Posts Tagged ‘Training Blog’

Training progress for mere mortals – session 303

Tuesday, January 26th, 2010

A few days ago i broke through the n = 6 barrier with a average n back score of 6.05.

The thing that still fascinates me about this is that I’m still seeing slow continuous improvement in my scores. It hasn’t been easy or rapid but steady and pretty continuous. I have felt and seen the difference that clearer thinking can make in day to day and professional life.

It’s really remarkable to reach a max average n back greater than 6… and now i can do 5′s almost without thinking… that just freaks me out.

I’ve been keeping track of my scores in a spreadsheet which enables me to look back on my progress several different ways: number of training days vs progress, number of training sessions vs progress and calendar time vs progress. I’ve completed 303 sessions along the way over the past 9 months.

The most positive and consistent correlate seems to be number of training days with n=back progress.  The graph correlating calendar days to training progress is fascinating in showing a long plateau around n=5 last summer.

Thanks to all who have posted in this blog for inspiration and motivation to keep going.

The key learning from this, for me, is that continuous if not rapid improvement in your working memory is possible whether you start out as a genius or not. Hard work can pay off just stick with it.  Benefits correlated with improvement in working memory are available to all of us.

Session #7

Monday, June 23rd, 2008

Day 7
Friday, May 30

Training location: Home
Training conditions: Afternoon. Tired (woken up early again). Swam. Had lunch. Caffeine. Ginger tea. Alone in the house.

First ten blocks stayed on 3 most of the time, moving up to 4 a couple of times. Block 11, no misses on a 3. (First time!) Back to three for block 13, but just one miss, despite feeling discombobulated. Down to 2 on block 15, got totally confused on the 3s. No misses on the 2s. Losing it at this point, completely flaked out on the next 3 set. Again, no misses on the 2s.

Mean n-back: 3.15

Session #6

Monday, June 23rd, 2008

Day 6
May 29 (skipped a day due to lack of time)

Training location: Fall Café
Training conditions: Just drank a cup of latte and ate a cranberry muffin

Feeling tired – Zane woke up at 5, I got him back to bed but got up at 6 with Otto.

Down to 2 on block four, up to 4 on block 6. Back down to 3, right back to 4. Starting to feel more comfortable on the 3s – seeing the visual hits better. Back up to 4, back down to 2 by block 16… Feel like I start to get tired after the first 10 blocks or so, this gets worse, affects concentration, and I just can’t remember the sequences. Taking breaks and forcing focus seems to help. Cancelled a block at 17. Starting to feel competitive with myself after the dip in scores on the last session.

But despite feeling very much more in control, I scored a mean n only .05 better than two sessions ago! (Mean n=2.95)

Session #3

Monday, June 23rd, 2008

Day 3

Training location: Not recorded

Conditions: Not recorded

Several times scored no misses on n=2, several times stayed on n=3 for two consecutive turns. With two training blocks to go, got on to n = 4 !!

Felt completely out of depth on n = 4 (9 misses, 6 hits)

(Ended on string of n = 3, n = 4, n = 3, holding n = 3)