Now, I know that no one really wants to suck at their sport, so I guess along with telling you how to suck I will tell you how to not suck, sound OK? Here’s the deal, I talk to people all the time, parents and athletes, who want to know how to get themselves or their child into shape for their sport. I inevitably get some sort of story about how they jog for miles and miles in hopes of getting faster and in better condition. And herein lies the problem….the way to suck at sports, jog. Run slow to get slow. Yes, you can get slow by running slow, simple adaptation.
But if you’re running you have to be getting in better cardiovascular shape right? Short answer is yes. The correct answer is this, in strength and conditioning there’s this concept called sport specific conditioning, train in the same sort of intervals as your sport. There are no team sports where you run for miles at time. Sure, in soccer you end up running a couple of miles, hockey is another one, lacrosse I’m sure you get in at least a couple of miles. But, they’re all in short burst with walking or jogging in between. Your body has different energy systems it uses for different duration’s of physical activity: phosphagen system used for short bursts (up to about 10 seconds), glycolysis which is used for for about 2 minutes, and finally the oxidative system which is used for anything longer than 2 minutes (more to come on this). So training your oxidative system for work that your phosphagen system should be doing is completely counter productive.
The trick is to train in the manner of which your sport is performed. Think of the rest periods you get between each play or each burst of energy. How long are they? How long do you have to run, skate, jump? What’s the furthest distance you can possibly run, skate, jump? Take all of that into consideration and you have yourself a basic, but good, conditioning program. A football lineman probably runs around 5-10 yards on average per play, so train in that distance. Yes, there is the possibility of running 80-100 yards, so do a little training in that distance too. You have no chance of running five miles, so don’t run five miles when you train. Getting the picture?! Great!
This concludes the article on how to suck at your sport. Stay tuned for our next article on how to fail in life….ha, OK not really. If there is anything unclear or you have any other questions or concerns send me a message and I’ll be happy to help you out. Hope everyone has a great weekend!