As a coach this is an issue we often run into. Members or people online will see something I am doing (be it physically in training, in business, in teaching etc…) and assume that, that’s the best way to do things. More so, they might bring up in class or during a conversation “Well, you say this, BUT I have seen you do this. So what the heck?”
The truth is, the saying “do as I say, not as I do” has a ton of truth in it… and wisdom.
From a 1000 yard view… the answer is simple… You are not me, so your plan should not be the same as mine.
Now, that is not to say that there aren’t “general best practices” in life that tend to apply to most, especially the majority. However, every persons past experiences, current situations, and future desires are not the same, and so no two roads will be alike.
Let’s take training for instance. There are days where I train 3-5 hours. There are times where I train 10 days in a row. Is this good, not exactly. Is it something everyone should aspire to do, no. Is it the best way to approach fitness/life, nope. Does it work for me and my goals and my past? Absolutely… or at least I think so… it hasn’t killed me yet.
I have spent the last eleven years doing this full time. In that time period, I have built a tolerance to that kind of volume. And trust me, I made plenty of mistakes along the way. Mistakes I hope to keep everyone else from making. But at the end of the day, when you’ve done nothing but fight people, lift heavy shit, and use your body as a never ending experiment for over a decade, feel free to do two-a-days, or three-a-days, or just fuck yourself up all day long. If you haven’t done that, then notably have you not earned the right to do that, but IT IS NOT THE BEST WAY TO GET THINGS DONE!!
My life is teaching. To be a better teacher, I have to be a good student. For most that means diving deep into their art. For me that means diving deep into CrossFit, Powerlifting, Olympic Lifting, Kettlebells, BJJ, Krav Maga, Boxing, Kali, Firearms, Wrestling, Gymnastics, and more. I can’t “stay ahead” of my students and give them the best possible instruction, strategy, etc… by training one hour a day, five days a week. So for me, the hours are necessary. I also know that I AM NOT going to be the greatest practitioner of any of these topics. Because if I wanted to do that, I would need to focus on one area specifically, and make sure I am doing everything possible to improve there. For me, that is teaching. That is my focus.
Context matters. I would never tell anyone that the way I train (overall) is the best approach to everything… because it’s not, at least not for most people. So don’t try to model after me… or anyone for that matter.
Are you training to be in the next CrossFit Games? No? If not, then why the hell are you following their program.. or their movement style… or their everything?!
This applies to more than just fitness.
Are you worried about protecting your family, so you decide to begin training with a firearm? How does learning to clear rooms in teams apply to that context? Are you, your spouse, and your kid, stacking on doors, going room to room in search of bad guys? No. You’re not. Ever. It’s fun, sure but not practical. Focus your time, where it is needed. That’s how you improve.
Yes, it is great to learn from those that are better than you or have at least “been there.” But make sure the pieces you are picking up, still apply to your life, your context, and your goals.
The road to where you want to go is often riddled with consistent, practical, boring ass fundamentals. Fundamentals, that if you pay attention, are still present in the jacked up shit I do. Fundamentals that you need to master before moving on.
At the end of the day, good teachers are their to show you what is best for YOU. 90% of what we SAY is also what we DO… but there is 10% that isn’t. It’s for us. It’s for learning, experimenting, or for our own personal goals. Don’t get that mixed up.
Find a coach or mentor you trust and follow their plan…. don’t do what we do… because remember, we’re trying to find out what works and doesn’t so that you will be BETTER THAN US.
Trust the path.
Be good, train hard, stay safe.