Often within my training, I’ll leave the gym having set some major personal records. During the session, I felt like I could accomplish just about anything.
My confidence begins to soar, and I start to think that within the year I’ll be competing alongside Mariusz Pudzianowski and taking the title of the World’s Strongest Man.
However, the next week, I feel like I have the physical strength and abilities, of a pubescent boy who regulates most of his free time to playing video games.
This roller coaster of abilities is the reasoning why the entire training process must be periodized, towards peaking the Superman type performances for the important times.
This is the art of developing athletes.
But when looking at the day to day process, how can the training be regulated for the state or preparation of the athlete’s abilities that day?
Ideally, every trainee would be in touch deeply with their physical and mental being. While that may sound too ‘deep’ for some, the idea couldn’t be any truer. When the athlete can understand the state of their mind and body, they can better regulate the stressors that their body is receiving. This is the principle of Self Regulation.
Even the best coaches and trainers, (though some new technologies can close this gap), are taking educated guesses when deciding the training load for the day ahead.
Unfortunelty, it takes a great deal of time to develop those personal connections, and often times, even when those connections have been made, the user can often override them due to their own stubbornness. I am guilty of this VERY often. Sort of a, do as I say not as I do situation.
I can’t count the number for times I have known better to not continue on when something was giving me pain, but I pushed through it, thinking it wouldn’t affect me. Boy, I am more often wrong than I am right.
I am sure you can relate to this.
Young athletes and strength enthusiasts are often the ones who fall victim to this problem, but it certainly is not left absent by the savvy vets. The younglings just have the benefit of incredibly quick recovery capabilities, the lack of accumulated damage from many years of abusive training, and a reduced overall intensity experiences during each training session. Because of this, they are able perform at a high relative level more often.
Thus, unless you are someone much smarter than I in regards to cutting it short when you don’t have “it”, a combination of self regulation and coach regulation are needed.
However, for this to truly work, the athlete must be completely upfront with their preparedness for that day and the coach must have a great ability in reading body language to truly determine when to call it quits, or reduce the loading of the day, or when to press on.
Think Big and Best Wishes,