Optimal Health for Age-Group Athletes

health strategies & tools for achieving optimum performance and athletic longevity 

Health and fitness can be mutually exclusive, especially at the performance end of the spectrum. Chasing personal records, more often than not, demands the sacrifice of our health. Often, that sacrifice doesn't deliver the expected results. A focus on healthy athletic habits is one which will pay enormous dividends, both in a better quality of life and in a longer athletic career. 

Keystones

Athletic longevity is built on a foundation of optimal health. You might be able to game the system for a while but, eventually, your health will fail. Sleep well, eat a human-appropriate diet, control your stress, develop basic cardiovascular fitness and build foundational strength. Five simple keystones.

Habits

You aren't the sum of your goals, aspirations or dreams. At your most basic, you're the sum of your habits - those things you do unconsciously every day. Most of us are unknowing slaves to our habits but it's possible to reverse the tables and use them to our advantage.

Recovery

Almost everyone you speak to will tell you that recovery is as important as working out. The problem is that most people have no idea what actually constitutes recovery. Rather than simply sitting on the sofa, recovery is an active process. It's stuff you do, not simply the absence of activity.

Rehab/Prehab

Injuries aren't inevitable but they do happen. Sometimes it's a case of overuse, in which case you're to blame. Other times, you might be involved in an accident. Either way, you need to make sure that you rehabilitate the damaged tissues so that you heal up properly.

Keystone Articles

Recovery Articles

Habit Articles

Rehab/Prehab Articles

Other Optimum Health Articles

The Healthy Athlete Course

In over 20 years of working with people of all levels from elite to beginner, I created The Healthy Athlete Course that walks you through exactly what you need to do to create a level of health that virtually guarantees athletic longevity and superior performance. Rather than just providing information, it teaches a habit-based approach to creating far better levels of health than most people in the general population experience.

It's a summary of everything I've learned about being a truly healthy athlete, whether training or not. These are the exact things that I do every day in my quest to be healthier and fitter at 70 than most 20 year olds. I only wish someone had given me this information when I was younger.

Optimum Athlete Health Comes First

Athlete health always must come first.

This is especially true for amateur and age-group athletes, for whom sport is not about earning money, it’s about so much more.

For the amateur athlete, sport is about health first and performance dead last. That doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t seek to perform. You absolutely should aim to perform at the highest level that you can.

What it does mean is that sacrificing an athlete’s health in order to go after a performance makes no sense at all.

Someone once said that your health is the only thing you have that is worth having if you have nothing else.

Newsflash: Nobody, other than you, your close family and you coach will remember the 10-minutes you cut from your ironman time. In fact, even you might not remember it, given enough time. 

Is it really worth sacrificing your health in order to achieve it?

What you will notice is when you're always sore getting out of bed, when you develop metabolic syndrome from all the sugar you've eaten in the belief that carbs make you go faster or whatever long term health condition shows up as a result of driving performance from a place of ill-health.

What if I told you that you can have that performance and be healthy at the same time?

What if I told you that athlete health underpins superior performance and, perhaps even better, longevity of performance?

Athlete health doesn’t come from a series of hacks or a daily handful of supplements or listening to binaural beats or whatever.

Real, long-lasting athlete health is the result of your small daily habits…

  • Do you sleep properly? Do you sleep enough?
  • Do you have a quality nutrition approach that you stick to consistently?
  • Is your body composition where it should be?
  • Have you developed ways to manage the stress of work, lifestyle and training?
  • Do you have proper mobility around your joints?
  • If you’re an endurance athlete, do you do enough strength work to be strong?
  • If you’re a strength athlete, do you do enough cardio to look after your heart?

Few of these things are sexy or exciting, they’re pretty mundane in comparison to buying a new bike that isn’t an ounce over 6.5kg or the latest set of wheels that save 40 watts at 40km/h or an aero helmet or yet another bike-fit or… (the list is endless).

What most athletes fail to understand is that all of the things I listed above affect your recovery ability dramatically. And everybody bangs on about recovery, it seems, constantly.

Recovery is not lying on the sofa, eating chips and getting fat. Recovery is an active process of sleeping well, eating well, stretching, meditating, lifting and running.

If you’re not doing these things, you’re not recovering the best that you can.

I’ve lost count of the number of people I’ve spoken to who have changed their nutrition to my approach and who recover faster. I can say the same about those who have sorted out their sleep. Or got stronger.

If you’re going to be an athlete, health comes first. If you do that, you’ll be a better athlete and a an athlete for the long term.

Learn the Secrets of Athletes Who Consistently Perform at the Highest Level

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