Three Habits For A New Training Block
A new block is underway and we’re all making the most of our time, in the Hive and out. While plenty of our athletes are signed up for the Refine Basics program with Grand Traverse Nutrition and Smart Wellbeing, there are some great habits to work into your day that will go hand-in-hand with those efforts.
Habits can be good or bad; just as you might habitually exercise or do the dishes, you may have a knack for having an ill-timed snack, or maybe slap the snooze button a few times more than necessary. With all of our athletes, we always talk and try to learn about what some of those positive habits are and how they make life as an athlete easier.
Plan Ahead. Way Ahead.
This one is huge. You can put yourself and the people around you in a much better position by sitting down and planning out not just your day, but your week, your month, even your whole season. By being able to ‘see’ the big picture, you can start to fill in the blanks on weekends and individual workouts at the right times before your big events. It’s a great way to be realistic and honest about your goals. For example, if you know you and your family will be on vacation for Spring Break and training will be limited, is setting Barry-Roubaix, just two weeks later, a good position to put yourself in? If you’re on a work trip for a few days, maybe it is a good idea to load up the weekend before so you can use that time away from the Hive as rest?
Planning your season isn’t just putting a few dates on the calendar. To get the most out of your training and to really enjoy those races, put some effort into putting all the pieces together in the weeks before!
Flip the Switch.
This one can be tough, but it’s vital not just for performance, but for enjoyment. One habit that can help you get the most out of your workout time and each class at BEE is to turn off your professional and personal life and put on your athlete hat while you’re here. Being able to compartmentalize those areas isn’t easy, and there’s no doubt that work stress, a busy home life, and other factors can be both a mental and physical distraction. The very best amateur athletes, however, have the ability to flip the switch and focus on your workout, and that can actually be a huge stress reliever. This is your time to focus on something that’s important to you; leave everything else at the door, and with a little luck, it might even look a bit different when you pick it up on the way out.
Change One Thing Per Week.
Someone quite smart (and apparently it wasn’t Albert Einstein) once said, “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result”. That’s especially true in training and fitness. If you never change the workload, stresses, and structure of your workout and diet, you’ll never know what works for you and your body. That’s why our training blocks are do drastically different from November through April, and it’s why even pro cyclists’ workload changes by hundreds of kilometers each month to balance intensity, endurance, racing, and recovery. We take care a lot of the structural changes for you at BEE, but there’s room to shuffle things up on your own, too. Add strength training to your regimen, work in a run or two a week, or make small changes to your diet.
A good story on this; we once had an athlete who worked extremely hard, but always seemed to be just a little heavier, a few pounds over an ideal weight that never seemed to go away. Looking at their diet, they decided to make just one change. Instead of eating peanut butter and jelly on their morning toast, they had just a dash of honey. Within just two weeks, those annoying 5 pounds fell away, without changing anything else in diet or training load. One small change! You never know what habit might be having a bit impact on your health and performance.
What’s the one small change that has worked for you? Let us know in the comments, and for more advice on how to plan ahead, change things up, or focus in, get in touch.