I like the idea of training for life, and I guess what that really comes down to is being able to do more stuff before I die. (We’re all dying, bitch).
In my mind, I need to be prepared for endurance events, or local races I may want to partake in on a whim, so I can feel more alive, and enjoy my body’s capabilities. I want to be able to pull my kids up a long, steep hill on a sled in the dead of winter, while they laugh with excitement. I need to be able to move with purpose under load, I want to maintain my ability to bang out pull-ups, and pick up heavy stuff. I recently began a new path as a volunteer firefighter, in addition to my day job, family (wife and 3 kids), and graduate school, so like all of us I have a bunch of shit going on, and have many reasons to want to feel prepared.
I have found the SOFLETE programming helps me be better at all these things because I feel better physically and mentally after each session. I take a little time each evening to simultaneously unwind and push myself past perceived limits. As a result, I am more ready for life.
I am currently on Week 5 of BASIC Cycle 2: Revolution. I completed the BASIC Cycle 1 at the end of December.
What I really like about following SOFLETE programs is that they push me well beyond where I would push myself if I were working out on my own. I had done the SOFLETE Strength program previously, but I admit it was a bit more than I was ready for, both time commitment wise and ability wise. I was finding I needed to scale the workouts on occasion, or cut them short. So I was excited when SOFLETE released their new BASIC program, as I felt it was just what I needed, and something I could commit to doing every day.
As for the process itself, I use the SOFLETE app on my phone to follow and track my workouts. The app features integrated videos for each exercise, which are very helpful when I come to an exercise I am not familiar with, I can watch a 1-minute video and can usually do it or at least attempt it, and then practice until I become more proficient. It’s like Trinity in The Matrix when she “downloads” the instructions to fly the helicopter. Boom, got it. Workouts take me an average of about 75 minutes, which is long enough to kick my ass, but not so long that I find it hard to fit into my day.
I have found recovery time is shorter, I’m generally ready to go for the next day’s workout and not too sore, or wiped out, that I am dreading it. This is directly related to the mobility and breathing protocols that are a part of each day’s program.
I like that each workout begins with a well thought out warm up, a series of exercises and stretches meant to get you ready to dive into the more intense sections that follow. Warm-ups are good for old men like me but often overlooked by younger athletes. SOFLETE makes mobility and breathing priorities in their programming, and the results are really what set their programming apart. I can now put my socks on in the morning. I had trouble with this simple task when I was just lifting weights, and following weightlifting programs like Wendler 5-3-1 and Starting Strength. My mobility was terrible, and I felt sore and really stiff every morning when I got out of bed. I have made great strides in this area over the past few months. Also, I have used the breathing methods taught in the training in other aspects of my life as well. The techniques have been super helpful when I have trouble falling asleep, encounter stress at work, and most notably, aiding with a faster recovery during intense portions of endurance events.
My focus on training has improved. I am now able to work through workouts that once seemed overwhelming, and am even beginning to thrive at them, to the point where I am feeling ready to handle more.
SOFLETE Basic offers lots of variety, each day is different, I find it exciting, never boring or monotonous. The coaches are always available in the app, and questions are answered promptly and with accuracy. The group feed format allows everyone to benefit from the knowledge that is shared. I enjoy the camaraderie on the app feed and in the FB team room. Being part of a group going through the same thing with the same questions is very beneficial, and significantly speeds up progress, because the right answers are readily available.
I’m looking forward to continuing the training and possibly moving to a more demanding program soon.
- Matt Desmarais