All too often as coaches we miss a vital part of training. The mental side.
I have watched as people have thought so hard about a lift that they have to step back, look me in the eye, and ask what they were supposed to be doing. Depending on the person i either try to control myself and patiently explain what i was looking for or simply laugh in their face (not the best approach as my fiance will tell you). Most of the best coaches in the world won’t try to tell you they have the best training program, in fact its likely they will have something that works for them because in all reality there is not much difference in programming. As weightlifters, we all snatch and clean and jerk, squat and pull. The Chinese aren’t out there doing some magic exercise that puts them consistently at the top of the world rankings. Football players all run sprints and lift weights so what is it that makes such a huge difference?
A couple things:
1: The mental strength of the athlete. First and foremost the athlete has to want to achieve. If there is no desire then there will be no result. Especially if you are working at a high level. There has to be some form of strong internal drive to succeed. I am not sure if this can be taught. I have played with guys who had far more natural talent than me but would not apply themselves to being successful. Its horribly frustrating to be around people like this but no matter how hard you try, its almost impossible to get in their mind.
2: Expectations. These are both internal and external. The internal expectations come from the athlete themselves and gives them a purpose to win or accomplish whatever it is that they are working towards. External expectations come from coaches, fans, etc. I like to set high expectations for my clients as i am convinced that if they believe that i think they can do something, then they will be convinced of it as well. For example i have a guy who when starting with me could barely snatch 135 lbs. 6 months later he is up to 175lbs and i expect 185 this weekend. When i first told him that 185 was doable within the year he looked at me like i was crazy. I simply looked back and smiled knowing he could do it especially if i showed him confidence. Did i believe he could make jumps this fast 6 months ago? Maybe but that doesn’t even matter. What matters is that after a couple months he started talking about 185 like HE knew he could get it.
Set your expectations high as a coach.
3:Work ethic. Its not cool to go into the weight room, do “a couple squats” and call it a day. If you are truly working towards a goal make an effort to get the most out of your training everyday. I understand that not everyday will be something you tell your grandkids about but please put conscious effort into everything you do so its not a waste of time. Why be there if you aren’t going to get something accomplished?
4: Coaching. This piggy backs well with expectations but as an athlete, buying into a program 100% is crucial. If you are struggling with why your coach is having you do something, then you are less likely to put 100% effort into it. With total buy in up front you will feel less stressed about your program and more focused each day you put in towards your goals.
5: Goals. Knowing where you want to end up is half of getting there right? Need i say more?
More to come on goals later.
Simply said, get your mind right! Whatever that takes for each individual will be different but remember, we succeed first in our minds.
Front Squat x 3
10 wall balls