Tuesday, March 16, 2010

4 ways to improve your performaince

4 Ways to Improve your Athletic Performance

If you are a competitive athlete this article is for you. Whether you are a professional or college athlete, youth athlete, masters athlete, recreational athlete or just enjoy working out and being healthy the advice below can assist in taking your performance to the next level. These are not fast acting remedies. Abiding by these principles can have a dramatic transformation in the way you perform mentally and physically. But you have to put in the work and have the self-discipline to work on these concepts.

1. Good nutrition. Without good nutrition your body will lack recovery and energy, suffer during workouts and you will be more likely to suffer injury. Immediately wake up and drink 8-16 ounces of water, eat breakfast and take your vitamins (look below). Eat every 2-3 hours and focus on getting in quality carbohydrates, healthy fats and lean proteins at each feeding. A good nutrition plan goes hand in hand with a good training program.

2. Train Smart not hard. Most athletes definitely put in the work and train hard. But the question is “are they training smart and efficient”? If you are constantly training hard and breaking down the body your performance will suffer. Instead focus on smart training. I am not saying that you shouldn’t work hard. I am saying that you need to have a smart plan so you can stay on the path to conquering your goals. Arrange active recovery, rest days and rest weeks into your training schedule. Know when your body needs a break from training and have the discipline to rest when needed.

3. Take vitamins. In a perfect world we would get our recommended nutrients and vitamins in the form of natural food but it is very hard to do this. A multivitamin, fish oil and Vitamin C should be taken every day with a meal to maximize nutrient intake during the day. A multivitamin is intended to supplement the human diet with dietary minerals and vitamins. Taking fish oil is a great way to increase your Omega 3 fats to decrease inflammation in the joints and tendons and aid in the recovery process. And taking a daily vitamin C will increase your overall health and help fight infection

4. Believe in Yourself. Motivational speaker Brian Tracy says, “You are who you think you are.” You need to have daily self affirmation and motivation so you can have the confidence to go out and perform. Visualize yourself having the perfect race or competition. You are more likely to achieve athletic success when you have a positive mindset about yourself and your abilities.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Woodside 1/2 Marathon Race Report

Well I think I proved that you don't have to put in long useless training miles to endure a long distance event. The past 12 weeks I have been working on speed and efficient training. I have not ran 10+ miles since my 1/2 Ironman in October. My goal this off season was to train efficiently and smart. I feel I am on the path of accomplishing my off season goals. I am not exactly where I want to be yet but I am happy with my performance.

This past weekend was the Woodside 1/2 Marathon. For those of you that do not know about this event, I will give you a few details. This is a single track trail run. The first 6.5 miles is a climb of 1900 feet. When you turnaround it is an all out time trial to the finish. For most the weather was dark and gloomy but for us running the event the weather was perfect for a run.

I started out fast, maybe too fast because about 15 minutes into this race my legs were burning. As we started the climb up the mountain my heart rate was high and my legs were pumping. I was able to stay positive throughout the tough section of the course. I just told myself, "Get to the turnaround and then the race is almost over." I kept saying that in my head. I would zone out and before you knew it another 10, 15 and 20 minutes were gone. I checked my watch and I knew the turnaround would be here shortly. The final climb was a tough one but then I turned around and started the "time trial". I got to the top in 52 minutes so roughly 8 min./mile. Running downhill is tougher than most think. Especially on a descent that involves a wet and muddy trail and approximately 15 switch backs to deal with. My heart rate was steady and controlled and my stability felt great. This is where all the training in the gym pays off and being strong and stable are advantages. By time I reached the 10 mile point of the race, my legs were fatigued but I needed to push through the last 3 miles. I zoned out, kept my pace and pushed to the end. Once I knew there was only 1 mile to go, I gave it all I had and finished strong. The 2nd 6.5 miles took 42 minutes so roughly 6:25 min./mile. My overall time was 1 hour 34 minutes and 16 seconds, 7:14 min./mile, which was 50 seconds faster than last year. I was 22nd out of 156 participants.

Good things: speed and strength were great; aerobically I felt good till about 11 mile marker

Things I need to work on: endurance; pushing through the tough spots of the course; digging a little deeper to keep up with a racer infront of me

Goals: 1) Keep training smart. 2) Continue building the endurance to prepare for Wildflower 3) Challenge the body a bit more when racing

Past writings