This past weekend was epic. One of those pivotal moments where life comes to a screeching halt but the fast forward button is also on lock.
When: Friday, June 4- Sunday, June 6. Who: the top fitness experts in the business and many coaches, trainers, entrepreneurs, and physical therapists with a hunger for more. Where: Providence RI. What: Perform Better Why? Insert our weekend mantra: fitness! fitness! fitness! (When you wake up at 5am on the weekend you need a chant.)
As a media analyst, I do not fit the typical three day training summit attendee but everyone has to start somewhere. Right? Right. Plus I do not know a single person living a healthy lifestyle that wouldn't take something away from the Perform Better summit. What individual doesn't enjoy an inspirational talk? Show me a runner who isn't interested in increasing their speed! Who would turn down an opportunity to revamp their work out? Especially if the revamping was brought to you live by, say, Fraser Quelch, the creator of the TRX?!
Apologies in advance, no camera was present. I felt a little out of place in the beginning and when I warmed up the camera seemed disrespectful and unnecessary. Not many sweaty athletes want a photo taken of them during a cardio strength training with well-known, respected coach Dos. I personally think being active is beautiful, but I wasn't about to assume someone else felt the same way. Also, the presenters were there to present in a comfortable setting, not paparazzi-ville.
Ok, soooo that's all great but what did I do this weekend? Every hour I could either listen to a presenter (two lectures every hr) or engage in hands on training (two hands on sessions every hr). With so many topics and speakers, the decisions on who to see were tougher than overcooked steak.
Highlights from Friday included but were not limited to Brian Grasso and Fraser Quelch. 9:15am, when I would usually be settling into my cubicle at work, I was with Brian Grasso, founder and CEO of the International Youth Conditioning Association (IYCA). Here we did spider man crawls, hops, skips, jumps, crab walks, bear crawls, push ups and played like a kid for an hour. This.was.fun. Young athletes should not train like adults and frankly, Brian taught me that I shouldn't either. Natural movement and playful exploration lead to stability, flexibility and strength and engages more muscles than a bicep curl. Fraser Quelch's lecture and hands on session, "Key Concepts in High Performance Body Weight Training" handicapped me the rest of the weekend. After an hour in the TRX and resistance training, I was beat street but rejuvenated. I will never view body weight the same.
Saturday was inspiration defined. Bill Parisi founder and CEO of Parisi Speed School and Todd Durkin of Todd Durkin Enterprises, Fitness Quest, Under Armour and trainer extraordinaire (think: Chargers, Drew Brees, the Marines) spoke on defining your mission and vision. Passion should be Bill and Todd's middle name. It actually might be. Attitude, positivity, action, desire, focus, success, flexibility, strength, happiness (to name a few) are all related. "You can always do more" -Todd Durkin. "Act the way you want to become, become the way you act." -Bill Parisi.
Oh and Saturday was coach Dos and explosive plyo push ups, burpees, squat jumps, medicine balls throws, kettlebell swings, and rope swings. No big deal. GAH!
We'll just say I was tired when Sunday came into focus but I woke up, ahem I got jacked up when I heard Dave Jack, a performance coach who has worked with top professional athletes, speak about the transformation from good to great. His presentation was geared towards coaching, but it was applicable to everyone, everyday, everywhere. I wrote down a single note during Dave's talk, because I was 110% percent entranced. Dave Jack presented one of, scratch that, the most memorable talk I have ever heard. Dave reflected on his early twenties, on the fire that burned inside telling him there was more to life, on those quintessential moments in your life that alter your path, on the importance of trust and developing your vision.
To sum it all up: "Be the who to do the what, and let the rest take care of itself, and when you do greatness will come, and, when it does, don't believe it, just keep doing what got you there in the first place."
Thank you to everyone at Perform Better. Thank you professional coaches, athletes, fitness gurus, personal trainers and motivational speakers.
Epic. Elite. Extraordinary.
I'm still sore.