Pushing boundaries

THE MORE, THE MERRIER: Working out in groups beats boredom Photo: AP

THE MORE, THE MERRIER: Working out in groups beats boredom Photo: AP  

You may not be an Olympian, but there are lessons you can learn from them if you want to improve your athletic performance.

“The Olympics symbolise the chance for all of us to push the boundaries of human potential. If you want to compete at a high level, mimic the strategies of those at the top,” says Chris Sebelski, an assistant professor of physical therapy at Saint Louis University, in a news release.

Sebelski offers the following Olympian-inspired tips:

Set a goal and break it down. For example, if you're planning a long hiking trip, you might start by walking three miles a day for the first two weeks, gradually building up to 10 miles a day by the end of 10 weeks.

Be sure to cross-train. It reduces the risk of overtraining, helps avoid injury, enhances muscle performance and helps prevent boredom.

Work out with others. Sharing a spirit of competition and encouragement will help keep your motivation at a high level. You'll also gain training benefits from working out with others with different levels of ability.

Think of people who can help you achieve your goal, such as a trainer, nutritionist, physical therapist or physician. There are many different sources of help and you can select the one that works best for you.

While it's impossible for most people to devote as much time to training as an Olympian does, you can approach the workout time you do have with the single-minded focus of a world-class athlete.

“Train for a couple of weeks with focus and discipline, and lo and behold, you'll be surprised by what you can do,” says Sebelski.

Anyone can experience the sense of achievement and pride that comes from striving to improve on their personal best.

“Regardless of the scale of your goal, you should have the experience, at least once, of training for and accomplishing a physical goal you set for yourself. Crossing that finish line is a feeling unlike any other.”

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Printable version | Sep 22, 2020 6:07:42 PM |

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