Stop kidding yourself, you’ve got stuff you don’t do well…
If you don’t agree, you just haven’t looked closely enough.
The physical stuff you don’t do well will eventually bite you. But, if you’re honest and make the effort, you can head things off at the pass before your body breaks down.
I’ve done it, and at some stage we all will have done it. And the older you get, the less you can get away with it! Avoidance is not the answer.
The problem is, we all naturally dislike stuff “we’re not good at”. But this is the stuff that brings balance to your body (in so many ways).
I’m not saying every session should be tortuous, but a little bit of every session should take you were you don’t want to go – because that’s where you need to go.
I started off today with a 6:30am gym session with my wife Deborah. She won’t mind me saying, but she’s got some issues! …Not mental ones (you could argue that point… she will mind me saying that), but rather some physical compensations that need attention.
By her own admission, Deborah is a creature of habit. She’s remarkably disciplined; sticking at a routine is a massive strong-point for her…
…but, she’s prone to going off-tangent over time.
Unchecked, little deviations creep in, and what was good exercise form becomes incrementally worse. Deborah needs watching and pulling back on-track regularly… and for while, I’ve not been much help there!
So, now I’m on it! But… Deborah doesn’t like it… she says (in her best Gollum voice), “But it hurtsss ussss…”
I’m “making” Deborah work on the things she struggles at. She’s working on opening up her chest and strengthening her scapular stabilisers, and generally getting better thoracic extension and overhead range of motion.
She’s reluctantly self-myofascial-releasing tight areas, opening up range of motion with distraction techniques, and loading these patterns to anchor the new range of motion.
This morning, my weapon of choice for this last part was… (drum roll)… the Turkish Get up!
…Deborah HATES the Turkish Get Up!
Why? Because she feels she’s “bad” at it.
Why? Because she’s tight in her shoulders and upper back!
…But I know after a few weeks, it’ll be her new favourite thing!
I’ve seen it with countless clients, and experienced it many times myself too… What you have to work the hardest at to achieve, you value the most. The payback is massive, but it just takes it little longer.
Coincidentally, this morning I also had a chat with Robert Napoli from Beast Technologies about velocity based training, and we got onto the topic of programming your own training.
Now Robert is a coach himself, and more than capable of putting together his own training programme, but knows that he just doesn’t do this productively for himself!
So Robert trains with his brother (also a coach), who specifies the training they both do in a session. This works, because Robert has to go places he might avoid if he had a free-reign himself – he knows and admits that!
Coaches need coaches too! Honest third-party reflection is GOLD!
Training that works on your shortcomings is PRICELESS!
If you want to get the most out of yourself, you need to be prepared to go at the things you don’t necessarily instantly enjoy. But stick with it, trust me, it’s so worth it.
Smuggle some of the “tough love” in amongst the stuff you enjoy to keep you balanced psychologically… And I’m not saying let your natural strengths slide and solely focus on your weaknesses, just that as always, a degree of balance is required.
Remember, once you achieve your goal, it takes much less effort to maintain it than it took to achieve it in the first place.
So think about it… What are your “issues”, and what are you doing about them?
Founder of Heatrick Strength and Conditioning
Don Heatrick is a family man from the UK, former mechanical design engineer, European Muay Thai silver medallist, former pro Thai boxer (ranked 4th in UK while aged 40-years), and now a podcast host and the go-to expert on Muay Thai performance training with over 25 years of coaching experience.
Don helps committed Thai boxers organise training for accelerated self development & Muay Thai performance.
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