How I prepared myself for the eight-hour-long Black Belt Test at WCKM.
Analyzing previous tests I realized muscular endurance and fueling are critical to sustain this long test designed to make you tired and test your “no quit” attitude.
Endurance is the key, muscular endurance trumps peak power.
But what about fueling an effort like this? Carbohydrates are necessary but a long effort like a 8hr martial arts test with the entire body engaged burns through your carb storage in no time. Refueling with simple carbs can quickly lead to an upset stomach, which in the case of a martial arts demonstration can be devastating. Picture groundwork while dealing with gas and stomach distress and so on. 💩
So what to do?
I focused on increasing my bodies ability to burn fat for fuel as the supply is vast even if you are lean.
The way I approached this was using a specific protocol for my runs at low intensity at the threshold of aerobic function, this required a heart rate chest strap and GPS enabled watch to get feedback on heart rate and pace.
With the low intensity running came low carbohydrate diet comprised of minimal to unprocessed whole foods to make sure I meet the macro and micro nutrient needs. This is vital for health, performance and recovery.
Did it work?
It sure did, my energy was good and I kept going strong until the test was completed. Keep in mind when your body runs low in energy your fine motor skills suffer and techniques become a challenge. Fat for fuel was a great strategy and allowed me to go strong, recover faster, train more, without risking my health.
If you have questions don’t hesitate to reach out to me, I would be glad to help.