Grease the Groove: The Perfect Flow Cycle Compliment

Yesterday, I talked about structuring a day like an interval workout.

Today, I’d like to add another physical component into a focused, deep work session primarily focused on the release stage of the flow cycle.

Backing up, flow is not an ‘on’ or ‘off’ switch. Instead, it follows a four-stage cycle:

  1. Struggle
  2. Release
  3. Flow
  4. Recovery

For our purposes, we’re looking at the second stage, the release.

After you’ve struggled for a period of time (maybe an interval of 45–90 minutes?), it’s time to take a break.

What kind of break though?

Low-grade physical activity.

Enter Greasing the Groove. Popularized by Pavel Tsatsouline, the concept involves repeatedly practicing a strength skill in small doses in order to learn the skill.

The trick is not to go to failure whatsoever, building the neurological pathways of the movement.

Throughout the structure from yesterday, this would give us anywhere from 6–10 sets on an exercise or multiple exercises to practice.

This is a great way to be moving all day long as Outside Magazine wrote so well, even if the frequency in their sample day was a bit short for optimal focus.

So, pick an movement, two, or three you enjoy or want to get better at, pair it between your work periods, and grease that groove.



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Kevin Votaw

Kevin Votaw

Flow Coach. Applying flow in school, sports, and life: ❌ Flow x Fiero ♦️North of Happy ⚾ The Pitching DJ 🧠