| In brainstorming for this weekís topic a co-worker brought up the topic of rest. As coaches, itís a very important part of our job to teach the value of rest. One of the hardest things about coaching athletes is getting them to rest either between sets, sessions, or at all! I thought that in this simple, but hopefully insightful post it would be good to outline why rest matters.
When training for increases in speed, power and strength, itís very important to train with a high level of intensity during a working set. We will often build in rest into certain sections of a program, so that the athlete can be fully recovered for the next set. These aspects of training MUST be done with intent and QUALITY. We are often asked, ďcan I just do all 15 reps and be done with it?Ē The answer is always no.
Or something like this will present:
Workout: Heavy sled March @ 10 yds
Box jump x 5
MB slam x 10
Rest 60-90 s between rounds
3 minutes later: Client: ď Coach Iím done with all my stuff, now what?Ē
Coach: Face palm.
In a situation like this, Iím looking for those movements to be powerful and to be done with maximum effort after youíve recovered during the rest period.
If you take 3 work sets and combine them into one, youíre effectively competing against the desired training effects! I would prefer 5 quality reps over 15 speedy ďletís get this over withĒ reps every time. If youíre working as hard as we want you to be, you should need the rest anyway! If your program says rest 2-3 minutes after each set, you should take the rest and be ready to give the next set your full attention and effort. Donít speed through your workouts and choose weights or distances you know are too easy. Training is SUPPOSED TO BE HARD. Quality, efficiency, and intent are your ingredients to success.
When the session is over, rest plays a similar role. We all know that recovery is important, and Iíve written about it previously. See that post here. (http://www.nwgabaseball.org/snitz/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=102660) I do want to mention though, that rest and recovery are when adaptations (training progress) are realized. I often have guys go on vacation for a week and come back lifting more weight. I always savor these teaching moments, because itís so important to understand. Biceps donít grow in the weight room, they grow while youíre sleeping and eating after the weight room. If you work hard enough, the brain says, ďWow that was brutal! I better lay down some more tissue and recover so that next time Iím ready.Ē If you can understand this concept, you set yourself up to be successful in the way you feel, train, play, and eat! To be clear though, Iím not saying you should just consistently take weeks off. There are always other training qualities or other parts of the body that can be addressed!
We hope this is helpful! Have a great week, and as always feel free to comment with questions or topic requests!
All the best,
The Rapid Team
Andrew Gordon, MS, CSCS