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5 Ways to live like an athlete even when it’s not game day

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As a chiropractor and athlete myself, I regularly treat and interact with people that compete in a multitude of sports. Today I’m sharing 5 common traits among athletes I think we should all embrace to improve our health and quality of life.

1. “Be bulletproof.” This is my term for preventing injuries. Many factors play into the avoidance of injuries but the ones I feel are most important are: varying your workouts, getting different types of exercise (cardiovascular, weights, yoga, etc), stretching and getting enough recovery sleep (7 hours minimum). I also recommend receiving holistic checkups such as chiropractic adjustments (every pro team has a chiropractor for a reason!), acupuncture and/or massage. Remember, the human body, much like a sports car is designed for high performance. Don’t allow a lack of preventative maintenance to turn your Porsche into a garage-bound piece of junk.

2. “Don’t put sugar in your gas tank.” You would never think of putting anything other than the proper fuel into your gas tank for fear that your vehicle would break down. The same analogy applies to what you eat and drink. If you want to be healthy, pain-free, performing well and feeling great than you should seek to put only the best things possible into your body. I’d recommend decreasing/eliminating alcohol, sugary drinks, sugar, white flour, artificial ingredients and any medications you don’t ABSOLUTELY need. Next I would increase water intake, fruits, vegetables, protein source, and healthy fats and make sure to take a good multivitamin/mineral.

3. “Challenge yourself.” I read once that the difference between a jogger and a runner is the signature on a race application. Whether it’s physical activities, your job or personal life it is imperative that you constantly challenge yourself. That means different things to each of us. Personally I sign up for increasingly difficult races, publicly speak regularly (this was unthinkable for me years ago) and spend many hours analyzing my business and implementing strategies that lead to growth.

4. “Get comfortable being uncomfortable.” One thing I’ve found that athletes understand better than most is that regardless of how great you are, how much you’ve prepped or how amazing your intentions may be; sometimes stuff is just not going to go your way. These instances are NOT failures but rather opportunities to make you more resilient. For example, I ran a race last weekend and felt great going in but within a couple miles my tank was on empty and it was a struggle. No matter what I tried I just couldn’t get things going like I normally do. Midway through the race I just accepted that it was a “grind it out” type of day. I wasn’t thrilled with my finishing time but refusing to quit when I was exhausted and hurting was satisfying. Feelings like that help me deal with adversities that confront me in my personal and business life. The difficulties in your life are ultimately what will help you grow as a person.

5. “There is no secret sauce.” Our country has an obsession with quick fixes. Unfortunately when it comes to your health, there really aren’t any. Learn from trial and error, take baby steps, set goals both short and long term, learn from people with more experience and embrace consistency. You won’t win the war overnight but you’ll start winning the battles that lead you there.

Dr. Kenney has won multiple awards for “Best Chiropractor” and specializes in motivating and helping patients achieve their goals of better health and pain relief. For more information please visit www.NewBodyChiro.com, find us on Facebook (New Body Chiropractic & Wellness Center) or call (303) 347-9906.

Matt Kenney5 Ways to live like an athlete even when it’s not game day

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