House of Champions welcomes guest contributor, Dean Bo, a talented young fighter who is proud to call HOC his training place. We hope you are enjoying his tips so far and welcome your feedback.
This week in Dean Bo’s corner I will explain why it is important for an athlete to know how to rest properly. Everyone around you is taking part in some activity every day. Some might be accountants where they exercise their brain for number crunching, a waitress might be on her feet all day, and psychologists might be taking to someone easing their emotions all day, but usually an athlete uses; physical, mental, and emotional energy every day throughout their training sessions. In order for an athlete physically, mentally, and emotionally at their top level they require rest, and a lot of it.
What does resting for an athlete include?
1) Sleep 2) Nutrition 3) Mental relaxation besides sleep 4) Stretching
These four areas above are the four focuses athletes must use to rest and recover properly.
1) Sleep– athletes work their bodies more than any other people and therefore require the most sleep. An athlete requires a minimum of 8 hours of sleep a night during training season. HGH which is the human growth hormone that signals growth in our muscles from deterioration through training is released at its highest levels while we are asleep. The more you sleep the more growth hormone your body will naturally produce. Sleep also helps the mind to reset itself. Think of everything you practiced throughout that day being written onto a cassette tape, while we sleep that cassette tape rewinds and lets us make room for more information to be written on it the following day. Every athlete has had the feeling of an off day and most times it is mental and can be because of a lack of sleep.
2) Nutrition– Athletes bodies are pushed to the limit every day and like a high performance car us high performance athletes require a higher grade of fuel. An athlete might be burning enough calories to eat whatever food they want and not worry about weight gain but this is not the point. An athlete needs quality food in order to recover and replenish the sore body. An athlete requires a high amount of complex carbohydrates in order to refuel the body with glycogen which is the main source of energy for muscles endurance. Protein which is built up of amino acids to help repair the ripped muscle fibers and heal the muscle and make it stronger. Healthy fats, such as avocado and nuts are great for storing high amounts of energy. Last but not least, vitamins, and minerals are very important to keep an athlete’s immune and digestive system functioning properly.
3) Mental Relaxation besides Sleep– The reason I say mental relaxation besides sleep is because often time’s athletes think is sleep is enough to rest the mind, but it is not correct. We focus so much on our technique, our opponents, and the sport in general of which we practice, often times we go the whole day without thinking of anything else. Athletes who are so focused in their sport often don’t realize that is all what consumes them. It is so important to relax your mind and watch a funny television show once in a while or indulge in a good book. Even to go walk in the park and enjoy the nature is great to take your mind off of the daily grind. The athletes who do this perform much better in pressure situation s because they have allowed their mind the proper relaxation it needed.
4) Stretching– Even when not on the field or in the gym, stretching is a must as much as an any athlete can. Stretching provides blood flow to our muscles and makes them more elastic like a good rubber band. A more elastic rubber band is less likely to snap then a tight rubber band. This is the same thing with our muscles. The more stretching the less chance of injury, the less stretching the more chance of injury. This is a very simple concept and athletes should always remember to stretch as often as possible.
As long as every athlete remembers the four focuses of rest, they should be able to perform at the highest levels, injury and stress free, with success, for a very long time.
Hope you all enjoyed the technique of the week. Stay updated with Dean Bo on all my social media and find more motivating posts like these every day!