Trusting the progression

We hit the jackpot with warm weather this week in Oregon and I was ready to capitalize. I had a great throwing session again and I am very excited about the upcoming outdoor season. While my throws are not near my personal best I know I need to trust the progression of my training if I want to accomplish my goals.

On any given day I could go to practice and throw 110%, break all my practice personal bests, and feel pretty good about myself. But with that approach to training my chances of throwing far at the end of the season in August and September are pretty slim.

Rule #1

Never compete with yourself or anyone in practice.

You want to beat me at practice that’s fine, but when competition starts we will see who has really been working on their technique.

My goal every throwing practice is to hold back on the reins as long as I can (throw with minimal effort), and slowly dial up the intensity of my throws as the day progresses.

I do this because I have experienced what it feels like to throw hard early in practice and throw easy early in practice. And I always come out with great results when I take it easy in my early throws.

If I try to throw too hard early in my practice I tend to:

Push into my block off my right leg
Throw with my arm rather than my legs
Accelerate too fast in my approach and brake coming into my impulse

But if I take it easy and work on my technique and fundamentals I am able to focus and develop muscle memory that will last for the rest of the day. Then as the day progresses I can slowly dial up the intensity while still maintaining powerful positions.

Win the day

Oregon Ducks football team has a slogan “Win the Day” which often literally means they are doing whatever it takes to beat the team they are playing that day.

There are big goals, medium goals, and small goals. Small goal is something I strive for daily. Medium goals are inside my training blocks maybe 4-8 week goals. And big goals are goals I have set for myself for the whole year.

Similar to, “base hits win games” lots of small goals will add up to big progress.

Last training session I accomplished my small goal. My body was feeling good, I was progressing throughout the day, hitting good positions, I threw far, and I won the day. But I am also trusting the progression of my season.

Strong Arm vs Quick Arm

There are two distinct phases of training in the javelin; developing a strong arm, and developing a quick arm.

In the fall and winter I throw a lot of balls, I lift heavy, and my training sessions are long. All of this volume will develop my arm to be very strong and will help me maintain a high level of fitness throughout the year.

I personally shoot for 30 throws off the runway, twice a week, ranging anywhere from a 5 step to full approach. I also have a medball day where I will try and throw 200 throws (various ways) with heavy throwing balls, shots, and medicine balls (3k-6k).

Come spring we will shorten the length of workouts, lift lighter weight, faster, to maintain strength, and throw lighter implements (600-1000g) to increase arm speed.

I like to describe developing arm speed a lot like an episode of “Sport Science” did on bat speed. While most of the pros in the MLB warm up with a weighted bat to make a regular bat feel light and fast, they are actually training their muscles to contract slower.

I train my muscles like this in the fall and winter, but as I get close to season I will throw lighter implements in order to train my muscles to fire faster than normal.

So even though I wasn’t throwing a personal best the other day in practice I am trusting the progression of my training and I know my arm is going to get so much faster once I start to taper in order to peak for big competitions.


Put a cone out in the field 10 meters less than what you hope to throw that day in practice. Work on your technique and don’t throw past the cone. When you are focused on technique rather than throwing far you will quickly learn how easy it is to throw far with technique rather than brute strength. Breaking down these mental myths will help you throughout the year to trust your training and throw far.


#TrainBIG and #KeepFighting

4 years ago