Happy Monday! Hope you all had a good holiday weekend. I spent mine up in the Highlands of North Carolina doing a ton of outdoor activities like hiking, kicking around the soccer ball in the backyard, and ultimate frisbee. I love bringing out my old athlete side! A lot of my fitness inspiration actually comes from my time as an athlete. For a significant period of time in my life (early years through high school and college) I was hardcore into sports. I was captain of my field hockey and lacrosse teams in high school and then went on to start my freshman year at a Division I college lacrosse program until I tore my ACL. Fashion came later for me when I took art history classes and internships in NYC and London fell in love with the visual world that unfolded before my wide eyes. All that said, the lessons I learned both mentally and physically from performing as an athlete helped me immensely in life. The first time I did a live tv segment I relied heavily mentally on my experience playing a game and only having minutes to do something right and win. A lot of the ways I keep myself in shape are all taken from my athletic training and I tweak them to fit my body and level of strength and endurance now. I truly believe that everyone has the ability to harness their inner athlete. There are certain things athletes do mentally and physically that help them succeed in all areas of life. For my last post with adidas and Refinery 29 I want to talk about some of those tricks to help everyone tap into their inner athlete.
Train your body 360 degrees. In the gym it’s easy to focus on very linear moves that focus on just one are of the body or muscle groups. Athletes use training movements that challenge different muscle groups at the same time. A kettle bell chop is a great example of this, as you have to squat down and twist to and then raise the bell overhead on the other side. Your core, legs, and arms are all engaged.
Use explosive movements. Ah yes, I’m beating a dead horse here but it really does make a difference. Think high-knees, skips, sprints, and side shuffles. The adidas Performer high-rise tight is perfect for these types of movements because it keeps everything right in it’s place. No spillage or slipping and sliding. It truly performs as you perform.
Combine your training with stretching.Read: Yoga. When I was an athlete we considered good stretching to be the butterfly and touching your toes to warm up. As I’ve gotten older I’ve realized how important stretching and lengthening your body is to being lean and fit, not muscular and thick. Yoga and pilates have been the best for me. When I had ACL injuries I did more pilates but now I focus a lot on yoga. An athlete truly surpasses their own gym strength and performance when they become yoga strong. Flexibility is key to unlocking so many things your body never knew it could do. I stand up straighter and keep my joints/muscles nice and loose so I can perform better at the gym. Make sense? The mental benefits are truly amazing as well.
Hope this is helpful to your overall mental attitude towards working out. It’s about making you feel strong and empowered, not fitting into someone elses standards or strength.