Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Continuing Minimalism in 2008

I'm always hesitant to state New Years resolutions. So, there was no obligatory New Years Post because well, I rarely feel obligated to do anything. But, since we're into January and I've had time to reflect, I'll be happy to give my thoughts on my goals. I won't call them "resolutions" because they are not really that. They are a refinement and further commitment to things I've already been doing.

I'm not one to set a bunch of goals for the year for training or anything. Now, I do have a couple of goals and yes they even have numbers attached to them. However, these goals will be the results of higher level goals or initiatives. Those initiatives and their proper execution are what matters; the results or the numbers usually take care of themselves.

Continue Minimalism. That's the high level goal; the goal in which all other goals and initiatives are derived. If it doesn't fit in under that one, it is an antagonist..

This takes the guess work out of a large part of my training. I don't have to worry about doing 10 different things. I can stay out of analysis paralysis hell. I can continue to pour my focus and my energy into a few movements and in turn, I will continue my journey to mastery of those things.

You see, I don't think it is necessarily easy or natural for many of us to narrow our focus to a few things even in training. It is counter-intuitive in our complex culture. I see it at work all the time. We get inundated with many initiatives and information. Consequently, we get overwhelmed. The end result is usually low and/or sub-standard productivity even though we work harder and longer.

Prioritization seems to be a rare skill in my work and in some of the training I witness. Commitment is also rare. If you prioritize things, you inherently make a commitment to something; You've made a decision to elevate something above everything else. So, the inability to prioritize is also the inability to commit, and it is also the inability to decide.

That's why minimalism will continue to be my friend. It is easier to prioritize things when the list is shorter. It is easier to make commitments when you don't over extend yourself. Decisions are easier to make when you have fewer choices.

So, the lower-level goals (and I'll stick to training and personal goals):

Training: Jerks and Snatches 4-5 times per week and progressively increase the volume when training for the competitions. Row 10-15K meters per week. Do some sort of joint mobility and squatting everyday even if it is for 5 minutes. If I have time and energy, do a few circuit or met-con workouts per week. It won't be at the expense of the Jerks or Snatches. It will provide a break from any monotony I might feel and provide an additional conditioning challenge. When I'm not training for a competition (and that won't likely be until after September), then I may take up learning a new skill like Weightlifting.

The goal of that training will yield results and those results will be a noticeable improvement over the last competition. The other and equally important goal of that training will be to maintain strength and continue to enhance my mobility and conditioning.

Diet: When I'm not traveling, continue to consume large servings of veggies through the vitamix. I find that when I do this, my diet naturally gets cleaner and my cravings for crap diminish and my appetite is reduced. Drink 2 liters of water per day. My bodyweight will drop further if I stick to this plan.

Other: Travel and spend more time with friends here in St. Louis and in the rest of the country. Attend Martial Arts class when possible. Read a couple of books per month. Write a couple of blog entries a month. These goals will enable me to be a good friend, keep my mind active, and maintain balance.


Sunday, January 6, 2008

1000 Snatches

The article is up on the American Kettlebell Club Blog Now!