That’s what I’d always heard.
“It’s gonna take you longer, and it’s going to hurt more and more each time.”
So now that I’m older here’s what I’ve got to say:
Screw you, buddy.
The older I get, the smarter I train, and recover.
Science and technology are making that easier and easier for me. So there.
Here are some basics that I KNOW will always help me.
- Start small and build up.
Nope, it doesn’t matter what it is, but the general rule is that 21 days makes a habit. So I build my programs 3 weeks at a time, and the build is usually gradual and comfortable.
- If anything hurts, STOP NOW.
Tomorrow is another day, and long-term injuries that do not go away come from not stopping. Good things come from controlled failures.
- Nutrition and Eating Schedule.
I generally have a good diet, but I try to have more protein and fat in the beginning of my season, and as I need more calories, I put in more carbs. I also go from eating 3 larger meals a day, to 6 smaller meals. The difference in calories on season and off season is incredible (from 1600 kcal/day to 3000 kcal), so I have to fit them in somewhere. But I have discovered that when I eat is just as important as what I eat.
- Myofacial Release and Stretching.
I know. I hate it too. But rollering and stretching are the best things for keeping me balanced. I have problems with Hyper-mobilty so I have to be careful about building muscles evenly, and keeping my tendons in balance. Most of my injuries have come from a muscle or tendon being too loose while the opposing tendon/muscle is too tight.
This is a precious gift from the materials science gods and goddesses, and GAWD does it work. #ifuckinglovescience. It cuts down on soreness immensely.
- A Weight Training Program.
No, not just going to the gym a grabbing a couple of kettle balls for a 10 minute pump. I am talking about a serious program like powerlifting. Powerlifting is excellent for cyclists in particular, because it helps stave off bone loss. In fact, it increases bone density pretty much exactly where we need it. Oh the other thing? Crashing with a good deal of natural armor (aka muscle), is better. I really KNOW this to be true for me, because when I have a good deal of muscle, I bounce and yes, even skid better. Sorry about the imagery.
- A Coach
“Any racer who’s only had themselves as a coach, is eventually coaching a fool.” – Girl Meets Bike.
Yes, I said that, and I mean it as much for myself as anyone else. Want to get better? You have to have a qualified objective observer. Nuff said.
“Thinking getting older sucks? Consider the alternative.”