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We are all inspired by the fitness of our favorite professional athletes. One thing that these athletes have in common is a structured routine of training. A lot of us have busy day-to-day lives, but if you’re looking to improve your fitness, professional track and field sprinter, Gabby Thomas, shares some tips on how to make your training as effective as possible.

    1. Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate. Drinking water is critical for peak performance during exercise. Hydration keeps your joints lubricated, delivers nutrients to cells to keep you energized, and prevents muscle breakdown. The slightest amount of dehydration can negatively impact your brain performance, strength, and muscle power.
    2. Make Tangible Goals. Knowing what is realistic for you and what isn’t is key. Start with small, specific fitness goals, and work your way up to ensure that you accomplish what you set out to achieve.
    3. Be Intentional. It’s important to understand which muscle groups to exercise. For example, lifts such as power cleans, squats, and deadlifts promote full-body muscle gains, while aerobic workouts such as jogging, reduces resting heart rate and breathing rate.
    4. Quality Over Quantity. You make fitness gains by increasing the level of strain put on your body. Challenge yourself by trying to keep the intensity up during exercise, even if that means tracking rest intervals between movements.
    5. R&R. Your body needs optimal rest and recovery in order to be ready to perform and efficiently make gains. On recovery days, short, easy workouts, such as a 10-minute walk or warm-up, can increase your blood flow and speed up recovery.
    6. Destress Your Muscles. You can book that massage or do it yourself, but massaging deep tissue points will prepare your body for exercise. You can use a foam roller, lacrosse ball, or anything that will relax an area with knots.
    7. Sleep. Sleeping is critical to recover and to build muscles. It also improves your neuromuscular function and ensures that you perform optimally during your workout. While everybody is different, an adult should generally aim for 7-9 hours of sleep each night.
    8. You Are What You Eat. To train like a pro, what you do at the gym, on the field, or on the track is only half the battle. Understanding what you need to eat and how much to eat is critical. A clean, balanced diet in addition to training is the best way to promote fitness.
    9. Stay consistent. Progress takes time, but consistency yields lasting results. Not only does it enable your body to adapt, but forming effective habits takes time.
    10. Find a Training Partner. Having a workout buddy can help with accountability and add a competitive component to training. It’s important to train hard and train smart.
    11. Have Fun! Getting workout results and maintaining them is not a one-and-done task. It’s a lifestyle and mindset change, so enjoy the journey!

 

Gabby is a Division I NCAA champion and collegiate record holder currently running for Team USA and training for the Tokyo Olympics scheduled for Summer 2021. She is also a Public Affairs Associate at Sedera.