6 training tips for the New Year from an athlete
A few weeks ago, I was emailed these 6 training tips for the new year from an athlete – Josh Cox, a 4-time Olympic Trials Qualifier, 3-time National Team Member and the American Record Holder in the 50k. I thought the tips were really useful and if they were athlete approved, that works for me! I hope you find these useful to help you kickstart your new year, especially if you’re somewhere warm (thank goodness for gloves and hand warmers).
- Pre-run warm up and snack: Your muscles require more energy for a cold weather workout. You’ll need a good source of protein and carbs before, during and after. Pre-workout, I like to grab a PowerBar Performance Bar and during a long run I rely on PowerGels. While you’re snacking, start stretching and moving. You’ll want your body to be nice and loose before you hit the outdoors. If you require a quick indoor treadmill warm-up, go for it. That will help get your body temperature up.
- Proper recovery: Post-run nutrition is key. A nice massage never hurts either. Immediately after your run, get calories in via quality protein and carb sources. If you’re not ready for a big meal, grab a banana and have a protein shake or PowerBar ProteinPlus 20g Bar with some fruit… and something warm!
- Wear the right gear – Layers are everything! Start with a base of tight compression clothing to keep the blood moving. Throw some athletic clothing on top of that along with socks, gloves, head and neck gear to keep you warm. You can always take off layers mid-run but you can’t add them! (Note: my fave are from Underarmor)
- Grab a friend: What better motivation than having someone right along side you? If you’re going to be miserable, be miserable together! Jokes aside, I love running with a group especially during the winter. You’ll take turns pushing each other and having someone to meet will keep you accountable and on track with your fitness goals.
- Take that first step: Often times the biggest roadblock to our fitness isn’t the elements, it’s our mindset. On my worst days, I just lace up the shoes and get out the door, “just run a mile” I’ll tell myself – once I’m out the door it’s easy. The key to training, and life, is taking that first step. The first step is the best step; it’s where intent meets action. There is no such thing as luck when we’re developing our fitness, it’s a grind, it’s hard work, it’s getting out the door… and, it’s worth it. Like life, we get out what we put in.
- Have something to look forward to: Whether a warm bath or nice meal, have something to look forward to when you’re training session is over. This will help keep you motivated. It’s also important to always keep your goals in mind. At times, winter training can get rough but if you’re focused on an upcoming event you’ll be that much more motivated to get out the door.
How Do You Workout?
I hope you find these useful! I am curious, do you workout indoors at a gym or at home, or do you continue to take your workout outside during the cold winter months? Let me know in the comments below! I admit that I tend to stick to the gym but at least once a week, I try and go for a power walk or a run outside. Good luck with your fitness goals wherever and however you workout and remember that I am here to help you in any way I can!