Do you think your body keeps a reserve for physical activity even when you think you are working the hardest you can? According to Professor Kevin Thompson, Head of Sports and Exercise Sciences at North Umbria University believes that, “ that the system is conservative and even well trained individuals, who have a well developed pacing template, there is a reserve of energy production which can be utilized to further enhance performance.”
When I first read this story on ScienceDaily.com I thought of it as a metabolic reserve. I felt that I have tapped into that reserve myself as a trainer and athlete. When I feel like I am pushing as hard as I can- someone does or says something to push me and I squeeze out a little more. I find this to be particularly true when my performance is tied to an interval of time. I definitely pace myself for the interval and perform accordingly. Professor Thompson refers to as a, “metabolic reserve.”
The interesting thing about the study, although the results make complete sense to me, because I do understand human nature; is the competitors were less motivated or able to tap into their ‘reserve’ when they knew their opponent was actually working at an output 2-5% higher than them. They did better when they were not aware of this at all. Prof. Thompson validates that a small amount of deception can enhance performance. – you must believe on some level that you can beat your opponent. If you are training and know that the opponent’s (whether it be person or avatar) pace is already higher than what you think your max is- you have lost in your head. Click here to read this great story.