Your best. It’s a big scary phrase that turns people off exercising because they think it means they have to meet this superhuman target each and every session, and if they don’t make it, then the session is invalid. NOOOOOOOOOO…..”Your best” is a subjective term that is completely relative to each and every day. There are going to be days where you’ve hit that perfect balance of nutrition, sleep, warm-up and you just POWER through a session and set all sorts of new benchmarks. To repeat that straight away next session is completely unreasonable, but it SHOULD be a mid-term goal. To make last week’s best, next month’s normality! The are so many “power” phrases floated around the fitness industry (all industries for that matter) lately. Instagram is full of meme’s like “Go Hard or Go Home”, or my personal annoyance “Do you even lift bro?”. Garrrggghhh that drives me nuts that one. I’m not surprised when people tell me they get daunted by going into gyms when people throw those around.
So What DOES it mean?
Here’s my interpretation and what I push for when instructing in all my classes. Absolutely in all cases – the mere fact that you’ve turned up for any sort of exercise is a win straight out of the box. Unless you are smashed, sore and really should be taking a rest day – even the smallest and shortest of sessions is giving you a leg up on doing nothing. It will increase your heart-rate, promote regenerative metabolism increase and give you some positive, feel-good energy. More often than not, the mental boost is what we’re after anyway!
Secondly – “Your best” is how you feel today…right now….If you’re in one of my 30 minute HIIT classes like GRIT CARDIO I’m going to do everything in my power to get you to smile, laugh, and PUSH as hard as you can. That is not a pre-set level. As hard as you can go for right then. If you aren’t completely feeling it, are sore and can only punch out a light jog – then BOOYAH! That’s perfect, because you’re still mentally training yourself to push through so that when you feel amazing, you’re going to be flying on the winged-feet of Mercury himself! If you’ve come in feeling like Zeus, by gad people we’re going to use that and set some PB’s!!!! But……and I STRESS the “but”…….either way – you’re a winner, I’m proud of you, and you should be damn proud of yourself.
*by the way, the days where you really aren’t feeling it, but turn up anyway, those days mean so much more than when you are top of the game.
What It Doesn’t Mean?
That you should faff around at the gym purely to be there and achieving nothing. Whoooaaaaaa. wait wait wait. Before you all start staring hard at the screen and thinking “but you just said…..” – yeah yeah there is a BIG difference between doing some light exercise to clear the head, aid recovery or focus on something low impact, like flexibility, and puttering around for 30-60 mins doing nothing when you would probably have been better off resting. So…..example time. Maybe you are feeling SUPER sore and are mentally fatigued from a big day at work. Your best today might be a self-driven stretch session to loosen everything up and be prepared for tomorrow. What you should NOT be doing, is coming in, doing 2 mins of weights across 10 different machines, whilst texting and looking facebook. Grin. You’ll see it if you look around next time you go in, and you’re wasting your time.
How Does One “Give Their Best?”
Primarily? Be mentally rested. GET ENOUGH SLEEP. It’s so hard to push yourself when you’re low on energy. Aside from the obvious physical implications, you wont have as much motivation, as much drive, or the ability to push just that little further when you’re tired. This is my number one – and something I’m incredibly guilty of short-changing myself on as well. I’ll dob myself in straight up, I should definitely be getting more sleep. It means, consistent good sleep. Not one HUGE sleep in. It means topping up the batteries over the course of a week. You know how your phone charges quickly, then slows down towards the end to drip feed and make sure it’s ALL the way up? Same concept. Its that last 20% that makes the difference. We all know the “Eat well and drink water” stuff and there’s heaps of articles out there for that – I’m going to practically scream it, GET MORE SLEEP.
The other big (but mostly under-valued option) – is to train in a situation where you’re accountable for the work. Some few people can push themselves, and good on you amazing crew – the rest of us need a buddy 🙂 Or a class/group situation. It’s amazing what you’ll achieve with someone else there. They don’t even need to be particularly coach-like, you’ll tend to perform better, more optimistically, and more enjoyably with someone else there. The whole concept of group fitness stems from this. I love teaching high energy classes because every day you see people surprise themselves with what they achieve. LOVE THAT look!
This was us Launching the New BodyAttack at Ezyfit Health and Fitness – IT WENT OFF. Burnt a ridiculous amount of calories and had an absolute BLAST doing it.
Your Best Guys – it’s not a scary thing. Your best. It’s always enough….always. Just make sure you give it.
I’ll always make sure you do anyway 😉 Come jump, run, lift, laugh, sweat, dance and sing…..and together we can achieve anything.
Your Best – You Can – You Should