Just had a great workout! A circuit of kettlebells, resistance stretching, jump rope and Tai Chi ball drills … now approaching 7 decades, training is more fun than ever. Years of contact sports can exact a toll, but it also becomes the impetus for learning how to heal. The aging process tends to soften the rigidity in mind and body, when you get the hang of it.
Sports were my backdoor into the medical profession … it just seemed like a natural progression at the time. I believe a history of intense athletic training should be weighted more than straight A’s for prospective med students. If you want to see stressed-out, less-than-healthy people go to a medical seminar, conventional or alternative. Most doctor-types have never fully inhabited their own body … doesn’t make sense in my world.
I always wanted to be a sports doc, but events took me in an unanticipated direction. Chronic degenerative health issues comprised the bulk of my practice. I suppose it’s what I needed to learn. Some clients along the way were purists in one particular mode of dietary belief and such … more attention to what went into their mouth than what came out of it, as they say. No room for deviation in any case. In hindsight they were the hardest nuts to crack … too much mental at the expense of old-fashioned running, jumping and playing.
An athlete must first envision a goal before the body obeys. The good ones figure it out … imagination followed by any pro-active effort necessary to ground the dream. Discipline and work become empowered passion. Experience refines the process, as body and mind out-picture the attributes of balanced training … flexibility, power and endurance.
Here’s a few training tips that we’ll greatly embellish in future writings, and podcasts. I’ll add a few of my favorite links to people I personally favor:
- Non-Linear Movements are always superior for a more diverse stimulation of muscles and neural-networks. In other words, they translate better to real life and sport.Examples: Kettlebells, Crossrope, Tai Chi Ball training and, of course, many sports.
- Cross-Training makes use of varied training techniques to target similar areas and skills. Results are superior, and repetitive movement injuries are reduced.Examples: Speed training can be alternated with intervals, hill running, plyometrics etc.; power is better developed by interchanging barbell, kettlebell and free body techniques; cycle active and static flexibilty techniques to keep muscles pliable, but not overly elastic.
- Whole Body Movements require the coordination of multiple muscle groups, as opposed to isolation techniques common to body building, and conventional gym machines.Examples: The kettlebell get-up, Olympic lifting, martial arts training and most sports.
- Get Outside whenever possible!
I rarely go to public gyms these days … tortured faces watching the treadmill timer, while others are preoccupied with sneaking a selfie in the mirror. Health is an inner state, not an acquisition … and, it should definitely not be confused with fitness alone. Routines of tedious repetition fueled by should’s and what if’s may just be telling you something about your life. Think with the heart of an athlete, and let your training mirror life as you intend. Above all … keep it fun.