One isn’t better than the other – it’s based on needs and goals.
I’ve always loved the lifestyle of an athlete. I always pride myself on training harder than the next guy. In sports, I had to. I was always undersized. From high school to professionals, the “eye test” was always my biggest challenge.
At the age of 29, I developed my ideal physique and size. I worked so hard at gaining the mass and look that I never thought I would lose much of it. Sure, maybe 7-8lbs but that wouldn’t matter because I was ripped. At this point in my career, I realized pursuing football wasn’t going to provide the lifestyle and financial security needed in my thirties. One day I knew I wanted a family. I knew I wanted to build generational wealth for the children I didn’t have at the time.
Well, I was wrong about losing weight and my physique. After playing football, I transitioned into the NASCAR pit crew world. Even though it provided me the competitive environment and locker room camaraderie I desired, it did not demand the same physical investment. NASCAR pit crew was/is going through a culture shift – not only with its fan base but the pit crew personnel. No longer are mechanics working on cars and changing tires. Now, mechanics are the mechanics and the pit stops are handled solely by the pit crews. Now, pit stops are getting exponentially faster by the year – from 12-14 second stops in 2014 to 10-12 sec stops in 2017 (12 seconds at a Cup race won’t win you any races).
Now, pit crews need stronger, faster, discipline, coachable and more explosive “athletes.” These athletes are coming from different backgrounds – collegiate & professional football, baseball, wrestling, and etc. Millions of dollars, winning and losing is now based on tenths of seconds based on times that keep getting lower every year.
In NASCAR, preparation and training is based on mental fortitude, core stability, movement patterns (and prehabbing their imbalance), plus explosion all in 10-12 secs of action. This is significantly different from training to run up and down a basketball court, or explode off the ball to run directly into the strong guy in front of you over and over again (football).
Ultimately, I found my self in a sport that was still trying to understand what their pit crew comprehension looked like. Thus, what type of workout/training is needed to compete and sustain. Prior to becoming a coach for my team, I was in an environment that required us to “workout” not “train.”
We were focusing on being stronger or “in-shape” versus being more functional and explosive in set movement patterns that we repeat over and over again. Moral of the story, We have to ask ourselves,
“Are my weightlifting and workout goals for me to look good on the beach or perform?”
“Are these curls for the girls or functional movement patterns/lifts that will transfer over to my profession giving me a competitive edge?”
“Are these static lifts and training regime going make me more mobile and controlled or eventually get me injured?”
“Since my physical preparation determines my ability to feed my family, am I preparing and training in the way that will sustain my career, not allowing my body to burn out and break down?”