This morning I was training a client. Her workout was: 90 seconds on the rowing machine, 40 kettlebell swings, rest x 4.
For round #2, I challenged her to row more meters than she had in her first round. She sprinted all out and destroyed her first round distance. But she was huffing and puffing too hard and had to take a break before her second set of kettlebell swings.
Round 3 on the rower I challenged her to “make this your easy pace”. I asked her to match her second round distance but make it feel easy.
She did just that. She hopped off the rower after rowing the same distance as round 2 and went right into kettlebells, no rest needed.
As your trainer, if I see you struggling, I could coach you through good form: relax your shoulders, keep your core tight, support your lower back, drive your knees… But by the time I get to the end of all the cues I’d need to start back at the beginning. Instead, if I keep telling you to “make it easy”, you naturally relax, control your breathing and find good form.
When running, you stop fighting to turn your legs over and take more efficient steps. When biking, you begin to make smoother circles, pushing and pulling evenly. And when rowing, this client relaxed, stopped struggling and found a better rhythm by taking the time to fully extend each stroke.
Try it for yourself! Go out and make fast your easy pace!