(CARLSBAD, CA) – Skaters performing triple axle jumps, snowboarders twisting through double back flips on the half-pipe, and bobsledders racing down tracks at breathtaking speeds. Top athletes from around the globe gather every four years to compete for Olympic glory.
Most of us can only dream about achieving the levels of strength and endurance showcased by these extraordinary Olympic athletes. And yet, we just may be able to learn something from these Olympians.
Jazzercise Founder and CEO Judi Sheppard Missett notes that Olympic level athletes use training techniques that can be applied to any personal fitness routine. Sure, most of us probably won’t be squatting on top of a stability ball like Olympic Skier Lindsey Vonn, but, there are still many Olympic-style training methods that can be adapted into an everyday workout regimen.
1. Set a Goal –The principle of goal-setting is something that all of us can learn from our Olympic heroes. It doesn’t matter if your goal is using a heavier set of hand-held weights or performing just two consecutive push-ups. The point is to set a goal, then work towards it.
2. Strengthen Your Core – Olympic Speed Skater Apolo Anton Ohno claims that core abdominal work helps him achieve 40 mph speeds at death-defying angles on the short track. Speed skaters aren’t the only Olympic athletes who rely on their core strength. In fact, core stability aids us in most day-to-day activities, as well as athletic endeavors. Take an extra five minutes each day to focus on yoga or Pilates-based core strengthening exercises.
3. Fuel Up – Eating a nutritionally balanced diet is essential for success, whether you’re training for the Olympic games or just hoping to make it past 30 minutes on the treadmill. Proteins supply about ten percent of your energy needs during an endurance exercise. What about the other 90 percent? That energy comes from carbohydrates. That’s right! Looks like carbs aren’t the archenemy after all. Be careful to eat healthy carbs, such as whole grains, rather than refined varieties, like white rice and sugary cereals.
4. Get Expert Help – Olympic athletes know how to conduct their workouts. Yet, even these elite athletes find themselves getting into a rut, doing the same exercises over and over. That’s why a coach is so important. A coach can help you focus on exercises that you may typically avoid.
5. Find Your Balance – Take your balance cue from top Olympians who have found the right proportion of training versus rest. Even Olympians, who train seven to eight hours per day, take a little time for their bodies to recover after intense workouts.
Go for the gold and channel your inner Olympian. Take a moment to examine your workout this week and see what you can incorporate from the training methods of our athletic heroes. The Winter Olympics may have come to an end in Vancouver, but the inspiration of Olympic-style athleticism lives on.
Jazzercise, created by Judi Sheppard Missett, is the world's leading dance-fitness program with more than 7,800 instructors teaching 32,000 classes weekly in the U.S. and around the globe. Since 1969, millions of people of all ages and fitness levels have reaped the benefits of this comprehensive program, designed to enhance cardiovascular endurance, strength, and flexibility. For more information on Jazzercise go to jazzercise.com or call (800)FIT-IS-IT or (760)476-1750.