By Joe Lewis
Rule No. 1
Always show up at your martial arts school to train. Never miss a class. Schedule each class at the beginning of the week. When your class are on your schedule, nothing else will interfere with that time slot.
Rule No. 2
Each class must help you accomplish three things, this way you will maintain your motivation, which is the key to successfully completing any program.
A. Enjoy your class. You must have fun. Find one or two aspects about your past workouts and focus on them as you anticipate the same experience again on your way to the gym.
B. In each class you must finish it having learned something new and of interest to you. Share this with your partner or discuss it with one of your friends as well as with your instructor.
C. At the end of each training session you must always feel that you accomplished a good, physical workout. This sense of achievement is primary to keeping you focused and motivated in preparation for your next lesson.
Rule No. 3
Acquire an attitude of progression. Designate a goal. Do not just wander through your workouts without focusing on a designated purpose. Whether it’s the overall workout or just a single drill make sure in each you identify something of primary importance as a key point to work on.
Set up each workout to be structured. During each workout each week you should notice a marked improvement in both your skills as well as your physical fitness. This may include small details such as losing from one-half pound to three pounds per workout or per week.
It may include something as simple as an increase in strength such as doing lifting programs. It may be a three to a five pound improvement in your maximum lift such as a bench press or a jump in the total number of pushups from 18 one week to perhaps 20 or 22 pushups the next. During a cardio-type workout you may only begin with 25 to 30 punches in a three minute round and work up to perhaps 70 or 75 punches in the same three minute round later in your training.
Rule No. 4
Developing a strong work ethic – The single most important factor great champions had over their competition was their work habits. They all use three key words – intensity, intensity, intensity. This intensity must be stressed during at least one workout each week. Older athletes may train five days each week instead of six or seven. One week three of those workouts will be intense and the other two will be much lighter.
The following week the pattern switches. They will do three light workouts with two days working with intensity. A younger athlete may train more often, six to seven days per week sometimes. He may instead focus on doing at least one intense drill on every workout day.
About Joe Lewis
Joe Lewis is widely regarded as the greatest karate practitioner in American history.