Working out is crucial to an Ice Girl’s endurance and physique, but it’s important to remember that there are many other additional factors that influence the way you perform and look. That said, I have learned to manage my health through a combination of eating right, managing stress, incorporating weights into my workouts, setting personal fitness goals, and scheduling my workouts.
I know it can seem like there are not enough hours in the day when you are in the midst of a busy season, but meal prepping is crucial to staying on track and eating right. As a professional skater, I expect a lot out of my body and the muscles that I use while skating; and eating right is a big component to ensuring I can effectively do my job at games. I dedicate one afternoon a week to meal prepping everything I will need (finding new recipes always helps so I don’t get bored or burnt out).
For me, carb cycling works best. I always eat three meals and two snacks a day, which consist of mostly fresh fruits and veggies, as well as lean meats. With carbohydrates, I try to stick to brown rice, quinoa, nut crackers, and fresh sprouted grain bread (Ezekiel is my favorite type of brand!).
Stress has a major impact on your overall health and look. Not only does it negatively impact your sleep, attitude, and mental clarity, but it also raises your cortisol levels, which slows your metabolism. Here are some ways I keep my stress under control:
- I don’t beat myself up if I have a ‘cheat’ meal. Some of us stress to no end about this, and it only exasperates the “problem.” If you’re going to eat it, own it. Then get back on the healthy eating wagon.
- I try to always refocus on what makes me happy. I work full-time and have been a DSIG for 3 years, and it does get stressful juggling all of our games, appearances and practices with a corporate work schedule. But when I take the time to refocus my thoughts to reflect on why I love what I do, my stress level decreases significantly.
Incorporating Weights into Workouts
Instead of focusing on being “skinny” it helps to focus on being stronger and gaining more muscle definition. You can’t just simply do cardio, which his is a common misconception I hear from girls auditioning for our team every season. Everyone wants to literally “out run” a bad diet, which isn’t possible. Aside from aiding in physical appearance, weight training is essential to endurance and speed on and off the ice.
Setting Personal Fitness Goals
I like to set small obtainable goals with a timeline for myself to keep me accountable. I’m a total “check things off the list” type of person, so this really keeps me in the gym pushing hard. My goals can range from losing inches in certain areas of my body to increasing my weights when I’m lifting. I also aim to workout every day- but it is important to make sure I am letting my body rest and recover. During a busy season, it’s imperative to have a day 100% off to rest and reboot.
Again, it’s all about preparation. If you go in with a purpose, you will maximize the time you have to workout (which, for many of us, is limited during the season!).Here’s how I schedule my workouts:
1) Fasted cardio in the morning. I like to do interval sprints the most! I then do muscle group focused weight lifting in the late morning/early afternoon (when I have a ton of energy). I like to choose two areas of focus and completely fatigue them for my lifting that day. I will do something like back and biceps one day then chest and triceps another and legs and shoulders for a third.
2) I incorporate High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) workouts twice a week. These are a lot of fun to do with a workout buddy over lunch or after work. My workout buddy and I take turns setting the workouts, which keeps everything fun and interesting while holding me accountable.
Being healthy really is a way of life. Instead of crash dieting or trying to “out run” a bad diet, it is always best to be consistent in eating clean, exercising and managing your stress level. Thanks for reading!
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