Be Your Best Fit: Create a Training Plan to Succeed

AJ Pualani
August 24, 2017
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#NOWAmbassador AJ Pualani has a passion for bouldering, a form of rock climbing that is performed without the use of ropes or harnesses. He fell in love with the powerful movements, the required patience, balance and flexibility, the mental aspect, and the always-supportive climbing community.

While rock climbing may be a bit unique compared to other sports, the concept of setting goals to become a better athlete still holds true. Setting goals can be a driving force in motivating us to become better athletes – and, specifically for me, a better climber. Goals help us understand what weaknesses we need to work on, which is a great starting point when building a training plan. By targeting our weaknesses, we can see more overall improvement as we strive to become better athletes.

As you create your training plan, make sure to integrate fun exercises or even games into your workout sessions to keep it enjoyable and to mitigate burnout. It is crucial to note that while pushing our limits is important, it is even more important that we listen to our bodies – understanding what our bodies need helps us to avoid any serious injuries.

My Current Training Plan:

For the past month, I have been trying to stay committed to a training plan that fits my goals. Before I could create a plan, I needed to understand and target my weaknesses, which include endurance, finger strength, explosive power, and core.

Because I am a working professional and an advocate of work-life balance, I have to be a little flexible with my gym sessions as things come up. Assuming I make it to the climbing gym three times a week, my training plan is as follows

Day 1: Endurance (3-hour climbing session)

  • Warm Up (active stretching & easy climbing)
  • Climb / Project Boulder Problems (just for fun!)
  • Linked Boulder Circuits (climb 3-5 boulder problems to link together into one)
  • ARCing (climb on flat or slightly overhanging walls with a pump in the arms and learn to manage the pump for an extended period of time; as your endurance increases, climb for longer periods of time)
  • 8 Minute Abs (various ab exercises with very little rest in-between)
  • Rice Bucket Exercises (resistance exercises to prevent finger/forearm injury)
  • Cool Down (stretching)

Day 2: Finger Strength (2-hour climbing session)

  • Warm Up (active stretching, easy climbing & ARCing)
  • Climb / Project Boulder Problems (just for fun!)
  • Hangboarding (various finger/hand grips with multiple repetitions of hangs)
  • 8 Minute Abs (various ab exercises with very little rest in-between)
  • Rice Bucket Exercises (resistance exercises to prevent finger/forearm injury)
  • Cool Down (stretching)

Day 3: Power (2- to 3-hour climbing session)

  • Warm Up (active stretching, easy climbing & ARCing)
  • Climb/Project Boulder Problems (just for fun!)
  • Campus Board (basic ladders & matching ladders)
  • 8 Minute Abs (various ab exercises with very little rest in-between)
  • Rice Bucket Exercises (resistance exercises to prevent finger/forearm injury)
  • Cool Down (stretching)

Integrating NOW Products into My Training Plan:

Supplements are an attractive way of potentially gaining a performance edge or aiding in recovery. However, before you start taking anything, make sure to do your research – figure out what makes the most sense for you.

For me, NOW products have been a contributing factor to my training program. The products below continually help me train hard and maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Pre Workout:

  • NOW® Sports Energy Extreme Capsules

    • Provides the energy I need to stay focused during my workouts*
  • NOW® L-Citrulline Veg Capsules
    • Promotes nitric oxide production and supports vascular blood flow preventing me from getting pumped too quickly*

Post Workout:

Setting YOUR Goals and Training Plan:

When creating your own training plan, assess your own fitness level – understanding your baseline abilities will help set realistic goals. Once you’ve established your fitness level and start creating a fitness program, consider creating a balanced routine that incorporates cardiovascular and strength/conditioning moves to build muscle strength and endurance. Start cautiously, progress slowly and always allow time for recovery – it’s important to push yourself, but listen to your body’s needs at the same time. And lastly, put it on paper! A written plan may encourage you to stay on track.

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*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.