Training vs. Practice

Note to future self…

We know intuitively that the way we get better at something is by practicing. However, have you stopped to think about your process for practicing and getting better? I know this sounds meta but I feel that we all probably have suboptimal ways to train. This is specially true if we don’t intentionally try to improve our training. This should hold true for anything. Whether you’re training for a marathon or trying to get better at writing, we all have a process that we follow (training) and that process can presumably be improved.

My original intent for this note was to help us be more intentional about the way we train for anything. Now, as I started writing down my initial outline I found myself switching between using the word “training” and “practicing” and it made me wonder if there’s any semantic difference between the two. I am glad I looked it up because there’s a significant difference.

Practice is applying what you learned.

Training is learning how to improve something or do something new.

In other words, practice is useful for consolidating the skills what we’ve already learn so that it can be recalled in the future. Training is about the acquisition of new skills that can be later be practiced.

Here we already see that there’s a sequence in which training/practice should take place and this might be a good starting point for understanding how to think about improving our learning process.

Next Step

This note is just an entry point for thinking more deeply about finding ways to improve the way we train and practice. Moving forward I will focus on figuring out the best way to train (across skills) and then move into ways to improve the way I practice. Some areas that I will be trying to examine include writing, exercising and reading. Will write back with any updates.

That’s it. Now back to work…