Here in Sports Daily, we have the utmost respect for athletes in all fields and expertise – so much that we want to be like them. After observing their habits in various forms of sport, we’ve put together our research and found common practices shared by professional athletes. Read more to learn some sport secrets and how you can achieve an athlete’s results.
Find Your Routine
There’s an unspoken misconception that athletes are born physically fit. Of course, genetics play a part in their physic, but for the most part they trained for it – and you can too. Athletes do not have the luxury to miss out on their train as often as a regular person, so why should you?
Incorporate cardio and weightlifting as much as you can. Athletes train daily as their livelihood, so you will need to do the equivalent. This means being active as often as you can, every single day, even if it’s walking instead of taking the car out. Work out at home or find a gym near you to elevate your physical abilities.
Eat To Be Healthy
Eating like an athlete does not mean eating like your favorite football player. To eat like an athlete means to eat healthy – according to your physical goals and activity level. No matter how much you burn throughout the day, you still have to put some thought into the quantity and quality of your food.
To determine how much you are supposed to be consuming per day, look what your level of physical activity is, and apply the input-output method. For instance, as a marathon runner, you will want to consume high-carb meals before a big race. If you want to bulk and become a serious weightlifter, you will have to eat like one.
Get Professional Help
Professional athletes don’t lead successful careers on their own. They have a team of health professionals, nutritionists, and trainers to back them up and maximize their performance. We may not have the same support system, but we recommend seeking help from the experts.
See what you struggle with the most and get additional help in that area. Not sure about your eating habits? A nutritionist will make your healthy diet simple. Not sure where to start when it comes to training? A personal trainer will put you on the right track.
Even if you’re not keen on the idea of investing in professional help right away, it doesn’t have to be a permanent expense. Remember, you’re beginning your journey, and you need to start somewhere. Why not start on the right foot? It’ll save you the time of having to start over again to get it right.
So you signed up for a gym membership, got your Paleo meals prepped for the week, but what exactly are you aiming for? You should set up short term and long term goals according to your current physical state and athletic level.
Short term goals to improve fitness levels need to be realistic and gradual. If you aim too high and attempt to run a 5k marathon after only a week, you’ll be setting yourself up for failure. Slowly increase your strength and endurance. As long as you’re putting in the work consistently, you’ll get there.
Long term goals are allowed to be a little more intimidating. In fact, it should be something that will challenge you. Look into competitions or events that you’re excited to participate in. If you’re persistent on your goal, you won’t have to worry about running out of time. Long term goals are no sooner than a year away or more.
Take this moment to plan on doing something you always wanted to do but never got around to doing. It can be as extreme as an obstacle course, or as subtle as a hike on your vacation. The important thing is finding one thing that you absolutely love and focusing all your energy on it.
On another note, we recommend that you don’t concentrate on aesthetics, at least not in the beginning. Weighing yourself often or looking for signs of progress may discourage you too quickly. Take a “before” picture if you must, and we assure you that the results will be visible before you know it.
Train Your Mindset
You can eat and train as much as you like, but if you see this lifestyle as a chore, your efforts will be short-lived. We’re always looking for motivation, but the truth is, motivation will always be temporary. Instead of being motivated, be disciplined.
Let’s put it this way: your alarm goes off at 5 AM, you’re dead tired and the mornings are the only time you’re able to train. If you wait to be motivated to get anything done, you’ll never achieve consistency because the motivation won’t always be there. Motivation is not going to keep you from hitting the snooze button; discipline will.
To be disciplined means getting up and going out to train regardless of how you are feeling. In fact, training needs to be so ingrained into your daily routine that you couldn’t fathom skipping it for a day. Eventually, you’ll be able to complete the task as mindlessly as brushing your teeth or going to work.
Luckily, habits only take a few weeks to form, and the active lifestyle can have a positive impact on your mental health. Imagine how easy this is when you apply this knowledge: use physical exercise to rewire your brain, thereby increasing your mental sharpness and energy levels. All you need to do is get the ball rolling.
Build Your A-Team
Athletes have teammates and other people that depend on them to perform well, and we need others to cheer us on. As humans, we’re highly social creatures, and we often find our strength in numbers. While you do need to stick to your plan no matter what, a buddy system might help you stay accountable.
If you’re not already in a sports team, group or class with people to count on you, create one. Your workout group doesn’t have to be anything official. It only needs to be made of people who will support each other and strive to achieve the same goal.
Other alternatives would be to take your goals to social media and even enter online groups dedicated to fitness. Whether it be for a similar weight loss goal or training for a competition, you’re more likely to show up if people are waiting for you.
Living Like An Athlete
Will it get easier? No. This path was never supposed to be easy, or else athletes would not be as celebrated as they are now. To live as an athlete means to embrace new challenges, never be comfortable, and always perform better than you did yesterday. Find what your limits are, then cross them.
In the end, you may not reach the same level as someone that competes full-time, so use this as a chance to pay homage to your favorite sport idols. Eat right and get in shape not because you “have to” but because you deserve an active, healthy lifestyle. Before you know it, you will reach lengths that you couldn’t imagine.
Getting in shape like an athlete is more than just a physical transformation. Like athletes, we strive to be physically and mentally stronger every day. And like athletes, we need to cherish every victory and push forward after every loss.