We have entered the fitness era where lines are blurred when it comes to training. We live in the hype moment of metabolic conditioning and high intensity training and we feel like we need to push the body all the time. I have done a lot of reading lately and although I don't train a lot of elite athletes, the theory makes sense, to be the best at what we do, we need to NOT burn ourselves out with the secondaries to try and perform. Makes sense for top athletes. If your sport is not deadlifting but sprinting, why kill yourselves doing deadlifts and leave nothing in the tank for sprinting? Rather work on your sprinting and leave deadlifting as a supplement to power your sprinting. How do you do that? Well, never leave the deadlifting rack exhausted, that's all.

Awesome for athletes, but how does that apply to the normal run of the mill gym rat, like me? (yes, I am just a gym rat with no aspiration to break the 100m record, ever....). Start with the basics. I train because I want to look good without any clothes on. Sounds like a plan? Of course it does, so how to achieve it? By NOT killing yourself training on a daily basis. 

Years ago, the renowned Mr. Bill Phillips shook the world by giving us his 3 times per week 20 minute solution to long, dreary and boring cardio. It was great and it was fresh and the wonderful thing is, it worked. The Body for Life program was intense, 6 days of training per week but never more than 45 minutes of training per day and never the same thing over and over again. Weight training one day, 20 minutes kick ass cardio on the next. But what does that have to do with skills practice and resting?

The big thing with training and getting better at what you do is getting better at what you are not good at. This should be taking slow (so that you don't tear a muscle by doing something your body is not used to) and that is what is called practice. Not to be confused with rest. Practice should be scheduled as part of a training week. So quickly, at the top of your head, what exercise do you hate doing? Squats? Turkish get ups? Do you hate doing them because you suck at it? No offense, but we all suck at something and knowing it is the starting point of getting awesome at it. We need to practice those moves. Slowly at first and then more frequently until we rock at them. To steal a word or 8 from Dan John: "If it is important, do it every day." So if squatting is a sucky exercise for you. Schedule it into your skills practice day as a start, and believe me, you are going to sweat bullets by practicing this skill.

If you want to get better at anything, in life, in training in anything, you must practice it. This is not an off day scheduled workout. You are training and training hard. You are going through the full range of motion when you do these movements. You are going to rest between every set, to be fresh for the next and then its go,go,go! Over and over, with a light load until the movement is right and then you can start adding weight. 

So take a step back from all the hectic metabolic conditioning training all the time, the HIIT all the time and stop killing your body and doing all the moves you are good at. Practice what you hate, what you suck at and what is just painful when you think about it. You will love yourself and your beautiful body for it at the end of the training cycle. What? Training cycle? Ok, let us leave that for another ramble....