Our fitness allows us to do things outside of the gym that we may have never thought possible. Maybe you like to run local road races, ski, or go hiking with your dogs? Great, your training helps to provide you with the base to do those things! What ever your outside motivations may be, we can only achieve these things if we stay healthy when training. While aches and pains are normal as you push yourself to your physical limits each day, injuries can often be prevented with some simple routine adjustments! Here are six basic points of injury prevention:
- Rest at least 1-2 days per week. Sure, sometimes your body feels great and you are finally seeing some progress. Don’t fall into the trap of skipping rest days. They are essential for recovery and help keep you from developing any preventable injuries.
- Sleep 7-8 hours per night. Everyone has a million excuses as to why they don’t get enough sleep. Find a way to get rid of these excuses, make some changes, and do your body justice by sleeping an adequate amount each night.
- Eat well all day, everyday. You cannot out train a bad diet. Limit sugars and processed foods. Whole, unprocessed foods will fuel you to perform AND recover better!
- Prepare for the day's training. Take some time to come in prepared for what ever the training day calls for. This will ensure you are ready and equipped for what is asked of you.
- Leave time to mobilize. Be sure to leave at least 15 minutes on either side of your hour of training for some additional stretching. Mobility is often one of the main reasons people develop injuries inside the gym. Never neglect your limited range of motion!
- Scale and modify when needed. Never allow your ego to get in the way of your health and progress. Just because you may want to hit a certain weight or do a particular movement doesn't necessarily mean it is right for you in that given moment. Listen to your body and you will have longevity!