We're sure that once or twice, maybe mid gym session, maybe whilst watching a major sporting tournament like Wimbledon or the UEFA Euros, you've thought to yourself: how long does it take to become an athlete?
Unfortunately, it's not that simple... but the good news is, we can gain some tips and tricks when it comes to nutrition and training advice.
Whether you're going for gold or not, having a good routine in place to keep your fitness in check is vital. We've gathered this handful of tips from the team here at Innermost, that we think no pro should live without.
Check them out and then get to work. It's time to train like an athlete.
Strive for progress over physical appearance
Working out in order to look good is fine, but can add unnecessary pressure to your workouts and result in loss of motivation or improper workouts. Your body isn't going to transform after that first run, but you might be able to shave off a few seconds in your second one.
Focus on how your fitness is making you feel and perform, rather than worrying about the scales or what you're seeing in the mirror.
Add some competition
Start sports training with a friend, in a group class, or sign yourself up to a local race or match to add some friendly competition to your training. This will give some extra motivation as well as adding a social element which will make working out more fun - and therefore more likely to be repeated!
We're huge believers that one of the best ways to motivate yourself to hit the gym or get involved with sports training is through the addition of a gym partner - whether they're a friend, colleague or your romantic partner, the more the merrier!
Keep a track of your workouts
Make notes or use an app to plan what you're going to do in each of your workout sessions, and then track your performance at the end, including weight and reps, timings and any other useful information. This makes it easy to track and plan your next workouts and make sure you're progressing.
Pay attention to your nutrition
One of the best athlete tips is based around the fact that your body needs to be fuelled during training in order to recover properly and develop healthy muscle.
We've got some delicious meal inspiration and food plans if you're looking for some advice - but the key thing to take from this is that it's super important to ensure you're getting enough protein, which is vital for muscle development. Check out Innermost's range of award winning protein blends here, and pick which one is best suited for your fitness goals.
Talking of goals...
Fact - having goals is key to staying motivated.
Set yourself a target you want to work towards, whether that's by signing yourself up to a race or having a specific weight you want to be lifting by a certain date, this will keep your workouts structured and your body developing. Typically your goals should target speed, power and endurance. Be realistic in your time frames - consistently missing your targets because you've been too hard on yourself will likely end in you giving up.
Get in the zone
Headphones in, favourite bangers on, best trainers laced.
Having a good pre workout routine will ensure your head is in the game and you're ready to perform. Your mindset can have just as much of an impact on your training as the workout itself, so try out The Focus Capsules to ensure your mind is keeping up with your body and functioning at its optimum.
Mix things up - but have a focus
It's important to work your body in different ways to reach maximum fitness, so ensure you have a good mixture of cardio and strength training in your schedule, no matter your goal. Different types of exercise bring different benefits which shouldn't be overlooked, so if your routine is missing something, add a session this week. Make sure you stay focussed, though, and don't lose sight of why you're working out.
Put quality over quantity
This one is twofold: Firstly, keep an eye on your form, and focus on doing lower reps well and at high weight, rather than lots at a low weight that isn't testing you.
Secondly, it's better to do one workout where you really push yourself, than do a couple of workouts that were rushed, used bad form, or you weren't interested in completing. Don't waste time - put the effort in or save it for another day. If you need an extra push during a session, take The Energy Booster around 15 minutes before the workout to support stamina and endurance.
Give yourself time to recover
Working your body to its limits will result in injury and burnout. Sometimes, the best progress you'll make on your body will come from a proper rest day rather than another work out. Keep moving, stretch well, but don't test yourself - and make sure your nutrition is supporting that recovery period. Start off by taking two of The Recover Capsules each morning and evening to ensure you're giving your body the necessary ingredients for healthy recovery.
There you have it. Make these 9 tips a permanent mindset, and you'll be smashing your personal bests in no time. Fuel up with The Performance Collection to ensure that Innermost has your back the whole way there.