So, being athletic as I am doesn’t mean that I’m in a constant state of preparedness for anything. My successes rest on the back of a periodization model called the “Training Hierarchy Pyramid” [which you can find in my book “Three Dimensional Physical Preparedness.”]
I scout, assess and design my training to peak for events. And my “job” involves traveling to different countries, speaking to various audiences and teaching others the revolutionary wellness super-system known as Circular Strength Training®. And part of that “job” involves looking camera-ready for various photoshoots.
I’m essentially selfish because I’ve collected the best coaches and trainers in the world into RMAX International, and get to plumb the depths of their wisdom on a daily basis on a nearly infinite array of subject matters.
That’s me over there today after completing the 30 hour long cycle with Coach Locke:
One of those brilliant gems in the RMAX crown is CST Coach Mike Locke, Fitness and Sports Performance Director of the Bellingham Athletic Club and Physical Education Faculty Professor at Whatcom Community College.
Mike isn’t a rookie to fitness. He’s covered ALL angles and approaches, holding a B.A. in Exercise Science and a M.Ed. in Exercise Physiology from Western Washington University. In addition to being a Certified CST Coach, he’s also a Certified American Kettlebell Club Coach, a Certified SPARQ Coach and a Certified National Strength and Conditioning Association Strength and Conditioning Specialist, who apprenticed directly under the legendary speed guru, Randy Huntington.
I asked Coach Locke to assist me in my preparation for my upcoming schedule of photoshoots in Australia, and I felt compelled to share with you his amazing coaching skills.
I’ve always harped on coaches, that everyone needs a coach, especially coaches. We need to go into that grey fog where we cannot navigate alone, because we are blind from fatigue, exertion and hyper-focus. And in order to find the bottom of the tank, we need someone whom we trust to make sure that we remain safe as we go into that dark unknown that sport psychologists call “the toughness threshold.”
Here’s a photo of Coach Locke taking a class of recruits through the signature CST Core Meltdown Program called “Locke Tight” in honor of Mike’s evil genius:
As we just completed the final session, 30 total hours of high intensity training. I interviewed Mike and wanted to give you a glimpse into the mind of a madman, er… I mean, brilliant coach.
“You may wonder why someone like Scott Sonnon would need a coach to direct his own training. After all Scott is a well known authority on fitness and martial arts. He travels the country and the world coaching and lecturing. Why would he need someone to coach him? To Scott’s credit he realizes that even though he is a very skilled world-class athlete and a knowledgeable coach, he still needs and is not afraid to ask for assistance and direction in his training. He knows that the right coach can take him to the level he is looking to achieve.
An athlete of Scott’s ability provides some very interesting challenges. In him, you have an athlete who is tremendously fit, exercise savvy, and extremely mentally tough. Athletes of his caliber are very good compensators. They intuitively meet challenges and adapt quite readily to the demands placed upon them. So, you have to monitor their technique and hold them to the “letter of the law” for any given exercise so they can reap the most benefit.
This adaptation forces a coach to continually look for methods that challenge the athlete but stay within the framework of what they are trying to achieve.
Scott adapts so well to the demands placed on him that you have to constantly adjust the routine and manipulate all the variables at your disposal, from the type of exercise and its sequence, to the duration of each exercise, to the number of sets, to the load and angle of each exercise. All of these variables need to be assessed in the entire training plan along with recuperation and recovery, without which an athlete like Scott would be unable continue to train at the highest level.
Keeping the athlete healthy and able to train is another one of those challenges coaches needs keep in mind. With an athlete like Scott you always have to be aware when “to pull the reins in” and when to “give him his head” because he will give you everything he has and more, sometimes to his benefit but also to his detriment.
It is the coach’s responsibility to know when to spur and motivate them on and when to say when enough is enough and rein the athlete back for their own good. Scott is no exception; he will give you everything he has on every rep.
Our success has come directly from constant honest communication. A coach needs to listen to what the athlete says and what they don’t say. Scott’s feedback is vital to my planning for him. It is a relationship of collaboration and trust. Scott has been an absolute pleasure to work with and I am honored to have had the opportunity to assist him in his training.”
Thanks again Coach Locke for all of your help preparing for my media tour in Australia!