Most busy 9-5ers don’t have time to spend all day training, eating and recovering like a professional but Physiotherapist Andrew Ilief gives you 10 tips on how to train like a pro!
- Plan – Plan your training sessions, seek some advice from a strength and conditioning coach or join into well-programmed group classes like @befit.training, don’t just go it on your own and hope for the best. This includes rest and recovery, periods of de-loading, and days when you just do nothing. If you think that (insert athlete) just trained and hoped for the best, you are wrong! You don’t need to plan everything down to the hour or even the day, but a rough plan of programming will help you stay on track so you can achieve your goals.
- Activate – one thing Athletes do really well is activate before training. Athletes don’t just rock up, do a jog and then get into a strength session. They spend the time switching on muscles and psychologically preparing for each session. If you are time poor try this short circuit to activate pre-session;
- 5 mins bike
- 10 glute bridges
- 10 side planks left and right
- 10 bird dog variations (YouTube can guide you if you’re not sure what these are!)
- 10 downward dog walk outs to push up
- 10 reverse lunges
- Lift – Now we are training we can focus on compound movements! Compound lifts use multiple joints at once such as; deadlifts, squats, overhead press and power cleans. These lifts can be intimidating and can often have a bad reputation but when done correctly and in well-programmed sessions, compound movements are the most effective exercises.
- Hydrate – Nothing fancy, just drink plenty of water so that your muscles are optimally functioning.
- Active recovery – There is nothing worse than being stiff after working out, and the best way to speed up recovery is low intensity workouts. This can be as simple as going for a 20 minute brisk walk or completing a low impact circuit to increase blood flow and get that body moving. Here’s an example of a low impact circuit:
- 250m row
- 10 Curtsy lunges
- 10 reverse lunges
- 15 single leg calf raises
- 10 squats
- 10 mountain climbers
- Eat – Every athlete has a nutrition plan, now they are usually closely managed by a sports dietitian. While you don’t necessarily need that level of input, seeking advice from a sports dietitian to get a nutrition plan to suit your goals can really help. Your local Sports Dietitians association will help you find a Dietitian who specialises in eating for training. Find the Australian one here.
- Sleep – Busy at work, stressed at life, you need to recover. The ultimate goal would be a quality nights sleep averaging between 7-9 hours. In our household we have a strict no phones 1 hour before bed policy as studies have shown the lights can affect our sleep patterns.
- Train with a friend – Training with a partner or in a group environment helps you get it done, it pushes that extra bit and keeps you accountable.
- Rest, relax, recover – There is nothing wrong with a myofascial release, you can either do this yourself or a Physiotherapist can support you with it.
- Have the right gear – Using compression garments may assist in venous return, reduced muscle oscillation (vibration of muscle from impact – i.e. your foot hitting the ground when running), improve thermoregulation, reduction in lactic acid and improved recovery heart rate. These have important implications for athletes that perform repeated bouts of high intensity exercise. My recommendation is to wear compression garments for 1-2 hours post training.
Rest days can also be super beneficial for training, to read more on why and how to include a rest day, read Andrew’s article here.
Andrew Ilieff has experience across cardio respiratory, rehabilitation, sports physiotherapy and aged care – spending an extensive period of time in private practice. For credible information on training and injury prevention check out Andrew’s Instagram page here and website and services here.