Thursday, July 26, 2012
Speed Training and followed a few years later with the Speed Training video. When writing a book, I choose a topic that I’m familiar with and want to learn even more about by researching further. Such was the case with Speed Training. Over the course of the eight months it took to write the first draft, I gathered a ton of speed drills from fellow martial artists to add to my personal favorites. So that I could write about them, my daughter and I would practice them several times a week, as would my students. Some drills were outstanding, which I included in the book; some were poor or simply dangerous, which I didn’t include. At the age of 48, I wondered if I was too old to improve my speed. But to my happy surprise, within just a couple of months I discovered I was getting faster. I won’t blow smoke at you and say that I doubled my speed because that would have been impossible since I was pretty fast to begin with and I’d already been training for nearly 30 years. But I did improve. I could feel it, and others could see it. Over the months, I practiced drills to improve perception, reflex, audio, visual, and movement speed. As much sweat as I lost working on the exercises, I am convinced — and don’t blow me off as a mental case — that half of my improvement was a result of thinking about speed so intensely. Thinking about it? Really? Really. For eight months, 24/7, I trained, ate, drank, and slept one thing: speed. I researched it, talked about it with other instructors, wrote about it, drilled on it, taught it, watched fast fighters, and — this is the biggie — visualized myself getting faster. Through all of this I carried with me the confidence that I was going to get faster. Now, results with any physical exercise take time, two months if you’re a teenager and genetically blessed, longer for the rest of us. I’m definitely not genetically blessed; I’m a hard gainer. Nonetheless, I found my speed improving in just a few weeks, less than two months. Understand that I didn’t improve so quickly from eating protein bars, working on the drills, or using my ThighMaster. I got them from being mentally possessed and obsessed with what I wanted to achieve. While I saw and felt the difference the first two months, a result of my mindset, I continued with the myriad drills three to four days a week for another half year. By the time I finished the book, I was happily impressed with my results, as was my daughter with hers, and my students with theirs. Developing a powerful mindset isn’t new. Back in the day, Arnold Schwarzenegger said that he would imagine pumping his arms into mountain peaks, and he nearly did, complete with snow. Chuck Norris said he would see himself beating his opponents and with specific techniques before he stepped into the ring, and he almost always did. Today’s Olympic athletes concur that a powerful mindset is critical to their success. With every ounce of their being, they believe they are going to improve, that they are going to reach their goals, and that they are going to stand on the top step with their medal. So keep in mind, literally, that no matter what your passion — martial arts, shooting, knife fighting, police work, military — a powerful mindset is equally as important (arguably more important) as the physical drills you do. What we think, we become. Loren Christensen is the author of two dozen Paladin books and videos, including Speed Training, Fighting Power, and Warriors. Loren was a military policeman in Saigon during the Vietnam War and retired from the Portland, Oregon, Police Department after more than two decades of service. He can be contacted through his website at www.lwcbooks.com.
Posted by DD at 10:15 AM