ReadyNutrition Guys and Gals, we’re going to discuss how the use of music can be beneficial to you as a training tool. When we are talking about “training,” this is an all-encompassing category to include all of the tasks you need for proficient survival readiness. Such tasks include (but are not limited to) exercise and weightlifting, hiking, meditation/relaxation, mental preparation before an event (such as a sporting competition), and while you’re writing or studying.
Music is proven to help increase focus and concentration, as well as improve your physical coordination, especially where you’re incorporating the music in the timing of your tasks. For a good introduction to the different beneficial effects of music, I recommend visiting this website: http://www.emedexpert.com/tips/music.shtml. Pay close attention to these different categories, especially #4, “Music helps to work more productively.” This is the category that describes a great part of what you will need in terms of helping you accomplish physically demanding tasks.
You can increase your physiological and psychological ability to perform, as well as resist the drawbacks associated with pain, stress, and fatigue. You’ve heard the term “psyching yourself up,” right? The music will help you. Select the type of music you need for the task at hand.
When I write, I like to listen to light classical, just as a slight “background” sound, to help me relax without taking my mind’s focus off of the task at hand. When I lift it’s with something such as “AC/DC,” that kicks out a fast, strong pace with lots of energy and “pumps” me up mentally to do that extra set or that extra rep. When I am going to do some kind of sporting event or a challenging exercise for time, such as a run or a road march, I always listen to stuff beforehand that gets me in the mood to perform, and something I can think of while I’m performing the exercise.
The way to quantify if this works for you is to see it work: to make gains, to feel better about yourself and what you’re doing. There are times to relax and meditate, and you can accomplish this with light classical or instrumental music, or maybe even soft singing. Sounds of nature can be an excellent thing to listen to if you live in an urban or suburban environment, but believe me, I do have those types of CD’s to use in the “off” season in the dead of winter and such. It is just as important to learn how to relax and wind down as it is to work and train.
Find out for yourself what it is that works for you in these categories, and then set the music aside so that you will incorporate it into your routine and use it when you need it. You will see good results (especially when you lift weights or exercise). Music is a powerful tool in these areas. Don’t neglect any tool that will help you to perform and train even better. So, turn on those tunes as you fight that good fight, and find what works for you. JJ out!