If you’re like me, you have Rio Fever! Growing up, I always loved watching the Olympics—gymnastics was my favorite sport. Olympic athletes inspire us with their discipline and natural talent as they climb higher, jump further and run faster—constantly breaking records. They encourage us all to take on new challenges. Whether your goal is to run a marathon, improve your foul shot or compete in a triathlon competition, there are lessons to be learned from the world’s top athletes.
So, let’s chat and chew about how to train like an Olympic athlete.
Set your goals and make a plan
Once you set your goal, break the process down into smaller tasks and ranges of time that allow you to easily track your progress along the way. Remember, Olympic-level athletes train for their next gold medal over a four-year period.
Olympic athletes have mastered one skill-set, but it doesn’t mean they don’t use others along the way. When you cross-train, you reduce the risk of overtraining and avoid injury. You also improve muscle function and stimulate the mind, which prevents boredom from repetition. Cross training is also useful for sports you can’t practice every day.
Workout with Others
Generally, Olympic athletes don’t train alone or with people who perform at the same skill level. By mixing it up, you will feed off the energy of others as well as their motivation. Dedicate some time to thinking about the people who can help you accomplish your goal—you might even benefit from working with a trainer, a nutritionist or a physical therapist.
Find your Motivation
Don’t ever shy away from jamming out at the gym—even Olympians use strange methods to cope with their emotions. If you want to keep things simple, try yoga, meditation or watch your favorite television show while using the treadmill.
No matter what your end goal is, don’t forget to turn to family, friends or training buddies for motivation along the way. For most of us, it’s impossible to dedicate the amount of time an Olympic athlete does to training; do what you can with the time you have. Adopt the program that’s best suited for your day-to-day life, and within no time, you’ll see your dedication begin to pay-off!