The Year Ahead – Tips from the Therapist

Posted on: January 15th, 2013 by chriswilson

January is always an opportune time to think about the following year, selecting events, setting out goals and planning the training to come.  Whatever you are going to do, here’s some simple tips which we believe will help you through 2013.

  1. Set out your goals for the year. Are they realistic and achievable? A goal can be to get to the start line, complete an event, achieve a new personal best or a team goal –win promotion.
  2. Try to train consistently, follow a mini plan, identify a few key sessions, like the Bodylab Friday Morning Run, make them a permanent feature in your diary and build your plans around these sessions.
  3. Try to train with friends/groups, it’s far easier to motivate and push yourself when you are with friends, they may be stronger/faster than you, but you will catch up with them. It’s a lot more fun too.
  4. Set some lifestyle goals as well as performance goals. Your goals don’t just have to be about completing an event or getting a personal best. It’s a good time to look at your lifestyle and base some goals around things you would like to change or try – get more sleep, follow a certain diet, stretch more etc. Note the benefits as you train.
  5. Find a few local races to compete in regularly to monitor your progress, keep you focused and motivated. Recording PB’s and seeing performances regularly improve is great motivation.
  6. Incorporate regular stretching sessions into your weekly routine. These should be separate to training sessions. You can ask Chris for advice in setting up a short routine.
  7. Far too often, clients come to me when they are injured, regular sports massage is about preventing injuries and having you in the best possible condition before your event/game. A Bodylab massage session will keep your muscles in check, make you aware of possible muscle in-balances and help you tailor your training to incorporate specific stretches and exercises to deal with these. Remember, use the massage to prevent rather than cure.
  8. Monitor your diet, keep a record of what you eat and the time you eat. It may discipline you to avoid those treats and larger portions.  You can also relate this to your training… not feeling great…check the last few days of your food diary.
  9. Think about your technique, as you build up the length of the sessions, not only muscles become fatigued but also the nerves controlling them. When you feel you are losing the technique, make a slight change – cadence, stride length, stroke length,power output, to re-ignite those muscles. Whatever the sport, be disciplined over technique, always aim to be the best you can.
  10. For runners, build up distance / time /effort slowly, most studies suggest an increase of no more than 10% per week. If you miss some sessions through illness or injury, don’t try to catch up, it’s better to regress and start building again rather over training and exacerbating an injury.
  11. Cross train.  By varying the sports/activities, you are conditioning yourself for different stresses on the body and so developing a stronger more powerful body. Also it can be great fun and help keep you fresh both mentally and physically.
  12. Have FUN. It should be all about enjoyment. Never lose focus of that.  If training solo and thinking ‘I have to’, then try to organise training with friends or joining local clubs to meet new people. Remember why you are out there.
  13. If at any time you feel soreness, aching or injured, talk to us, we are sure we can help you.

For more contact Chris, 0207 359 4555