feeling in your stomach, you may have FEAR. But as humans focused on the transcendence of body and spirit (otherwise known as Athletes) we must not settle with a feeling but rather deduce the cause of the FEAR, and really pinpoint why we view our eventual demise with such trepidation?
Imagine You are flying 30,000 feet over my programming Template for a year. We are cruising, sipping cocktails and watching a Badass Tom Cruise Movie when we come into late Summer/ Fall. The Muscular Endurance that we strive for has been met, so the long Summer hikes, trail Runs and Mountain Biking Sessions can be dominated. We have built stability and capacity out of our primary movers like the Glutes, hamstring and Quads... But Now its time to get deeper, develop an inner strength that will not only round out your strength but can get you the top end speed you want.... its time for ADDUCTION.
Without going any further.... Which would you be? Flexible? OR Mobile?
As an athlete and Gym owner I hear the two Terms Flexibility and Mobility used with very little regard for differences. But there IS a huge difference and today I am going to shed light on this so YOU can change the way you think about your daily training. This under appreciated distinction is literally the linchpin of athletic performance. Have I peaked your interest? Lets get bendy today and develop a greater understanding of what it actually means to be a functional athlete.
Each morning as part of my daily Nutrition routine I eat a handful of Nuts with my coffee. To some that may sound quite out of the ordinary but starting the day with a good amount of fat allows me to 'break-my-fast' and get fuel my brain and body for morning training. As most of us, I am blessed with choices. Choosing which nut to fuel my morning with is sometimes a question so I thought I would dig into it a little bit more this week. Do I go with the walnut? A nut that I literally grew up on, coming from Linden CA where we lived on 12 acres of walnuts. Or the Almond? The creamy and dense nut that my grandfather and uncles grow and tend to be the kale of the burgeoning Nut business! Lets find out.
Are you savvy with the term 'being plastic'? This malleable substance is used to shape, bend, and form to anything that is asked of it. The goal of a a thoughtful yearly program design is to maintain plasticity throughout your meso cycles of Hypertrophy (muscle growth) as well as optimizing your Central Nervous System adaptations and recovery. To achieve the desired plasticity I have employed scientifically based formulas for building, peaking and tapering through the seasons. All focusing on intensity, load, and recovery.
For as long as I can remember I have said, "it isn't about how you are performing, its about how you are recovering". I have studied this 'chicken or the egg' conundrum in training for years. The debate about what we as coaches should put an emphasis on, expectations in the gym or expectations of the immune system. There is growing evidence from some of the best science minds in the world that your immune system is the key to athletic performance. As the focus shifts, so does the nutrition. And for this, we surprisingly find mushrooms hold treasures that have been yielding gold medal results for millennia.
I woke up this morning with the 1997 movie, Grosse Point Blank on my mind. If you are old enough to remember it, the scene Im thinking of is right before the High School reunion and John Cusack is stewing in his hotel room. In an anxious panic John picks up the phone and calls his Psychoanalyst and asks for help. His analyst (Alan Arkin) gives him the mantra to recite, "I am home in the ME, I am Rooted in the ME, This is ME Breathing...". Well, this classic centering mantra got me thinking about the concept of SELF DOUBT. This very human feeling is a hinderance that 99% of us have and if we can conquer it, the world will literally open up before us and goals can be met with force! Today lets dive in on understanding and moving past SELF DOUBT.