Diary of a Spartan Warrior: Week 8
Powering Through with Motivation
This week officially begins our warriors toughest training yet: power and strength.
With three more members joining their team, BistroMD’s team of real food warriors are ready to battle their toughest week yet, with a series of exercises that will test their individual power and strength-training levels.
“In the weeks leading up to this 8th week, I’ve tried to prepare our team by putting together a workout schedule that would gradually strengthen our warriors, while promoting endurance and preventing injury,” says Sean Wells, a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist through the NSCA, and the fitness expert at BistroMD. “These next 6.5 weeks will really test the mental and physical capabilities of each member of our team.”
Maintaining the Motivation
“With such a difficult six weeks ahead of them, our team of warriors are going to need to maintain their motivation and not give up,” says Sean. “This workout isn’t going to be easy, and we are going to need to encourage each other every step of the way.”
For three new Spartan warriors—Al, Carrie, and Holly—this phase will be even more difficult, considering they are entering the training late.
With such an intense workout, motivation is going to be critical. As a team, these BistroMD Spartan warriors are keeping each other motivated the good ole fashion way: through positive re-enforcement and encouragement.
“Even though I’m what most would consider a little 'scrawny' my fellow team members make me feel like I could lift up the entire world,” says Amanda Paul, a member of BistroMD’s Spartan Team. “I’m really skinny, so when it comes to doing pull-ups and squats, I don’t have a lot of confidence. My team, however, really makes me feel like I can, which motivates me to keep pushing forward.”
When it comes to motivation, it’s also important that you don’t push you or your teammates too much. Risking injury is not worth pushing yourself to do more. Just as important as setting realistic goals, so is realistic motivation.
Taking the Time to De-Stress
An intense workout like this can be very strenuous, so it’s important that you take your day of rest seriously.
In order to avoid injury and to make the necessary progress in your workout, it’s important that you take a day just to relax.
“Rest and recovery time in any exercise plan actually allows the real changes to start taking place,” says Sean. “Recovery allows the body to replenish energy stores and to repair damaged tissues. It also prevents overtraining and injury.”
On your rest days, don’t do any type of intense activity. Your body really needs the time to adapt and adjust to the intense changes in your workout.
Going for leisurely walks are fine, just don’t turn them into jogs or sprints. Rest time is important, so make sure it remains a high priority.
Aim for a Moderate Change
“When doing a workout like this, always make sure that you properly plan out your schedule,” says Sean. “It’s important that you alternate between exercises at the appropriate times. This helps your progression and prevents over-training."
Don’t push yourself to the limit by doing all power-training activities three days in a row. Instead, save the power training for one day each week, and alternate between strength and cardio. This will help you avoid injury, but will help you build a gradual, healthy endurance for these exercises without harming yourself or your progress.