From the Coaches: Tips and Best Practice for Pre/Post Workout Routines:
We often hear people say they are nervous or worried about an upcoming ride, more so for events or fitness tests but it can also happen for a regular ride on your training plan. We all have sessions we look forward to more than others, and a 4DP result to identify your rider type can give you certain premonitions too.
But how often do you get to the end of a workout and think:
“I’m done with exercising, I never want to do that again!”
(Okay now I come to think of it… Violator, Full Frontal, Nine Hammers…the list goes on!). Joking aside though the rush of endorphins and satisfaction of completing a ride to achieve your honour, glory and victory is one of the best feelings you can get! And the truth of it is, we do all our workouts to feel better about ourselves and gain something positive.
So coming back to before a ride, there can often be more apprehension and nervousness than is really necessary about the task at hand. Sometimes that is justified but more often not as you need to remember that you are in control of the intensity:
→ You set your 4DP numbers by pushing YOUR body to achieve the best it could,
→ You entered that event because you wanted to achieve something great!
Here are some tips to help you get ready for each and every time you get on the bike or go for a workout:
- Plan ahead! Being in the know about what you have scheduled for the upcoming day (and even week) will help you make time in your day/week for your rides
- Make sure you are sufficiently fuelled & hydrated. You want to give yourself the best possible chance of doing well and looking after your body
- Be prepared and organised. Know what you are doing and have your equipment charged and ready
- Take time to warm up and get your body ready for exercise. Maybe you have some pre-workout rituals or race day rituals.
- Go in with a positive attitude but be realistic. If you haven’t had the best day and are feeling tired, stressed or anything else, there is no shame in reducing the intensity of the workout by 10-20% if it means you are going to complete the ride and feel better for it.
- Give it your best and see it through
Last week Mac talked about what to do when you miss a workout and the impact of “Stress -> Rest -> Adaptation -> Repeat” on your body. Going through your pre-workout routine will help you determine exactly how much stress you can handle for this particular workout. Doing any form of exercise is going to put stress on your body and move you that little bit further along in your fitness journey to achieve greater heights the next time an event or fitness test comes around.
On the flipside, after a workout, always make sure you take some time to:
- Spin out and cool down so you can flush out that lactic acid and deoxygenated blood from your body
- Let your HR return to a normal level which also helps with the recovery process
- Take some time to reflect on the workout and what you would do differently next time
- Spend a few minutes stretching to bring your muscles back to normal length
- Rest, refuel and get excited about your next ride
There you have it, the next time you have a tough workout scheduled in your training plan, I want to hear a big WAHOO from you and lots of excitement to see just how much you have improved since your last 4DP numbers.
Which workout (Sufferfest or outdoor ride) is your nemesis?
What are your pre/post workout rituals to help you crush it?
What would you do more of if you had the time?
PS: If you are struggling with your training and need an extra nudge, check out our customised plans where a coach will spend 30mins talking to you about your goals and training and from there create a customised plan to help you move in the right direction!