Note to self: Make a positive change to your nutrition
How often do you find yourself reaching for the biscuit tin for that extra Hob Nob, piling your plate up for a bigger portion size than you really need or reaching for the crisps when you know you should go for the apple? Exercise is not (or at least should not) be an excuse for eating whatever you want. If you’ve made a ‘note to self’ this year that you should cut down on the custard creams or ban the Belgian buns, then don’t just talk about, do it. You won’t need to cut out your tasty snacks and treats completely but you could just make more healthy choices more often.
Note to self: Put back in
A lot of effort behind the scenes goes into staging events in the sport that we all love and, when you get the chance, it’s great to see things from the other side of the fence. Instead of being a participant in an event, join in and be a part of it in other ways. Help with marshalling and volunteering to support the broader sporting community. Giving back while others enjoy their sport, can provide you with as much of a big warm glow inside as actually doing the race yourself.
Note to self: Do it with others
Even for the most highly motivated among us, exercising solo all the time can get a little tedious. Running, cycling, swimming or going to the gym with others is not only great for motivation but it also pushes you harder and you get more from the exercise you do.
Note to self: Take care of yourself
Being healthy is about everything you do and the broader lifestyle choices that you make. Your performance is influenced by everything in your life. When things in your life are in balance, integrated and you are physically, mentally and emotionally content, then chances are that your training will be going well too. The key here is to make small changes that can make big differences when it comes to taking care of yourself.
Note to self: Stretch more!
So, you’re at the physio/masseur and they say to you ‘do you stretch’? You take a few minutes to think about your answer, but you already know it really. Do you tell a little white lie ‘oh, yes, I stretch regularly’ or the truth ‘no, never’. The reality probably lies in the middle ground answer ‘not as much as I should’. No one likes being injured. The best thing to do with an injury is to avoid getting one in the first place. Stretching muscles as part of a structured cool down or as a standalone focused training session along with some conditioning and stability work will certainly help keep muscles, tendons and ligaments flexible, strong and capable of helping you perform consistently better.
Note to self: Create a positive performance environment
Every day you exercise in 2013 look to create a positive performance environment to help you train better. Believe you can do it. Surround yourself with positive people and focus on the things you can control. A small amount of nerves can actually help your performance, not hinder it. It’s OK to be nervous so long as you harness this nervous energy and use it as your electricity during whatever sporting challenge you set yourself.
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