We’re all living in such an unprecedented time, figuring out ways to combat all the changes we’re seeing can be difficult. Below, you’ll find 10 ways how to stay on track, stay healthy and focused on training during the age of social distancing and self-isolation. They will allow you to come out of this time stronger (ready to build on what you have, rather than starting from scratch) as well as more focused and determined than ever before.
1. Maintain a specific order and structure in your everyday life or create new routines. Be strict with your timing, wake up and go to sleep at regular times (get up early! you’ll be glad you did!), set time for your workout and create weekly training plans. Prioritize yourself and your fitness, so you can better cope with the stress and help others.
2. Stay active, train indoors and outdoors (if allowed!). The advancement of technology has made it much easier —smart trainers, virtual platforms, videos, media services, etc.) Add some creativity to your training plan -any creativity is welcome and will keep you motivated! Sign up for virtual competitions, compete in Strava challenges, set a time to meet up on virtual platforms, such as Zwift, enter a very hard race for 2021.
3. Buy an expensive equipment and guilt yourself into going training. You know triathlon and cycling offers endless opportunities to spend money- smart trainers, new set of wheels, bike power meter, smart watches. So there will be no more excuses not to train!
4. Look at this time as great opportunity to work on your weaknesses, work on your mobility, improving your cycling skills. Can you ride rollers no handed?
5. Read a sports book and watch a sports movie. Reading the autobiographies of famous athletes with great pieces of advice for peak performance or watching sports movies will inspire you to train and dream bigger. Some examples are Chrissie Wellington “A life without limits”, Chris McCormack “I’m here to win”, movies “American Flyers”, “The Armstrong Lie”.
6. Strengthen your mental game. Find your why. Focus on what can you do, not what you can’t. Try shifting your mindset on COVID-19 and turn what at first can appear to be a challenge. There is so much more than just doing the physical training to becoming really good at what you do. Time away from the pressures of competition is a great time to develop mental skills. Focus on areas such as self-belief, mindset and confidence.
7. Take contrast showers – caffeine -like energy boost! There are plenty of benefits of taking contrast showers, they help with muscle recovery and reduces inflammation, good for your heart and blood vessels, improves cognition and helps with depression, improves energy levels and your immune system.
As the centre image illustrates, my own training has now become a masked affair, but I still try to make it stylish and match the kit.
8. Some people cope with the pandemic by baking 10 loaves of banana bread. Do not over cook, hense do not overeat (use your gems mask to avoid overeating and do 10 pushups every time you open a fridge).
9. To not feel lonely during self- isolation, stay in touch virtually with family members, schedule virtual get -togethers with friends. Relationships are important– humans are a highly social species, and isolation can have significant repercussions on our wellbeing. The emotional support provided by the people closest to us is invaluable. It is important to nurture those relationships in both good times and bad.
10. Practice gratefulness. There are still things to be thankful for! Add yoga, stretching and breathing exercises, they are great for coping with anxiety. Focusing on what you’re grateful for can go a long way in reducing stress. Breathe, take a minute and focus on the now—rather than fear.
This is a strange and chaotic and yes, a worrying time for all of us. Covid19 has hit our communities hard, and some of us have felt it personally. However, let’s do all that we can to stay positive and to motivate ourselves to get through this fitter and better equipped for life and racing in the future – stay safe!
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