Training presents us with a weird dichotomy. If you are training too easy, it feels like nothing is being done. If you train too hard, recovery time takes too long. Training too hard comes with its own set of values. Loving the hard training but there is that one little squeak that tells you this is waaay too hard. So you shove that little whiny you in some deep dark corner in your brain, and yell I’m hardcore! I’m a fucking UNDER ARMOUR ad! If there is a camera right now, this would be my montage! KNEEL BEFORE ZOD!
I’m a god among men. Kneel and worship before my abs.
I have done hard training in my life. From doing Thai boxing. Training for a half Marathon. MetCons, Oly lifts, WOD’s yada-yada obligatory masturbatory resume here. But there is NOTHING that saps my will power and focus and no amount of slogans, shouting or positive reinforcement can make me break than running in a wet rain snow environment. I’ll do it, but I will bitch and moan like a cat in heat. I’ve narrowed it down to having wet and cold slushy feet and cold rain coming down my back. Last night was one of those moments that I wished so much that I had a car. Don’t get me wrong, I tried to power through but you hit that point where you are just miserable and running faster isn’t helping because you have about 12 lbs of groceries on your backpack. On the way back I stepped into an ice/snow patch and my foot came through. Suddenly, I’m ankle deep in cold, cold water. FAAACK. So I try and boot it home ASAP. At the cross walk a car was too close to the curb and “did somebody order a shower?” At this point, If I got mugged, death would be instantaneous for the individual.
Rain/Snow vs Me
Thinking back now, we spend so much of our lives training in safe and warm confines. No type of training will really prepare you for lifes’ dekes. You train hard for when you step out of the gym.
I dunno where this gym is but if they can train like that with no chafing, I want in.
Hard training gives the you mental fortitude to just give ‘er. And to keep going knowing that you have the capacity to endure. Because that movie montage in your head? Doesn’t end after the buzzer.
Yours In Fitness
When I was competing a lot in Taekwondo, a rolled ankle is pretty common occurrence. If it was a meet, you can bet that to immobilize the ankle, tape is the go to gadget! After ice, tape that ankle tight! Even now, when I’m doing lifts, I tape my wrists especially when I (try) do gymnastic ring workouts.
As a tool, there is no greater utilization than the lowly sports tape. Whether it is for recovery, training, performance and injury prevention, I use it for any of these things.
Case in point for Thai boxing. In this sport, even wearing shin guards, shin to shin clashes are constant and is always a guarantee. When a hematoma happens, you end up with this tiny bump on your shin, that will always hurt. Tiny bone fragments are chipped off leaving a divot in your shin causing the bone growth to have a “bump”. To prevent this, as soon as possible, tape the shin tight for a couple of days until it heals relatively flat and even.
My student Kim from last summer. I told her to tape it 6 months too late!
It was more so used in the last summer Olympics when a lot of the athletes were using kineso tape for everything. Results have been varied in its use but personally it has helped stabilize my wrist and knees. My knees are both shot from Patello femoral syndrome. It still hurts but the pain does not get worse if I use the tape. Kinesio Tape is made from cotton, so it is breathable and does not irritate the skin.
Some have found creative uses for it:
Still others have gone beyond its scope and branched to inter-specie:
Although, by far, this is the best use :
Yours In Fitness
In our pursuit to become “anything”, sometimes we forget the reason why we do it. Ambition and happiness should go hand in hand but are/is sometimes overridden by one or the other. To have ambition, is to strive, to perfect, and to succeed. They key is finding that measure of success.
Are you ok, with the result? Can you still improve? If so, will you be miserable? Is the misery worth it? All these questions, are easy enough to answer, but really hard to actualize.
Anchor your vision with temperance and reality and boost that with confidence and persevere. Take care not fly too close to sun. To fly freely in space with boundless heights of ambition will only leave you falling back to to the ground. Try to look down every once in awhile. You might find that contentment was already at your feet.
Yours In Fitness.
My first job ever was a fitness instructor. It fell into my lap and I thought “Wow, what an awesome gig! Working out AND getting paid”. Then I went to the next step, did my personal training course and that was my start. All in all, I’ve been training people close to 15-20 years and I think it is one of the most under-appreciated and under-regulated profession. Consider this, you can be a certified fitness anything after a weekend course, it’s not that surprising.
Finding a good and honest personal trainer is actually pretty hard. Primarily because they are under contract to sign up as many people and sell memberships. Sifting through the bullshit is the HARDEST part. Here is a couple of things to watch out for :
1. Do not trust a personal trainer that gives you a cookie cutter workout. What works for one person might not work for you. Look at their clients. If they are prescribing the same workout to two disparate individuals, tell them to go back to Hogwarts for more schooling.
2. Run away if the person does not take into consideration what you want to accomplish. Run towards the person if they’re hot (Kidding! Only if they’re really hot!).
3. If they neglect a nutritional aspect in conjunction to your regimen, kick him/her in the balls. Diet is the biggest contributor to outward body changes. As Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin, the lawyer and gastronome said, “Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you what you are”.
Yours In Fitness.
Jay-sus. This is so functional.
I first met Jeff when I was at the lowest point in my life. I had no motivation to train or really do anything remotely exercise-y (it’s a real word, google it). Anyway, he dragged me to swimming, diving, weights and kickboxing. It was painful at times but absolutely welcome. I would ebb and flow but it was already there so even though I might slide a bit I know enough to come back to working out. Then there came a point when Jeff decided to do a fight. He trained his ass off and subsequently winning the fight with a knee to gut TKO. After that, tried to get back but it just wasn’t there any more. Fast forward to finishing Uni, he got married and now kids on the way, and he said it was the same feeling as before. He knows he needs to exercise but, as he says, the drive has dwindled. When I was at that point, I really felt like I was failing all the time.
My own drive waned also when I got to Toronto after Uni. Found a gym and started doing my own workouts. It was a long slow climb to see that light but I’m almost there. Now, my motivation comes from striving to be better at what I am trying to achieve. Internal motivation plus really good workout partners push you like no other. Fitness is a continuum and not a pass/fail paradigm. If there is anything to I can impart, daily things compound to bigger achievements taken as an aggregate.
So here is my challenge to my former student, my friend, and my brother: the 3 x a week daily 10.
10 Arm Rotations left and right.
10 Power Jacks or Jumping Jacks.
10 Quick Toe Touches.
10 Body Twists.
3 rounds of :
5 Strict Pull-ups
10 Air Squats
5 V – Ups
Finish with a 30 sec Mountain Climbers.
Do this for 3 weeks before you have anything in your belly in the a.m. I know life is busy but this only needs 15 minutes of your time.
Get back to it. 3 Weeks, Nak Muay.
Be Relentless, Like Fire.
So I read this article about women cannot physically do chin ups. You can read it http here pull-ups
This got me to thinking why is it so hard and to an extent they explained the boring bio-mechanics and weight to height to lever body something, something zzzzzzzzz.
I quote “Men and women who can do them tend to have a combination of strength, low body fat and shorter stature. During training, because women have lower levels of testosterone, they typically develop less muscle than men, Vanderburgh explained. In addition, they can’t lose as much fat. Men can conceivably get to 4 percent body fat; women typically bottom out at more than 10 percent.”.
Why stop there? If that is hard, then a muscle up or a rope climb would be next to impossible yet just youtube muscle up and women and there’s a ton of them out there.
Like anything else, a chin up/pull up is a benchmark achievement. To get there though, you have to be able to do a couple of things first. Strong core, stronger biceps, even stronger back and lighter body mass. I put it akin to doing an Olympic snatch. It involves more than strength. Shoulder mobility, low back, ankle, hip flexibility are but a few things you will need.
So don’t be discouraged! Most studies need to be debunked and disproven anyway! As my old coach said, a strong mind is a strong body.
Yours In Fitness.
From the book “Every Woman’s Encyclopaedia” 1910-1912
*If swimming is one exercise that ought to be mastered because it may be the means of saving life in the future, rope climbing is another. Every boy and every girl should know how to climb a rope, and to descend easily and quickly from a height by means of a rope. It said “Every girl!”
So you are ready to try out a new exercise regimen! Good for you! Crazy Navy SEAL Insanity Fight Training! You did good but next day, OMFG you can’t walk. Can’t even wash your face. Had to roll out of bed instead of sitting up. What the hell happened?
In a nutshell, most Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS) happens during eccentric contraction of a muscle (think of the bicep muscle lengthening during a bicep curl).
Cryotherapy, stretching, homeopathy, ultrasound and electrical current modalities have demonstrated no effect on the alleviation of muscle soreness or other DOMS symptoms. Sometimes, Ibuprofen works but is dosage dependent and time sensitive.
So what to do? Caffeine to the rescue! Take a cup or two of java and wait for an hour or two and it will significantly, help with performance and attenuate soreness. Try it!