Mindset, Fitness, and Performance in Sport and Life
In part 1 of this series we talked about how a simple shift in perspective can transform your health, fitness, and performance. This applies to both youth athletes and adults like you!
Athletes use the LTAD model, and everyone else can use the Movement Spectrum I created.
Adopting these long-term developmental models requires you to shift your perspective on what it takes to get fit and lose weight.
Sure, you can drop a few pounds or improve your fitness in a few short weeks to reach a short term goal, but like most people, I assume you actually want to KEEP your improvements while avoiding injury.
If so, a perspective shift is essential. 🙂
So, what skills do you need for long-term success?
Regardless of what types of activities you want to do, there are a handful of skills that form the foundation of every movement you will ever do.
Here’s the list (Yup. This is it)
- Posture (static & dynamic)
- Breathing (particularly braced breathing)
- Bracing (particularly while breathing)
- 7 Primal Movement Patterns (Push/Pull/Hinge/Squat/Lunge/Gait/Rotate)
This may seem simple, and you are probably thinking you already know most of this.
While you may have done the movements before, and taken a few breaths in your life, I can tell you that most people do them poorly.
The ability to MASTER this short list of skills will be the best investment you can make in your future health, fitness, and performance.
After decades of working hands-on with thousands of corporate clients and even world-class athletes, I can honestly say that a lack of focus on these skills is behind almost all injury, failure and frustration in fitness.
When you make the decision to focus on these skills it signals an important shift in your mindset. You begin to see health and fitness as a skill based, long-term journey instead of something you put up with to lose a few pounds and look better naked!
Athletes and fitness enthusiasts already “get” this perspective, but it’s almost completely missing from those people who hop from diet to diet or one fitness plan to another.
The great news is you can learn these skills at any age or experience level.
Your body is an equal opportunity learner. It’s never too late to start.
When getting started, it’s important to understand the difference between “chronological age” and “training age”.
Someone may be 40 years old and never formally trained any movement skills in their life. Someone else may be 40 years old and have 20 years of movement training (dance, gymnastics, team sports, etc.)
Both have the same chronological age, yet the second will have a training age of 20. The second person has formally practiced a wide range of movement skills and subjected their body to the rigors of structured conditioning over time.
This means the second person is starting from a better foundation of movement skills, even if they are out of shape and haven’t done anything for a decade.
I mention this because it speaks to the importance of being active for life and continuing to build your brain/body connection (aka “movement skills). It’s why we strongly encourage kids to be active and have fun diving into a wide range of activities.
Some people take this as a negative and get frustrated because it seems they are starting from a deficit.
If you are in this situation, I encourage you to look at it from a different perspective.
Think about the opportunity you have to move forward in a positive direction and apply the principles of the movement spectrum to speed up the process of getting results.
It doesn’t matter what age you start. You are in control of how you proceed.
By getting the right information, and making a decision to apply it consistently over time, you will see tremendous results.
I always think of Sister Madonna Buder, the nun who began exercising at the age of 48 because of her priest’s recommendation that activity would improve her “mind, body, and spirit”.
She took this to heart and started a consistent running plan. She found out she really enjoyed it and over the next couple years, built up her distance and volume to enter some local races, and eventually competed in an Ironman Triathlon.
Since that time, she’s completed an Ironman events almost every year and currently holds the record as the oldest person to complete an Ironman event…at age 82. No, that’s not a typo!!!
As of 2016, she had run more than 340 triathlons. She’s 89 now and still going strong…though I haven’t seen race results for the past few years.
Don’t believe me…check it out here. I even saw her complete Ironman Penticton in 2004 and 2005 at the spritely age of 75!
Now, you don’t have to go to the lengths of Sister Madonna, but I want to drive the point home that it doesn’t matter when you start. As long as you follow the right (skill based) plan, you will see incredible results in much less time than you imagined. (though not overnight). 🙂
Think about how you’ve been approaching training, and how much potential you’ve been leaving on the table in life!
In the next post, it’s time to tie it all together and provide you with a simple plan to get started!
Of course, please post a comment or reply with any questions.
Have an awesome day!
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