23 Dec 30 Days of Training Female Athletes, Day 21: Taking Care of Your Health for a Lifetime
The message I have been preaching to young female athletes has been the same for all of these years.
Not only is it about becoming strong to be able to handle a demanding environment on the pitch, it is also about becoming resilient to sickness, disease and injury – any inevitable, catastrophic environment that life will throw their way.
Because, well, that’s life. We need to be rooted in reality that not everything in rainbows and unicorns, and there’s risk at every corner, so what are we doing to prepare at our best? What are we doing so we don’t live in fear and we can continue to live an enriched, connected and adventurous life?
Strength training, for one, is one of the best ways to reduce chance of injury, bone mineral density decline, and muscle atrophy as we age. Too, strength training has been shown to reduce depression and anxiety in kids (read THIS and THIS study).
Other messages I preach for sports and life:
– Get Vitamin D to build bones as well as improve immune function (read THIS study on Vitamin D healing for COVID-19). <— more of these need to be shown to the public, instead of fear mongering.
– Walk daily to get into a parasympathetic state and recover better
– Get 7-8 hours of uninterrupted sleep for better immune function, cognition, memory, and focus
– Connect with other human beings to improve mood, anxiety and avoid feelings of loneliness and isolation, the two main drivers of suicide (read THIS study on the effect of lock downs on kids, who aren’t main drivers of the virus).
– Even if you are “healthy” and exercise and eat well most of time, it is not enough. You have to continue to be relentless about all factors of performance and health. Check out this interview here on how to dial in:
My mission is to continue to get louder with this message, so all humans, especially kids, can live an enriching and healthy life that is guided by love and not fear.
We can have both: we can be cautious about our health and put our bodies in the best position possible to be able to handle sickness (auto immune doctor to follow: Dr Terry Wahls), and we can still go out and live out the human condition of connection, creativity, livelihood, exploration and love.
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