What Is Your One Fitness Priority, Right Now?

                       Reprinted with permission from 'The One Thing"'- 2014  Rellek Publishing Partners, Ltd.

                       Reprinted with permission from 'The One Thing"'- 2014 Rellek Publishing Partners, Ltd.

In the book, 'The One Thing', author Gary Keller and Jay Papasan share proven models for making massive gains in life. The core concept, is to figure out what is the one thing you can do, which puts you on a path to reaching your goal. It's a valuable book for anyone wanting to change things up in any aspect of life. 

Keller and Papasan point out that the word 'priority' is derived from the latin word 'prior', meaning former or first. It's only in recent history that the word has been expanded to include 'priorities'. Some would say that word is strange adaptation, because there can only be one 'first thing'. 

Large gains are usually the result of singular focus on a specific aspect of performance, the one that matters most at the time. This is becuase it's quite simple for an athlete to get faster, or lighter, to extend endurance, gain new technical skills, increase flexibility or muscular strength. What's nearly impossible, is to do all of them, all at once. 

It sometimes looks as though a person is gaining in all aspects simultaneously, but a closer inspection will yield the truer picture. Over a period of time, it is possible to start, to gain core strength, improve flexibility, build cardiovascular endurance, add speed, build muscle, trim down and have a super successful adventure or event, but the quickest way to success is to focus on these things one-at-a-time and sequentially -- achieving mastery in one area before moving on to the next. Does this mean we ignore everything else? No - but everything else becomes secondary to the main thing. 

The converse of this is to try to do it all. In my experience, in most cases where injury has occurred, what led up to the setback it is trying too much or too hard, in other words, a lack of focus on the main thing.  

In Fit By Nature we organize around the seasons, suggesting one priority per season. This strategy honors the concept that it takes 10 - 12 weeks to get results in any one area. If you are new to 'phased' or 'periodized' training. That can be a good way to start. 

As you look ahead for the next three months, what is your priority? To use the focusing question from Keller and Papsan,


"What is the one thing I can do,

such that by doing it,

everything else will be easier

or unnecessary?"  


As a personal example, about three months ago, I realized too late that I'd let my weight creep up to an unacceptable level. I was trying to build endurance for a race, working to recover a foot injury and was having trouble recovering well. I had too many things to focus on, was working too hard and had no success strategy (trying to do everything well is not a strategy).

Then I had an outright failure in a race that I'd wanted to do well in, but I didn't even complete. This painful letdown caused me to realize what had occurred. So I met with a coach and he immediately pointed out that by fixing the weight issue, everything else would take care of itself. How simple was that after I realized it. I'm about halfway there now and already the foot issue and rest/recovery are already just fine. It's common sense really, but it's just hard to see the forest from the trees sometimes.

If you are having roadblocks to achieving a goal. Consider contacting me or another coach, to arrange an consultation. It's hard to be objective about our own situations and often easier for others to see our strengths. At adventX, our On-Target Fitness Evaluation can often identify a clear path to success - in just one conversation.