Warm Up Before Strenuous Cycling

In order to get themselves to their best point of physical exertion when they are cycling, most athletes will try to reach PAP, Post-Activation Potentiation. This is a time frame when, for about 5-10 minutes, your muscles’ contractile response is at its highest and best. Though strenuous warm-ups can create this biochemical change, fatigue from too intense of a workout can also prevent it. If you push yourself too hard in a warm-up, the exhaustion may very well take over and keep you from getting to your best. Instead of doing a 40-minute warm-up, try for a 15-20 minute one. This can still get you to your PAP potential with less risk of exhausting yourself in the process.

– For several good 20-minute warm ups, you can start off by selecting an rpm of Zone 1 or 2 Intensity and going at it for 5 minutes. Then, for 15 minutes, create this pattern and repeat 3-5 times: go 1 minute at 90, 1 minute at 100, 1 minute at over 100, and then ride for 2 minutes at a slow Zone 1 rpm.

– Try riding at a low intensity for 10 minutes to get yourself going. Then, increase the tension of your ride until you get the intensity goal you desire for your warm up, and ride at that for 90 seconds. 90 seconds is a good time frame in which to ride at an intense speed and really get a good warm up. Then take a 3-minute slower ride before you get back up to your 90-second intensity. Repeat the whole sequence 4-6 times.

– Start off with 5 minutes at a low intensity zone, and then repeat the following sequence multiple times for up to 15 minutes. Find a hill if you are outside, and if you are on an indoor bike, simulate a hill, and then pedal on it seated for 30 seconds. Then do another 15 seconds at an increased intensity. Then, increase the tension but stand up on the bike for 15 seconds. Sit down and spin for 2 minutes at a low intensity before repeating.

– Stretch your calf by standing on your bike pedals while keeping the cranks vertical. Take your stretching leg and lower the heel past the platform of the pedal while keeping the heel of your other leg straight on its pedal, hold for 20 seconds, and then switch.

– For quadriceps, grip the handlebars in the middle with your left hand, then grab your right foot with your right hand and pull it until it touches your behind, hold and switch.

– Stretch your hamstrings by standing horizontally on the pedals, keeping both legs straight but steadily moving forwards until your shoulders are lowered and your pelvis tilted enough for you to feel the stretch.

– You can stretch your neck before a bike ride by bending your head slowly to one side and then the other without rotating it.

– Stretch your lower back and your legs by lying flat on the ground, and pull your upper legs towards your chest one at a time.

Considerations in Jogging

1. Have proper hydration

As you jog, you will constantly lose a lot of fluids in your body through sweating. This is why it is important that you properly hydrate yourself before you go into a jog. Make sure that you drink plenty of fluids the day before you go into jogging. Usually, the reason why people tend to feel dizzy after a long jog is because they become so dehydrated quickly. It is also important that you bring water as well in case you plan on jogging for a long distance.

2. Good sleep

The night before you jog, make sure that you get plenty of sleep of up to 8 hours. It is not advisable to go jogging if you only have a few hours of sleep. If you didn’t get enough rest the night before, you will easily get tired and dizzy when you go jogging.

3. Plan your jog

It would be a good idea if you plan your jog properly. Don’t go jogging in long distances if you are not used to jogging before. It is important that you start jogging in a short distance and then gradually increase it as you get used to jogging. Moreover, this could make the jogging experience a lot more fun.

4. Jog with a partner

It would be a great idea if you could try and jog with someone else. The reason why it is highly advised to do so is because your partner can motivate you to keep on going and vice versa.

About Plateauing

One of the easiest ways to overcome a plateau is to change your workout. That’s pretty straight forward. By adding variety to your workout, your break the routine that your body is used to and you will start to see progress again. This doesn’t have to be a dramatic full on revamp of your entire work out, but adding a few new moves or replacing some moves with others, will keep your muscles confused and keep them working. If you perform your workouts in steady sets and reps, then try switching over to interval training for some of them. Interval training consists of you working out really hard for a period of time, and then going less hard for a short time, and then back to going hard again. For a runner, this would be running as hard as you can for a good minute or two, and then jogging or walking for three to four minutes. The variation will shock your body back into making those gains you want.

But if interval training isn’t your thing, then switching the moves you are doing will be what you want to focus on. Constantly doing the same type of curl or squat or lift with the same weight may earn you some gains to begin with. But once you plateau, you are going to need to start kicking things up a notch. Start adding more weight tot your sets. Or start performing a different move that will work the same muscles that you are trying to focus on. The internet is full of plenty of resources on what moves work what muscles. Even switching from dumbbells to kettlebells (which I recommend) is another great way to break away from your comfort zone and start making progress toward your fitness goals.

Better Guard Passing

1. Be Knowledgeable of all Guard Positions

Even though there are some common principals to passing any guard an understanding of each type (i.e. closed guard, spider guard, half guard, butterfly guard, etc.) will help in ultimately being able to pass someone’s guard. The more you understand about each type of guard the more you’ll be effective in knowing what the guard player will be looking to achieve in their offense.

2. Control the Legs and Kill the Hips

A universal and fundamental truth about passing any guard is knowing how to control the legs and kill the hips of a guard player. Once someone is able to fundamentally wrap their head around this principal the sooner they’ll start passing guards. Controlling the legs is sometimes in the form of redirecting or pinning the legs to name a couple. Killing the hips simply means immobilizing the hips so that the guard player is limited in their movement. This can be done in numerous ways such using your elbows to limit lateral motion or using your hands to push the hips to the floor, for example.

3. Standing vs. Kneeling Passing Styles

Generally speaking guard passers can be divided in to two categories, standing or kneeling guard passers. Players naturally gravitate toward being one or the other. Each passing style has it pros and cons. Generally speaking standing passers are less likely to get submitted, however are more likely to get swept. Where as kneeling passers are more likely to get submitted, but are less likely to get swept.

4. Know your Preference

Depending on your style of jiu jitsu some like to close the distance and have a smashing style passing game. Where as others prefer a more distant and fast pace style passing game. Traditional old school jiu jitsu players typically prefer to stay close when they pass the guard. The “new” style of passing has seen players using distant type passing such as the example with a long step pass

5. Be Relentless

One of the most important factors in passing any guard is being relentless! Passing guard is one of the hardest tasks to accomplish in jiu jitsu. Rarely do you get the pass off of your first attempt. Not only be relentless in your guard passing on the mat, but in your thirst to learn about guards and guard passing off the mat (i.e. videos, seminars, etc.).