This is the final part of the "Healthy living for club cricketers" series. To go to part one click here.
Most people agree on the reasons behind being healthy and even the ways to stay motivated. Where there is a lot of conflict is in the methods themselves.
The web is an especially difficult place to find answers. Anyone can post an opinion and even present it as fact. Even the highly trained experts disagree on what is right and wrong depending on their experience.
I'm coming from the angle of a coach and cricketer who has not only lived a less healthy life and prefers the healthy one. I have seen the benefits of healthy lifestyle changes in myself and people I have coached over the years both as a personal trainer and cricket coach.
You will no doubt be able to find plenty of people who disagree with me. Some may even be better qualified and experienced than I am in the field of health. That's really not the point of this article though. I'm not after a war of words. These are my views based on what I have seen, split into several easy to read categories.
My advice is to pick one you are not doing and try and make the change of habit in the next 30 days. Hopefully you have the tools to do so.
- Train for strength/power 2-3 times a week. This can by bodyweight training or the gym or both.
- Interval train 2-3 times a week. Running is best, especially during the season.
- Stretch every day and while you stretch visualise success.
- Increase your general activity away from exercising: walking the dog, playing with kids, doing housework and the like.
Recovery and relaxation
- Take an hour a day to 'decompress': relax, think and read something that takes you away from the stresses of the day.
- Take up foam rolling.
- Do something you enjoy away from cricket to challenge your mind and body in new ways. This could be anything from doing the crossword to playing another sport.
- Every day, do something nice for someone without being prompted. It can be someone you love or a stranger.
- Drink more water it's a great recovery drink (8 glasses a day is good to aim for).
- Follow Precision Nutrition.
- Eat 5 portions of green, leafy vegetables a day.
- Increase your intake of omega 3 fats from oily fish or other sources.
- Only eat whole food, cut out the processed stuff.
- Switch to green tea.
- Try a new fruit or vegetable every week.
- Don't eat anything that contains flour unless it's after exercise (that includes bread and pasta).
- Get at least 8 hours of sleep a night.
- Take fish oil every day.
- Consider creatine and protein powder if you have a sound diet.
It's also sensible to factor in a break from these rules now and again. A pizza once a week is not going to make you fat if you eat healthy the rest of the week. Missing a training session or two every couple of months is not going to railroad your fitness plans. Whatever you are doing, take time to take a break now and again (as long as you stay about 90% compliant).
What are you doing this year to be healthier? Leave a comment and let me know.
Image credit: d_vdm