Thanks to our increasingly complex understanding of sports science, training methodology, and nutrition, athletes continue to break records that were previously considered impossible. Now is a better time than ever to realize your full potential. That said, it’s worth noting the importance of balance.
You don’t want to overwork yourself or cause long-term harm that outweighs any short-term benefits. So, what exactly can you do to boost your athletic performance - without compromise? Take a look at the following 6 strategies.
Most athletes stick to functional exercises. It’s certainly a solid foundation, but they shouldn’t make up the entirety of your routine. Switching things up every once in a while will keep you motivated and stave off boredom, while also ensuring that each muscle gets the same amount of attention as the rest. This is known as muscle confusion.
Junk food is a no-go for any serious athlete. This is true not only for the effects of the wrong food on your weight but also with regards to energy release and overall health - both physical and mental. Food can play a different role depending on when you consume it. It can aid in recovery or provide fuel for the next session.
Start with a healthy breakfast. A balanced dose of carbs, proteins, and fats in the morning will jump-start your metabolic rate and prevent the breakdown of muscle protein. Carbohydrates should be of the complex type.
It’s often the case that your diet alone cannot provide all of the nutrients that your body needs for peak performance. Some supplements have additional benefits. The most basic include macronutrients, vitamins, and minerals. Your needs will vary depending on the requirements of your body and the type of exercise you do.
There are certain supplements that are made specifically for athletes. This includes sermorelin, which has benefits such as increased strength, metabolism, and fat loss. It also improves mood and recovery. Here’s a deeper look at sermorelin therapy. Remember to consider the side-effects of any supplement that you plan on using.
Are you drinking enough water? This is especially important during and after exercise when your body loses high amounts of fluids. It’s recommended that you consume between 20 and 40 oz per hour during intense sessions. This is key to proper recovery. Just be sure to avoid drinking too much as this can lead to bloating and nausea.
Giving your muscle tissue adequate time to recover ensures that you don’t experience injuries that can otherwise hinder your progress. There are several ways to improve the recovery process.
It can be as simple as taking rest days, with a focus on the specific muscle groups that you just worked. Stretching is also a good idea, as it prevents muscle tightness and joint stiffness. If you’re interested in a more intense recovery technique, consider getting a massage. Many athletes swear by it for the ability to realign tissue and reduce inflammation.
Your mental wellbeing is no less paramount to your athleticism than your physical. Cognitive performance exercises are one solution here; they involve activities that help to improve your visual acuity, memory, and response times in addition to providing other benefits. Of course, staying motivated and reducing stress will also help. Perhaps you can find a fellow athlete and hold each other accountable for sticking to your routines.
Reaching your maximum athletic potential is mostly a matter of taking care of your body and mind. Take some time to determine what your body needs and find the healthiest ways of meeting those requirements. With enough persistence, you’ll notice major benefits and reach new heights.