Strength train like a yogi
One of my recent focuses for my training has been to bring more, well, focus into my strength training sessions. It’s something I’m usually “pretty good” about, but when my schedule gets busier and I’m juggling more things, it’s easy to get distracted or enter into a training session with my mind elsewhere. Maybe I start checking my phone on rest breaks, or I start thinking about all the other things on my to-do list, or I get into an animated conversation that would be better served for after my training (especially since I normally train with my husband and business partner).
Ok, I’m not saying your strength or cardio training sessions need to be done without leaving the space of 24 x 68 inch rectangle, with the lights dim, in complete silence. After all, there is nothing like the camaraderie of training partners to cheer you on, encourage you with a high five and make you laugh with a well timed joke! However, there is a lot to be gained from a yoga-like focus in your training.
- Get centered and bring yourself into the room. One of the ways we like to encourage this at Breakthrough is by starting every training session with a “breathing reset”. This is not just a chance to connect to deep relaxed breathing – it’s also a time to get your mind focused on what you are about to do, and let go of whatever your day has been up to this point or whatever will be happening once you leave the gym. And if you are someone like me who has the potential to get distracted by your phone, it’s best to leave it in your bag and away from your training area. Facebook will still be there in an hour.
- Continue to connect with the breath throughout your training. Make sure you are using the proper breathing match and techniques to whatever exercise you are doing. And use your rest intervals to check back in with deep relaxed breathing as well as “fast and loose” drills.
- Take time in your set up for each exercise. Don’t just run over to a piece of equipment and hope for the best. Make sure you know the most advantageous way to set up in terms of strength and alignment, as well as how much weight you are supposed to lift and how many reps you are supposed to do. Set your mind to the task at hand, and be ready for something awesome to happen!
- Use both your sets and your rest intervals to check in with any technical elements you are working to improve. We all have days where we feel “off” for some reason, but most days you should end your training sessions better than you started in some way – either physically stronger, mentally more dialed in, or just feeling more energized and positive.