I am nearly at the end of a six week training program I have being doing at the Shed10 in Ballinderry. Throughout the whole experience myself and my trainer have repeated these words a number of times – ‘accountable and comfortable’.
This programme has been more than just training, it’s taught me a few things about myself and also how to help others. The first lesson has been accountability.
I have been coaching people and teams for a long time and I just didn’t realise the level of accountability that some people place on being in my class or team. It is something like this that can help bring people to the next level or help them to not miss a workout.
Being accountable to someone is a great tool in reaching your goals. There were many times that I felt I couldn’t be bothered, I was tired, it was too long of a drive or I had something else on. But being accountable to my trainer meant that if I didn’t turn up, not only would I be letting myself down but I would also be letting him down.
The other advantage of being accountable to my trainer was the positive feedback and reinforcement I got from him when I trained, he understood the commitment I was making and wanted to get the best out of me – which is what I was able to give him.
Being accountable to someone doesn’t have to be a personal trainer it could be a family member, friend or even work colleague. Having someone to train with or even tell them what you have done will also inspire them. Firstly, they will feel privileged that you put so most trust and faith in them and it may also help them in reaching their own goals.
Being accountable doesn’t have to be a person either, it could be a programme or diet plan that you can follow, the key to this is to write it all down. Tracking what you have done is far better than thinking about it. By writing it down you are being accountable to yourself, plus you can also see the progression you have made.
The next lesson I learnt was being comfortable. I trained every day over the last few weeks resting only on a Sunday. But at each session I left feeling ready for the next day’s workout. I’m not saying I strolled out of there, I did work hard but I worked smart. I never left unable to walk or move my arms, unless I was on the assault bike – but that’s a different story.
I was comfortable in all my reps and sets, I never once tried to push out that last rep so much so that I lost my form and increased the risk of injury. I was happy with the level of volume I was accumulating without having to hurt myself.
Training this way has enabled me to never miss a session but still work hard in each one to a comfortable level. Please don’t confuse comfortable with easy, comfortable to me is pushing myself enough so that I feel it, but understanding there is more to come in the session, day or week.
It’s about finding your comfortable and always training to step up to the next comfort level. For example, whatever was a comfortable weight in week one would be an easy weight in week four, it’s about gradual progression.
Don’t be afraid to throw in a max session every few weeks just to test yourself. These are just two of many lessons I have learnt over the past weeks. I’m due to finish the six week programme mid-February and will update you all on my results.