IMG_2306.PNGChange is difficult, breaking old habits a chore. Soon social media will be full of promises for the new year , life changing statements that will never materialise. Change should be more about a gradual process as opposed to the” All or Nothing” approach. Creating healthier habits and routines is a lot easier than focusing on old patterns.

For big results try this approach. Take one small task, focus and educate yourself on that task, skill or new routine and repeat it for a few weeks continuously. Once you are comfortable and have integrated a new process into your daily routine turn your focus to another area.

Heres a few habits I and some of our athletes have incorporated into our daily routines that have become hugely beneficial, easy to introduce and have without doubt resulted in Marginal Gains.

Hydration

IMG_2308.JPGEach night before bed it takes less than a minute to make a hydration drink. There are various tablets on the market at the moment with some containing Caffeine if you require your morning fix. I place this on my beside table and on waking drink it before getting up. Im sure I can feel my spine sucking up the fluid and when I actually do get up feel ready for the gym.

I also use this time to check messages and emails from the evening and review my plan for the day. Once I’m out of bed my phone is away until after practice ensuring the morning isn’t wasted in the Social media quagmire.

Shoes

IMG_2310.JPGAfter reading Kelly Sterritts Ready to Run and A Supple Leopard I decided to invest in some new shoes. I spend a lot of time in athletic trainers daily, to and from the gym, in the gym and also whilst lifting weights. With the information in this book (you’ll have to read it ) I decide to get a shoe with no heel raise and no arch. After breaking them in I have found running much more comfortable and my squat technique has improved greatly.

 

I take the Tram to the gym. It usually takes 15 minutes and as part of my routine I stand for this journey with my feet good alignment. It was difficult to focus initially but with just a few weeks of repeated practice now seems unnatural to stand any otherway. The benefit to my posture and health of my knees is a huge return for such a small investment.

Couch Sit

IMG_2313.JPGThis is something else I have adopted from Ready to Run and is a game changer. The source was initially a running book but there is no doubt this is a must for the jiu jitsu guard player just as much as the office worker seated all day.

 

This is a stretch that I incorporate at least once a day for at least 2 minutes per stretch. I make sure I do this in a warm up to open my hips before a run. There is no doubt this opens up your running mechanics and encourages more efficient technique.

If you bring one thing in routine, make it the Couch Sit. The team at SBG Manchester were not happy when I added this to the routine as it is initially quite uncomfortable . Within a few weeks again it has become a main player in knee, hip and lower back health.

 

 

 

Journal

IMG_2311.JPGFor the last month I have wrote a short Journal at the end of my work / training day. When a Sports Psychologist recommended this I just thought it was more work. Now after ingraining this new habit I realise that I could not have been more wrong.

It saves me five times the time it takes to write each evening. Reviewing this in the morning whilst hydrating reminds me of what to work on in the day, what I would like to achieve and inspires me to have a good day no matter the external distractions. It also serves as a kind of download process helping clear my mind and shelf any tasks until the next day. The simple act of putting my thoughts down clears my brain of the thoughts and problems I need to address until the next day. Instead of coming home and downloading on my family I get to spend quality time with them and enjoy the rest until the next morning.

Simply , don’t try and change your world in one day or a promise that you cannot keep. Make little adjustments and keep going until you feel the benefits . If you don’t feel the benefits , educate yourself , adjust and move on.

I actually wake up these days thinking about my water and how I can improve on yesterdays Journal entry.

 

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