Man, I can’t believe how much of a shift I’ve gone through over the past few months. It was just a short time ago that I jacked up my lower back doing a double kettlebell exercise WITH GOOD FORM!
I spent the next month guarded and wondering if I’d ever regain my pliable, flexible, athletic ability that sometimes leaves people with blank stares on their faces. Call it ego, call it obsession, call it what you want; but to me it was just a strict, disciplined regimen.
Right in the middle of this injury phase, I spent some time with my good friend Ron Jones at his place in Cali for our annual Fitness Bar-B-Q. Aside from the amazing run we did that weekend, a few things stuck with me, but they didn’t come full circle until recently.
After being limited on the backyard exhibition, for the obvious reason, I came back home and decided to heal myself once and for all. Up to this point, I was very regimented with my workouts. I knew exactly what I was going to do and on what days I was going to do it. I worked in mesocycles that I would change every four weeks like clockwork.
Since hurting my back, I was forced to change things up a bit, because I quite simply couldn’t do a lot of the stuff I wanted to. That’s where the word “play” came in.
You see, when I was in Cali, Ron kept talking about how he now considers his workouts play time and he would just go out to his yard and mess around with Indian clubs, wands, kettlebells, the pull-up bar and whatever other tool he felt like using. None of it was structured, none of it was uber serious, and with the exception of one or two drills, nothing was planned.
He simply went outside with a goal to have fun and practice some drills. After deploying this strategy, he remarked that he’s having more fun now than ever before in his life. That’s a pretty serious epiphany that can’t go unnoticed.
I had to do a big ego check after thinking about this. Instead of sticking with my structured plan, I chose to follow the same strategy. I had no choice but to change my routines because of my back pain, and this was a great AhHa moment.
Fast forward to today, and my back is now feeling as good as ever, but I’m still following a playful regimen instead of one that is set in stone. I always say that everything happens for a reason. Although my back issue was not fun and I hated the pain I went through 24 hours a day, I needed to experience that to come upon this revelation.
Simply put, I now go into my workouts with the same attitude as Ron. I have two or three things I want to do, but then I just free-float it from there. This has re-awoken my interest in working out and I am more in love with exercise than ever before. I have a hard time keeping my workouts to under 90 minutes. If I had the chance, I’d honestly practice some form of drills or movement for several hours a day. I have truly hit the salt spot in my training!
I think it’s important to take notice of what we uncovered. How many times have you backed out of a workout or trip to the gym because you thought it was going to be hard or boring? I’ll bet many if you are human.
Try shifting your consciousness and not only think of it as play, but ACT like it is going to be playful. Do things that you like and WILL keep you motivated. Also pick up a new skill or two that you might’ve had your eye on for a while and start practicing, regardless if it is yoga, Pilates, Indian clubs, combat ropes or crawling patterns.
We always talk about off-the-ground and on-the-ground training, but in reality, it’s all off-the-wall training. We just make it fun and we welcome you to join us.