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Two Steps Forward, One Step Back.

Posted Jun 29 2009 4:24pm

Do you know what the trouble is with looking solely at performance as a method of gauging results?  It’s easy to underestimate the beneficial impact of change.

Imagine, for example, that you’re a professional-level golfer.  Your coach tells you to switch your hand position because it will help to prevent that nasty habit you have of breaking left on wedge shots.   How do you think your swing will be for the next few days/weeks/months?  Yet, if you stick through the learning curve, you’ll likely do better at this year’s Masters.

I’m not talking about variety for variety’s sake, of course.  What I’m alluding to are small changes that cause a slight, immediate dip in performance but pay off big in the end.  It’s probably worth it, for example, for you to learn to pull sumo instead of conventional if you’ve got short legs, even if you’ve been pulling conventional for years.  Similarly, while there’s nothing wrong with keeping the same routine as long as it works, why not try rearranging your workout schedule or exercise order to see if you derive any additional benefit?

How do you optimize results while avoiding the trap of the constant tinkerer?  Make one small change at a time, and give it time to work.

With anything involving a change in technique or skill, do yourself a favor and reduce the weight considerably.  Give yourself two weeks or so to allow the technique to “groove in” and to build back up to an appropriate poundage.  Accept that your results may be a little less than stellar while you work out the kinks and press on.

Of course, if anything hurts, abandon ship.

Are you sticking with the path of foolish consistency?  Or tweaking your workout so often your workout log looks like a map of Middle Earth?  Or neither?   Leave me a comment; I’d like to know.

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