Chicken or Egg?

Did the lack of energy come first or the lack of training? Frequently when you hear the reasons why someone has not been training, lack of energy is up there on the list. They believe that they do not have the energy to do any training of any kind and that is that. What is the cause of this lack of energy? Did you change how long you are awake in the day? Did you add more commitments that use more mental reserves? Or is it because you chose to lessen your training first?

The past several weeks have lead me to believe I have found the answer to this "chicken or egg" conundrum. I admit, my training as of late has not been to the level and consistency that it usually is. I chose to slow it down to accommodate more time for my short term EMR studies, the idea was to save more energy and brain power.

Funny thing, the exact opposite occurred. Not only did I have less energy, but I found it more difficult to focus for any amount of time. Sitting at a desk studying for hours on end with few breaks to get the blood flowing has been counterproductive to my ability to retain any knowledge. Energy levels go down and I find myself staring blankly at the screen or book. I can say I spent x amount of time studying, but what was the quality of the studying? How effectively was the time used?

This past week I started to recognize this pattern and decided that something needed to be done promptly. Whenever I find myself losing focus, I get up and do a set of pushups or situps, a form or two, techniques, anything to wake my brain up and get me focused again. When I am tired, I sleep, simple as that. I used to stay up to all hours of the night, just to get more studying done, but what is the value in that? I am exhausted the day after and end up forgetting what I read anyway.

I found since applying these simple interventions, I am beginning to feel more energetic again and more focused, not quite where I was, but on the right track. When you feel a lack of energy, that is the best time to train. Training doesn't always draw energy away from you, if you do it right it can draw energy toward you. I feel this is one way to make your kung fu serve you.

Daniel Sollinger