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Coaches Corner: Should we replicate the emotional states of competition during training?

by Shaun Kober
December 17th 2020

 I've had so many great conversations with friends and colleagues about what we see happening in the fitness industry, and thought to myself, "I wish we would have recorded that." More

what does it mean to live life to the fullest train to your potential and perform at your best, leave nothing on the table. That's a non negotiable is that I strive to be better every day because if I'm not on top of my game, how is anybody else gonna follow me down the road? Keep demanding more of yourself to live up to that potential and to stay hungry. Training is progress, you know, when I look at the word training, I think of steps, baby steps to get somewhere that you want to be, and that is basically your life journey. That's a mindset in itself, man, it's like, it's not just about, I know that for you, a lot of that's about the physical, but we're constantly in training, whether it's growing our skill sets, whether it's growing up physical bodies, whether it's growing our relationships, whatever and all of that is a training ground and that kind of goes back to the mindset that we just talked about, You underestimate yourself and you don't even start, but then once you start, you often surpass what you thought you could do perform at your best mate. That's that's sort of what life is all about, you don't have the knowledge and have the fitness, the healthy ambition and drive that no matter what comes along.

When that next phone call comes, I can just say yes, I don't have to worry, just go and do it. Yo yo what is up guys, welcome to this episode of the live train, perform podcast? I'm your host, Sean Cobra And today's episode is our 4th installment of my coaches corner with cat uniqueness of Macron's muscles mindset. In the first installment, we went through what to look for in a coach as well as our journey and evolution through the fitness industry. Then we went into how to implement functional training tools into your workout regime that was followed up by how to deal with chronic injuries and pain, and during this last episode of the conversation, we're gonna be diving into whether it's worth training at an emotional state similar to competition or not. Let's get this episode underway. The next question comes in from Alex West scott 12345 on instagram, are there benefits to training at an emotional state similar to what you will experience in competition.

So I found this question quite interesting and it probably varies from coach to coach, how they answer it. And I think for me, repeating the state of competition would be very difficult and I'm not saying that you can't amp yourself up before a training session by even just physically how you're standing or you know what you're eating and stuff like that, but to repeat a competition state or environment, I just think it would be quite hard to do and I don't know if that's because my experience in competition is either, you know, the gymnastics aspect of things or power lifting or running. There are three things that have competed in the environment around me is always full of adrenaline, it's full of energy, there's people there, there's a build up to it, there's a lot of emotional intensity behind going into the competition. If your power lifting, you've got judges there, you've got people yelling at your name, there's lights flashing, you've got, you know, there's a whole, I can't, I can't replicate that in a session, um I can definitely feel super energized and feel like, you know, I might smash out of PB or something like that, but to repeat the environment I think is quite hard to do, and in saying that it also kind of links back to what I said earlier about how your training on a weekly and then yearly basis, so my approach is, you know, 90% of the week is working with intention, which basically means looking at mechanics and consistency and then 10% of the week and over the year is, you know, what would call competition or going balls to the wall?

Like, basically, I'm saying if you're going to do one hardcore session, you do it once a week, not every day, and this is a gripe I have, unfortunately, we, with crossfit is a lot of coaches don't explain that when they go into a class and crossfit, something that's intense and if you're going seven days ball to the wall, then, you know, you're gonna, you're gonna burn yourself out, so I know that's often a little tangent, but I think what you need to consider is if you're trying to replicate competition environment, maybe you should be doing a competition. Um if you can um or focus on just one session a week being that session where it's really hard core because the other 90% you want to improve your skills, you know, your coordination, accuracy, agility, balance, flexibility, then train your engine capacity, you know, you power your strength of speed and then compete. So it's always for me it's mechanics, consistency and then intensity. Yeah, I love what you, what you just said then about, you know, once a week testing yourself because so many people, they think that and I was like this as well when I was younger when I was in the army, I'm gonna fucking, you know, compete with my mates and we're going to see who can put themselves deepest in the pain cave.

And like, there were, there were times where we would finish, you know, physical training session whilst I was in the army and I couldn't fucking eat for hours afterwards. Like mel of food made me feel sick and you know, I was trying to unlock my car door and my arms were just like quivering and I was like, and you know, that was a badge of honor back then, but you know, I now know that I'd pushed so hard into a sympathetic state, that fight or flight state that was so jacked up and my body just couldn't accept food because it had like pushed all of its resources away from my digestive system. And this is something to think about as well. And I've spoken about the autonomic nervous system in multiple episodes in the past, but um your autonomic nervous system is the balance between the sympathetic, sympathetic state which is fight or flight and the parasympathetic state, which is rest and digest. So to answer this question, I think it really depends on the person that I'm talking to. If you're somebody who you know has to ramp yourself up for everything that you do, you have to motivate yourself, you have to fucking slap yourself around to um release cortisol and adrenaline and things like that.

Like you're probably so sympathetic driven that trying to train in that state to replicate competition is probably not going to be a good idea for you. You're probably like, you know, desensitized to cortisol, adrenaline or adrenaline etcetera. So for you, you probably need to spend some time um firing up the parasympathetic nervous system and getting into more of a relaxed state so that when you do go into that competition state you get that response that you want where you get excited, you get that adrenaline release that is going to fuel you now um on the other side, I went through this period as well when I got back from Afghanistan, I've already been to Iraq East timor and Afghanistan was my third deployment as a soldier and I was getting fucking shot at I was in fire fights a lot and I got back from Afghanistan and I no longer got excited to play rugby, I no longer had that adrenaline dump because being shot at was the fucking most exhilarating thing that I've done in my life.

Then I'm like putting my boot on about to run out onto the field as co captain of a team that had won 70 games straight playing in the grand final and people like you nervous, I'm like not, I'm good because I've become desensitized to that, right? So it really depends on the person that I'm speaking to here now, is there some benefit who training in an emotional state that is similar to competition? Yeah, I think so. And what I'd say here is for example, like when Peter Leon fought against Jose Aldo for the UFC bantamweight title earlier this year, one of my mates johnny, who's a boxing coach at Tiger, went over with him and I was like, dude, when you get to Dubai do some training sessions at the same time that he's going to be fighting, Right? They were fighting like 3:00 AM or something to cater to viewers around the world. And I was like, you've got to put yourself into that state.

You've got to get his circadian rhythm working to that time zone so that he can perform there because you don't want your fighter, you don't want your athlete walking out trying to fire themselves up when they're really fucking tired of their body clocks out of whack. So, yes, there is a time when you want to try and get your circadian rhythm, a line to the time zone that you're going to be competing at. Um but yeah, again, another very complex topic. And is there some benefit to it? Yes. Within reason, but you don't want to go, you don't want to do everything in that state. You know, let me give you another example here, how many people go to the gym and they can't train or they don't train well without their pump up music. That's a state of arousal. If you need to put yourself into a state of arousal every single time to train, what's going to happen if something goes wrong, if your headphones break, your phone dies, you don't have the ability to listen to the music that you want, or go through the same process that you always go through.

If something happens and you can't work around that, then it's going to fuck up your psychological state, which is going to fuck up your physiological state and affect your performance. Anything else there, cat? No, I think so, I think that's, you know, touched on on things, without having to, you know, do separate podcast for each of the questions, but that last point is very valid with how you kind of set yourself up. Um you know you've always always gotta he opened to adversity because it's going to happen. Yeah it's important to have your rituals. Um but don't rely on them and that's and again that's another good point as well. You know that's something that we would train when I was in the army. These are standard operating procedures. This is how we conduct our training but then you throw in, you throw a spanner in the works, see how you react because it is important to have your rituals but you also need to be flexible enough to be able to adapt to whatever comes up in your environment. 100%. All right sweet. I think that's a good place to start rounding up this episode.

I'll break this up over a couple of sessions, probably 3-4 episodes to release over the next couple of weeks. Where can people find you cut. Uh So you can find me at w W. Dot macros muscles mindset dot com dot au or you can find me on instagram at macro muscles mindset awesome. Thank you very much for being my first repeat guest. It's a pleasure to have you on, it won't be the last time. Let's chat again soon. Thanks for having me. Thanks for your time. Good, thank you and that rounds out the entire conversation that I had with my friend cat of Macron's muscles mindset. If you've got some benefit from this episode, please make sure you pass it off to your friends and family. Also, if you share it on your socials, make sure you tag both Cat and I. I'm at coach underscore Ko ko Bes and Cat. Is that Macron's muscles mindset tags in the story so we can also share it on our social media platforms.

Any five star ratings and reviews are appreciated guys, anyone who does leave me a five star rating and review will receive precedents when it comes to answering these questions on the podcast. Much love Guys piece

Coaches Corner: Should we replicate the emotional states of competition during training?
Coaches Corner: Should we replicate the emotional states of competition during training?
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