By: Spencer Collins
GOING FOR THE GOLD
Over the past two weeks we’ve watched the best athletes around the world compete in the Summer Olympics. Let’s be honest, 99.9% of us are never making it to the Olympics, but that doesn’t mean we can’t be in good shape.
Training like an Olympic athlete is hard, but here’s how you can start.
Be prepared to sweat, not sleep.
Olympic athletes do more working out than resting. And it’s tough. They spend hours in the gym, on the court, on the field, in the pool, you name it. This is a full time job for most athletes.
Simone Biles said she had to miss her high school prom, because she was busy working out, but hey, she won four gold medals, so realistically, that’s probably better than going to prom.
Obviously, each athlete does a different workout, so I’m not going to tell you exactly what to do, but joining a gym is probably the first step. If you’re not comfortable with that, at least run. There are free run clubs at tons of local breweries, so start there. The rail trail is a nice run too.
If you want to get real crazy, check out SwimMac. This is where many Olympic swimmers train. Coach, David Marsh is also an Olympic coach, so he can point you down the right path.
Remember to switch it up.
If you do the same workout over and over again, it becomes repetitive and uninspiring to go to the gym. Also, your body gets used to it, so it stops building as much muscle as when you switch it up.
What you eat is obviously very important too.
You will probably eat more than you normally do because you’ll be spending so much time working out. You may think carbs are bad for you, but both swimmer, Missy Franklin and gymnast, Aly Raisman say they eat a ton of carbs because of how much they are working out.
Carbs help give you energy. Obviously, don’t eat ONLY carbs. Balance is always key. Good, lean meat and fiber definitely helps. Check out some local farmers markets for the best fruits and veggies.
Realistically, just keep a good diet, but eat MORE.
Learn from a loss.
If you watched women’s beach volleyball, you saw Keri Walsh-Jennings lose her first Olympic match EVER. However, she said that loss pushed her so much more and made the bronze medal match that much more special.
Losing sucks, but it helps build character.
P.S. You can use this tip for everything in life when something doesn’t go your way, not just in sports.
Cyclist, Evelyn Stevens once said “I learned early on that sometimes you might not have the skill, but if you can fight and grind your way through a situation, you can often succeed.”
If you are at least out there pushing yourself, you’re already doing more than some people.
Plus, half of it is just a mental game, so tell yourself EVERY SINGLE DAY that you are good enough!
Remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day and your change won’t come in a day either. Becoming an Olympic athlete is more like a marathon than a sprint. Marathoner, Desi Linden once said “I try to give myself little goals throughout the race to accomplish and feel good about. You’re at 20 miles and you know there’s a long way to go, so it’s ‘OK, get to the next water station. Look up and try to pass that girl hanging out in front of me.’ It’s about little things you know you can achieve, then you set the next goal.”
This is the best way to get things done. Make a goal of running one mile on week one and just increase it week by week instead of trying to run a whole marathon on day one.
Last but not least, when you do make it to the Olympics and head to a foreign country for competition, don’t be like our dear friend Ryan Lochte (who is now thankfully moving out of Charlotte) and lie to authorities.
Have fun. Work hard. And GO TEAM USA!
Written by Spencer Collins | @spencer_elizabeth
News junkie. 4th grade spelling bee winner. Dance floor addict.