Sore neck from football season? SST tells you what to do.

The Canadian high school football season is over and soon it will be all out 2019!

This time range is when we really see if the kids are foam rolling and stretching, taking care of their bodies. One of the problems we have with high impact position such as OL, LB and RB is upper back and trap soreness/stiffness.

The upper back stiffness is an easy problem to solve, lots of foam rolling. For a more aggressive approach I would suggest that you use a piece of PVC pipe or a softball, that will give you that really hard feeling that will allow you to really dig in. One tip, if you aren’t grimacing while rolling you aren’t doing a good enough job. Really get deep, the soreness usually lies deep in the muscles, so don’t be gentle.

The neck and trap stiffness is a little bit of a different issue. This happens very easily for football guys because of the head and neck hits that they take. If you don’t take care of your neck and traps, there is a possibility if getting headaches and being at a higher risk for a concussion. Release your traps can be done a few different ways, I have attached a video that shows a few different ways to make it happen! The two best ways shown in this video is the traction with the bar and the traction with the band.  Keeping up with maintenance on your neck and traps is very important because of how vital our head and brain is to our functionality!

To all the football players and coaches out there reading this, we here at SST Burlington wish you all the luck that you need leading up to playoff, GO GET EM!

Oh, and remember to check out our Big Man Camp:

Starts January 28th, 2019HERE

Resistance for Acceleration

Sprinting has been described as consisting of a series of phases: an acceleration phase (typically the first 10 metres), a transition phase, and a maximum velocity phase.  For sports such as soccer, rugby, hockey, football and basketball, maximum velocity is not always attained, and repeated short sprints are more common.  Taking this into consideration, the ability to develop speed in as short a time as possible (acceleration) may be of high importance to many athletes.  It has been proposed that acceleration and maximum velocity are relatively separate and specific qualities.

An athlete’s ability to accelerate his or her body during sprinting is dependent on several factors.  These factors include technique and the force production capability of the body, in particular the leg muscles.  It has been shown that the technical aspects may have less importance for the acceleration phase of performance than for a typical sprinting event.  For example, in many sports the athletes have to accelerate from a lying or crouching position, from landing on 1 leg and pivoting, from catching a ball, and so on.  Therefore, the force capability of the muscle may be more important in improving acceleration of the athlete.  This point was supported by R. Mann in his publication titled “The Elite Athletes Project: Sprints and Hurdles.” which stated that the ability to perform well in sprints over short distances is dependent on the ability to produce large amounts of force at crucial times.

A variety of methods are used to enhance force output.  These methods include resistance training, plyometric training, and assisted and resisted sprinting techniques.  For this article we will focus on resisted sprinting which involves athletes sprinting with added load.  This load can come in different forms: weighted vests, sled-sprints, uphill sprinting and limb loading.  More specifically, this article will focus on the towing of weighted devices such as sleds which is the most common method of providing towing resistance for the enhancement of sprinting.

It has been shown that the use of towing as a form of resistance may increase the load on the athlete’s torso and therefore require more stabilization.  This training stimulus may increase pelvic stabilization, leading to a positive effect on sprint performance.  Increased torso loads also cause an increased upper-body lean and increased thigh angle at both the beginning and the end of the stance phase.  This increased thigh angle reflects the increased need for force production during the prolonged stance phase.

It is important to note that sprinting speed should not be decreased by more than 10% when adding resistance; adding too much resistance may alter running kinematics in ways that are not desirable.  It is also maintained that sled-sprinting should not be employed when the desired training effect is neural (i.e. maximal velocity).  Sled-sprinting is an effective method for a metabolic training effect (i.e. acceleration).  Due to evidence that only the first 10 metres of a sprint have been designated as the acceleration phase, it is suggested that sled-sprints should be performed for distances no longer than 10 metres.

S.S.T. holds that a well implemented speed program should include a variety of methods to achieve desirable results (i.e. resisted sprints, assisted sprints, unassisted sprints and resistance training).  Also, methods such as resisted and assisted sprints should be used sparingly, such as in the final or next-to-final block of an athlete’s periodized program.

REGISTER HERE for SUMMER SPEED CAMP!

 

BTW – If you missed last week’s piece “To Squat or to Power Clean, that is the question?” CLICK HERE to see it.

 

What to Look for in a Strength Coach/Personal Trainer?

If you are just getting into the spirit of using a strength coach or personal trainer and want to know what to look for, hopefully I can offer some advice. I have been in this field for over 14 years and have seen a lot. I’ve traded new information with colleagues, and used mentors and libraries of information to learn what I now know. But the learning never stops! I am always seeking what is best for my clients.

Many people have asked me what to look for when hiring a strength coach or a personal trainer; I think the answers are the same in either situation.

I used to think education was the most important credential and trust me I believe this lays down the foundation of the science of personal training which is very important but not the only thing to look for.  I have seen many good coaches who don’t have a post-secondary degree have success but I have seen many more trainers who have a degree and then take a 2 day course and now think they are EXPERT personal trainers after one weekend!

Here are some of the attributes I think a client should look for:

Passion

I have just returned from a speaking engagement and workshop in cloudy southern California (June Gloom!) where a couple of things really stood out.   On the first day I had the pleasure of teaching 50 personal trainers about Functional Applied Speed Training for Power Systems.

I was overwhelmed and surprised by the passion and love for training and knowledge these coaches exhibited.  Some had come from as far as Canada and New York all the way to California for a full day of learning.  Right away (8 am) the audience was engaging and very receptive to learning.   Never once did I have to beg for a volunteer, in fact I had to beat them away with a stick when we went into the practical sessions.  This is what I call passion!

The next day I was fortunate to pair up with a good friend and great strength coach, Scott Prohaska.  He had arranged for the training of 15 athletes, ranging from Olympic bobsledders to division one football players to rep baseball players.  Coming into this I knew all these high -level athletes would have passion, but the passion from Scott was amazing.  Not only was he encouraging, but he tried every drill I put each athlete through.  At the end of the session he told me that he has brought in many people in to speak with his athletes and was pleased to report that his athletes told him that they enjoyed the day mainly due to my passion and the fact that I was right there in the trenches with them. This is what I love to do!

Later that day Scott and I went for dinner and discussed how many hours we work per week?
70-80 hours was the answer.  I have asked many professionals, in other fields, the same question and they often admitted to working similar long hours. When I ask why they work so many hours each week,  the common answer was not just that they have so much work to do, but rather, that they love what they do. You can actually see the true passion in their manner.  People who are successful  put the time into their field of work, but the ones who are truly dedicated, do it for the love of it! Their passion shows, in fact it oozes out of them – because you can not fake passion!  As one of my clients, JoAnn, says “Love it!!”

See my recent video on this point: Video I – Passion CLICK HERE

Leave your Ego at the Door!

This is probably one of the most important ideals, and one of the most difficult for many coaches to acquire.  I see big egos every time I travel and watch other coaches teach.

Let’s use my friend Scott for example. His strength is his ability to help his clients get strong . . . he does a GREAT job at this, but he understands his limitations, in this case, speed training. What did he do but seek out someone to help him and his athletes.   He left his ego at the door!

I did the same thing for some of my female clients when I discussed nutrition and training with top physique coach, Francine from Montreal. Her insight was tremendously productive in helping my female clients achieve success.   I often bring in nutrition experts such and Caryn from Biotics Nutrition to teach the SST staff, enabling us to better help our clients.  Again I remind you, your trainer should be able to leave ego at the door!

Remember the bottom line is that strength coaches and personal trainers are here to help you.  Whatever it takes, coaches should try to ensure the best for their clients.

We, as coaches and trainers, all like to boast about our clients’ successes and sometimes market them (before and after stories),  but remember this (and I tell all my parents and athletes this):  You are the one who committed yourself to the project and you must be the first one to put forth a great effort .  Our trainers are ready to work hard for you, and you must be ready to work too.   I just wrote up a program to encourage you to reach your goals . . . you and your trainer’s best efforts!

 

Continuing Search for Educational Resources

Consider the strength coaches who attended this past seminar. They took time from their busy schedule to spend a whole day to better their techniques.   They are determined in their search of new educational information.  Next time you are looking for a trainer/coach ask how many seminars and what other types of education they take part in. At SST, the minimum goal is to attend one new seminar each month to better ourselves. Even if I only discover one new thing, both my client and I will be better for it.

These last few weeks, I have been reading books, articles, DVDs and anything I can get my hands on regarding cancer and nutrition.  Why?  One of my clients has been diagnosed with cancer and I feel an obligation to do the best I can to help him get better.  This is the kind of dedication I look for when hiring strength coaches.

Another good friend, one of the most learned nutritionists in the world, John Berardi spends countless hours researching and discovering new information about the human body.  He has PASSION which leads him to the never-ending search of new and important information; the ongoing search for education!  Why do you think he is the best?   Passion and education!

So next time you are looking for a trainer/coach, don’t be afraid to ask them questions as if you’re conducting a job interview; which you, in fact, are.

See my recent video on this point: Video III – Continued Education CLICK HERE

Results

Yes, results are the bottom line. Why do you think the TV show, Biggest Loser is such a hit? People are getting results and that’s what everybody wants!  Most people want instant success. If a coach tells you that you can drop 20 pounds in two weeks, be very leery. Success takes a lot of work, as in anything worth while, and there are no short cuts. So don’t expect shortcuts in weight loss or training either.

Ask your coach or trainer what successes they have had, and be specific. If you are a female client ask about successes with female clients.  If you’re an athlete, ask about who the trainer has helped?

Do you see a theme here?  The best coaches all have passion; all exhibit a keen interest to learn more in an endless study of research; a good coach stashes his/her ego. All these combined will give the client excellent results.   Notice I did not mention certification?  The reason for this is that some trainer certifications are done on line or through a weekend course (some are actually pretty good) Now, this is better than nothing I guess, but imagine dealing with a doctor who received his accreditations at a weekend seminar.  Don’t get me wrong, it’s great to get certification but the trainer/coach must still continue their education throughout their lifetime.

So, when looking for a good coach/ trainer please ask these questions and remember you will only get the results you want from the effort you and your trainer put into it.  Some Coaches may only be working with you for two hours a week.  So get off the couch, get ready for summer, and find yourself a great coach!

See my recent video on this point: Video II – Results CLICK HERE

For more information and access to great articles and videos please visit www.sst.training

Larry Jusdanis

Owner, Sports Specific Training

www.sst.training

To Squat or to Power Clean, that is the question.

With Olympic lifting at an optimal high in training facilities, I ask the question – to squat or to power clean?

What’s better? I know any good strength coach like Charles Poliquin,  Dave Scott-McDowell and Scot Prohaska and will say it depends upon their program. I then ask, why do some coaches who I believe get their certificate over a weekend (more on this later, or see my article on What Makes A Good Strength Coach) preach power cleans for close to 100 reps when we know that this is a technical lift and high reps increase the breakdown of form?

Squats are a staple in many successful athletes’ programs, and for a reason: too MANY people are too weak for their speed. “Strength is an essential component of all human performance and its form development can no longer be neglected in the preparation of any athlete.”

As Mark Rippetoe states in Starting Strength, “Physical strength is the most important thing in life.”

What does that mean? People need to get under a bar and squat!

Squats are what I call a slower strength movement (obviously there are some speed variations, but for this purpose we will focus on back squats), or more at the maximal strength component of the strength speed continuum, aka force velocity curve.

As you can see in the diagram above, squats’ emphasis is on maximal strength and strength speed during dynamic training days. Some variations of squats that would emphasize different phases of the force velocity curve are:

Back / front / safety squats for maximal weight – maximal strength

Back / safety squats with bands – shifts more to strength speed

Back squats with bands – traditionally strength speed and depending upon load closer to speed- strength

Jump squats – dependent upon weight – at SST we emphasize speed during this exercise and have our athletes NEVER exceed 25% of bodyweight as their load for their day. If you are in doubt, ALWAYS aim for the lower weight and increase speed during this exercise

Cleans

The power clean and its variations… pound for pound, the power clean and cleans are great exercises when performed properly, and this is where the issue lies. Cleans are a component of Olympic lifting and a sport in itself, which many coaches and athletes neglect. It takes thousands of hours to become proficient. There are many qualified coaches who are able to coach this lift properly, but unfortunately there are way more that have no clue!

An example of this is a client of mine who won the North American Masters Javelin championship. After performing an assessment, I discovered many imbalances such as unable to fully squat, but what dumbfounded me more was that he told me his trainer had him proficient in power cleans. I said, “OK, go ahead and please show me with light weight.” he must have seen the sheer terror in my eyes after his rep and asked what was wrong. Quickly I said, “We have a few things to work on prior to cleaning again.”

The Clean is a tremendous exercise that falls in the strength-speed and speed-strength continuum dependent upon load. When coached properly, an athlete will see tremendous gains in athletic ability such as jumping and sprinting. Power cleans and variations of cleans are exercises that allow one to  “Jump with weight.” Sometimes as coaches and athletes we neglect this aspect, but the underlying premise is, it’s still a loaded jump.

One of my biggest concerns, and this is with many lifts, is that athletes want to lift more and more weight independent of their form. I prefer to use cleans as a speed strength exercise to improve jumps and speed only. With squats I shift our focus to more of a maximal strength and strength speed exercise. As stated earlier, most athletes are too weak for their speed, thus the focus should be on maximal strength and the king of this is squats and other variations.

Another variable to consider when comparing cleans to squats is that the power clean teaches more timing and synchronization of motor units, whereas the squat is more of a BEAR DOWN and sweat, or what I call “Get under the bar and lift” type of exercise. I know there are some more technicalities regarding the squat such as position, application of force, etc., but the rate of force production and synchronization is greater in the clean.

So let’s get back to our original question: to squat or to clean? What is right? It all depends. If you find you are too weak for your speed, then squats should be the focus. In fact, one of my top strength coaches, Antoine Hamelin, has a rule: if a person cannot squat their own body weight, they squat 3–4 times per week!

If you are too slow for your strength, then cleans may be the better choice. I witness this with athletes who have powerlifted. But do remember this: Athlete A, who squats 500 lbs, will always be able to clean more than an athlete who only squats 200 lbs.

In my next article I will discuss the importance of full squats for sprinting.

 

Verkohoshansky and Siff; Supertraining; Sixth edition – expanded version.

Larry Jusdanis is the owner of Sports Specific Training (SST) the #1 rated speed program in Canada! 

For more information about Sports Specific Training’s SUMMER speed  programs please

CLICK HERE

 

 

Road to D1 – Week 2

Hello all,

I hope everyone is enjoying the beautiful summer weather that we are having! We are very excited about the Road to Division 1 Football update.

If you haven’t seen the start of this journey please click here.  In this blog post we are going to explain the first phase Kyle has been preforming in his preparation or camp in August

Our focus was twofold- increase Kyles rate of force development and lower his body fat.  His program was mixture of Cluster sets to focus on his overall strength, and with our 60% max workout to increase his speed and quickness. The speed aspect of Kyle’s game was the part that needed most improving.  Kyle has days that he is lifting heavy (cluster) (90-100%) of his max and days were he is working speed and quick twitch working only (55-65%) of his max lift. Kyle is getting in 9 grueling workouts per week.  He is training currently two times a day at 8am and 3pm Monday-Thursday and one work out on Friday. To see the last 4 weeks of Kyle’s program PLEASE CLICK HERE

With Kyle hitting this much volume, his diet is so incredibly important. We needed him to lose body fat which he has, but maintain his strength levels. Kyle is on a low carb/high fat diet that has produced some great results.  He has slimmed down from the 315 to 290 pounds and looks very impressive. THE BIG MAN ALMOST HAS ABS POPPING THROUGH!

One of his concerns was not to lose strength…In fact his strength went up but more importantly his overall speed has increased!

Here are some impressive numbers from his body fat calculations. These results came from 8 weeks of work, 4 weeks of general preparation and 4 weeks on the first phase of his program.

  1. Down 24 pounds in 6 weeks
  2. Down 31.3% in the Subscap area (Back)
  3. Down 26.6% in the Midaxillary area (Side)
  4. Down 27.2% in the Supra-illiac area (Love Handle)
  5. Down 11.8% in the Umbilicus area (Belly)

Below you will see Kyle’s full body fat numbers. In 8 weeks he went from 23.6% to 21.4% in total body fat which is awesome! Take this stat in the average body fat for an NFL offensive lineman is about 24.8% so Kyle is keeping pace with pro athletes and let me tell you he is just as strong! I will also attach Kyle’s program, look out for the next update!

We are excited about our upcoming High performance summer camp following the same principals Kyle has worked on in the last 8 weeks

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GET STRONG

MORE POWER

AND SPEED SPEED SPEED!!

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER FOR OUR 8 WEEK PROGRAM

Resistance Training for Acceleration

Sprinting has been described as consisting of a series of phases: an acceleration phase (typically the first 10 metres), a transition phase, and a maximum velocity phase.  For sports such as soccer, rugby, football and basketball, maximum velocity is not always attained, and repeated short sprints are more common.  Taking this into consideration, the ability to develop speed in as short a time as possible (acceleration) may be of high importance to many athletes.  It has been proposed that acceleration and maximum velocity are relatively separate and specific qualities.

An athlete’s ability to accelerate his or her body during sprinting is dependent on several factors.  These factors include technique and the force production capability of the body, in particular the leg muscles.  It has been shown that the technical aspects may have less importance for the acceleration phase of performance than for a typical sprinting event.  For example, in many sports the athletes have to accelerate from a lying or crouching position, from landing on 1 leg and pivoting, from catching a ball, and so on.  Therefore, the force capability of the muscle may be more important in improving acceleration of the athlete.  This point was supported by R. Mann in his publication titled “The Elite Athletes Project: Sprints and Hurdles.” which stated that the ability to perform well in sprints over short distances is dependent on the ability to produce large amounts of force at crucial times.

A variety of methods are used to enhance force output.  These methods include resistance training, plyometric training, and assisted and resisted sprinting techniques.  For this article we will focus on resisted sprinting which involves athletes sprinting with added load.  This load can come in different forms: weighted vests, sled-sprints, uphill sprinting and limb loading.  More specifically, this article will focus on the towing of weighted devices such as sleds which is the most common method of providing towing resistance for the enhancement of sprinting.

It has been shown that the use of towing as a form of resistance may increase the load on the athlete’s torso and therefore require more stabilization.  This training stimulus may increase pelvic stabilization, leading to a positive effect on sprint performance.  Increased torso loads also cause an increased upper-body lean and increased thigh angle at both the beginning and the end of the stance phase.  This increased thigh angle reflects the increased need for force production during the prolonged stance phase.

It is important to note that sprinting speed should not be decreased by more than 10% when adding resistance; adding too much resistance may alter running kinematics in ways that are not desirable.  It is also maintained that sled-sprinting should not be employed when the desired training effect is neural (i.e. maximal velocity).  Sled-sprinting is an effective method for a metabolic training effect (i.e. acceleration).  Due to evidence that only the first 10 metres of a sprint have been designated as the acceleration phase, it is suggested that sled-sprints should be performed for distances no longer than 10 metres.

S.S.T. holds that a well implemented speed program should include a variety of methods to achieve desirable results (i.e. resisted sprints, assisted sprints, unassisted sprints and resistance training).  Also, methods such as resisted and assisted sprints should be used sparingly, such as in the final or next-to-final block of an athlete’s periodized program.

To find out more information regarding SST’s upcoming Lightning camp please visit our website at www.sstcanada.com

 

SST Q&A- Short Hockey Stride

Question:  My 14 year old son is a good hockey player, but as he is getting older, his skating strides are becoming short.  Why would this be? And how can he improve his stride?

Answer: This is a good question.  I have been around the rinks for about 20 years now, and that is something I notice a lot of in young hockey players. A short skating stride can come from a number of things.

First thing, take notes:  What is the position of his upper body? Which way does he shoot?  What does he do for warm up?

For Example:

If his upper body is bent over = tight hip flexors

If he shoots left = Tight right Hip (must be balanced) (and vice versa for a right shooter)

Warm up is Crucial for effective stride length so make sure you are including an effective dynamic warm-up before you get on the ice.

 

If you are still having issues with stride length look to tackle to following through myofacial release,  proper stretching, and off-ice training:

  • Tight Hip Flexors– Comes from too much skating, riding the bicycle (amazes me how many pros I see still riding the bike after games!), not enough stretching, computers and TV etc. Look for warm-up exercises that extends the hip and lengthens the leg.

 

  • Tight Hamstrings: same as above.

 

  • Weak Glute Muscles: Glute Med, Glute Max, Piriformis  muscles which extend and abduct the hip.  These muscles are neglected off the ice.  If these muscles are not strong, power can not be generated to get a full stride. Weak glutes often cause the common hockey groin injury as a direct result of the groin being overworked.

 

  • Tight IT Band – Abducts the hip. Tightness in the IT band causes knee tracking problems causing Patella Femoral syndrome. Use myofacial release to help reduce tightness.

 

  • Tight/Weak Adductors: Commonly neglected.  Athletes tend to stretch this muscle a lot, however neglect to strengthen them.  This affects the recovery phase of the skating stride. Due to the imbalances of the Glutes the groin is an overworked muscle.

 

  • Upper Body Posture: Tight anterior muscles can affect the stride length as well. When a player strides, the opposite arm cocks back as well.  Being tight can cause the leg not to extend to its full potential.  Most hockey players are tight in the Anterior Upper Body (chest region).

 

  • Weak Core Muscles: Especially Back Extensors.  Weak low back causes a hunched position which decreases stride length.  SST has found that strengthening the Lower Back will increase stride length.

 

These weak areas can be improved by:

  1. Stretching the hip flexors and hamstrings, strengthening the glute muscles, strengthening the adductor muscles.
  2. A mixture of dynamic stretching, static stretching, foam roll self myofacial release.
  3. A proper warm up before training, practice and games is also very important.

 

EXERCISES PERFORMED AT SST

Split Squats, Lunges, Walking Lunges and other forms of Lunges, Glute Ham Raise, Reverse Hyper Extension, Deadlifts and all variations,  Resisted Hip Adduction, Y,T,W,L Shoulder Circuit, Back Extension and a variety of speed, agility, quickness and power exercises.

A player with a long fluent skating stride will be more effective and efficient during a game.  He/she will not use as much energy, will be stronger on his/her feet, and will be less likely to become injured.

To recap:  Stretch hip flexors, IT band and chest muscles.  Strengthen glutes, adductors, back extensors and upper back.  SST recommends doing this 3 x a week and watching the difference in your stride and your game.

 

For more great articles and videos please visit www.sstcanada.com

 

 

Did You Waste Your Time With Your New Years Resolution – Part 2

If you missed our first 5 tips to keeping your New Years Resolution, click here to check them out

6. Keep Track of Your Progress

One of the easiest way to keep you motivated on your way to your goals is to track your progress. Track your workouts and weights you used, track your weight and body composition, track your nutrition. When you’re in the thick of it you do not always see the progress you’re making, however, if you keep track of what you are doing day to day and look back in a couple months you will be surprised at how much has changed!

Tracking your progress will also allow you to see things such as a tendency to eat too much at dinner, missing more workouts as the week goes on, you haven’t increased the weights you are using at the gym. Seeing what you are doing on paper (or an app) will allow you to make adjustments to your plan and give you a better chance of sticking to your resolution

7. Celebrate your Progress

A great way to keep yourself motivated towards your goals is to celebrate the smaller victories along the way. Lost 5lbs?! Treat yourself to a new workout outfit! Added 10lbs to your squat, go for a massage (your sore muscles will thank you!). When you celebrate the steeping stones you will be more likely to want to keep pushing for the next one, making your ultimate resolution easy to maintain.

8. Reward Yourself with Non-Food Items

When you celebrate your progress, make sure to avoid doing so with food! Using food to reward your fitness or dietary progress is undermining your ultimate goals and may reinforce an unhealthy relationship with food. Instead celebrate with self-care (massage, pedicure, a bath), treating yourself to something you normally would not (a new outfit, a new book), or a trip or activity you have wanted to do.

9. Make Adjustments

As you progress, you should check back on the goals you wrote down from time to time. This will allow you to tweak your goals if needed. For example, if your goal was to lose 10lbs by the end of March and on February 5th you have already lost 8lbs, you should try making your goal more difficult! You can also look to add more detail to your goal, instead of just squatting 135lbs, how many reps do you want to do? In order to make your resolutions sustained behavioral changes you must be able to self-reflect and be flexible.

10. Know that Set Backs are Normal

You are human, you are going to make mistakes and the world will not end! Going to a birthday party and eating some cake or missing a few days in a row at the gym should not be enough to derail all your hard work. DO NOT GIVE UP THAT EASILY!

Allow yourself some freedoms and guilty pleasures now and then, not only will this allow yourself some sanity but it will also make big setback less likely to occur. For example, if you LOVE chocolate do not deny yourself chocolate altogether, switch to dark chocolate and allow yourself a couple pieces on Sunday evenings as you prepare for your week. Allowing yourself this small treat once a week will make you less likely to gorge yourself on the plethora of chocolates around on Valentine’s Day.

With the help of these tips you will be well on your way to your goals for 2018! Let make this year your best year yet.

If you need some extra help sticking to your resolution, enlist the help of our SST coaches and our incredible Adult fitness programs. We have a program for every fitness level and every goal!

Check out our incredible 2 for 1 deal we have going on in February!

Did You Waste Your Time With Your New Years Resolution?! Part 1

So the first month of 2018 has come and gone; how are those New Year Resolutions treating you?

If you’re like the majority of people, when the New Year comes along you start making resolutions. Promises to save more money, keep in touch with friends and one of the most popular, get in better shape! Well, the resolution part is easy but sticking to your goal, that is the hard part!

According to some research, upwards of 92% of New Year resolutions do not succeed!! With the odds stacked against us, the easy thing would be to join the masses and just give up, but my resolution was to make sure YOU stick to your resulution. So, I put together my top 10 tips to help you stick to those resolutions and be a part of that illustrious 8%! IT’S NOT TOO LATE!

1.Make sure your Resolutions are Realistic

Haven’t been to the gym in a couple years? That’s okay, but your resolution probably shouldn’t be to start going to the gym 7 days a week. Not only is that a really daunting task (even for someone who goes to the gym regularly!) but it sets you up for failure. What happens when you miss one day? It makes it easier to talk yourself out of the next, and the next, and next thing you know your resolution is down the drain!

Rather, aim for something that is more realistic and maintainable. Start with aiming to go 2 or 3 days a week (if it’s been a while you will be sore and you will be happy to give your body some extra rest!). Once you get into the swing of things add an extra day, a couple weeks later add another. Before you know it, it will become second nature to get to the gym on a regular basis and you will avoid feeling overwhelmed and defeated by the gym

2. Be Specific

Vagueness is the enemy when it comes to goal setting. If you don’t know exactly what you’re working towards how will you know when you’ve attained it?

Instead of saying you want to lose weight or get stronger make specific, measureable, time-bound goals for yourself. For example:

– I want to lose 10lbs and 7% body fat by March 31st, 2018

– I want to back squat 135lbs by May 1st, 2018 (I’m well on my way!!)

Are making statements like this scary? Yes.

Is there a chance you may not meet this goal? Yes.

However, giving yourself something specific to work towards will make it more likely for you to stick to your goals.

3. Go Public

Making a silent promise to yourself will not cut it, tell the world! Tell your partner, your friends, make a statement on social media; making your goal public gives you accountability. Yes, telling people about your goals may make you feel vulnerable but it will also push you to stick to your goals.

 

4. Enlist a Friend

Having a gym buddy will make you, and your friend, more likely to stick to your plan. If you know you are meeting someone at the gym you are less likely to skip going and if you want to cancel you have someone asking you why. Accountability is key!

Can’t find someone who wants to go to the gym with you or your friend lives far away? Have a friend check in with you and ask how things are going periodically. Having someone to answer to increases the likelihood that you will stick with it.

5. Plan Ahead

In order to stick to your resolution you need a plan. If you have no idea what you are going to do to achieve your goal then how are you going to get there?! Take some time each week to plan out your upcoming week. Pick the days and times you are going to go to the gym, plan your meals for the week, make a shopping list, prep your meals, put together healthy on-the-go snacks.

It may sound like a lot, but taking an hour or two once a week will make it SO much easier to stick to your goals as your busy week gets rolling. You are less likely to make a quick stop at the drive-thru when you know you have dinner prepped in the fridge or you have healthy snacks stored in your car. Having a shopping list at the grocery store will make you less likely to throw the unhealthy foods in the cart. If your gym time is in your schedule, you are more likely to go! Planning gives you direction!

 

If you liked our first 5 tips, check back soon for Part 2!

If your resolution need an extra helping hand, check out SST’s incredible Adult Fitness Programs!

With supportive coaches, encouraging training partners and an energetic environment; the results you want are not out of reach!

Check out our incredible 2 for 1 deal we have going on in February!

 

Are you Slow? It Could be Your Nutrition! Read Larry’s Tip!!

Running (Speed) and jumping (Power) are skills necessary for successful performance in sports, and must therefore be prioritized during training. We have previously covered how to increase your speed and vertical jump through training. However, much like the way you look, nutrition will also impact your ability to run faster and jump higher.

 

 

An article published in the Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research studied the effects of a 4 week energy restricted diet on sprint & jump performance, body composition, and hormone profiles in elite male track athletes… the results were amazing!

A caloric restriction of 750 calories per day (carbs & fats reduced, protein held at 2g/kg/day) combined with regular training resulted in:

  1. Significant reduction in body mass and fat mass. Athletes lost about 1lb a week.
  2. Maintenance of lean muscle mass.
  3. Improved 20m sprint and countermovement jump.
  4. Unaltered testosterone levels.

How can this be explained?

Increased power-to-weight ratio. Reducing body weight while preserving muscle allows you to still produce the same amount of force but now you have less weight to move around, resulting in faster, more explosive movements!

Taken together, this research further supports what we focus on at SST: getting athletes leaner and stronger to improve their speed and power.

Are you in need of some speed training, or getting ready for your season and feel like you need that extra help….For a limited time SST is offering a first time offer:

 

8 PRIVATE ONE ON ONE SESSIONS – NORMAL VALUE $899.99

For the month of February only- ONLY 399.99! 60% off!

Quite a few of you have taken advantage of this savings!

Thus we only have 7 packages left due to our limited capacity

If you truly want to get better this is the time

Please contact Larry ASAP and state “I am in Big Dawg!”