Less Is More
Part 3 of A Recovery Story by Coach Josh
“Do less. Now, pop up. Well, you can’t just lay there because now it just looks like you are boogie boarding.”
If you do not know what movie I am talking about, I will save you some time and tell you the movie is called Forgetting About Sarah Marshall. The main character, Jason Segel, experiences a tough break-up and goes to Hawaii to forget about his ex-partner. When he goes to Hawaii, he decides to take surfing lessons from a character who is played by Paul Rudd. Paul Rudd’s character tries to explain to him that when it comes to surfing, less is more. Even though the scene is supposed to be a comical scene, there is some truth into what Rudd is telling Segel.
Sometimes, we can get very fixated on wanting to do more in the gym. The difference between wanting and needing here is very important. This was a tough exercise for me. I wanted to take class, do metcons, get back to doing strongman things, and wanted my back to feel better. I had to sit down and prioritize what I needed the most and what I should focus on first. Clearly, I needed to get my back feeling better. Now, this does not mean I just sat around on my butt and became sedentary. With the help from Danny, we were able to become a little more creative with my training and made it about having fun while doing less.
One way we were able to keep training fun was doing things outside. Luckily, this was during the summer so the weather was nice. We would keep things light, simple, and focused on quality. This was perfect for me for a few reasons but most importantly, I felt less stress. I did not have to worry about blocking 2-2.5 hours of my day just for training. I could do some warming up with hypoxic breathing and do a 25-40 minute AMRAP for quality outside. We would come up with these short training sessions to do for about 2-3 days a week. Having this shortened training week allowed me to do other things outside the gym as well. I was able to go to open hockey a little more frequently. I really enjoyed this because I was able to move, get a sweat in, and get back to playing hockey a bit more regularly.
Even though I was doing less then what I accustomed to, I started to feel better. Not just physically, but I started to feel better emotionally as well. A lot of this was because I was not putting my body through the same amount of stress that comes with what had become my regular training. Once I was able to relieve some of that stress, I started to feel more alert and a bit more productive. Again, I am not saying that you should stop doing metcons and just go for 30 minute walks. There are benefits to both. I am simply saying, you need to find a balance. Depending on what you do for work (i.e. how stressful your job is), maybe coming into the gym three to four days a week would be more beneficial than trying to cram in five to six. Throughout this personal process of trial and error, I have found out that four days of training a week is plenty for me. Sometimes, I will get roped into doing an extra metcon but I try to be reasonable.
If you can figure out what your body responds best to, it will only lead to better training sessions and have you feeling just a little fresher going into your next session. On the other hand, if you are feeling great with five to six days of training, keep doing that if your lifestyle allows it. Everyone is different and responds differently to the same stimulus. It is just a matter of figuring out what works best for you.
Hope you guys enjoyed this. Stay tuned for one more week of my recovery.
Metcon - For time:
21 Wallballs (20/14)
9 Deadlifts @ heavy*
15 Pause HR push-ups
REST 3 minutes
15 Pause HR push-ups
*Athletes should choose a deadlift weight that is ~ RPE 8. Most likely this weight will be challenging to complete unbroken sets for the entire workout so athletes must focus on form.
20 minute cap