Thursday, July 8, 2010

Improving Training Sessions

Olympic lifter Shi Zhiyong.
Bad ass video of him here.

I was originally suppose to post Tuesday or Wednesday, but didn't get around to writing (wrote this Wednesday night actually). Sorry if anyone was expecting a post earlier in the week!

The title is pretty self-explanatory, but how do we go about improving our training sessions? I'll share a few ways I use to make workouts flow smoothly.

This is aside from all the proper progressions, programming, dynamic warm-ups, warm-up sets prior to work sets, and workout nutrition. Those are all straightforward - at least to me - and can be found through one's own research or consulting a professional/someone not an idiot.
1) Mindset: Calm

I picked up this from a training video of Olympic weightlifters (which I can't find). Although, the difference is they do it between sets of maximal lifts.
  • You're lifting today at noon. Ok good, but before you start your routine go lie down somewhere peaceful for 10-15 minutes. Relax your mind.
  • You don't need to close your eyes. Simply leave the hectic-causing aspects of your life away from exercise. Keep the stress outside the weight room and get mind & body in ready-mode to lift.
  • If it's nighttime or you're so tired you'll fall asleep as soon as you lie down, better skip it and just listen to a little music.

2) Recognizing: Anxiousness
  • Busy day? In a rush? Chances are your workout for the day will seem like a chore or time consumer more than anything else.
  • Lifting in a rush sucks. I prefer my summer sessions opposed to during the school year because I don't have to worry about being somewhere right after I'm done. Don't look at the time when you're working out. You want your attention in the weight room and not worrying about other matters. Exercise is stressful enough on the body as it is, don't add more to the fire.
  • If you have more important priorities then either skip working out altogether or cut down on rest times, reps, sets, or exercises.
3) Awareness: Execution
  • It's easy to make each exercise a mindless repetition of movements or to do it just for the sake of being done. The problem? We ignore producing clean crisp reps and instead get sloppy execution that reinforce poor movement patterns.
  • Ignore/ditch the music player and the mirror: They distract more than you think. Feel how your body is performing the exercise and if it hurts, is awkward, or can be improved upon. Make small adjustments to see how they change.
  • Having trouble targeting what needs to be worked on? Close your eyes. Now you've eliminated any visual distractions and can focus solely on how your body is moving.
There you have it. 3 tips to incorporate and improve your own training. If you try them out, let me know how it goes.

As for myself, excuse me. I'm going to go lay down.


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