Rest is part of the program
Do you want to know one of the most important factors regarding performance?
It’s your recovery! You can train as hard and long as you like but if you don’t give your body a chance to recover you are not going to perform well. For example, if you have signed up for a half marathon and you are training like crazy to get the best time. If you don’t give your body ample recovery time during your training and right before the race you will get a terrible result and increase your chances of injury!
So how do you recover well? There are many things on the market currently that claim to help with your recovery during training. These include cryo chambers, ice baths, or other expensive devices but quite simply the best thing you can do is just get enough sleep! Getting 7 to 9 hours of sleep a night and practicing good sleep hygiene is extremely beneficial. Good sleep hygiene means not looking at your mobile phone or watching tv in bed! Additionally, getting to bed and waking up at the same time every night are other very important sleep practices.
What else can you do?
Get into the good practice of cooling down after workouts and make sure you are getting ample and correct nutrition to promote your recovery. Emotional stresses are another major factor in your recovery. Try to have a good work/life balance and build a strong support network to help you through any stresses you may be experiencing. Practicing these tips will not only help your athletic performances get better and better but also your general health as well. So start sleeping better, and eating, and living well!