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TRAINING TIP: Slow it down

Tip via XPT Performance Director, PJ Nestler 

 Most people exercise with the intent of task completion: perform X number of reps, lift X pounds, run X miles and success is measured on did you complete it or not.

The problem is that most people are not training for a Crossfit competition, powerlifting meet, or marathon, so those arbitrary goals are irrelevant. Even if you are you should never allow short term goals to overshadow long term health. Most people are exercising to stay/get fit, healthy, reduce pain/injuries, and improve body composition (lose fat/build muscle). Therefore, the focus needs to shift to match the goal.

If you want to use exercise to build resilience and bulletproof your body from injury instead of getting hurt in the gym, it’s time to change your intentions during training. Focus instead on dominating positions, mastering every inch of your range of motion rather than speeding through the tough spots, and FEELING the muscles working. Using tempos to slow down movements is one of the best ways to teach proper positions, create mind-body connection through movement and build strong and stable joints.

For the next 3 weeks, decrease the weight and reps on everything you do by at least 30% and add a tempo, 3 seconds during the lowering phase, 2 second pause in the middle, and a controlled 1 second on the upward phase. Pay close attention to feeling the right muscles doing the work and even video a few reps to see if your feeling matches what it actually looks like (excellent learning strategy I used with all my athletes). You will gain strength, body control, and identify/eliminate weaknesses that will improve your future training and pay off big time down the road in long term resilience.

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