My to-do list currently has 28 items on it (and that's huge improvement from the 70+ I had a few months ago, before I decided to cut out the non-essentials). Just looking at the thing stresses me out.
Everybody is busy, and it's very easy to get a feeling of being overwhelmed and panicking. It happens to all of us, and I certainly get it from time to time as well.
Obviously I can't do all of those items in 1 day. That's where I try and use planning to get through. I try to split up projects into manageable parts. Having a constant reminder for a project of "in 7 days I need to do this, in 14 days I need to do this, ..." stresses me out and is unnecessary. Whenever I get a bigger project now, I divide it into parts and plan those in. I then open my calender and plan it in. Then, as time passes, I see for example: today I need to do part A. Next week, I'll see I need to get part B. I don't need to constantly see everything that's coming: I just need to get done what should get done today. (I recently started using the 17 hats software for this, recommended by Dan Salcumbe)
Same goes for emails: I try to end the day with an empty inbox. Emails I cannot answer today, get snoozed to a later day. Having them just standing there, unopened, stresses me out and gives me a feeling of not being "finished" for the day. The feeling of having an empty inbox is the best in the world.
Last but not least: starting every day with some breathing exercises and ending it with a cold shower (Wim Hof Method, thanks Tom Stijven and Dirk Janssens) helps me stay focussed. I highly recommend it to anyone since it's not only very simple, but also does not take up a lot of time.
You might have noticed those flashy rolls in the cabinet at the whiteboard at 3-2-1 Fit. But what are they actually for?
Foam rolling is done by rolling over a painfull/tight areas to make them relax (or actually, the surrounding fascia), increase blood flow and loosen up the muscle. You can do this either with the foam roller or with something like a tennis ball.
It's best comparable with a deep tissue massage, only you get to both do the massaging ánd get the pain. You also save money. Triple win.
Multiple studies (including 2 linked below) have shown positive short term effects of foam rolling on strength, flexibility and recovery. The mechanism involved is a relaxation of overtensed muscles, allowing you to move more freely after. The key is not to be a warrior and go above your pain threshold: your body will perceive this as a threat and will not relax at all. The ideal timing would then be right before exercise, to release the tight fascia and move more freely after.
Never forget though that an overly tight muscle might just be a way of your body telling you something is wrong. You might be weak or in some areas, causing other areas to pick up the slack. If you need frequent foam rolling before you can get anything done, be sure to see a movement specialist to check where you are lacking.
New gear at the gym!!!
Todays workout is a full body blaster, good luck!
I used to do a lot of jump training when I was younger, because I wanted to dunk a basketball 🏀. So Plyometrics was a term I came across very often, in fact, it was probably one of the first things I learned about! Plyometrics is a term that is thrown around very liberally these days. But what exactly is it?
True plyometrics, as they were first introduced by Soviet coaches in the 60’s, are also known as the “shock” methode. By jumping off a height, landing and immediately producing an explosive force afterwards, the muscles are loaded very heavily (this can generate forces up to 3-5 times bodyweight), first in an eccentric and then in a concentric way. By practicing this, the transfer of force becomes quicker, which is a very useful quality for sprinters, jumpers, … and basically any sports that involves these elements.
Nowadays, people refer to plyometrics as well for simpler jump exercises such as ladder drills, hops, and other drills where total contact time and transition between eccentric and concentric is much longer.
So, who is this for? 📈 This type of training can give very short but intense burst of load, so high level plyometrics are not something I’d recommend to a beginner. You want to be sure your body can handle these high loads first. If you have been exercising injury-free for a while and want to jump higher or sprint faster however, plyometrics can be a great idea for you.
Home workout #14! It's only normal that this one is all upper body, since we just went to Fibo :D
One of the most popular recent trends in nutrition is definitely intermittent fasting ⏱. This comes down to eating only for a limited time period during the day and fasting for quite a long time after that. Some forms even extend this to not eating for a day, followed by a few days of normal eating. The pattern is clear: prolonged periods of no caloric intake. (note that it does NOT say you should lower total caloric intake per se, but only limit the number of hours you get them in)
Intermittent fasting has been shown to have positive effects 📈on triglyceride levels, cholesterol, blood pressure, hormone levels and overall weight, although the number of available studies so far is very limited (and the number of long term studies is even lower).
I have been doing 8/16 (8 hours of eating and 16 of non eating) intermittent fasting now for probably around half a year and after some initial hard days, I must say I’m happy I made the switch. The biggest benefit for me is the mental freedom it gives you in your non-eating periods. You don’t even have to think about eating. I was surprised about how easily I wanted to grab something to nibble (and that was usually not the healthiest thing). Snacking was more programmed in my system than I ever thought. By doing intermittent fasting, those opportunities were severely limited. 🍕🌭🍰
I would recommend this for people who want to lose weight, for the simple reason that the number of hours where you will be allowed to eat are just so much smaller, which will often times result in less calories in and weight loss as a result.
Periodization refers to the sequential use of different training stimuli in the shape of exercise selection, volume, intensity, focus and goal of the training, often with the goal of peaking towards a certain competition. By intelligently varying these factors, training results are optimized. 📈
There are different ways of using periodization:
- "Traditional linear periodization": training is structured in blocks with different focus points. For example, you would focus 6 weeks on strength endurance, then 6 weeks on maximal strength, and then 4 weeks on power output. Every block builds on the last one.
- "Undulating periodization" refers to training where volume and intensity go up and down repeatedly. This can happen on a weekly basis (for example: week 1: squats at 70% all week, week 2: 80%, week 3: 75%, week 4: 85%) or on a daily basis (variation within the week, for example: monday at 80%, friday at 75%)
There is mild scientific evidence that periodized training might have benefits over non-periodized training. However, there are some severe limitations to these studies, most notably lack of standardization of overall training volume between compared groups and a limited duration of studies (very few studies go over 12 weeks).
So... what does that mean for you?
I would not recommend you to do any program that has a periodization approach over 3 months unless you meet the following qualifications:
a) ✅ You are in a more advanced training stage and have more problems making improvements.
b) ✅ You stick with a program all the way through and don't miss more than 5% of all sessions. There is very little benefit in doing a periodized program where one phase builds on the other, and then quitting after phase 1.
c) ✅ You should not be someone who gets bored too often. Periodization may use a lot of the same exercises or focus for multiple weeks.
Photo credit to Breaking Muscle
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