The IWT Mindset
Yesterday we did an IWT, or Interval Weight Training, session at the gym. I have written the workout below so you can get an example of how they are set up and what they look like. I believe (this is not a fact) that IWT’s are one of the most effective workouts for a variety of reasons.
Reason 1, they include strength/resistance training. Reason 2, they include a conditioning portion. Reason 3, they have a given rest. Reason 4, the weight lifting and breathing can be altered depending on your goals. These 4 factors, when combined correctly, calls for an awesome workout if you are willing to put in the effort. IWT’s are not effective, however, if you do not put in the correct effort. Today’s post is about just that. The physical and more importantly the mental effort needed in order for an IWT to be truly effective.
When we do IWT’s we usually have our athletes record the distance or calories they were able to achieve during their work period. This is so they know where they are and it gives them the ability to look/compare with other individuals of similar fitness levels. The great thing for us as coaches is we can see who is slacking. Granted there are a variety of reason someone may not perform their best on a given day, for the most part we know if there is a real issue behind someones “slow moving”.
The reason we see most people finish an IWT and still have some juice left is their inability or lack of desire to push beyond their mental capacity. Honestly, IWT’s begin to suck pretty bad. Your body fatigues and your breathing exercises begin to feel like an eternity. When you are going into an IWT you have to fill yourself with positive self talk. I’m talking total overload of telling yourself you have what it takes. If you have already made up your mind before you start that you don’t have what it takes or you really don’t want to do it, then you might as well not even start. The worst part is, the beginning is the easiest. The body starts to fatigue more and more as you go and when that happens, you again have to go back to telling yourself that you can do it. No, you cannot tell yourself that it’s hard and that you’re tired. You have to keep moving knowing you can hit the numbers from the previous set.
During yesterdays workout, a little past the halfway mark, I specifically remember telling myself, “You’ve got this man, don’t be a f**king quitter, you’re better than that”. As hippie dippy self talk may seem, if you truly mean what you’re saying to yourself, it never fails. You always have more left in the tank, many of us just never find out that it’s actually there. We quit well before the real work begins. We are so accustomed to being around negative people and quitters that we think it is the norm. Well guess what? It’s not!
What’s so crazy about the IWT mindset, don’t quit when it get’s hard, always be positive mentality is it’s the same mindset you should have in life as well. The things that we push through in life are the most rewarding. Many of us however never get that reward because we quit too soon. We are so damn worried we will fail or that we will be embarrassed of what “they” will say that we never get to the other side. Truth is, life is only going to be as hard as we make it. Hard times will definitely arise but if you can remind yourself that you’re a badass and you can do it, I guaran-damn-te you will. And the gift on the other side will be that much sweater.
Perform 3 rounds of each station. Once you have completed an entire station, rest 3 minutes. Record all Meters on Ergs and Calories on AirFit
Station 1: 3 Rounds of the following
- 10 BB Front Squats at challenging but doable weight (we did 115#/85#)
- Immediately following the FS perform 2 Min. of max meters on the SkiErg
- Rest 2 minutes
Station 2: 3 Rounds of the following
- 10 Dual Dumbbell Press at challenging weight (we did 40-50#/25-35#)
- Immediately following the Press perform 2 min. of max meters on the Rower (concept 2)
- Rest 2 Minutes
Station 3: 3 Rounds of the following
- 5R/5L Kettlebell or Dumbbell Snatch
- 2 Minute max calorie AirFit
- Rest 2 minutes