Anyone who has participated in our bootcamp classes understands that they are unique and an incredible draw on all your muscles and energy resources through a wide range of movement.
Our bootcamp exercises are designed to support fighting, not looking good—even if that is a byproduct of the hard training.
The following are tips for helping you have an energized bootcamp session, regardless where you train.
Tips For A Good Bootcamp Session
The following are tips for optimizing your training in one of our bootcamps. Many of these apply to other bootcamp-type training as well.
1. Hydrate well the day before.
I’m not talking about alcohol.
Water, electrolyte drinks, fruits and vegetables with high water value top the list.
And get more than you feel you need.
Avoid things like watermelon and coffee which have a diarrhetic and dehydrating effect.
Muscles are in the range of 70% water content, give or take up to 5% or more. Having hydrated muscles improves muscle contractibility, meaning you will be stronger in your exercises.
And please be warned that there is such a thing called "water intoxication."
This involves only drinking large amounts of water in a short period of time. This can dilute the electrolytes (salt) in your blood and can lead to muscle weakness, confusion, nausea, vomiting, lightheadedness. In severe cases, it can cause seizures, unconsciousness, or death.
BCAAs are protein, pure and simple. BCAA’s spare muscle breakdown during high-stress exercises. Much has been written on them. Bodybuilders have known their positive effects for decades.
You can also find high content of BCAAs in good quality whey protein, among other protein supplements.
Basically, amino acids are readily cracked for energy and spare muscle breakdown.
If you take good quality amino acids before, during, and after training, you will have less muscle soreness the day after and higher energy for your workouts.
Click the images for links to Amazon to get you started. We've used Amino-x and others and have found them quite good for our needs.
3. Cut off food 2 hours (minimum) prior to training.
But only do this if you don’t wish to see your food come up again during the exercises.
Sip an amino acid drink with electrolytes before, during, and after training—in small amounts. Or just a good electrolyte drink and water. Nuun makes an electrolyte tablet with no calories, as an example.
Find one that works for you and use it. Don’t depend on just water, especially if you are training outside in high humidity.
5. Eat some high quality protein/nutrition bar or meal after training.
The window of opportunity for optimum amino acid uptake for exercise recovery and muscle repair is within about 30 minutes after training.
6. Stretch before and after.
Seriously. Spend time doing this so as to prevent injury.
7. Get a massage, even if you have to do it yourself.
Muscle recovery is sped up by kneading those muscles properly. Look online for technique, find a talented partner, or go to a sports-massage therapist. Your body will thank you.
8. Avoid high fat meals.
They slow the metabolism and add fat to your body. Fat entered into your system converts more easily to fat on your body than carbs or protein will.
Learn how to exhale through effort.
In our training, I teach students to focus on the exhale and getting the breath out fully before taking in a quick inhaling again.
You can test how much you need to breathe for any exercise by simply seeing how many reps of the exercise you can do on one breath.
If you are strong, say, using 1 breath for 5 reps, then you certainly don't need to complete a breath cycle for each set.
Keep your breathing regulated so you don't hyperventilate.
Hyperventilating is one of the contributors to making you feel like vomiting
In your daily life, practice square breathing. That's where you inhale on a count of four, hold for a count of four, exhale for a count of four, hold for a count of four and continue that cycle.
You can increase your number count as you gain greater control.
That works for some people.
I teach visualization and focusing methods in Core JKD that allow for more direct control. I will post this in a future article or video.
10. Enjoy what you’re doing.
If you don’t like the type of training you’re doing, find another.
Everyone is unique. Find one that rocks your world, and stick with it.
Don’t stop training just because it challenges you or is difficult.
Challenge yourself, your body and mind were designed to respond positively to physical stress. You’ll look and feel better and be physically capable in your later years—and if you happen to need to defend yourself at some point.