Have you been following your training plan to a tee but not meeting your goals? Here are a few crucial elements to add to your training plan to focus on performance maximization.

Eat Real Food

Follow a minimally processed diet for optimal health and improvement in your performance. Making that step alone and cutting back on the chips and candy will make a huge difference. Still not sure what foods are right for you? There is not one “right diet” for everyone. Structured elimination diets and learning to listen to your body can help guide food choices.

Stress Management

This is often one of the hardest pieces of the puzzle, but find something that works for you. Here are some ideas that have worked for me and my patients in the past:

  • Prioritize social connection and community.
  • Start a daily yoga practice.
  • Meditate regularly. Try out apps like Headspace or Insight Timer for guidance.
  • Find work that you are passionate about.

Rest and Restore for Performance Maximization

Listen to your body and avoid over doing it. Include sufficient rest days into your training plan. If you do suffer from overtraining syndrome, make sure to treat it thoroughly. Sleep at least eight hours every night. Regulate your circadian rhythm by sleeping at the same time, getting sunlight first thing in the morning, and limiting light exposure for at least two hours before bedtime.   

Gut Health

See previous blog post, “The Athlete’s Gut.” Gut health is imperative in performance maximization.

Treat Deficiencies

Nutrient deficiencies such as iron, zinc, magnesium, and others can be particularly problematic among athletes and lead to fatigue, difficulty recovering, and poor performance. Laboratory testing can be done to get an inside picture of what is going on and direct diet and supplement recommendations.

Ari is a board-certified Family Nurse Practitioner who practices functional and integrative medicine. To learn more about Ari’s practice visit www.thewholesomenurse.com or call Evolution Healthcare and Fitness to schedule an appointment.