Don’t train like a toddler
Have you ever watched a toddler copy an adult? They see you do something and follow suit, it’s how they start to learn about the world around them and how to operate in it. Our little girl, Katie, does this a lot. She sees me or my wife do something and copies it. She has no idea what she’s doing or why she’s doing it, but if Dad does it, then it must be cool, so she does it too.
I see the same thing happen in the gym.
People see an exercise on social media or in a magazine and add it in their next session. And while there is nothing wrong with this, there needs to be a level of understanding about what the exercise is trying to do, and whether or not it fits into your training goals or not.
The exercise might be the best thing in the world ever, but not be applicable to your needs or goals. By all means try new things, experiment a little, but don’t lose sight of the goal and how to get there.
Situationally appropriate food
We like to think of food as either good or bad, and by extension, we are either being good or bad by eating those foods. But there’s the thing, food has no moral value. It’s just food. It’s a collection of calories, nutrients and tastiness that we can eat for a variety of reasons, taste, hunger, enjoyment, need etc.
This type of thinking can make it easy to fall into cycles of poor eating habits. We eat “good” foods for a while, limiting “bad” foods, until the cravings get too much and we binge on the supposed bad foods, feel bad and guilty for doing so and force ourselves back to eating “good” again.
But how about we start thinking a little differently…?
How about we think of foods more along the lines of their situational appropriateness?
For example, a doughnut is a super tasty collection of carbs and fats that would be perfectly appropriate with a cup of coffee as a treat now and again. It’s less appropriate as a breakfast or pre-workout snack (despite my best efforts to prove this wrong). A more appropriate option, in this case, would be something that contains some protein and fast acting carbs, and minimal fats in order to get the quick nutritional boost to aid with training and recovery around your training session.
Single leg RDL progressions
I love single leg RDLs, the combo of hip and core stability, hamstring and glute strength, and positional awareness they develop is a fantastic addition to everyones training aresnal. But they can be a little tricky to do, so here is my progressions list for finding the right variation for you and progressing the right way.
Split stance RDL. This gives you the most stable position to perform the single hinge possible. But remember that you are only using that back foot as a bit of reassurance and 90% of your weight is on the front foot.
Wall press RDL. You still have the extra point of stability, but it’s off the floor this time. Driving the heel into the wall helps you maintain a neutral spine.
Floor slide RDL. Into a moving second point of contact, the foot stays on the floor but you start to get the action of a full sl rdl. This helps you maintain a flat and level pelvis throughout the movement while increasing the loading and need for stability on the working leg.
SL RDL. Full version of the single leg hinge, requiring all the strength and stability that requires.
Bonus warm up move – hip aeroplane. This is one I’ve been using in my warm ups recently, while it’s not really loadable, it does challenge the hip in an extra plane of movement, helping to build more stability in more than just a sagittal plane.
If you have this movement in your program, pick the right variation for where you are right now and look to progress as time goes on.
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