You are what you train to be


You are what you train to be, I was taught that valuable lesson in a great class I had at UCSB in 1969, called Fundamentals of Conditioning, taught by Sherm Button. I have forgotten a lot of things from the class but I never have forgotten that lesson. If you train to be slow you will be slow, if you train to be fast you will be fast. Sounds simple and it is, but simplicity yields complexity. It is the simple axioms like this that are easy to forget. Frankly that is why when I look at some of the strength training programs that are the current rage, I wonder where common sense enters into the picture. Doing everything with chains, and bands and box squatting may make you measurably stronger, but does doing those slow movements all the time transfer? Based on what I learned a long time ago I don’t think so. Do those modes of training have a place? Sure they do, at certain phases, in small quantities to vary stimulus, but a steady diet will not improve explosive power. It all comes down to having a clear focus on what you are training for. Look carefully at the physical qualities demanded and train those qualities. You can get away with goofy stuff for a while, but eventually it will come back to haunt you. I remember a defensive back from here in Sarasota who went to an SEC school and started for four years. At the end of his senior season when he had to improve his 40 time I was talking to him one day. I had just watched him run a couple of sprints and he ran like he was pulling a heavy sled. I asked him what they had done at his school – low and behold they had done repeat 100 yard sled pulls with up to 200 pounds. No wonder he ran like he was pulling a sled that was what was ingrained in his nervous system. Remember the message you are what you train to be! There is a line from a country western song that sums it up quite well – Work your fingers to the bone, what do you get? Boney fingers!

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Vern Gambetta

Vern Gambetta

Director at Gambetta Sports Training Systems
Vern is the Director of Gambetta Sports Training Systems. He has been the a conditioning coach for several MLS teams as well as the conditioning consultant to the US Men's World Cup Soccer team. Vern is the former Director of Conditioning for the Chicago White Sox and New York Mets. He has lectured and conducted clinics in Canada, Japan, Australia and Europe and has authored six books and over one hundred articles related to coaching and sport performance in a variety of sports. He has a BA in teaching with a coaching minor and an MA in Education with an emphasis in physical education from Stanford University.
Vern Gambetta


Athletic Development Coach & Consultant. Founder of GAIN Network. Proud dad. Love to read everything.
RT @GreatestQuotes: Your aspirations are your possibilities. - Samuel Johnson - 4 years ago
Vern Gambetta

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