For the past 4 years, I have had the opportunity to coach professional athletes in strength training and nutrition at the Gary Roberts High Performance Centre. I not only had an opportunity to work with the man himself, Gary Roberts (NHL veteran and high performance coach) but I also got to work along side Adrian Vilaca (professional  MMA fighter and strength and conditioning coach). In addition to working with some of the top hockey players in the world Adrian and I have coached clients who, although not competing in professional athletics, implement the High Performance approach to their training, nutrition and lifestyle. 

In this guest post Adrian Vilaca breaks down the high performance approach and how ANYONE can become a badass. 

Introducing Adrian Vilaca “the Fighter” #fighterandtheging

What the F*** is High Performance Training by Adrian Vilaca

The fitness industry is notorious for buzz words and eye catching phrases, to be honest it’s a bit overboard. How can you, an eager member of the health community, navigate through the minefield of “sport-specific training” and “double bi-lateral anti-anti rotation exercises.”

One of the most prominent buzz words in the industry is featured above, “high performance”. What does that even mean? Who is it for? Should I be searching for “High Performance Training”?

The short answer is YES! I struggle to think of a single area in life where I would rather choose the “stock, run of the mill model” when stacked against “High performance”. We should want the best in all aspects of our life, especially when it concerns our most valuable asset. Our body. This doesn’t mean that everyone is qualified to administer a high performance program and you should still do your research before deciding on a coach but that is an entirely separate post. Today, I want to focus on why “High Performance” is for everyone.

The chief different between High Performance and “not-High Performance?” is the manner in which you approach your training sessions. When I think High Performance I think training, not just working out. I realize that they may sound the same but they are most certainly not. Training implies a goal, something that you are working towards. What the goal is insignificant, what matters is that it has created a purpose to your session. Your goal can be as seemingly simple as picking up your 3 year old without back pain, that is as valid as any Olympic hopeful. It carries weight in your life (no pun intended) and will have a direct impact on the time spent with your little one. Below are three reasons why High Performance training is for you:

1. Injury Management / Prevention

The most important reason for training, at all levels, is to avoid injury. If you build a structure and it continuously falls over and breaks you will spend time to repair and reinforce the structure. The structure is compromised and cannot function properly. The body is no different, if you are injured you will likely experience some level of pain and restriction. A quality high performance program will have a component dedicated to rehabilitative / preventative care. This is an aspect that is often overlooked in general training programs and will likely make the biggest difference in your life.

2.  Individualized Challenges

Your High Performance coach should have a firm grasp on both their craft and your level of fitness. This will allow them to design workouts that are specific to your needs and restrictions while presenting a challenge. We receive the most satisfaction when we perform challenging tasks that are within our power to complete, provided we apply ourselves. Training is no different, plus this avoids hours of mind-numbing Pec Deck Chest flys, while insuring you don’t aggravate your knee injury from that Barbados dance floor accident 2 years ago.

3.  Motivation

Going to train should be exciting, it should even be a little bit unnerving “I hope they don’t make me push that f***ing sled again”. It is important that you are excited and motivated to train, otherwise it will quickly become a chore and you will find yourself making excuses to avoid training. A High Performance setting allows you to become part of a community of likeminded individuals. People who want to work hard and better themselves. It doesn’t matter if you connect face to face, or via an online platform you get to share your life and workout experiences and work towards your goals together. 

Adrian Vilaca (“The Fighter”)




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