So Happy New Year, here it is 2016. Have you made any resolutions? Im not in the habbit of making them myself, however last year I decided to go 3 months without alcohol and after the over indulgence of Christmas I have decided to do it again this year remembering how energised I felt giving it up last year.
So thats goal number one! I also mentioned in my previous blog I was going on a flexibilty journey this year and wanted to show you my before pictures. I will be posting hints and tips along the way to help others with their goals, so if you have any questions please feel free to get in touch.
I also became very interested in diet and healthy eating last year and how it affects your performace. With my nutrition course on the horrizon and all the advice I have picked up along the way I will also be blogging about my experience with food and will share some of my best loved recipes and ideas with you all.
Where to begin,? Lets start with the splits - many of us would like to be able to do the splits but think we are too stiff or may be too old to start trying. I was a runner as a kid and back in the day stretching was not promoted in schools as a result my hamstrings became tight over the years. This didn't bother me until at the age of 25 when I decided I wanted to do the splits to improve my Pole work.
So along with a very talented and wonderfully patient trainer and friend I began my journey. Tiffany and I would session swap once a week. In return for me teaching Tiffany Pole Gymnastics (which was a joy down to her wonderful ballet backgroud) she stretched me! Now its not the most comfortable feeling in the world, but with a little help and dedication in 6 months for the first time I managed the splits. (Well on my left side!) So since my hamstring injury this year my right side has had chance to catch up! Here are my January Split pictures:
When setting goals like achieving the splits it's important to not focus on the end results but enjoy the journey. Try not to over stretch and listen to your body and be grateful for everything you have already accomplished.
It's important to be warm when stretching so after a workout is the perfect time, it will also help muscles return to their normal length post exercise, this is called maintenance stretching. However there are many types of stretches and to improve general flexibility you will need to perform developmental stretches, it is important that the muscle being stretched is relaxed. The stretch can be broken down into 2 phases; an initial stretch, taken to the point of tension and held until the muscle relaxes further (at least 20 seconds), followed by a further period of at least 20 seconds. So if you are serious about developmental stretches we can see that they need to be held for a minimum of 40 seconds.
As mentioned there are several types of stretches which I will be explaining in future blogs that will help you in your journey.
That's me signing out for this week, next week I will be discussing my favorite food cheat (that you can enjoy guilt free) as well as starting points for back flexibility and side splits. If there is anything in particular you need help or advice on please email me: firstname.lastname@example.org and I will try and help in the next blog.
Bye for now!