Recently I listened to a podcast with LeBron James and his trainer Mike Mancias. LeBron James is one of THE best basketball players of all time. Mark, his trainer and recovery specialist, is sometime referred to as his secret weapon. They've been working together for more than 14 years. What really stood out to me in this podcast, is how much emphasis LeBron and Mike puts into the Process of recovery, every single day. In order to stay injury-free, and be able to play consistently at an extremely high level.
"Recovery never ends, recovery never stops."
When we look up to athletes that we think are awesome, we pretty much only focus on how hard and intense their work-outs are. It's easy then to do a quick copy and paste on some kind of version of that, for our lives.
Meaning we focus almost exclusively on what kind of training we should be doing. It makes sense since the main focus on athletes are when they are competing in their Arena, and we see their incredible performance.
The thing that not a lot of people see though, is the work behind the Arena. Just like LeBron, the top athletes that I have worked with over the years are all consistent performers on behind the scenes stuff, in particular recovery. It might not be the sexiest part of living an athletic lifestyle, but as Mike says "it's a never ending process...that's the approach we must take, in order for us to be successful and provide longevity for these guys."
"it's a never ending process...that's the approach we must take, in order for us to be successful and provide longevity for these guys."
LeBron who already has had a long and amazing career, is still playing, and is not planning on quitting anytime soon. He contributes his success to being consistent with the Process. The Process of his recovery work, hydration, eating clean and training.
When it comes to Nutrition, Mike and LeBron work along the lines of "less is more, keep it simple, eat organic, no artificial ingredients". They make a conscious decision of eating clean and staying away from artificial drinks, artificial sugars and fried foods consistently during the 9 months of basketball season.
-Ok, sure. But, that's their job. I'm not an Athlete, why do I have to care about this? If it takes all that work to play continuously at a top level in sports, don't you think you need to do some work in order to "play well" in your life? If you want to have a life of quality - whatever that means to you - you are going to have to put in some work. Period.
So what can you do for your recovery work? The easiest place to start is to plan in some kind of mobility work daily. Make a conscious effort of when and where you are going to do it. Here is a good place to start.
I often suggest to sit on the floor and do some mobility exercises during the first 10 minutes of watching Netflix, TV or similar. It's easy because it's time that you already have. It's just a conscious decision of doing a few simple moves on the floor, instead of flopping onto the couch immediately.
Start thinking about what you can you do in your life to create a Process that helps you being fitter and more energized. How would that Process look like in terms of Hydration, Nutrition and Recovery work?
Work on implementing that plan, and have a great weekend!
"A good plan implemented today is better than a perfect plan implemented tomorrow." -George Patton