How To Train Like an Athlete
Are you training for an upcoming race or event? Be it a 5K, 20K, 50K, 100K, Tough Mudder, CrossFit games, or maybe just life in general, there are some things to consider before you start!
First let’s nail down what you’re working towards! If you have a 100k in a month from now and you’ve never run before, probably not a great idea. Something like a 5k might be more your speed from the standpoint of time, effort, prehab, rehab, and overall training. Make sure the goal is realistic.
Type of Training
Second, one you nail down the goal/event/race etc, train specifically for it. There are so many apps now to help you train for the 5k, 50k, Tough Mudders, weight lifting. If apps aren’t your thing maybe go to the physical place. If your goal is to swim more actually use a pool and not just another type of cardio as they are very different. To that same point, most experts recommend cross training to better your ability. You don’t just want to stay in 1 plane of movement throughout your time. Maximize your results by cross-training (ex: if you want to cycle for a 5 day span, weighted leg, core, and back workouts aid in the process).
Refueling Your Training
Every type of training and your unique goals within that parameter will require something different per person. So first off, let’s talk about eating enough. You might notice your eating habits (ie: foods you buy) change. Maybe you’re choosing foods that are leaner sources of protein and more fiber. Well, you might notice that a “normal portion” isn’t cutting it while training. Give yourself a little grace to allow for lower calories by adding more to your plate should you feel the need to. Which in turn is my second point, eat intuitively. With new food choices, comes new territory for learning how upping your training from your usual might require more energy (AKA food).
7-9 hours of sleep is key for recovery. As much work as you are putting in with your training you want to be sure that there is optimal recovery to let you do it again, and better the next day.
Probably the most important of them all because this is the real starting point. For example, if you work 9AM-5PM at a desk your hours to workout outside of that dwindle depending if you are a morning/evening exercise, have a family, have an extra curricular event going on, or ___. So be strategic and realistic with that works best for you because there is no one-size-fits-all plan.