How to Train Like the Top 1% in the World (5 of 5)

5123851007_542b23aa2cWoah. You actually… made it to the end.

You did read the rest of the series on moving heroically, right? (If not, go do that now, tons of people have benefited immensely from it.)

Today we’re going to talk about how the best people in the world approach training and their practice.

I don’t know about you, but I want to be one of the best movement artists on the planet. Modeling my approach to what the best in the world already do seems to make a lot of sense to me.

Obviously we can’t all train like pro athletes, and there are definitely some factors we can’t control, like:

  • Superior genetics
  • Early childhood training
  • Raw talent

But we can learn a lot from the way they reach greatness if we pay attention.

Fate does play a role, but not as much as you’d think.

In the book The Talent Code, author Daniel Coyle studied talent hotbeds around the world. On a quest to uncover how the world’s best reached their level of incredible talent, in the end it boiled down to one thing:

Quality and depth of practice

If you exclude this critical ingredient, the clay of your greatness will remain simply mud. So, that begs the next question.

What most greatly affects your quality and depth of training?

The level of your training partners and teachers.

The sad truth is that people will go their whole lives without deliberately selecting the people they train with. Fewer still will ever seek out and consult the help of a teacher.

Zombie_Treadmill

The majority of the population will train alone, sad isolated gym creatures hooked into the matrix with their apple earbuds and templatized routines.

Okay, that was pretty dramatic. But you know what I’m getting at: the more you train alone the more likely you are to always do what you’ve always done.

There’s no one there to point out your mistakes (creating imbalances), call you on your bad habits (the ones injuring you), and encourage you to give everything when you’d rather just go through the motions.

I can say all of this and you can nod your head in agreement. It’s easy to see that having a great training partner or teacher is better than doing it like a lonely rogue. But you won’t do anything about it unless you know:

  • How to spot a great teacher or training partner
  • How to find and connect with them

Let’s dive into each one, shall we?

 

How to find amazing training partners:

  • Make friends with the teachers at local gymnastic, crossfit, bouldering and parkour gyms. Ask to train with them. Ask if they have open gym. They might be way better than you, but that’s good a think. It means they’ll force you to grow and progress much more quickly than if you surrounded yourself with average people.
  • Take some martial arts, dance or yoga classes in your area and look for the most dedicated, advanced practitioners. Ask if they’d like to meet up once a week to train and exchange ideas.
  • Post in the Movement Lifestyle group on Facebook. See if there’s anyone near you that wants to train with you.
  • If you can’t find someone locally, create a Google hangout group where you share ideas each week and keep each other accountable. Look for the top commenters on this blog, Nerd Fitness forums, or any blog that resonates with you. They are the ones most likely to be dedicated enough to consistently show up.

Finding and assessing great teachers:

  • Make sure that they walk the talk. Never hire someone that can’t actually do what they are trying to teach you to do.
  • Look at their credentials and who they’ve worked with in the past. People of a high caliber tend to have a track record of working with other high caliber people.
  • Make sure they give live coaching, not just here’s a list of thing, do them then “record a video and show me.” You want live feedback and guidance to ensure you’re doing the training correctly as they prescribe.
  • Ask them what their process is. If they don’t have an answer, take your money and run.

One teacher I can recommend is Justin Goodhart. I’ve personally worked with him and can attest to his level of commitment, knowledge and passion he puts into every client he works with.

You can check out his student results here (you’ll find me on there).

The important thing is to find a teacher or training partner that is not only really fucking good, but that you resonate with. Some people might vibe with precise, focused process Justin gives, others will be drawn to the fun, mindful approach of Ryan and the guys at GMB.

Or you might somehow be kind of insane and want to pursue internal strength, physical badassery and depth of purpose all at once, like me. In that case, we could be a good fit.

Working your ass off is inevitable if you want to be amazing. So, why not be smart and make your environment work harder than you can?

Level up the people around you, and you level up automaticallyClick To Tweet

Go, do something now to make your social influences work in your favor. Your future self will thank you for it.

photo credits: OneZombie treadmill

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