Becoming an elite athlete is all about persistence and Sydney-based sailing duo Mat and Will say they believe that persistence beats resistance every time. Here’s what they do when they feel their motivation start to decline and how they switch their mindset and get back on track.
1. Stick to a schedule
We have a strict weekly training schedule and do our best to stick to it whenever possible. It’s much easier to go to sleep with the locked in plan to train the next day than to wake up and try to find the time. Make appointments with yourself, block them out in your diary and stick to them as strictly as you would a doctor’s appointment.
2. Eat a healthy diet
One of our favourite meals is a simple steak with steamed veggies. It’s packed full of the vitamins and minerals that our bodies need, provides sustained energy and doesn’t leave us feeling heavy and bloated. For us, it’s very important to eat small meals regularly that help to keep us energised, light and clear minded.
3. Seek support through supplements
There are so many amazing supplements on the market at the moment that enable you to tailor your vitamin and mineral intake to the exact needs of your body. Our current favourite is the Blackmores Exercise Range. We use the Exercise Multi to help fuel energy during the day as well as the Muscle Magnesium to support muscle health, relive cramps and allows our bodies to rest deeply and recover quickly.
4. Visualise your goals
We don’t wake up and go sailing, we wake up and train for the 2016 Olympic Games. Both may involve the same physical actions but visualising our end goal allows us to stay focused and motivates us to push ourselves harder every time. We know the competition is tough so we maximise our training at every opportunity to ensure we are in the best possible condition to achieve the Gold Medal we’ve been working towards.
5. Minimise stress
It’s easier said than done but a clear and stress free mind allows us to focus on what’s really important. Small things we do to help minimise stress include weekly healthy meal prep, taking time to spend with family and friends, planning our days in advance and booking in regular massages.
6. Surround yourself with like minded people
We both share the same goal and it allows us to motivate each other very easily. Whatever your goal, try to spend more time with people who have a similar objective or who have already achieved that goal. You should also try to distance yourself from people who discourage you and don’t let their negativity rub off on you. There will always be people who tell you that you can’t do something and if you’re around them too much you might start believing it yourself.
7. Know when to relax
No matter how fit a person is, everyone needs rest days. If you’re feeling completely burnt out it would probably be more beneficial for you to relax and recuperate rather than push your body harder and risk injuring yourself. The same is true if you’re feeling sick or haven’t been sleeping properly. You should always listen to your body and make sure your basic needs are being met before trying to push yourself harder.