For maximum performance, the body needs to be healthy. Not just strong, fit, flexible and agile, but also healthy from the inside out. Your heart needs to be strong and the arteries nice and clean. Your metabolism needs to be healthy and the digestion optimal. If you don’t digests the foods that you are eating (and you are eating only healthy foods, right?) you won’t assimilate the nutrients that you need. Without the nutrients, you won’t be able to recover the same fast, and without a proper recovery, you cannot train as hard and as often.
The body is an amazing living mechanism and when kept in great shape, it will serve us for even one hundred years. Keeping it healthy and functional is not as easy as it should be, because our modern lifestyle undermines the basic principles of health. By reading this blog’s posts or my “Tennis Fitness for the Love of it” book, you have learned many of the injury prevention routines, such as myofascial release and stretching, and all the training and performance enhancement exercises. Hopefully you do them regularly.
It is important that we continuously learn new things how to take care of ourselves, and that we experiment with new ideas that are sound and see how our body responds. When something works, keep doing it and make it even better. Get rid of the things that sabotage your health and your athletic performance.
This week, November 21-30, take the opportunity of learning new things from 30 amazing experts in the field of integrative medicine, the META-Health summit. Every day, several speakers give a one-hour long lecture that you can listen for free during a 24-hour period. You may find many of the lectures beneficial to your own personal health and your athletic performance. Maybe you ask:
What is integrative medicine and how can it help you?
“Integrative Medicine is an approach to treatment and care that integrates conventional medicine with a broader understanding of illness, healing and wellness and looks at all available methods that may be a value in treating disease and illness. It takes into account the whole person and all aspects of lifestyle and restores the focus of medicine on health and healing and away from disease symptom management. It’s a practical strategy that puts the patient at the center of care and addresses the full range of mind, body, spirit and environmental influences that affect a person’s health. Integrative Medicine treats both the patients immediate and long-term needs enhancing the ability of patients to not only get well but more importantly stay well.”
Welcome to 10 days that will change your life forever. During the summit you’re going to receive FREE practical, actionable advice on how to take advantage of the latest research and science in integrative medicine, prevention and META-Health from some of the world’s top experts in medicine. This advice will help you achieve a better quality of life, stronger relationships, greater success, health and performance, and teach you innovative solutions for a variety of illnesses and diseases.
While you are listening, remember to use the time for a little stretching session… or go for a long walk while listening on your smart phone. Keep learning, keep improving and become the fittest athlete that you can be.
One-legged chair squat
My friend created this short video about how to perform a one-legged squat, a simple version of my “master” one-leg squat that I wrote about a while ago.
While the video is pretty good and shows you the first baby steps, I will add a few more things for you to add on when you proceed to the more advanced level:
1) Use your office chair. You can raise it or lower it according to your developing strength. As you get stronger, you can get the seat lower, and it will be much harder. Also, the seat rotates a bit, so you will need to focus on keeping your balance.
2) Take off your shoes and do the squat barefoot. No socks either. Stimulating the nerve endings in the feet seems to make the hip muscles fire better. You will notice how your feet muscles work, more than ever before.
3) To add more balance into this exercise, a foam pad under your bare feet will add another level of difficulty. I personally love this Airex version (they have 25% off now, use code URTHEBEST), but there are many out there for you to choose from.
4) Instead of having your arms anywhere in the air and use them to balance, put them on your hips. When that gets easy, put them behind your head. Later, above your head. The hardest version is to fold your arms behind your back. You see how your balance point changes and how much harder the exercise will be.
5) Hold a medicine ball or a heavy object to make it harder.
6) Instead of just standing up, jump up. Now, you work on your power as well.
What I like about this exercise is that it is so simple (yet difficult) that you can do it anytime. While you work at your desk at home or at work, just do one round of them and keep working. You do this ten times a day, you will become strong, in a sneaky way :-). That’s a good thing!
Enjoy the days of gratitude, yummy food and all your special people in your life. I am grateful for having you in my life, reading my writings and making me better through all our interactions.
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