Ten laws of health and fitness, part three

So we are half way through the 10 fundamental laws of health and fitness, and moving on to number 6, 7, and 8 this week.

6. Have fun

Sometimes when we start getting fit again we get too focused on the scales and really approach getting fit too seriously. Do yourself a favour, set a goal, walk away from your scale, tape measure, and mirror, and go play! Take a class, sign up for a race, explore, meet new people, and challenge yourself. There is so much we can do when getting fit and active. I would really encourage you to play a sport, or at least have people to train with if at all possible. I go for a run with Brian Maher, Thos Hayes, and James Ledingham every Sunday. Not only is there great craic on the run, it makes the time fly. If it is rainy or you are not feeling it, it is great to have someone to keep you accountable.

The take away message here is eat healthy food, exercise often at a good intensity with others, and getting fit will take care of itself.

7. Have a plan - create accountability

You need to have at least a 30 day plan that you follow. No exceptions. You cannot succeed if you are making it up one day at a time. I have an Excel spreadsheet of all my training sessions, including intensity and duration for the next month. This is vital. You need to write down your plan in advance, and preferably have a training partner on the same plan so that you are accountable to each other.

Make a discipline of writing out a plan at the start of each month and then sticking to it. This will help you to progress your training safely, allow you to plan appropriate rest, and finally take daily decision-making out of it. If you just 'wing it' every day then you will find that you talk yourself out of training a lot. Set the plan, and then follow through. Remember the 5 Ps - Poor Planning leads to Pretty Poor Performance.

With everardpilates.com we provide the accountability and provide weekly sample plans so you put structure into your training.

8. Restore your body - flexibility and functionality

Increased frequency and intensity of training should be accompanied by increased flexibility, core control, and functionality. I have worked with Olympic athletes, a European championship rugby club, and numerous inter-county hurlers and footballers, making sure that as they get fitter they stay moving correctly and do not become stiff. It is vital for the world class athlete and it is vital for the 55 year old woman who is training to do her first couch to 5k.

Without good movement all we are doing is building fitness on dysfunction. Yes, we can get fitter, but if this results in you getting stiffer then it will ultimately lead to injury, breakdown, and a plateau in fitness. You need at least one session per week where you work on improving your movements, flexibility, and core control. This is the fountain of youth. It reduces sprains and strains in your back, shoulders, hips, knees, and neck, and helps protects bones, muscles, joints, tendons, and ligaments. We can turn back the clock but only if we take measures to improve our flexibility and functionality.

Visit everardpilates.com to learn about our courses.

 

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