The best way I’ve found to train is at an 85-90% success rate.  This is a truism that seems to be cross platform.

For instance, when learning a language, it’s important to seek language inputs that are you comprehend at 85-90%.  If you find a podcast or news program that you can follow, but about 10% of the words or phrases are new or out of reach, you will be able to learn the words or phrases from context or by looking them up.

This is also why it takes some creativity to get past intermediate in language learning- very little natural language content is accessible at that level, which means the only language content that you can use is designed for learners.  Working with a teacher who can match their speech to your level becomes essential.

Climbing Training: we’re working on periodization training in climbing right now. The current phase is endurance, and that means going to the gym and doing multiple pitches on top-rope. (Goal is 20 pitches in 2 hours, about 840 feet vertical)  The important thing is to optimize the difficulty of the input (routes) in order to maximize the training.

My normal inclination- and I think this is true for many people- is to think to myself, oh, that’s a 10b toprope, I should be able to onsight it.  Therefore- I’m going to wait a few more minutes, drink some more ice tea, until this pump goes away totally so I can onsight it.

That sort of attitude habit is exactly what I’m trying to break, in favor of pushing myself to climb to the point of falling (i.e. failure) during this endurance training. (Nerdy climbing details over here.)


Language Training at 85%:

Here’s an example program I’ve been running.  Find a podcast you like – these are some of my new favorites for ArabicAzzbda / Business Box / Eish Btswi / Status Hour

You need to be able to download the episodes, streaming doesn’t work for this protocol.  Play 5-10 seconds of the podcast, pause the episode, repeat the words verbatim out loud. Repeat. Repeat for a period of time until fatigue or boredom sets in. Aim for at least 30 minutes.

Another protocol- do the same thing, only transcribe it by hand (good for handwriting.)

picture from @ben_climber




Posted by:Brook DeLorme

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