Training – why should I start now?
Our very own Personal Trainer, BASI Level 4 and Swiss Brevet Federal, Jake, looks at getting ready for winter…
Hang on – the ski season is months away why should I start training now? Surely I can just do a few lunges the week before and everything will be fine…
Nope! You can do a lot right now to ensure you’re in the best possible condition for the winter. Now is the time to focus on building a solid aerobic base so that your fitness is already good before you start strength and power training.
If you are a recreational skier then this is probably the most important aspect of your fitness to concentrate on. The usual suspects of swimming, cycling, and running are all excellent for improving aerobic fitness levels. To this list you should try and add skipping (great for co-ordination, balance, and agility) and rowing if at all possible.
Building a strong aerobic base is crucial for future training. If you don’t do this and rush straight into strength training then you stand a strong chance of injuring yourself – which is not what you want just before you head off on holiday!
At the very least, if you haven’t worked on your aerobic fitness, then you won’t get nearly as much out of a strength training session as you will if you have built up your fitness over the summer. So NOW is the right time to start aerobic training. Besides, it’s summer, so get outside, (hopefully!) enjoy some sun and start an aerobic training programme that will put you in the best possible place for the winter.
For some ideas on training I’ve added an example below, but even better come here to Verbier this summer and I can train you!
The other (maybe even more important) thing you can do right now is to eat well. The word ‘diet’ has been hijacked as it implies abstaining from certain foods. That’s incorrect – your diet should be what you choose to eat all the time.
So choose a diet that works for you. Experiment. One that is high in protein and lower in carbohydrates works for me however everyone is different. It depends on what your lifestyle is like, how often you exercise etc… To expect a silver bullet is not realistic. There are, however, some simple rules that are definitely true!
- Always eat breakfast – this will kickstart your metabolism
- Cut down on alcohol (slows your metabolism down) and added sugar (makes you fat)
- Base all meals around a protein source – e.g. fish, meat, eggs, lentils…
When you go to a supermarket shop around the edges where the fresh produce is (fruit, vegetables, meat), try and stay away from the centre where most of the fake, processed food is (think cakes, biscuits, crisps etc…)
If you’d like to know more about nutrition and complete a food diary, which I will then analyse, please email me firstname.lastname@example.org
Example: first training month
The key for effective exercise (and maybe all) training is intensity. Start slowly and work your way up. Build an effective aerobic base by concentrating on the basics. Start with slow jogs, swims and bikes and once you start to feel fitter after a couple of weeks add to them by trying to go faster and further.
Week 1 Jog 5km x 2
Week 2 Jog 5km x 2 Swim 750m
Week 3 Jog 5km Swim 750m Cycle 20km
Week 4 Run 5km Swim 750m Cycle 20km
Aim to jog 5km in 30 mins
Aim to run 5km in 25 mins
Aim to swim 750m in 20 mins
Aim to cycle 20km in 45 mins
Above are some ideas for a beginner programme. If you’re more experienced then try and increase the distance but ensure you keep a decent speed as well. For example aim to run 10km in 50 mins.
After building a solid aerobic base you’re ready to start resistance training with the aim of increasing strength and then power. More on that next time!