The Good Oil: Edition 7
Greetings everyone, and welcome back to The Good Oil!
If this is the first time you’re receiving this newsletter, my name’s Adrian Crawford and I’m a content strategist here at CBDistillery® as well as a native Australian, the father of a 3-year-old girl and an enthusiast of all things hemp-derived.
This time around we’ve got plenty of great reading for you (if I do say so myself), including a chat about exercise and fitness with a Division I college coach, a selection of apps to help kickstart your spring workouts, and more.
Let’s dive in!
Last month we heard from CBDistillery®’s Quality Assurance Director Alex Blanchette. This time around, with the weather getting nicer and facilitating some outdoor exercise, I caught up with Tyler Colvin, a Division I college coach, personal trainer and former physical therapist to discuss all things exercise-related.
Adrian Crawford: Can you give me an idea of what the daily life of a Division I college coach looks like?
Tyler Colvin: Chaotic in season, orderly out of season. A typical day in season might look like this:
0600 – Wake up.
0630 – Work out.
0745 – Finish workout and go supervise the team lift. The team has a strength coach assigned to them, but we like to be in there as well to keep them accountable.
0845 – Head over to the office. Our facility is all self-contained on campus so it’s pretty convenient. I’ll use this time to answer emails, plan practice, talk to players when they come in. One of my seniors a couple years ago described the coaches’ job as “half coach, half chauffer, half therapist”, and that sums It up nicely.
1000 – Practice.
1300 – Wrap up practice, debrief individual players who come in with questions, answer emails that came through during practice.
1345 – Lunch.
1430 – Afternoons vary, but this time is typically filled with maintenance on our equipment, planning for upcoming travel, film analysis, meeting with players and researching and contacting recruits.
AC: Next up, the origin story. What was it that started you on your journey to eventually end up as a personal trainer, coach and physical therapist?
TC: Well, I’ve always been active. I know that’s a cliché and I hate clichés but it’s true. I was originally recruited out of high school as a tennis player and ended up as a NARP instead. I received my B.S. in Civil/Environmental Engineering, but the job market was sluggish, and I decided instead of moving back home I would go to grad school. In grad school I discovered that I really didn’t want to sit behind a desk 40 hours a week for the next 40 years, and after I finished, I started pursuing coaching as a career.
Our conversation continues here.
Four Apps to Jumpstart Your Spring Fitness
In a day and age where many of us are trying to cut back on screen time, but keeping track of your fitness progress is a great way to remain engaged in your routine, map your progress and get new inspiration for workouts.
Here are four smartphone apps I’ve found super helpful over the years when pursuing various wellness goals, with the caveat that this is solely my experience. Different things might work best for you!
This one is a little specific to those who use the Apple product ecosystem. Apple Fitness is built in to the iPhone operating system and is an integral part of the Apple Watch. It allows you to set your activity targets for the day across three categories: Move, Stand and Exercise. The app uses brightly colored rings to keep you updated on where you're at in relation to your goals for the day, and you earn a little fireworks show on your Apple Watch every time you close a ring by achieving the goal. This feedback loop (no pun intended) is a good motivator for me to move my body every day, and Apple has basically made a video game out of achieving your fitness goals, offering monthly awards for fitness challenges and even alerting you to your "streak" when you've hit your targets multiple days in a row. At one stage, in February of 2021, I managed to hit 246 consecutive days of closing my rings before taking a much-needed rest day after running a half-marathon. If you like simple graphical interfaces and positive feedback loops, this might be a good one for you.
Nike Run Club
Back in the early stages of the pandemic I had just become a father and, between learning to take care of a newborn and working from home in our new, walled-off world, the walls of our apartment were closing in. My partner encouraged me to get out of the house after work every day to stretch my legs and close my rings (see above). Eventually walking wasn't enough to hit the growing target numbers on my Apple Watch, so I started jogging, but it was tough to stick to. On my search for some kind of coaching that I didn't have to pay for, I discovered the Nike Run Club app. It offers audio guidance from Nike's team of running coaches for a wide range of workouts, from beginner runs to marathon distances and practically everything in between. This app also offers awards and all kinds of stats so you can track your progress over weeks, months and years, as well as programs for 5K, 10K and half-marathon training that you can work into your weekly routines.
I've been working out in gyms for more than half my life, but now and then there are dormant periods. One of those such times was over the spring of 2019 and when I decided it was high time to start working out again, I wasn't sure I wanted to go back to the same old routines I'd been using before the break. Someone I trust recommended giving Stronglifts a try, and I took to it immediately. It's less of a coaching app and more that it does the math for you on what weight you should lift in a "five sets of five reps" configuration based on the starting lifting levels you nominate. I've always had a tricky back, but with help from the gradual progression of Stronglifts, I reached a new squat PR of 285lb for three reps in a few short months, which surprised me as much as anybody.
This one's the absolute jack-of-all-trades. MyFitnessPal has been around for years and offers meal tracking, workouts and even allows you to map out running trails. It also syncs with your preferred fitness tracking device of choice (Apple Watch, FitBit, Garmin Connect and more) so you don't have to worry about manually entering your efforts.
As I mentioned earlier, I started running during the early months of both the pandemic and parenthood. I gradually pushed my workout distances from a mile to 10K and beyond, and for a significant chunk of time there I was carrying my phone in my hand every step of the way. Looking back, this seems like craziness for a number of reasons, namely because I was expending all that extra muscular effort holding onto something I really didn't need to be holding onto. But my phone was too big to comfortably sit in a side pocket without bouncing against my leg for an hour at a time, and I was still so new to the sport that I never considered solutions might exist.
The solution came at Christmas from my dad, half a world away. I don't know how he knew I needed one, but parents are pretty intuitive like that. Christmas 2020 rolled around and I opened a package from back home to discover he'd sent me running belt, specifically the SPI Distance Pro.
This might have been my gateway drug to the world of running-specific gear, and let me tell you I dived right in. I had no idea such a simple design could make workouts so much easier. It has loops for energy gels on either side, the big zippered compartment for my phone and door key, and felt perfectly snug and secure even after multiple miles. I had been experimenting with small water bottles that clipped into the waistband of my shorts, but they were irritating my sides. Hooking them through the SPI belt made life much more simple on the road, and I really had no idea how much easier running could be once I was no longer carrying a bulky phone in one hand.
It's durable, too -- it's still in great shape after hundreds of miles, two half-marathons and plenty of other workouts. Couldn't recommend it more, and the price point is very reasonable too!
The Last Drops
That’s it for edition 7 of The Good Oil! Good luck out there with those spring workouts, and we’ll catch you next month!