25 May 2010

Don’t do what they do

Remember that being a successful athlete, not matter which arena you compare yourself in (peers, amateur, professional) by definition means doing what other people wouldn’t.
Lots of people model their technique, training and tactics on what their peers are doing. But if you want to get better than them, they are exactly the wrong people to look at. 
The modelling can be conscious and deliberate, but most of the time you actually do it subconsciously. So wake up! The greatest success you can hope for by doing what everyone else (in YOUR world of peers) does is to assimilate the same level of mediocrity they have. More about all this in my book.
While we’re on the subject of role models, an important point about them. Yes they are useful, even essential to help you get more out of yourself, so long as you chose the right role models. But keep in mind it’s the approach they have that you’re copying, not the exact actions. Their life, physiology, schedule, resources etc can never fit with yours. So don’t try. So the question is “What would they do if they had this (my) circumstance right now?”.
And one other thing… Good role models in sport are ones you can actually find some details about - someone you can feel you know through seeing them, reading about them or even better, being coached by them! If it’s someone who never speaks, blogs, writes coaches, it’s pretty hard to ask the question above and get near a useful answer.
You have two choices, pick a better role model, or ask them to keep in touch more. Interview them for your blog or your favourite website and ask them all the questions you want in one go. Just an idea.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Perfect! So I can tell you my circumstance/Schedule and you fill in the rest!?

Anonymous said...

Questions about general cardiovascular endurance training.

Dear Dave,

i have read several books about training for climbing including yours. Many suggest to do endurance activities such as swimming, running or cycling as a mean to become a more complete athlete.

They promote these activities for active recovery on non-climbing days, and in addition as a way to improve your body's general ability to recover (growth of heart muscle and other cardiovascular benefits). In one book for example it is recommended to do 60 minutes of running 3 times a week.

In two of these particular sports your lower body (legs) is the main area of physical exercise. This would mean that these muscles get trained and potentially gain mass. You write that a heavy lower body inhibits climbing performance and that sounds very plausible to me.

In consequence my question are:

Is the above mentioned training amount reasonable?
How often/long do you do such activities?
Is this form of training even necessary to become a good climber?
Are there negative side effects from this particular workouts (leg mass gain, less energy for climbing etc.)
Do the benefits outweigh the negative side effects ?

Greetings from Germany

kyleknapp.blogspot.com said...

Hey Dave, I have been struggling with this for a couple years now...everyone and their mother has some new fangled way of training regiment to try and I always wind up getting injured. Like the campus board or even the Moon board, which I do believe can be useful to some climbers, but for me, it seems to put a lot of strain on my elbows and fingers. Hence the tendinitis or osis in my right elbow. Seems to me that climbing outside has improved my ability just as much, if not more. Especially when I do manual labor, i.e. landscaping/masonry, for a living. I also believe that people don't rest enough, as well. Regardless, thanks for all your info and advice. It definitely strays from the norm and is a breath of fresh air. Cheers.

Anonymous said...

Been meaning to say for a while- I think your website's a great source of info & inspiration. Cheers!

Tom