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They say that champions are made in the winter. And it’s probably true—it takes a lot of determination to persist through difficult weather conditions and darker days to get the work done. But if you’re willing to do the work, you can set yourself up to do well when the season change.
If you’re hoping to bust out a PR this spring here are a few tips to get you in the best shape ever.
Instead of thinking about “cutting back” on certain foods, focus on getting MORE. Hydrate more frequently and track your water intake. Choose more leafy greens and sources of healthy fat, like avocados and nut butters. Snack on whole foods, like smoked salmon and sprouted bread toast or hummus and veggies, instead of convenience foods like protein bars. Often times, making food “off limits” can backfire and produce greater cravings, but focusing on adding more wholesome foods can provide a positive mental shift that is easier to adhere to.
Incorporate an intense bout of sprints into your weekly running routine. Short, intense workouts like Tabatas are very effective in building cardiovascular fitness, especially if you’re short on time.
Perform this 24 minute running workout once a week.
- 10-minute warm up jog
- 8 x 20 seconds sprint effort, 10 seconds recovery jog
- 10-minute cool down jog
You can’t optimize performance and reach peak fitness if you’re not recovering properly. Head to bed early to get optimal rest and scale back on your running volume and intensity every few weeks to give yourself a break. You can also accelerate recovery by hydrating and eating 15-30 minutes after a run. Tea with tumeric, cinnamon or ginger are great choices to reduce inflammation, as well as tart cherry juice. Be sure to get a good source of protein as well—chocolate milk is a great choice to both hydrate and provide a source of carbohydrates and protein.