How to improve performance
One thing that every athlete tries to do is improve their performance in some way. Whether its shaving a few seconds off your 200m sprint or going for more reps on heavier weight, improved performance is something everyone trains hard for. Although training alone will cause improvements there are many other factors that can cause your progress to increase rapidly compared to training alone. In this article we are going to be sharing the steps you can be taking to rapidly improve your performance and start seeing some real results.
The first step to improving your performance is finding out where you started. This is why it is a good idea to track progress and set reasonable targets. Modern technology has made it so much easier to track progress as you can save workouts on fitness watches and just jot down notes on your phone. This makes it easier to see your progress as you can refer to data saved on your devices or notes. Examples of data you should be saving is weight, repetitions, time, and distance. The data will vary for different workouts and modern devices allow you to go into more detail.
Fitness watches and other devices may also track your heartrate and v02 max. This allows you to go into more detail and train for certain goals. For example, if you want to increase your oxygen levels and improve resting heart rate then this allows you to track progress and train accordingly. In this example you know to do more cardio training and will be able to see its impact over time on your heartrate and oxygen levels. Although some fitness devices may be expensive, there are many affordable ones on the market, and they do the job just as good as those fancy ones.
Another important thing to improving your performance is by staying hydrated. Its important your muscles stay hydrated as this improves protein synthesis which is the process muscle is build and repaired. Staying hydrated is key to your muscles making a full recovery, which improves performance as this allows you to make progress. Fluid lost when training through sweat also has to be replaced to avoid the effects of dehydration which can cause nausea and make you lose consciousness.
Although staying hydrated is important, there is such a thing as drinking too much water. Being overhydrated can cause a dip in electrolyte levels which can cause headaches, nausea and can cause you to feel weaker which has a negative effect on performance. There is a way to combat the risk of over hydrating, an example includes endurance runners weighing themselves before and after a run, so they know the exact amount of water they have lost. The people most at risk of overhydration are endurance athletes, rugby players and army members. This is due to them consuming large quantities of water before working out.
Making sure you recover properly
Recovery is key to improving performance and making process. Its important you do what you can and leave enough time for your muscles and other tissues to recover after a workout. By not leaving them time to recover, you put yourself at risk of overtraining which has many negative effects in itself. These include the increased risk of injury, tiredness, fatigue, and weight loss. This will have negative effects on your performance and will decrease progress.
Making sure your muscles recover is key to improving performance and this is why many athletes have a rest day. This prevents the risk of overtraining and gives your muscles enough time to recover before training again. As well as physical benefits, there can be mental benefits of implementing a rest day. This is due to a rest day improving sleep and this will improve performance as you will be able to focus on your activity more and be prone to less distractions.
Train with the right people
If you go to the gym, then you may already know the benefits of training with a partner. Having someone there will make you push yourself harder as there is someone to assist you, so you are at less risk of injury. An example could be someone spotting you, this allows you to go heaver or get more reps without injuring yourself. This will promote more micro tears that cause your muscles to grow stronger and bigger. As a result, your performance will improve as you have gained more strength and will become more comfortable with the heavier weight.
There are also many other benefits associated with training with a partner. Another benefit is that a partner offers someone to have a healthy competition with. Competing allows you to push yourself harder and gives you a clear goal to work up to. Although competing is good, it isn’t for everyone and others prefer to compete with them selves rather than other people. Although this is a valid point there are still many mental benefits of competing like improved motivation, self- esteem, and better concentration.
Like many things in the fitness industry, supplements can be used to make reaching goals easier. There are many supplements that have been proven to increase performance and make you get the most out of your workouts. An example can include pre workout. This is a supplement taken before a workout that contain caffeine, which increases energy, concentration and prevents your muscles getting fatigued prematurely. There are also many other ingredients that promote good performance like creatine and beta alanine.
Creatine is a substance that increases the performance of your muscles. This is present in some pre workouts and promotes energy being fed to your muscles during high intensity workouts. This means you can train for longer and harder before your muscles begin to fatigue and get tired. Beta alanine also improves performance by causing less acid to build up in muscles. This allows you to train for longer before muscles fatigue and begin to hurt. There are also other dietary supplements that you can take that will improve performance. For example, supplementing protein will maximise muscle growth which will cause improved performance and more muscle mass.
In conclusion there are many things that you can do to improve your performance. If you have hit a wall in your journey to your fitness goals, then these are the steps you should be considering to get you back on the right track. Although you may have made good progress, as you get physically fitter and stronger its important to review things like training, diet, and rest to meet your new requirements. This is key to keep making progress as your body gets used to certain training, which is why it’s a good idea to change it once in a while. Also, with increased muscle mass you require more calories to maintain it as your metabolism it going to be raised.