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How to Train Before Breakfast: The Great Gama
I always like it when I meet a young athlete and they tell me they do a few press ups and sit ups in the morning before breakfast or at night. It shows me that in the words of Muhammad Ali “they have the will, I just train the skill“.
One famous wrestler, the Great Gama , took this to a very high level.
He got up at 0300 every day and did 4,000 deep knee bends (Hindu squats to Excelsior regulars) of which 700 of them were jumping squats.
In the afternoon he did 2,000 one arm and two arm press ups, followed by a 4 mile run, then 3 or 4 hours of wrestling.
It is funny how young males want to do “cleans” at the first opportunity, rather than develop a great foundation of conditioning first.
Somehow just working hard is often forgotten.
How to train like the Great Gama
My new schedule is less punishing than this, but it has helped cure my insomnia (thanks to Sleepyhead clinic).
- 0515 Wake up. Drink black coffee, eat banana, read/study.
- 0600-0610 Rise and shine mobility work.
- 0610-0700 Training session, usually weightlifting, otherwise structural integrity work + gymnastics.
- 0700-0710 Ablutions
- 0710 onwards: get family up, breakfast and school walk.
This requires a sensible bed time, and no indulging the night before, which is another good habit to get into.
One young female athlete who is on a Netball “pathway” said to me “But if I train before breakfast, I will have to shower“! Those athletes who do get into a morning routine seem to want “it” more than those who are ferried around by their parents to every last organised practice.
Try doing 10 minutes of exercise before breakfast every day this week, you will be on your way to being the next Great Gama!
"James worked with the Exeter and Taunton based Southwest Talent Centre scholarship athletes. He is deeply knowledgeable about strength and conditioning and has excelled at working with young athletes. His sessions are challenging and fun and he has succeeded in blending a group of athletes from a diverse range of sports into a cohesive training group.
24 Feb 2018
Level 1 Strength and Conditioning Course – Somerset
Venue: Princess Royal Sports Complex, Wellington, Somerset. TA21 8NT
Assessment Day: Sunday 25 March 2018
Cost: £280 including materials and access to online resources. To book send a deposit of £100 here.