Seek Understanding Of Your Body

Today I want you to consider a thought for the next time you work out.  Regardless of your skills being at the professional, elite, average or weekend warrior level.

The thought is:  how do I feel right now?

Have that thought as you start the session – preferably during the warm up.  Ask the question and then listen to the answer your body gives you.  It won’t be an audible answer but over time you will learn to hear what your body is saying to you.  The warm up is a time to harmonize with your body and hear what it’s capable of on that particular day.

In the world of Orange Theory Fitness 1 Splat Point is 1 minute spent in the state of EPOC (in the world of cycling we called if Afterburn – you go hard enough that when you stop training you still keep burning calories).  OTF defines  2 heart rate zones that generate splat points – orange zone and red zone.  Orange zone HR is 84% to 91% of max and Red zone is 92%+ of max HR. OTF has also determined that 12 to 20 Splat points puts a person into EPOC for 24 to 36 hours.

On July 21 (image below) I earned 1 Splat point.   So by OTF standards my workout was crap on that day.  In real life I don’t remember specifically what happened that day but here’s what I do remember:

  • 7/21 was day 6 in a row of a 9 day stretch where I did OTF daily.
  • That week they had something called Peak Week.  They have workouts where your time to complete them determines your fitness level.  For example:  500 meter row, 2,000 meter row, maximum distance run in 24 minutes, etc.

About 2 weeks later (image below) I earned 120 Splat Points in 4 days.

Our bodies are machines.  We input macro nutrients (food), hydrate, give it rest (sleep) and the elite amongst us ingest compounds that fill in the gaps our macro nutrients leave (supplements).  Think of these inputs as fuel for the machine.  Well, when it’s time to take the machine for a drive you’ve got options – you can 20 mph or you can 120 mph, you can for 5 miles or you can go 500 miles – you get the point.  The point of having the machine is to take it out let it go wide open once in a while.  But you see all of the inputs I just mentioned are external inputs.  Our machine needs internal inputs also – inputs generated from within us.  The biggest input is harmony.  Harmony in our soul – a connection between a state of joy and output that science doesn’t have a complete answer for.  The one ingredient that takes the fuel and changes it to rocket fuel is harmony.

And you get harmony but asking yourself “…how do I feel right now?…”

See how that all fits together?

On both of the time frames above I started the day with “how do I feel right now?”  I listened to my body and heard it’s response but the outcomes were dramatically different.  On 7/21 my body probably said “…sorry dude I’m not feeling it right now…”  2 weeks later when I asked the same question my body probably said “…molon labe…”

Why is asking “how do I feel right now” so important?  Because if you can run the machine in harmony with how it feels, you’ll have a healthier outlook on the frequency and quality of your workouts.  That will lead to improvement, personal records and breakouts.  If you don’t ask the question and blindly drive your body session after session, you won’t progress long term and eventually you’ll quit.   And the world doesn’t need anymore quitters.

What other ways have to found to seek understanding of your body?  I would love to know.


ps.  By the way I think I know what happened:  In the 2 weeks after Peak Week my body changed.  Meaning I broke down, then healed, then came back super strong.

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