Not a day goes by that the phrase, ‘the mind and body are inextricably linked” is not conveyed to our clientele. Regardless of what the class format may be, the skill level of the client, the goals/objectives of the client or the type of personal training program that has been designed, there is always a serious concentration on connecting the mind and body.
Just observing the recent Tokyo Olympics should provide you with an excellent example of how the mind and body work together. How many times have you heard those who have crossed the finish line first say that they purged all other thoughts out of their minds except for the finish line and what was necessary to cross it first? Not just during that event, but every time they trained that image of crossing the finish line, breaking the yellow tape, was indelibly etched into their brain.
And, this ability to concentrate, to put blinders on like a race horse, may be applied at every level of performance, from elite athletes to the novice. Where your mind goes, the body follows. Consequently, being and remaining in the moment when you are training, keeping the end game in the forefront of your mind, is more likely to yield the results you seek. Follow these tips on keeping your “head in the game” when you train and begin to experience a total mind and body transformation. As always, prior to beginning any exercise program, please consult your physician.
-It seems challenging to step onto the treadmill, stationary bike, or elliptical and not have a television, magazine, cell phone or book or workout partner to help you pass the time, but there is sound evidence that concentrating on your walk, run, or cycling, setting your goals for that specific session, and avoiding the external stimulation by visualizing yourself performing, may significantly improve your performance. *There are hundreds of virtual coached workouts available today on various media as well.
-If you find it is too challenging to give up all distractions, then rather than training on stationary equipment, get outside for your walk/run/cycle and let the great outdoors stimulate your mind and body connection and let your cell take a message.
-You may also participate in coached classes such as group indoor cycling, rowing, kickboxing, or functional strength or hire a personal trainer to coach your sessions. You will not have any time for distractions as you must be fully engaged to be a part of these coached environments.
This is “you” time
-Remember, this is your time. Give yourself a break from the external forces in the world and travel inward, feel the rhythm of your breathing, heartbeat, and pace your effort.
Immerse yourself into the specific skills and drills
-Feel every movement by focusing upon your biomechanics. Notice your technique, your form and strive for meticulous posture and performance. Every aspect of your body movement patterns matter. Every moment, every repetition, every mile and every breath you take, moves you closer to success.
-Music is a great motivator if you are using it to motivate you and not just help you pass the time. Choose songs that drive you uphill, pick up your pace on the flat and perform those high intensity intervals that send you breathless.