Thursday, May 12

From Wikipedia: Behavioral economics, along with the related sub-field, behavioral finance, studies the effects of psychological, social, cognitive, and emotional factors on the economic decisions of individuals and institutions and the consequences for market prices, returns, and the resource allocation.

OK, I’m nerding out here a little bit, but this concept of behavioral economics intrigues me in a lot of ways.

Traditional economic theory is based on the assumption that humans are rational and always make the most logical choices. However, we all know that is not true. Behavioral economics takes into account the other factors that play into our economic decisions – psychological, social, cognitive, and emotional.

Now, how does that apply to the gym? I’ve been considering this theory for a while, but let’s say our gains in the gym are similar to those in the world of economics. An increase in the weight of your back squat would be similar to earning more money in the real world.

So, do we always make the most rational decision to get our back squat to increase. If the goal is to have the highest possible squat one year from today, will all of the decisions we make daily in that year get us there? I think we all know the answer is no.

Sometimes our emotions and ego take hold and we try to do too much too early. Then we either get hurt or we are too sore to train hard the next day.

We are not rational beings.

Did the guy next to you just squat 300? Well you better load it up and see what you can do, right? (note the sarcasm, please).

We start everyone on a beginner strength program here for 10 weeks before even attempting a max load of any kind. It can be painfully tedious to stick to. I get it. But that progression will get you further in the long run. Sure you can squat more than 85 pounds, but if you put your 5-rep max on the bar week one, where will you go week two?

Patience and steady, consistent increases over that 10 weeks will get you a stronger squat, but emotions and ego tell you not to wait.

Remember, this fitness journey is not a week or a month long. We want it to last a lifetime. Enjoy the process and try to make rational decisions and you’ll be much “richer” years later.

For more on behavioral economics and how we make poor economic decisions due to outside factors listen to this episode of Hidden Brain:

Workout for Thursday, May 12
20 min Working, Not For Time:
Complete the following:
8 Rope Climbs or Rope Climb Scales
4 Sets of 5 Single Arm Barbell Rows on each side

7 min AMRAP
11 Cal Ride
9 Shoulder to Overhead (95/65)
7 C2B Pull Ups