Several weeks ago the staff at CPC and a handful of other lucky individuals were treated to an in-service presented by Chris Nentarz a Physical Therapist, Performance Specialist, and Master Instructor for TRX based out of Buffalo, NY. He spoke to the topic Reconditioning the Injured Athlete and shared this thoughts on how as, coaches and therapists we can take our athletes to the next level while still working around and with the confines of an injury. While what much of what he was presenting wasn’t new information it was just being presented in a new light, with new context, and for me with an audience of endurance athletes and CPC subscribers in mind.
The in-service hit home on several points for me but the biggest was developing and working hard to establish a Performance Mindset. Regardless if injury is present the need to create an environment that allows for daily, weekly, monthly, and annual success is be the recurring theme. While you may assume that the idea of a performance based mindset only applies to the 18 Maple or EDGE athletes that the umbrellaed staff of CPC coaches you would be wrong. A Performance Mindset is needed more and more each day as we as individuals continue to push the envelope of our own physical performance.
A Performance Mindset requires thought and attention to the little things. It’s about
being committed to your overall health and life long performance.
The first quarter of 2018 was a reflection of how just how far our subscriber base is willing push their physical limits. Class participation has trended toward the harder hitting and more intense classes. The challenge of completing a 6am Metabolic Mash-Up, Rouge Boot Camp, or the newly added PIQ or FUBAR classes has been accepted. It’s not uncommon to see many of our subscribers in for not just one, but two, sometimes three or more classes a week. Layer in additional training being done throughout the week, One on One coaching, endurance training, being a professional, and a parent and you now have a full week of physical and mental demand on the body that begins to take its toll. The ultimate goal behind all of this is PERFORMANCE. The desire for classes to feel easier, moving to the next color kettlebell, getting your heart rate to recover faster, or making it to your kids lacrosse game and being present not just there. And, yes, there are the added benefits of physical appearance and if you’re me, being able to eat that extra spoonful of peanut butter because you just crushed a 60 minute PIQ class.
A Performance Mindset requires thought and attention to the little things. Why you ask? Because, it’s a lifestyle change. It isn’t just getting up and getting after it each day. It’s about being committed to your overall health and life long performance. Below are several principles that I feel are the most important when trying to develop and instill a Performance Mindset
Be An Individual - I am a FIRM believer in this. 18 Maple Endurance Training’s mission is based on this. Everyone responds to training differently. What one can tolerate another can not. Basing your training weight, class schedule, or exercises on others without taking into consideration how YOU are feeling and responding to training will only result in performance that could be sub-par. Do what works best for you, your body, and ultimately your performance.
Train Smarter, Not Harder - The more weight used, the more miles covered, the higher the heart rate should mean that you are creating an optimal performance environment. Not always. It is true, that to create training adaptations you need to stress your body ie. weight, miles, higher work intensities, etc. Repeated stress can lead to a plateau, injury, or worse overtraining. Step back and consider how you structure your training week. Are you repeatedly doing the same movement patterns under load or for time? Is most of what you do in a singular plane of motion? How often do you toss in an unloading week just to change up your class routine and work in more rotation or anti-rotation based exercises? If you are seeing the same routine and same movements day after day, week after week you may be doing more harm than good. More is not better. Harder is not smarter. Shake up your schedule for a week. Your body, mind, and PERFORMANCE will thank you.
Recover & RELOAD - This could be a blog on it’s own because it is that critical to your performance. Unfortunately, it is the biggest piece to performance that is pushed to the side and ignored. Developing your Performance Mindset requires attention to recovery. I’m not going to lie, this is the hardest to manage but a little will go a long way. Life has a way of trying to hijack every minute of free time you have to give. Developing your performance mindset will lock that time in as yours and dedicated to your overall health and performance. Try giving 5-10 minutes of Trigger Point time after class to the major muscle groups you just worked. While you’re rolling hydrate and reload your body with a post-workout shake or snack. You can also mobile order your coffee to grab on the fly. ;) At the end of the night set aside 5-10 minutes of quiet time for yourself before bed to reflect on the day and allow your body to return to (or try to find) a state of calm. And, if you read Rob’s blog last week you’ll know just how important sleep is to your health and performance. Just by setting aside 10-20 minutes of your day to Recovery you’ve begun to create an environment and a mindset that will allow you to achieve peak performance.
Regardless of what you’re training for your ultimate goal should be to train for lifelong fitness and a body that allows you to do so. I challenge you to step back and look at your own training. See what you’re doing through a different lense and develop more of a performance mindset. By developing habits that instills recovery and promotes a positive but individualized training environment I can assure you your performance will improve now and long into the future.