Preparation – Prepare to Succeed

“Everything I do pre-round is based on a pyramid of mobility, stability, strength and power. You can’t have strength and power without underlying blocks.”

-Justin Rose – Professional Golfer 

It’s almost the New Year and this is usually when people start reflecting on the past and thinking about the future. One thing that has got me ahead in my career, business, relationships, health and sports more than anything else is PREPARATION.

Preparation is one of the biggest keys to success in fitness and life. If you’re not prepared then how can you expect a positive result or outcome? When talking about From Average to Elite this is something elite athletes are extremely good at! In this blog post we will look at different ways athletes prepare their minds and bodies to compete at the highest level.

Being prepared for any job is very important and it is especially important for training to improve performance. The best athletes and competitors that I’ve worked with understand this concept. Whether they are preparing their body for their round or they’re preparing for their workout, it’s the same. There’s a job that needs to be done and if you want it to be done at the highest level then you need to prepare that way. The best players in the world analyze every angle of their life and they improve where they can and strengthen their strengths.

Control what you can control…

Preparation is something we can all control. What do I mean by that? What can I control? You control every action you make everyday. From what you eat to how you train, sleep and think. You have the ability to control what you put in your body everyday. You control when you go to bed and wake up (unless you have young kids…I know this all too well!). You control whether you watch television for 3 hours/day or even more (I hope not). The point is a lot of people think they don’t have the power to change or improve but half the battle is just controlling the controllable’s

In this post we will go through 5 things that I want you to consider when preparing…

  1. Warm Up
  2. Assessments
  3. Fitness Plans
  4. Nutrition Preparation
  5. Mindset

WARM UP

Do you warm up before you play? Train?

Warm up before your round or workouts and feel the benefits. Even doing something for ten minutes before you play golf is HUGE. It doesn’t have to be a half hour workout or an hour workout before you play. It will make you play better, feel better and recover better. 10 minutes. Everyone can find 10 minutes. I challenge you to find 10 minutes. You’ll thank me later. 

Your body needs to be prepped before we do anything physical.  There are many ways that we can achieve this but what I’ve found works best is doing some kind of myofascial release, followed by a dynamic warm up. I have played with this formula over the years and this is what makes my athletes, and myself, feel the best going into competition or a workout.

A great way to increase circulation around certain muscle areas is to perform some myofascial release (foam rolling). This is a great way to loosen up the body before you work out and it also helps with recovery. A lot of athletes that I have worked with will roll before their workouts and others like it better after their work outs. Try both and see what works and feels best for you. 

Here’s a video on Myofascial Release: 

A dynamic warm up is going to turn on your body, increase blood flow, increase body temperature and move through all of the planes of movement (forward and backwards (sagittal), side to side (frontal) and rotation (transverse). Those are the physical benefits from a warm up.

There are also mental benefits including confidence! When you take your body through a warm up you feel how your body is feeling. If you feel good then you’re going to go into your competition feeling strong and confident. If you don’t, that’s positive too because then you know what to expect out of your body during the workout or the competition. You can spend some extra time warming up, rolling or activating and sometimes that helps to bring you back. The sad thing is so many people don’t even go through this process and they’re going into their sports or workout blind. Don’t be the norm! 

Here’s a video with a Golf Specific Dynamic Warm Up: 

I have a variety different dynamic warm ups that I have used for years. These warm ups are simple and they don’t require any equipment. Please go and see a certified exercise professional to help with form to assure you are doing the exercises correctly. 

Alternate Warm Up Example

Dynamic Warm Up https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLBoHK_ibKsl9VBsZgcIPbpCrPv988JyhS

Assessments

Do you assess your swing speed? Do you track what you do to see improvements? Have you ever done a fitness assessment to see how you rank?

Before you begin training get assessed. What is a fitness assessment? There are many things that we can assess to determine a starting place or to give us a base line to work from. I like to assess my athletes by starting with a movement screen to determine movement capabilities. Then we can move to muscular endurance, strength and power testing. Depending on the athlete we might do an aerobic assessment too.

In order to become the best version of yourself you need to understand your abilities. The video below showcases how I give my athletes an edge by assessing them using the latest technology in motion capture. I combine that with the sport specific screen used by the pros to determine the best plan possible. If you’re not assessing you’re guessing..

FROM AVERAGE TO ELITE…

Fitness Plans

Do you have a plan when you train? Or do you just piece together workouts from social media? Been doing the same workouts or exercises week after week? Do you have a system in place to help you be successful?

Creating a plan is the best way to enhance your abilities and play golf at the highest level. Defining some health and fitness goals is a great place to start when deciding where to spend your time in the gym. This strategy can work for any area in your life. Create short and long term goals for your career, training, playing career and so on. The best way to stay motivated is to have something to work towards. Below is how I like to define goals before creating a system, or plan, that will ultimately help you reach those goals.

SMART Goals

S – Specific

M – Measurable

A – Action Oriented or Attainable

R – Realistic / Result

T – Time

Off Season Example

S – Gain 5-10 MPH club head speed without hurting swing mechanics

M – Pre training speed measurement and bi-weekly checks

A – Fitness program completed 3-5 x/week / Program progressing monthly

R – 3x/ week at the gym/ 1-2x/ week at home training / 1-2 MPH Increase / Month

T – 4 – 6 Months

Do mobility work everyday to make sure you feel good everyday and that’s how you will continually improve. If you are an athlete then your body should be a priority in your life. Recovery workouts are a must to reduce the risk of injury and keep the body functioning at a high level. Mobility drills, recovery workouts, yoga, assisted stretching, massages, foam rolling, percussion guns and more. In my experience this is really the difference or the “secret sauce”. Create a plan if you want your training to be effective!

Nutrition Preparation

Do you meal prep? Do you plan out your meals each week before you go grocery shopping? Do you even think about how you eat? Talked to a Dietician?

Understand what you need to fuel your body and prepare the foods you need on a weekly basis. This doesn’t mean for a week and then give up and go back to the restaurants for breakfast, lunch and dinner. A lot of the time when it comes to fuel you need to experiment in order to find what works best for you. Experiment with different whole foods and healthy options, not unhealthy food. Once you find the formula that works for you then all you have to do is repeat it every week.

Where am I going to find the time to meal prep?

You will feel like you have more time if you prepare your meals or at least a few of them. Instead of having to make lunch 5 times you can make it once on Sunday and eat all week. Instead of chopping vegetables for dinner each night, you can chop them up on the weekend and put them in containers until it’s time to cook. Or you could do this twice a week and do it on a Wednesday, or Thursday.

At the end of the day it’s about organizing your life to assure you’re efficient with your time and you’re reducing your stress at the same time. Pack healthy food for work, travel, your round or practice sessions.  Drink WATER! So many of us are dehydrated and there are numerous studies on how that decreases performance and concentration. How will you have a positive mindset or perform at the highest level if you’re constantly hungry or depleted?

Check out my Nutrition Recommendations E-Book:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1dynNzdi4mUpAGrFkFacsAR5B1qwXfToJ/view?usp=sharing

Mindset

Do you work on your mindset? Have you ever talked to a sports psychologist? Meditated? Tried any deep breathing techniques? Visualization?

Putting your mind in the right place is also very important in your preparation for sport and life. Going into a day, your work place, a round, or training session with a poor mindset will definitely be the recipe for disaster. Taking a beep breath or going for a walk might help if your feeling off.

You do need to have a way to bring yourself back if this happens prior to a competition. You can come back to the problem once you’re done but dwelling on negative thoughts and emotions is a recipe for disaster. Learn to let go and live in the moment. Having a positive and growth mindset will help you see the good in most situations, even the bad ones!

Below is a great book to consider reading if you struggle with your mindset.

In conclusion, prepare for everything you do in life if you want to be successful. Consider improving one area at a time and watch the improvements happen. Soon you will include PREPARATION into everything you do!

Happy Holidays!! Thank you, for your continued support of CSC Performance Coaching!

From Average to Elite.

Stop misusing your time doing the same thing in the gym expecting a different result! Let me develop a personalized plan to maximize your potential and start living the life you deserve. We will identify your limitations and turn them into your strengths! Take your athletic ability, game, body and LIFE to the next level! Don’t waste another minute. LETS GO!

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Thanks for reading! Until the next one……

Mark

CSC Performance Coaching

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From Average to Elite

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