To improve your training adding flexibility training is a must.
WHAT is flexibility training? It is performing movements to increase the quality of your soft tissue to enhance it’s elasticity and function. Soft tissue (muscles, fascia, tendons, ligaments) that has knots, little adhesions, can effect your performance and increase the chance of injury.
HOW to add flexibility training to your routine? Stretching at the end of the workout is the best time to do it. The tissue is warm and ready to loosen. It is important to be in a relaxed, calm state of mind so the tissue is loose as well. Hold stretch positions for 15-30 seconds. Each stretch can be performed more than once. Using a foam roller is helpful for creating more elastic fascia. You can foam roller before a workout as well as after.
WHY is flexibility training important? Flexibility training (stretching, foam roller, yoga, pilates, massage) helps to remove adhesions in the soft tissue, improve circulation, decrease injury, increase performance, increase range of motion, takes a unwanted load off your spine and feels good.
Those are some pretty good reasons to incorporate flexibility training into your routine. Now go stretch yourself…….
Hard to believe the paddling season is coming close to an end. Perhaps another month of races, then Fall/Winter approaches. As you near the end of the season it is a good time to reflect on the 2017 season and ask yourself:
What accomplishments did I achieve this season?
What worked with my training and racing? What went well?
What would I like to do differently in prep for 2018?
What are my goals for 2018?
What does my winter training look like in order to accomplish my 2018 goals?
What fun things am I going to do to take a break from paddling to replenish my mind and body?
These are just some examples of questions to ask yourself to prepare for your journey into next season.
As I approach the Fall and Winter I work on a periodization plan for my 2018 race season.
This plan helps me to help stay on track during the winter months when it is harder to consistently train on and off the water. The periodization plan also helps me to peak when the racing season begins. The plan includes various components such as: cardiovascular conditioning; strength training; flexibility and balance training; mindset training; optimal nutrition; brain and body conditioning. These are components you may want to consider in your planning for the 2018 season.
As a coach I can help you in all facets of preparing for 2018. Please contact me at 503-351-8065 or firstname.lastname@example.org and let me know how I can help. I would be happy to be your Coach and give you tools to prepare you physically and mentally for your next racing season.
In the meantime, enjoy the rest of your season and happy paddling!!!
Have you ever kept track of what thoughts go through your mind daily? Are there more positive thoughts or negative thoughts? Does your self-critic pop up often during the day?
We have been hearing about how powerful thoughts can be and that we go in the direction of our most predominant thoughts. Another way to say it is we get and attract what we focus on (positive or negative), especially when attached to a strong emotion. For example, if we focus on lack, we attract it. If we focus on abundance, we attract abundance.
Thoughts lead to feelings which lead to action which leads to results. So if we want to change the results in our lives, we need to start by changing our thoughts. Pretty powerful stuff!!!
A way to start creating this change is first to be aware of what we are saying to ourselves in our minds (attention and intention). Then read daily affirmations out loud, while looking at our reflection in the mirror and say them with conviction, power and faith.
Create your list of affirmations that move you in the direction you want to go. One that I really like is “We go where our vision is.” By Joseph Murphy. So true!!!
Some affirmations to get you thinking:
I love the way I feel when I take good care of myself
I am worthy
When I fail, I fail forward
I am grateful for….
I am meant to do great things
I would love to hear what your favorite affirmations are. Feel free to share.
I find as an older athlete (still competing at the world class level) I have to train much smarter!!! Staying injury free through training and competition takes consistency with certain exercises and training principles. When I am off those specific exercises and principles… I feel stiff; shoulders talk and are unhappy and I feel less energy too. Below are some tips to help lessen the risk of injuries for you:
Before a training session or competition warm up with foam roller and dynamic warm ups to prepare the body and mind for action
Apply a training program that implements a progressive routine that helps you get to your goal
For you paddlers…. Training off the water is just as important as on the water to reduce injury and optimize improving your technique and conditioning base of endurance, strength and power – physically and mentally! Therefore, better performance!!!!
STRETCH Daily!!! Our fascia and muscle tissue becomes less elastic when we get older as well as with activity or lack of activity things tighten up.
Manage your stress!!
Eat healthy and keep your gut healthy with foods and stress management.
Get massage regularly
Address your current injuries instead of ignoring them. Listen to your body before it yells at you!!! – You only get one body in this lifetime.
Training regularly with recovery days included. Recovery and rejuvenation are an important part of training too!!!
Perform the proper technique and form in your training, even when fatigue sets in (that takes conditioning the brain and body)
Include Mindset training in your plan
Seek professional guidance if you are in need for help with your training, injury, etc.
Of course, the list can continue. Hopefully this gives you some food for thought to help optimize your training and keep injury free (or at least lessen the frequency of it happening). I am here to help. Contact me if I can help at email@example.com!!! Now, go get’em!!!
Setting the proper mindset is essential to create an optimal workout. It is easy to go through the motions or bring in the stress of the day into the workout. Creating a calm state of mind and setting your intention for the workout will help optimize your workout efficiency, increase focus, prevent too much breakdown in the body, and energize your training. Here are steps to aid in setting the right mindset that you can use for training or anytime you need it:
Sit with your eyes closed and focus on your breath.
Draw your attention to breathing in and out of the area around your chest and heart.
Bring to mind a positive experience or the feeling of gratitude, joy, appreciation and breathe that into the area around your chest and heart.
Now you are in a calm state of mind to perform a great workout! Set your intention and go!
I am fortunate to be surrounded by amazing people in their fields. I have asked Elena, an amazing massage therapist, to do this blog for my website on the benefits of massage. Enjoy and thank you Elena.
Benefits of Massage
Many believe that massage is a luxury for those who can afford to pamper themselves. Actually, massage is a necessity for good health and well being. Massage therapy dates back thousands of years to ancient cultures that believed in it’s medical benefits, the medical benefits of massage have seemed to be lost in the modern day medical community, and is slowly beginning to emerge.
Receiving massage regularly may provide you with many health benefits including
stress and anxiety management
improved immune system function by decrease of stress related hormones that can lower immunity
reduction in muscle tension
increase in range of motion
may help prevent injuries when received regularly
When receiving massage regularly you may reap many of these benefits. Monthly massages may help to maintain a certain level of health while receiving them more frequently may gradually improve your health and well being depending on your goals. When massage is coupled with regular exercise and strength training I believe these benefits are only magnified.
I am participating in an achievement class with Brendon Burchard. I am really intrigued with his philosophy on goals. There is a popular program that is called S.M.A.R.T goals (Specific, Measurement, Attainable, Realistic and Time-bound) that is being used to set goals and direction. Brendon states that we need to broaden our perspective and achieve something meaningful. This is so cool….he suggests to try setting and going for D.U.M.B goals. D.U.M.B stands for Dream-focused, Uplifting, Method-based, and Behavior-triggered. I love that. Go for the dream-based goal. The goal that fills you up with joy and a broader vision and purpose. Remember it is the journey. What you become during the journey and how you feel when you accomplish that D.U.M.B goal. What is your vision?
Well, it is hard to believe it is almost 2017. I like to create a theme and vision for the upcoming year. It helps keep me in check and stay on
track towards my vision(s) for the year (which can also change). Below is some food for thought when brining in the New Year:
Reflect on 2017 – what worked, what did not work, what was amazing, what needs to change, etc. in all areas of life (business, personal, relationships, financial, spiritual, etc.)
Create a theme for the New Year that is a focus for what you want to accomplish and to help stay on track.
Make a list of goals for 2017
Create a vision board to remind you of your theme and goals
Visualize daily success of getting to your goals
Have great support to help you get there
Hope that is some good food for thought. Have an incredible 2017!!!!
It is easy this time of year to just let the workouts slide and feel overwhelmed with no time to fit in the workout. Well, I want to help you out to stay away from the excuses of not having time to workout. Here are some suggestions:
Perform the 7-minute workout. There is an app you can follow (this is one
Cut your workout in half. Do part of it the beginning of the day and part of
it at the end of the day.
Make an appointment with yourself to fit in your workout.
Have a goal in mind of how many times per week are realistic during this
festive time of year and stick to it.
Create an accountability system with a buddy or your coach.
Workout with your kids… make it a family affair!!
Remember quality vs. quantity when it comes to your workout.
Do things you like to do!!!!
Hope that is helpful!!!! Feel free to share your idea.
It is hard to believe we are approaching a new year. Happy Holidays!!!!
We all have heard how stress is harmful to our health when left unmanaged for an
extended period of time. Okay, so HOW do we help control it? There are many
ways. Below is a list of stress management tools. I am sure you will find one or
two that work for you. Here you go:
Take a deep breath. This alone will help decrease your heart rate and help kick
in the parasympathetic system to create inner calmness. For example, breathe in
your belly for 5 seconds, hold for 2 seconds, then exhale for 5 seconds, hold again
for 2 seconds (source: “Change Your Brain Change Your Life” by Daniel Amen).
Perform the Heartmath Quick Coherence tool (www.heartmath.org). This will
help in times when negative emotions are taking over.
Meditation. Just taking a few moments to focus on calming your mind a day
can help control stress. There are options out there that are helpful guides for
meditation and you may find one that works for you.
Tia Chi. There are many studies that show how Tai Chi can help reduce anxiety,
stress, decrease blood pressure and increase focus.
Move. Do something physical to help reduce stress. Take a walk in nature,
participate in a yoga class, and follow a workout to help manage your stress.
Hope you are able to find one that works for you. I have used all of the above and
for different situations. Sometimes I have used more than one. Perhaps you have
a great tool that you would like to share that works for you as a stress reducer.
Feel free to share.
Take control and manage your stress. You deserve to have a healthy and
It has been GREAT getting back into paddling training for competition. This time around it is a lot different ball game training for a world competition than when I trained for the 2004 World Sprint Championship Gold. Now I have less time to train as a single mom, working full-time plus, not part of a club, wanting to be fully present for my son, etc. I have to make the best of my time on and off the water. It is hard, heck ya!!!! I am determined to do the best I can and ENJOY THE JOURNEY (that is a tough one to remember). This is what I have found to be helpful.. I am sharing hoping it may give some of you insight who decide to stop going for your goals because of……:
Keep your vision of what you want by visualizing daily, putting up a vision board
Ask for support and accountability – we all need that
Schedule YOUR time/training and have a back up plan when needed
Make sure to implement mental and physical self-care – foam rolling, massage, listen to motivating tapes
Be okay to make miss-takes
Have fun!!!! and remember the WHY’s!!!
Hope that is helpful!! More tips coming on some of the how to’s. Stay tuned….
Also, keep track of some of my posts for training tips, motivational quotes, etc. on my facebook page.
We all want to achieve optimal results – perhaps it is in an athletic performance, life, our career, etc. Regardless it takes many factors to do so. Just sharing some to ponder over:
1.Prepare as best you can with all variables in your life – work, family, proper nutrition, adequate sleep, etc. It takes preperation, the correct mind set, smart training and a vision. Now, go get’em!!!;
2.Focus on the qualitative experience vs the output. If you perform a workout or training session using negative self-talk while ignoring the movement quality (I call it being just in your head), for example, you are ingraining negative qualities as well as a negative experience. This will lead to failure in a more stressful environment/competition and to a larger degree. Keep that in mind…. literally;
3.Create a supportive environment!!!!;
4.Ask for guidance and help!!! This takes strength… not a sign of weakness;
5.Take quality time with yourself and family often. Fuel up your tank!!!!;
6.Remember it is the journey!!!
There you go… of course there are many more things to incorporate into having optimal results. Have fun!!!!
Help me keep an eye on how my athletes are doing in their training – aids in accountability.. I am watching :),
Provides feedback of the adaptations that take place with the athletes program and if we are on track,
Informs me when things in the athletes life may be throwing them off balance and we need to enhance the athletes skills in mental training (visualization, how to cope with stress, etc.),
Insight about timing of recovery,
Shows an athlete’s baseline and improvements in HRV, therefore performance and health,
Help me coach the athlete to their goals smarter and faster
In a nutshell, there is a lot of research that supports the importance of HRV as an indicator of overall performance and health as well as a marker of physiological resilience and behavioral flexibility. It is a great tool.
Hope you join us on September 19, 1-4:30 pm to find out more. Check my website at the event link. Go train smart!!!!!
Heart Rate Variability helps measure how your body is adapting to the balance of life, performance, training and other stressors. As an athlete, (older athlete by the way) I find it VERY useful in my training. Listed below are the benefits:
Provides me feedback on how to gauge my readiness for training on a daily and weekly basis,
Gives me an idea of how I am adapting to life stressors or not,
Shows how lack of sleep and poor nutrition effect my readiness for my training and performance,
Provides guidance on how my training program is going and IF I may need to make adaptations,
Shows if I need to take a recovery day to help reduce injury (No Balls out training, smart training),
Gives me a kick in the butt if I am doing myself more harm than good on how I deal with life stress,
Shows increases in my adaptations of training,
Great way for me to start my day with visualizing for 2.5 minutes,
I qualified this spring for the 2016 Outrigger Canoe World Sprint Championships! The world sprints will be hosted in May 2016 at the Sunshine Coast, Australia and I will be representing the Pacific Northwest/USA. In 2004 I won Gold in the Master’s V1 World Championships in Hilo, HI. Now I am raising a wonderful son as a single mom, while continuing to race and coach other athletes. My mission is to share my passion for the sport with my son and others by going for Gold! Travel and accommodations will be expensive and I am seeking your help. Please support me here in reaching my goal. Thank you!!!!
“Before you begin a thing, remind yourself that difficulties and delays quite impossible to foresee are ahead… You can only see one thing clearly, and that is your goal. Form a mental vision of that and cling to it through thick and thin.”
When I look back to training for the World Outrigger Canoe Sprint Championships in 2002 and 2004 (I received the World Championship title) , being on the water as much as possible was one key component to optimizing my success. However, just as important was mental training and land training. I will talk about mental training in another blog (GREAT stuff… stay tuned). In terms of off water training, the time I spent in the weight room, was important too. In my quest to compete at the World level again, I find doing resistance training to be just as important now that I cannot be on the water as much because of other responsibilities (being a mom, work, etc.) as well as being an older athlete. These are the reasons why off water training needs to be included:
– Enhance the body’s ability to develop neuromuscular pathways to create optimal movement patterns through land drills (hinging, breathing, rotation, etc.) that carry over to on the water
– Develop the muscles ability to recruit particular muscles used for paddling
– Perform exercises to reduce the risk of injury
– Increase energy systems needed for paddling – strength, power, strength endurance, etc.
– And much more… so get in your resistance training.
Take a look at the July/August 2015 issue of Amazing Kids Magazine in which Editor-in-Chief, Ryan Traynor sings the praises of “I am a Superbeing” by Diane Ulicsni and Lori Jorgenson. The book encourages confidence in kids through the exciting adventures of Adam and Molly, and creatively communicates body and brain function along the way. Please click here to read the full review.
How can you add more rotation to your stroke? It comes down to implementing more than just what you do on the water. You need to optimize training and prepping your body (within your body means) for rotation. Below are a few suggestions (make sure to check with your physician or physical therapist prior to exercises you may question is appropriate for you) to give a go and have fun!!!:
1. Use the foam roller. Loosen up your fascia.
2. Add exercises that involve gently moving the thoracic spine, for example, the rib grab.
3. Increase your hip mobility and hinging (see video below).
4. Enhance shoulder stability and strength (see video below).