Bishop Kearney Track and Field is now on a training break. We will resume regular practice when we return to school on January 2, 2018. You may have noticed a meet scheduled for December 30 at Hobart listed on the Section V schedule. We have decided to opt out of that meet.
Many of you have been training consistently since summer for cross country, soccer, volleyball, or football. Some of you train for multiple sports outside of school. Others have just begun training at the start of our track season. In either case, you've been training hard in track since November and it is time to rest your body. As a fitness professional, personal trainer, registered nurse, and a father bleive me when I say that taking a short training break will not endanger your fitness in any way! In fact, taking a training break may improve your preformance and help keep you healthy.
Why is this training break important?
Consistent physical activity is proven to promote good overall health. Bone density, muscular strength, cardiovascular endurance, and academic functioning are improved with regular exercise.
There is a downside to overtraining.
Training for prolonged periods can put a strain on the immune system and promote fatigue. Both are counterproductive. This is especially true for endurance athletes - XC runners and soccer players- are particularly vulnerable. It's no secret that seasonal illnesses have crept into our team. Overtraining (or more correctly, overreaching) can make even the fittest athlete more susceptible to these seasonal illnesses as well as associated musculoskeletal and soft tissues injuries. Additionally, programmed training breaks within a periodized training program may reduce or eliminate the Female Athlete Triad and Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport.
What is periodization?
Periodization is a method of scheduling and planning physical training into an organized program to meet a long-term goal. The training break period is as important as the initiation period (assessing fitness), pre-competition period (getting ready for track meets), and maintenance period (steady plateaued training) to overall health and performance longevity of the student-athlete.
What does a "training break" look like?
For the purposes of BK T&F, our break will take the "active rest" approach. That is all athletes will be encouraged to remain mobile through activities of daily life and engage in mild core fitness activity. Physical fitness can be maintained with daily walks, outside if possible, or simply walking often during the day. That is, don't lay around on the couch binge watching Netflix for days!
Wash your hands often or use hand sanitizer. One of the simplest ways to keep yourself healthy is to wash your hands. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, simply washing your hands can help prevent colds, flu, and other illnesses.
Remain active by walking often, outside whenever possible. Participating in household chores and shoveling snow is also a good way to stay active.
Winter means cold, dry air and the need hydrate all day long. Keep yourself hydrated with water or mild electrolyte drink. Avoid sugary drinks, sodas...and energy drinks. Don't share water bottles!
Maintain or increase your daily calorie intake. Take in as much fresh fruits and vegetables as possible. Don't be afraid to enjoy the good food that comes with the holidays!
Sleep. Get more of it. Period. Go to bed thirty minutes early every night - no mobile devices - just an extra half-hour of sleep.
Limit social media (or eliminate). It's easy to get wrapped up in social media given the extra time outside of a structured school day. Spending excessive time on social media has shown to increase stress in users of all age groups. Excercise science is beginning to prove that "mobile devices limit mobility" and actually deter people from engaging in an active lifestyle. Try limiting yourself to an hour a day of social media.
Complete a daily core training session. 10 Core Exercises for Triathletes is a quick, basic core series. Craig Alexanders core workout is a bit more complex. Either one or both of these routines will keep you mobile and maintain core strength during a training break. Feel free to pick-and-choose movements from both to make your own program.
Finally, thank you to our supportive family members who have braved the roads and late nights to be with us at the meets. It means the world to us to have you all there!
On behalf of Coach Smith, we wish you all the best this holiday season has to offer!