2005 – What are you going to do?

Greetings everyone from a sunny and very warm Cape Town, South Africa. I would like to wish you ALL a very wonderful and productive 2005. I would also like to step onto the edge and flirt with the wild side by wishing you a challenging year – at least from a physical training perspective.

Right, this article is one that will hopefully spur you on into tackling with vigour, enthusiasm + courage the greatest year of your life so far. I would like to also take a look back on 2004 and go thru some of the lessons learnt as well as look forward into 2005 to plot our course in this great pool of opportunity. So hop on the bus and let’s take this ride.

2004 was a tough and great year. Tough because of a lingering injury that was plaguing me(among other things), and great because of the fact that I learnt so much about God, life, business and dealing with a plaguing injury!

Let’s explore what I learnt from this injury. I suffered a prolapsed disc in July of 2004 and have just about fully recovered.

Lessons learnt:

  1. Stop Training: The first thing you need to do is stop training. This is a tough one for us “Ironheads” or athletes to accept because pushing ourselves physically is a big part of who we are as people, but this is the most important aspect in the interim, just until you have referred to a sports physician.
  2. Act Immediately: After any type of injury do not wait too long before getting it checked out by a sports physician. This was one of my mistakes, I thought it would heal by itself and so I waited for 2 weeks before referring to a rehabilitation professional. You can hamper your recovery immensely by doing nothing for so long.What I did do was to ice it and rest it for a week but I did not know the extent and seriousness of the injury and so I was just going by instinct(which was wrong – cause all I wanted to do was train!!).
  3. Be Patient: This is the most important of all. I wanted to get back into training as soon as I could and so I just did it, expecting my injury to just recover anyway … WRONG! “Patience is a virtue” and it is absolutely non-negotiable. You have to wait until most symptoms have subsided and your rehabilitation professional has given you the “go-ahead” before jumping back into training. I am convinced that my recovery time was greatly hampered by my seemingly virtuous passion for lifting and getting back into it, that each time I trained I was just re-injuring myself because the disc hadn’t had enough time to fully recover. This is an obvious point and I am sure most of you would never make these elementary mistakes that I did, but if you are anything like me – Be PATIENT!
  4. Amend your Goals: When you are injured, your first goal should be to fully recover. And then from there you should reassess your current training goals and change them to ones that you can still push for. It drove me crazy knowing that my main physical goals at the time were those that I could not train for or achieve due to my injury. So be wise and accept that fact and
    embrace the opportunity to refocus your mind and goals to something totally different. I refocused and made conditioning and body composition more my priority. I had been training purely for strength for a while and it was nice, once I got over the fact that I could not train for strength, to pursue something else for a change.So if you have always trained for endurance, then(as long as you pass it with your rehab pro) try out some weight training for a change, you will probably find that the change of stimulus and break from endurance training will actually help and not hinder your endurance when you return to it. For those “ironheads” maybe put more emphasis on range of motion training for a change. Although we all know that we need to be training in a way as to achieve a “complete athletic proficiency” status in our training we will always have a few more specific goals that could do with tweaking every now and then. And sometimes injury is the body’s mechanism of telling us that we need to shift our focus for a period of time in order to stay healthy in the longterm.

2005 – What’s in store?

So as we look into 2005 the first thing we need to address is the opportunity that it is to challenge us and “transport” us to a place where we are functioning better. It is not often that humans are static(with regard to character, maturity + physical fitness) we are either moving forward or we are slipping back. I believe, in most things in life, that maintenance is a misnomer. The reality is that if we are not striving for more or pushing ahead, then we are most probably falling behind. And 2005 is the perfect opportunity to keep going forward or reverse the trend of going back.

How do we stop from retreating and force ourselves to move progress physically or spiritually – I say “challenge.” Challenge is the vehicle that we travel in to take us on. This is my belief anyway. And so that is why I am being brave and wishing you a challenging year, because I believe that to stay alive we need to keep challenging ourselves.

So go for it. 2005 is our time. It’s our time to stand up and be counted. It’s our time to push ourselves further than we have been before. It is our time to deny the current societal trend of always looking for the easiest way out. It is our time to face head on challenges that we have only ever dreamt of attacking. Let’s do it! Let’s stand up, dig deep and walk into each new day looking for how we can make that day significant. My worst fear is to come to the end of my days and look back and see an insignificant walk. It is now that counts, not tomorrow, not yesterday, not next year once you have made your fortune – IT IS NOW!!

How I am I going to challenge myself in 2005?

I am going to take each day as it comes, that doesn’t mean a lack of planning for the future, but it means a mindset of “hey look at the opportunities right now.”

From a physical perspective I am going to:

  1. Complete my recovery from my back injury and work really hard to strengthen it beyond where it was before the injury.
  2. Work very hard on my body composition.
  3. Work towards performing a 1-Arm Chin Up with both arms. Now this is a tough one, but it is something I feel I can attack with vigour and go for without losing the focus of complete athleticism.

What’s it going to be for you?

  • Make your school’s first team in your chosen sport?
  • Enter that competition that you have been longing for but thought “let me be the best first and then I’ll compete”?
  • Perform a bodyweight back squat by the end of the year?

All of these are noble and achievable goals, all it takes is a decision to not sit back and watch your year go by without making it significant.

2005, it is here – what are you going to do about it?

Write your script:









Dig Deep!

Graham Dean.


    DOMINATE ATHLETIC™ is a specialised Athletic Performance Coaching Company based in Cape Town, South Africa.