Training with purpose and intention:
Longevity is something that we talk about with our clients daily. Longevity to us, means training for health, fitness, performance and wellness, not just today, but in 10, 20, 30 years. We like to use fitness to express this. We believe that there are no short term fixes, no secrets, no easy way out, rather training with intention and focus for years to be healthy and fit. We say this from our experience, Sara and I have both been involved in fitness and sport for our entire lives. There has been times where we have searched for the quick fix, only to be disappointed. We have practiced, researched and continue to coach individuals that have health and fitness goals. The number one message we send people is that results take real time and you better enjoy the journey.
Training with intention is something I have been discussing with some of my clientele as of late. Do you go through your training sessions just to get the work done, or do you use it as a time to learn more about yourself? We encourage all our clientele to be very mindful of what they are doing in their training. It teaches them a lot about themselves and ensures that you are trying to get better.
A common conversation I have with some of my individual program design clients is understanding yourself and knowing yourself. Do you know how long it will take you to row that 500m row in a workout that is primarily aerobic? What was your pacing on the AirBike when you were doing 30/30 repeats? Do you just go through the training, grunting, sweating and yelling but aren’t actually mindful with a purpose?
I think with beginners in fitness, there is a lot to be said with getting the work done, showing up consistently, putting in the time, making good choices and being proud of exercising consistently for the first time. As you get more experience, those things are all VERY important, but do you have specific goals for each training session? Do you have an idea where you can finish in a workout that is maybe for time? How many rounds you will get in the AMRAP? All these specific daily goals are very important. It ensures that you are being mindful, learning and really focusing on your progress.
If there is something Sara and I can teach people of the world training for health, fitness and performance, is that it goes way deeper than just “exercising”. Are you paying attention to your movement quality? Do you have goals with how you would like to perform the movement? Do you see yourself training in 5 years? 10 years? 20 years? At Southwest Strength, we don’t exercise, we train. We have purpose, we have goals and we know ourselves. This is a learning process that takes time, but it is a part of the journey.
The reason we don’t believe in quick fixes is because if you ask someone who tried a quick fix and saw results, then ask them what they are doing currently. I can almost guarantee you they gained the weight back, stopped seeing progress and hit a plateau in their training. I can honestly say the reason that happened is because they were only after quick fix. They didn’t have any other reason to get up in the morning and stay motivated.
The longer I coach, the more I believe how valuable it is to move well. Movement has become something I have been digging deeper into. If there is something we as humans can ALWAYS strive to do better is MOVEMENT. I commonly call athletes out when they go chasing a PR with shitty technique. I will remind them that you may have PR’d today, but can you PR in 6 months with that same technique? Yes, there are times when I sacrifice technique for a little weight on the bar, but deep down I know if I am not moving well, performing the movements efficiently I probably can’t make much more progress doing so.
We train mixed map sets in our gym. Mixed Map Sets – stands for Max Aerobic Power. Mixed meaning mixed modal – Wall Balls, KBS, Box Jumps, Rowing, Burpees, DU’s, etc. When we write those movements on the board in a workout, do you have a plan of how long each of those sets are going to take? Here is an example:
10 sets @ high effort/85-90%:
15 Cal Rowing
10 Box Jump Overs @ 20/24”
10 KBS @ 16kg
rest same as work
Mix and match work order per set
When you read that training, you should have an understanding of what is sustainable for you to complete the work. You should have an understanding of your rower pacing, burpee pacing, box jump overs and KBS pacing. From just reading the workout, you should know how long each set should and could take you. This all comes down to KNOWING YOURSELF and training with intention.
I believe that if you go through a training piece like this with intention, having a plan and goal of how long the sets should take you, you are getting WAY more out of it than just going through the motions. Also, this will allow you to hold yourself accountable to your times, your movements and your intensity that you attack the workout with.
Knowing yourself and training with intention is one of the most important pieces to a person’s long term progress. We always talk about the long game. We want clientele to invest in themselves, really enjoy the process of trying to improve and train for their entire life, not just a few moments here and there. In my opinion, someone that is healthy and fit is a person that moves well, eats well and trains at least 3x/week for a VERY long time! As we get older things change, priorities, health, flexibility, movement, etc. We still believe that people can strive to be the best version of themselves. To us, this is longevity. To us, this is health over a lifetime.