BEGIN WITH THE END IN MIND

The MONSTER GARAGE GYM/MAROSCHER COACHING LOG is a weekly Coaching Log by MGG owner, 2-Time WPC World Powerlifting Champion, Eric Maroscher, and is geared to the new to intermediate powerlifter. LIVE, LEARN and PASS ON.

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THIS WEEK’S Monster Garage Gym/Maroscher Coaching Log: BEGIN WITH THE END IN MIND

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This Week’s Coaching Log:
“If your ladder is not leaning against the right wall, every step you take gets you to the wrong place faster.” The quote is from educator and thinker, Stephen Covey. He speaks about this in his book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (the book is well worth reading). 7 habits, that sounds like a bullet point for a quick fix book, but once you begin your journey into the 7 habits book you will see there are layers and layers of useful information that one can apply to their life, and the whole book can easily be applied to your powerlifting.

begin with the end in mind

Dr. Covey talks about beginning with the end in mind. This is Habit 2 of his 7 habits. It is all about your internal power of imagination and creating a vision. When he talks about the ladder, he is talking about those who start climbing without planning, without a mission, without a vision. For powerlifters going up the wrong ladder, that is with regard the lifter's random-non-planned out training, where the powerlifter ends up at meet time, in a state of conditioning that is counter to what helps make a successful meet. Dr. Covey speaks about visually seeing where you want to end up, then building a plan from there. Further in his book, he delves into how we create things twice, first in the mind and second is in the physical reality.

Often in the world of big weights and competition, newer and intermediate powerlifters (although we see this unfurl itself with lifters who have been around for years too) focus solely on the big weights and not on the fully developed process to reach the meet goal. Although training with big weights is an essential part of the equation, the process, the vision, the broader plan, call it what you want, is often the missing ingredient keeping the lifter at arm’s length from success. In other words, if it was just about going 110% all the time in the gym, every meet for every lifter could be packed full of p.r.’s, and that is hardly the case.

Recently at the Monster Garage Gym, probably just like at your gym, we have had a slew of lifters compete in meets. Just like at your gym, some did well, others had their struggles. Now with the meets passed is the time to begin with the end in mind. To begin one’s training with a plan, a vision to reach the result they are looking for. Like Isaiah Hankel says in his Ted talks, “be pulled forward by an endpoint.” He discusses this using the example of sheep and the herd. He talks about how it only takes 5% of the herd to be led for the other 95% to follow without knowing where or why they are going that way. The application to our sport is lifters can see other lifters following plan X or program Y and they, not unlike the sheep, follow without knowing if this is right for them, if this plan will get them to their desired end result. The issue is, in order for you to reach your personal end result you need to develop your personal plan to get to that point for you, the individual. As the lifters at the Monster Garage Gym, like lifters at your gym are now looking at starting a new training cycle, this is the critical time, the time for authentic assessment of how that last meet went and the ability to use a filter of honesty and be truthful with one’s self about why the meet didn’t go as planned, thus devising the proper plan to get to that desired end point. This needs to happen at the beginning, before a single bar has been loaded, before a single weight has been lifted, and before a single rep has been completed. It isn’t that training with the heaviest of weights is not important, it is that training hard with a plan is what gets you to the end result, and that is far more important. This is why we take the time to begin with the end in mind, so we can work our way backward in our training and plan that way. This is why successful lifters don’t just bang out weights, but bang out weights as part of, but not all of the plan they have written down. The planning is key, and the writing down of the plan is key as well, because the more you define and detail out what you have in front of you, your end goal, the more likely you are to achieve it.

What is it about writing down the goals that help to better achieve those goals? Here is are a couple of stats to keep in mind that Isaiah Hankel refers to via a study out of Virginia Tech. American’s who write down their goals are 33% more likely to achieve those goals. But, 80% of Americans don’t have goals. Less than 6% of the population writes down their goals. Monetarily speaking, people who write down their goals earn 9 x’s the salary than those that don’t. What makes the power of writing down goals is the part of the brain called the Reticular Activating System. This R.A.S. makes you keenly aware of your goals and once aware, you are able to find ways in your training to get to where you need to be throughout the training cycle to get you to that end point. The successful end point being the meet.

The point of this coaching log is if you have just finished a meet, don’t simply start blindly following some plan, create a plan based on where you want to end up. Begin with the end in mind and build backwards from there.

The accompanying video is of some recent training at the M.G.G. where many of the lifters are putting their programs together by knowing where they want to end up, and they are starting their planning by building backwards from there. They are beginning with the end in mind.

Wishing all of our weekly coaching log readers the best in your training and competitions. Ever Onward, Eric Maroscher, Owner: MONSTER GARAGE GYM

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