Plateau Busting

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Bram
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Plateau Busting

Post by Bram » Sat Nov 07, 2020 5:11 pm

Curious what strategies you have used to make progress in any facet of your life — after being stuck

For me

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

* Drilling high reps of specific techniques
* Doing a few specific exercises for my wrists for lapel chokes
* Asking very specific questions from people that were good at what I wanted to do

Surfing

* Listening to criticism
* Listening to advice
* Studying footage of the best surfers and looking for nuances in technique

Working Out

* Copying the dietary strategy of people who had the results I wanted
* Copying established program design templates or rep schemes: 3-5 reps x 3-5 sets....54321....rest-pause....conjugate periodization....linear periodization....
* Occasionally breaking something down to its components and building to the goal e.g., one-arm push-ups from knees for high reps and sets and one-arm push-up negatives for low reps and sets = ability to do one-arm push-ups

Thoughts?
"When you seek it, you cannot find it.” — Zen riddle

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Alfred_E._Neuman
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Re: Plateau Busting

Post by Alfred_E._Neuman » Sat Nov 07, 2020 9:26 pm

Plateaus have happened to me in sports for two reasons - Simply adapted to the current way I'm stressing the system and straight up overtraining/fatigue.
In the first instance, the best thing to do is "same but different". In my world of endurance the plateau usually happens because I've gotten comfortable in the same workouts and distances. If I've been doing a ton of tempo/sweet spot and the gains have stopped, it means it's time to hit the :30-3:00 intervals HARD for a while and get the pure speed and strength on the bike up a bit. If I've been hammering the short sharp intervals and they've run their course that means it's time to drop back and build the base for a while.
In the second instance, the solution to the plateau is to just dial it back until you're fully recovered and you might surprise yourself at how much of a strength and endurance compensation you'll have made. There's a reason athletes taper before an event.

The key is knowing which one is the source of the plateau. If you're overly fatigued then simply switching which wall against which you're going to butt your head isn't going to do you any good. And if you've just run the course of the current training plan and need a change of stimulus then backing off isn't going to help. This part comes from being in the game for longer than a couple months.
I don't have a lot of experience with vampires, but I have hunted werewolves. I shot one once, but by the time I got to it, it had turned back into my neighbor's dog.

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Bram
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Re: Plateau Busting

Post by Bram » Sat Nov 07, 2020 11:05 pm

Thanks for your thoughts :)

Variety and rest are both solid strategies.

My plateau right now in surfing is approaching situations with a limited palette of options.

In one example, I could do a turn in three ways: grabbing the edge of my board, swinging my arms side to side, or placing my hands behind my back and pivoting my hips around them.

All three work, and I’ve done all three, but my brain is currently stuck on one option only — the arm swing method.

Trying to figure out how to break the auto-response.

Follow up question would be for Alfred and everyone else:

What plateau are you currently stuck on?
"When you seek it, you cannot find it.” — Zen riddle

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Re: Plateau Busting

Post by nafod » Sun Nov 08, 2020 12:18 am

I'm at the age where I am clinging to my plateau.
Don’t believe everything you think.

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Bram
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Re: Plateau Busting

Post by Bram » Sun Nov 08, 2020 12:58 am

nafod wrote:
Sun Nov 08, 2020 12:18 am
I'm at the age where I am clinging to my plateau.
How old are you?

What’s your activities?

Any goals beyond maintenance?
"When you seek it, you cannot find it.” — Zen riddle

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Alfred_E._Neuman
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Re: Plateau Busting

Post by Alfred_E._Neuman » Sun Nov 08, 2020 3:26 pm

Bram wrote:
Sat Nov 07, 2020 11:05 pm
Thanks for your thoughts :)

Variety and rest are both solid strategies.

My plateau right now in surfing is approaching situations with a limited palette of options.

In one example, I could do a turn in three ways: grabbing the edge of my board, swinging my arms side to side, or placing my hands behind my back and pivoting my hips around them.

All three work, and I’ve done all three, but my brain is currently stuck on one option only — the arm swing method.

Trying to figure out how to break the auto-response.

Follow up question would be for Alfred and everyone else:

What plateau are you currently stuck on?
I think in your case it's a little more unique. Kind of like a trials rider or downhill MTB racer, it's a skillset you're working on more than a pure strength or endurance gain you're after. I'd look at it like a tennis or basketball player looks at skill work. They have different shots they can use in different situations. Drill each one until it's second nature, then drill them some more until even the choice of which to use is so automatic the decision is subconscious. MTB or trials riders would call this sessioning. Re-riding a section that gives you trouble until it's second nature.

As to your second question, I'd say my main plateau right now is lack of anything to train for other than fun and fitness. I'm one of those rare people who relish the process of training more than the results from racing. I'm thinking of signing up for some of the ultra endurance gravel races and MTB marathons for next summer to give me a reason to train. Those events seem to be lower key than the road racing I'm used to, so I can just treat them as a big day out. More adventure than short/sharp torture fest.
I don't have a lot of experience with vampires, but I have hunted werewolves. I shot one once, but by the time I got to it, it had turned back into my neighbor's dog.

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Re: Plateau Busting

Post by Bram » Sun Nov 08, 2020 7:29 pm

Alfred_E._Neuman wrote:
Sun Nov 08, 2020 3:26 pm

I think in your case it's a little more unique. Kind of like a trials rider or downhill MTB racer, it's a skillset you're working on more than a pure strength or endurance gain you're after. I'd look at it like a tennis or basketball player looks at skill work. They have different shots they can use in different situations. Drill each one until it's second nature, then drill them some more until even the choice of which to use is so automatic the decision is subconscious. MTB or trials riders would call this sessioning. Re-riding a section that gives you trouble until it's second nature.

As to your second question, I'd say my main plateau right now is lack of anything to train for other than fun and fitness. I'm one of those rare people who relish the process of training more than the results from racing. I'm thinking of signing up for some of the ultra endurance gravel races and MTB marathons for next summer to give me a reason to train. Those events seem to be lower key than the road racing I'm used to, so I can just treat them as a big day out. More adventure than short/sharp torture fest.
Point One: Drilling

For whatever reason, not only do I hate drilling anything in surfing (loved it in Jiu-Jitsu), it was the cause of my only serious injury.

I was drilling a turn way out into the flats, was almost on the beach when I did so and got violently pitched.

Every time I’ve attempted drilling since, I lose my awareness of the wave, lose my joy, and put myself at risk.

So the plateau seems to be how I’m mentally approaching surfing, and some change has to happen which allows for more spontaneity/creativity.

Point Two: Your Plateau

As someone who mountain bikes 1-2x a year, what about just looking for epically fun rides to tackle with friends/family?

Fort Bill, Kingdom Trails, Moab come to mind.
"When you seek it, you cannot find it.” — Zen riddle

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Re: Plateau Busting

Post by nafod » Sun Nov 08, 2020 8:11 pm

Bram wrote:
Sun Nov 08, 2020 12:58 am
nafod wrote:
Sun Nov 08, 2020 12:18 am
I'm at the age where I am clinging to my plateau.
How old are you?

What’s your activities?

Any goals beyond maintenance?
I’ll be 60 in two weeks (holy shit...60).

Main activities now are gravel and mountain biking, paddleboarding and paddle sports, surf sports when at the coast, skiing in the winter, and hiking.

Paddleboarding is relatively new, so I get to see gains where there were none before. All the other stuff I get to see that I am nowhere as good as I once was, due to age and accumulated injuries. I just have to take joy in riding myself into shape each spring, for example. But not the shape I was 20 years ago. So be it. In some ways, watching the slow fade gives me better awareness of it.

I have a slack line strung up in the yard. That gives me goal to work on!
Don’t believe everything you think.

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Re: Plateau Busting

Post by Wild Bill » Mon Nov 09, 2020 7:28 am

My strategy just continue to do what I did and progress eventually will come.

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Re: Plateau Busting

Post by Bram » Mon Nov 09, 2020 5:11 pm

Bill, that’s awesome!

What program do you follow?
"When you seek it, you cannot find it.” — Zen riddle

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Re: Plateau Busting

Post by Bram » Mon Nov 09, 2020 10:08 pm

nafod wrote:
Sun Nov 08, 2020 8:11 pm

I’ll be 60 in two weeks (holy shit...60).

Main activities now are gravel and mountain biking, paddleboarding and paddle sports, surf sports when at the coast, skiing in the winter, and hiking.

Paddleboarding is relatively new, so I get to see gains where there were none before. All the other stuff I get to see that I am nowhere as good as I once was, due to age and accumulated injuries. I just have to take joy in riding myself into shape each spring, for example. But not the shape I was 20 years ago. So be it. In some ways, watching the slow fade gives me better awareness of it.

I have a slack line strung up in the yard. That gives me goal to work on!
Happy Birthday, Nafod!

What a great variety of activities you have, and based around the seasons too - hell yeah!

I gotta confess that slack lining intimidates me, good for you for pushing your training in so many directions.

I’m younger than you by a bit, but I run into athletes in their 60’s and 70’s who would impress me at any age.

One surfer in his 60’s told me he does pilates, yoga, or both six days a week and he said the body awareness and flexibility was huge (he was by far the best surfer out that day in a crowd from young teens to him).

And I always get inspired by Don Wildman:

https://www.esquire.com/news-politics/a ... dman-0508/

Just sharing info, I’m very impressed with your activity list my man!
"When you seek it, you cannot find it.” — Zen riddle

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Re: Plateau Busting

Post by Bram » Mon Nov 09, 2020 10:38 pm

Alfred, decided to add some variety to my surfing by choosing a different spot today —I usually only surf waves that break left, but I went to a spot that had both rights and lefts and it forced me to approach things differently.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts :)
"When you seek it, you cannot find it.” — Zen riddle

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Re: Plateau Busting

Post by Alfred_E._Neuman » Mon Nov 09, 2020 11:35 pm

Bram wrote:
Sun Nov 08, 2020 7:29 pm

Point Two: Your Plateau

As someone who mountain bikes 1-2x a year, what about just looking for epically fun rides to tackle with friends/family?

Fort Bill, Kingdom Trails, Moab come to mind.
I'm actually considering doing a bikepacking trip on the Great Divide MTB Route some time in the not too distant future. It's a trail that runs from Banff down through Montana, CO, and south all the way to the Mexican border. I have no desire to ride in the desert, but Banff down to the southern CO border would be epic. There's a race called the Tour Divide every year that's run on the course. Record is something insane like 14 days.

I really enjoy hiking and camping, so a long bike adventure seems right up my ally.
I don't have a lot of experience with vampires, but I have hunted werewolves. I shot one once, but by the time I got to it, it had turned back into my neighbor's dog.

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Re: Plateau Busting

Post by Sua Sponte » Mon Nov 09, 2020 11:55 pm

nafod wrote:
Sun Nov 08, 2020 8:11 pm
Bram wrote:
Sun Nov 08, 2020 12:58 am
nafod wrote:
Sun Nov 08, 2020 12:18 am
I'm at the age where I am clinging to my plateau.
How old are you?

What’s your activities?

Any goals beyond maintenance?
I’ll be 60 in two weeks (holy shit...60).
Right there with ya. And this is the thing of having been in excellent condition and doing sports well when younger. You really can tell how far you've fallen. Perspective. You can still do things, do them well, better often than those younger, but you know it's not like it was and isn't going to be again.

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Re: Plateau Busting

Post by Wild Bill » Tue Nov 10, 2020 6:01 am

Bram wrote:
Mon Nov 09, 2020 5:11 pm
Bill, that’s awesome!

What program do you follow?
I can't say I follow any program, I choose wich move i want to achieve, then look for progressions, and then just do it regularly.
workout consist from 4 parts - pulling, pressing, abs and sqats, 2 sets of each exercise.
current goals are chestpullups with fixation and straddle planche.

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Re: Plateau Busting

Post by Bram » Wed Nov 11, 2020 1:54 am

Wild Bill wrote:
Tue Nov 10, 2020 6:01 am
Bram wrote:
Mon Nov 09, 2020 5:11 pm
Bill, that’s awesome!

What program do you follow?
I can't say I follow any program, I choose wich move i want to achieve, then look for progressions, and then just do it regularly.
workout consist from 4 parts - pulling, pressing, abs and sqats, 2 sets of each exercise.
current goals are chestpullups with fixation and straddle planche.
Simple, short, and effective — nicely done!
"When you seek it, you cannot find it.” — Zen riddle

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Re: Plateau Busting

Post by Bram » Wed Nov 11, 2020 1:58 am

Alfred_E._Neuman wrote:
Mon Nov 09, 2020 11:35 pm

I'm actually considering doing a bikepacking trip on the Great Divide MTB Route some time in the not too distant future. It's a trail that runs from Banff down through Montana, CO, and south all the way to the Mexican border. I have no desire to ride in the desert, but Banff down to the southern CO border would be epic. There's a race called the Tour Divide every year that's run on the course. Record is something insane like 14 days.

I really enjoy hiking and camping, so a long bike adventure seems right up my ally.
Sounds great!

I read a book a few years back (“Dark Horse”) that led me to fixate a little more on what makes me happy and energized vs. what I thought I should do.

I think if you love training, hiking, and camping but not so much racing, it makes sense to do the parts that get you excited.
"When you seek it, you cannot find it.” — Zen riddle

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Re: Plateau Busting

Post by Fat Cat » Wed Nov 11, 2020 5:27 pm

Bram wrote:
Wed Nov 11, 2020 1:58 am
Alfred_E._Neuman wrote:
Mon Nov 09, 2020 11:35 pm

I'm actually considering doing a bikepacking trip on the Great Divide MTB Route some time in the not too distant future. It's a trail that runs from Banff down through Montana, CO, and south all the way to the Mexican border. I have no desire to ride in the desert, but Banff down to the southern CO border would be epic. There's a race called the Tour Divide every year that's run on the course. Record is something insane like 14 days.

I really enjoy hiking and camping, so a long bike adventure seems right up my ally.
Sounds great!

I read a book a few years back (“Dark Horse”) that led me to fixate a little more on what makes me happy and energized vs. what I thought I should do.

I think if you love training, hiking, and camping but not so much racing, it makes sense to do the parts that get you excited.
That sounds awesome! I actually was on the Great Divide up in Banff in like 1989, and it's amazing up there in the Canadian Rockies.
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Re: Plateau Busting

Post by nafod » Wed Nov 11, 2020 5:32 pm

Banff is awesome
Don’t believe everything you think.

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