A common question we get asked, how much should I be ‘training’? Without trying to sound like most professionals, it depends on a couple of different factors including intensity, volume, time, recovery and history. We will say however, that most of us can handle more load than what we think.
"We have not journeyed all this way across the centuries, across the oceans, across the mountains, across the prairies, because we are made of sugar candy."- Winston Churchill
Go to hard, and injury is almost a certainty, but doing too little will yield minimal results, repeating the same old cycles and increasing the risk of injury when you do decide to ‘test yourself out’.
This is where seeking out the right help is critical. We design our programs to push you hard enough to get big improvements out of your body - not only in terms of body image, strength and fitness, but also resilience. At the same time it won’t push you over the line so that you end up breaking things.
A key element is not trying to ‘make up for lost time’ or ‘missed sessions’ by going extra hard on the next. It will lead to additional unwanted soreness and increased risk of overuse as it will not align with your normal recovery practices.
Priorities play an important role here. If training takes away time to read your kids a bedtime story, that your choice. Its all about balance, but training is a big part of ensuring you’re around to not only read your kids a bedtime story, but to see them graduate, marry, have kids and enjoy all those moments in good health. We would also question your priorities if you couldn’t training 3x a week because you were working 60hr week.
A couple of key pieces of advice are:
- 1hr of moderate exercise seem to eliminate the increased risk of mortality risks associated with 8hrs of inactivity
- Sleep – Athletes who sleep less than 8hrs per night are 1.7x greater risk of injury than those who sleep greater than 8hrs
- If you train >4x per week and feel you need a day off, you probably do. As an alternative, just have a ‘low volume’ day.
- 15min of recovery per 1hr of training. That’s stretching, foam rolling, water therapy etc. As you get older (>35yrs old), double the recovery time.
- Stick to the program and try not to miss sessions as you begin to lose the resilience that makes you that little bit more bulletproof the next time you load up. We’ve had our best results on the back of consistent training, and we know it will work for you.
- We classify skill work as training. Find a daily minimum that is super easy to hit and is low impact (100 sec of handstands, 100 juggling throws, 10 pull-ups).
- If you do happen to get injured, seek out professional help asap. We couldn’t tell you the number of people who have done something and just let it sit there hoping it would get better. It often wont, your body just works around it, which causes problems in itself.
In summary, train in various forms daily, build your resilience, ensure you’re doing the appropriate levels of recovery and seek guidance from a professional from the start