training tip 012: Here’s Why The Majority of Us Have It Wrong When it comes to Training & How It’s Harming the Development of the Next Generations…


Set foot inside a training facility in today’s society, and you’ll undoubtedly see people going HAM (see: hard as a motherfucker)… they’re pushing themselves to the limit, and past it – day, after day, after day… why? Well, we live in an all or nothing kind of place… but this mentality, this kind of thinking isn’t correct, and in fact, it can be more harmful than it is beneficial

Many people these days pride their training and progress based on how hard they’ve pushed, or worse, how sore they are the next day…

These are the goals they set themselves and base themselves off – and it’s coming across in the next generations – which is harmful

And my job as your coach is to show you the way – as see, sadly, I used to be one of those people… I used to try and crush myself in the gym thinking it’s where development lay dormant

But sadly, all I found was fatigue, a lost love for it, and injuries

Derek Sivers has a fantastic story about this phenomenon – whereby he used to ride his bike along Santa Monica – and he’d push himself to the limit every time he did… what happened was that he began to associate the pain and hurt with riding his bike, so he’d stop wanting to go

Until one day, he decided to enjoy his ride… take it all in… and what astonished him was that, on this day where he “cruised”, it only took him 2 more minutes AND he’d enjoyed it

Physical training (and life for that matter) doesn’t always need to be balls to the wall… we need to mark ourselves utilising a different metric

It’s a lesson I learned from the phenomenal Dan John (whom we shot a podcast with here) – about park bench and bus bench training sessions

Park benches are where you get the allotted work done and move on – this equates to about 75% of our sessions…

Bus benches are where we expect something in a specific time period… where we’re working for a certain goal and we want it to come on time…

For our Academy kids, we utilise different metrics, generally based on how they feel, and how they’re performing (i.e. strength or speed standpoint)

Did we get the same amount of work done in less time than last time? Yes, fuck yeah, that’s progress

Personally, I’ve got two goals for every single one of the next generations I come across:

  • I want them to leave me feeling better than they did when they began (emotionally, psychologically, physiologically)

  • And I want to give them the smallest amount of stimulus I can to get the biggest response & result in improvement

As to me, that’s the true goal of a coach. Leave them better than when we found them… and have them do the least amount of work necessary to get the desired outcome

Now, that’s not to say we take it easy… quite the contrary, we work when it’s time to work, but we have an intention for everything we do – we know what we’re trying to get out of a specific day, cycle, or part of a training session

Our intention may be to work hard on our strength movement for the day, that’s where we want all of our focus and energy to flow – and the rest of the session is to get some good movement in

A conditioning set might be defined as a “go as hard as you can”… another that looks exactly the same on paper might be a “just move through it and feel good”…

And the more coaches throw themselves into this amazing part of life, they’ll discover how much of a contradiction it is… as yes, we’re training for today – but in essence we’re not, we’re training for “x” down the road… and the more you learn, the more you’ll realise you know nothing

And so, when it comes to the metrics you judge yourself by, and the standards you set yourself – perhaps it’s time to change them… perhaps it’s time to take a more long-term viewpoint toward your development…

As the one thing you don’t want, and trust me on this, is to still be busting your gut two years from now, with no real progress to show for it except the fact you’ve gone HAM evry single session you could

Remember, it’s not about who you are today that matters most, but who you desire to become in the future…

Nick Maier