I'm serious, hit the road and start putting in some miles. Let me give you a super-simple running work out
- Run a mile
- Sprint uphill 50 yards
- Jog slowly downhill
- -- Repeat until you have done 10 sprints
- Jog a mile home to cool down
Yes, I know all of the things you are going to tell me - that is a 25 minute workout if you aren't a particularly fast runner, and I assume you aren't since you are doing judo instead of track. I know that judo matches are five minutes.
Here is something else I know - most judo players aren't in the best possible physical condition, and their cardiovascular training is a particular weak point. There is a lot of opportunity to rest in a judo tournament. The picture above shows my little angel, Julia, pinning someone. How much effort is that for Julia? Answer, not very damn much.
I cannot tell you the number of times I have seen relatively skilled judo players lose because they were just tired out.
The advantage of the workout I just gave you is that it starts with a warm up. I don't know you but I've coached for a long time so I'm guessing that if no one is watching you, you aren't out there running like you're being chased by the police. (Not that, I, personally would know how fast one runs when chased by the police, cough, cough.) It's more of a fast jog.
You run up hill because it is harder than running on a flat surface. Judo is bursts of hard effort, punctuated by kind of coasting, like pinning your opponent or tying your belt while the referee wags his/her finger at you and admonishes you in Japanese.
If you get 10 good attacks in during a match, you're doing better than most people.
Yes, it is probably not the best conditioning work out in the world, but guess what, I bet it's better than whatever you are doing for conditioning now, which is probably nothing on many days.
The other nice thing about my recommendation is that it requires nothing more than a hill. Even North Dakota has hills and it's one of the flattest states you'll find anywhere.
Conditioning workout number two
If you happen to live in North Dakota and it's too cold to go outside - jump rope for 25 minutes. You'll probably have to start with five minutes and work your way up.
When I lived in Minnesota and it was way below freezing outside, I used to go downstairs to the basement of our apartment building where the storage units were and jump rope. It was boring as hell. Jumping rope is not my thing, but it is good cardio and it's better than running outside when it is 20 below zero. You don't need a fancy jump rope. I was broke and in graduate school and I'm sure I just bought a piece of rope for a dollar at the hardware store.
So ... you really want to win more matches? Get in better shape. You have no excuse.
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