With the hot weather upon us, it seemed a good time to touch on hydration. I say touch because this is a massive topic and to cover all bases would take many pages. So I’m hoping to briefly discuss what dehydration is, some of waters role in our health, challenge the belief that sports drinks are useful/necessary, educate you as to how much water you actually need (personally) to remain hydrated, and touch on the dangers of drinking too much.
Bob Takano’s site recently became the forum for a lengthy debate regarding the arse to grass squat. In quick summary, one camp is proposing knees out (recently reworded to knees neutral – but demonstration and literature by this camp says different, more on this later.) and the other camp saying it is ok to, and they’d prefer to encourage the knees to come in. The first problem with this debate should be obvious. Both camps are tending to speak in absolutes. There are no absolutes. Speaking in absolutes removes the variation needed for the individual needs of athlete’s, and the different demands placed upon athletes by different sports. This is a matter of individuality and task specific positional demands, I hope to show you that.
There are few topics as hotly contested as nutrition. And once someone finds a way of eating that genuinely suits them, whether for health or performance reasons, they seem to be vilified by the ignoramuses around them. The people that eat clean have some how ended up being the people getting hassled for their dietary habits. In my opinion this is a mixture of tall poppy syndrome, and people being insecure about their own lack of effort or caring. Those who are unaware of the effects the foods they’re eating have, yet still think their food plan suits them, or are too lazy to care, are not included here.
It’s often hard to believe the hero’s whom you watch and aspire to be like are not delving in to Performance Enhancing Drug’s (PED’s). When you have people like Lance Armstrong (a complete freak) destroying a field of other freaks, most of whom have tested positive at some stage, it makes it even harder. Was he that good? We now know not. I guess I’m saying if it seems too amazing, too good to be true, it probably is. Almost every sport has stories like this, and almost always it’s the poster athlete who is eventually caught. No sport is exempt, yes, even CrossFit. It’s not going away. People won’t stop training. People won’t stop dreaming. People won’t stop thinking their hero’s are amazing (PED’s or not), and rightly so. They are! Personally, it’s only the delusional attitude of those athletes who use, who walk around advertising results like “it’s all natural” and thinking they’re shit hot. At least Power Lifters admit it!
The best performers don’t thrash around like a dying beast trying to get their last few reps done. Form and pace is VERY consistent. This is as much an attitude as it is anything else. There is no reason why you shouldn’t look exactly the same. Strength and work capacity is relative. What we as lay people do that is different, is we let fatigue get the better of us. Fatigue should be used as an indicator to you to redirect your focus. When fatigued, you should think, “now is the time for an increased effort to pay attention, be precise, and dial up your intention”. So many people let their feelings of fatigue and their pain face drown them. Snap out of it! Focus on what you are doing.