Time to Start Living Like An Athlete!

By Corey Beasley

Everybody is always looking for the secret...

How do I get better, bigger, faster, stronger... I was talking to Matt Bousson the other day and he had a great way of describing how most athletes can improve.

Start acting and living like an athlete

I thought this was a simple way to put it.  Many fighters and grapplers are technical and tough, but lack many of the basic habits that will help them become better athletes.  Below we've gathered a few simple basics.  Scroll through the list and give yourself an honest assessment on each area.

calendar1. Why you are training?

Do you know exactly why you are training right now? What is the goal of all the hard work? Goal setting might sound a little silly to some, but when you get  specific, it can help guide your training, recovery and help you stay more consistent.

Ever heard of SMART goals?

When you write your goals down, they should be:

  • Specific: Well defined and clear.
  • Measurable: How will you know when you reach your goal?
  • Agreed Upon: All parties involved agree that this is a good direction for you.
  • Realistic: Is this realistic for you to achieve?
  • Time Based: There has to be a due date.

For example: I will drop my bodyfat percentage by 5% in the next 12 weeks.

Give it some thought and write down a few SMART goals for your training.

2. Have a team of people to support you?

Make a list of every person who is committed to helping you on your journey.  Once you have a list, its important to determine each person's role, set clear expectations and make sure they are aware of your goal, commitment and how to keep you accountable along the way.

Get everybody around you on the same page.  The clarity that this will bring to your training will blow your mind!

Athlete workout plan3. Do you have a plan of attack to reach your goal?

What needs to happen between now and completing your goal?  Do you know when to train, what to do, how to eat, and when to rest?  All of these things need to be clear, so we can set the plan in motion.

Sit down with your crew and map it out.  Get everyone's opinion and develop a plan of attack.

4. Strength and Conditioning 2-3Xs per week?

Do you have a Athlete workout plan to help you improve as an athlete?  This should be a well organized, specific plan for you to reach your goals and you should be monitoring your effort for each Athlete workout.   2-3 days per week is usually enough for just about any combat athlete.

Find a good coach, lay it out and execute the Athlete workout plan!

Athlete workout plan5. Do you shop and prep your food each week?

People seem to struggle with this one, but it really doesn't need to be difficult.  Choose a day or two and schedule time to shop, prep and cook your food for the week.  This will not only speed recovery and help you stay healthy, but you'll also save a lot of money, versus eating out all the time.

Don't be lazy...go buy some good, quality foods, cook em up and put into little containers, so you're prepared for the week.

6. Getting 7-9 hours of sleep each night?

Turn off your phone, ipad and television.  Go to bed, talk to your spouse, read a book or something.  The benefits of sleep are well known and documented, so make sure to get it in.  This, combined with good nutrition, is the easiest way to speed recovery between tough sessions.

Anybody else gain weight between fights?

7. Monitoring progress and consistency?

Are you getting better, making progress toward your goal and staying on track?  You'll never know, if you dont measure a few things.  Once you have your goals set, you need to monitor a few related things.

Are you consistent or missing sessions?  Are you getting closer to your goal?  (Weight going down,  Strength going up,  etc)

For example: If your goal is to drop body fat, you'll need to measure it at the beginning of this training cycle and probably each month to assess changes.  How was your training, sleep, and nutrition?  Assess, adjust and move on!

So how does your training measure up?  We all have certain aspects that we can improve on, so hopefully this list stirred up a few ways for your to improve.  Use it with your own training, share with your training partners and discuss some of these ideas with your coaches.

Hope it helps!