Can I let you in on a little secret? One little idea that has changed how I think, act and interact with the world. One that I remind myself about when I’m training, competing or just trying to get better inside and outside the gym. One little thought that I think will also change you.
The secret is this: there is no right way.
There is no one single right way to do anything. There is no set timeline to do it. There is no universal goal to achieve. You are not ahead of or behind anyone else.
There is just you, your goals, and your path to achieving those goals. It’s your journey. Whatever shape that journey takes is entirely up to you. All forward progress is progress if it is towards something that YOU want to achieve.
The progress of others does not matter. How anyone else is doing relative to you does not matter. Training is not win-lose or zero sum. For you to get better, someone else doesn’t need to get worse. What matters is whether you are doing what you can to keep improving to the best of your ability.
How freeing is that???!
Train hard. Recover harder. And stay focused on YOUR goals – they are the ones that matter to YOU.
Every athlete wants to get better, stronger, faster and improve! But what do you really need to make that happen? What does it take?
I can tell you what it doesn’t take. It doesn’t take hours-long workouts and killing yourself in the gym. It doesn’t take having the latest supplement or only eating all organic foods or severely restricting your diet. It doesn’t take having the fanciest mattress money can buy or spending hundreds of dollars on smart watches or gear. Your body won’t care if your mattress can heat and cool on demand if you’re only spending 6 hours a night in it. Nor will it care if your veggies are all organic if you rarely eat veggies in the first place!
Improving as an athlete means setting yourself up for success. At a minimum you need:
- enough training to cause your body to have to adapt and build
- enough nutrition to fuel your training AND rebuild afterwards, and
- enough sleep to recover and be ready for the next round of training!
Each aspect feeds into the others. Overtrained and under recovered? Your body can’t catch up with the demands and could get injured or even regress. Not enough training? There’s no incentive for your body to adapt to things it can already handle. Too little sleep or little food? You won’t be fully recovered from earlier training or ready to get the most of out the next session.
The key to to figure out what is enough for you – your body, your schedule and YOUR goals.
Step one to improving as an athlete is to figure out and master the basics. Once those are dialed in, then you can start to see whether you can improve with smaller factors – by training more, timing your nutrition or adding a supplement, upgrading your sleep quality. Focus on the 20% that will get you 80% of your results! We will cover each of these areas in upcoming posts – stay tuned.
Train hard. Recover harder. Repeat.