Corporate Wellness: Productivity and Exercise 

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It’s something your hear about everyday in school, at work and in your family life. People always look for new and better ways to be more productive. The people who are the most successful all have one thing in common, and it might not be what you think. They are extremely motivated individuals and  maintain a healthy lifestyle with daily EXERCISE. People who exercise are more likely to enjoy their jobs and achieve a higher level of performance and productivity. Besides the health benefits of being physically active, it also benefits other aspects of life. 

  • Get a better night’s rest – when exercise is added to your daily life you can get better quality sleep. This is crucial in preparation of a highly productive day. 
  • Experience elevated energy – exercise is proven to enhance energy levels and improve focus. All successful people maintain a high level of focus/concentration and stay “in the moment”. You are also less likely to procrastinate and thereby become more productive. 
  • You’ll experience less mood swings – one of the best byproducts of exercise is being happy. When you exercise endorphins are released into the bloodstream. The interaction of endorphins with your brain triggers a positive feeling in the body, similar to that of morphine. The improved sense of wellbeing makes you more calm and a pleasure to be around. That makes it a whole lot easier to make better decisions and be fully engaged. When you’re happy you’re more productive! 
  • Develop healthy behaviors – including exercise into your work day requires a little planning and time management. The behaviors that result are being more task oriented, improved work performance, ability to follow through and being better prepared. 

My view on working is based on time and energy expended. Everyone has a baseline amount of energy they can use each day. Some people have more than others, but with the addition of exercise this level can be altered. The amount of exercise you can handle is directly related to the amount of work you can do. By increasing your level of activity we are actually building the foundation for how much work you can do.

Most people want to exercise to get in shape. There’s no doubt that being fit is the greatest result of working out. However, a very interesting result of daily exercise is the effect on workplace productivity. Employees who exercise avoid procrastination and perform better than employees who are sedentary. Studies have shown that companies that require daily exercise from their staff experience a reduction in rates of illness and injury, which can save $500 per employee every year. Companies should know that implementing a wellness program normally lowers the rate of employee turnover, healthcare costs, disability insurance and sick leave. The increase in overall output from every employee makes this a win-win scenario. 

  

Workplace productivity isn’t purely energy based. It also relies heavily on your mental state of awareness. Sifting through paperwork and a constant barrage of meetings and phone calls can get overwhelming. So just like your body’s energy levels need attention, you need to maintain proper brain function. Exercise enhances the body’s ability to transfer glucose and oxygen to the body and brain. By creating stimuli such as physical activity and proper nutrition we can give the brain what it needs to function optimally. This can have a drastic effect on your performance and workplace capacity. 

Corporate wellness programs are essential to long-term success of any business. 

Here’s an example of what my corporate wellness program would look like: 

Crevfit Corporate Wellness Initiative: goal is to increase employee awareness and benefits of adopting a healthy lifestyle.

Fitness Activities:

Fitness and Mobility testing

Onsite exercise room or fitness center
Walking and/or running club (during lunch hour or breaks)
Onsite bike rake

Mind and Body classes (yoga, tai chi) initiatives

Team sports (basketball, volleyball softball)

Host an exercise equipment swap

Behavior Change or Lifestyle Change Programs:

Smoking cessation
Weight management initiatives

Substance abuse initiatives

Fitness activity

Stress management initiatives

Safety and Prevention Programs:

Back-injury training and prevention
Education about Ergonomics

Exercise Equipment awareness and tutorials

Awareness, Health Education, and Support Programs:

Lunch & Learn or brown-bag wellness seminars
Diet and Nutrition information, plus make available healthy food alternatives in your vending machines and cafeteria, and make available food storage and preparation facilities to encourage healthier eating

Prenatal care initiatives

Work-Life Balance initiatives

Financial education

Stress-Relief Programs:

Laughter bulletin board where employee can post jokes and cartoons (in good taste)
Visiting massage therapist

Stretch breaks

Group lunches or celebrations

  

Proper work desk posture: part of the back pain/injury prevention and Education about Ergonomics.

Being an Olympic athlete makes me an expert in the areas of health and wellness. Inviting me to your workplace could be a motivational catalyts or at the very least a great team building experience. Any inquiries can be directed to the CONTACT tab on my site Crevfit Online Coaching or my email ccreveling@gmail.com

I look forward to hearing from you!

-Chris Creveling

Olympic Silver Medalist, Founder of Crevfit

Cardio That Works in 2016

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“What’s the best form of cardio?” It’s a question asked by many and there are numerous answers. The right answer is different for everyone because it’s based on each person’s individual needs. This question grabbed my attention and I immediately went to work on it. It brought up other questions like, “What cardio works for weight lifters? They have specific goals they want to achieve without an aerobic overload. What cardio works best for the elderly?” 

Cardio can be summed up as any cardiovascular exercise such as running or biking over an extended period of time. It’s very important for our overall health and plays a key role in weight loss. Without this form of exercise the human body could not function. Not to mention you would be incredibly sedentary. But who has time to spend on the treadmill, riding a bike or swimming? Nowadays people really focus on short and effective workouts that produce the best results.

Cardio For Weight Loss
   
Being out of shape is never fun. It’s actually the opposite of fun, and that’s why we decide to lace up the shoes to go out and do something about it. For most people that means buying a pair of $200 Asics and going overboard with jogging everyday, and quiting a few weeks later because of injury or boredom. Instead of doing this I would recommend HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training). Usually HIIT only takes twenty minutes of your time to get a full body workout. This is done with no equipment and only bodyweight exercises from the comfort of your home or while on the road. Not only are these exercises more enjoyable and people LIKE doing HIIT, but they are proven to get results fast.  

 

No matter what your ability level or health, there’s always a HIIT program for you. HIIT programs have proven to be successful for the very old, the obese, and very sick at whatever intensity is considered “all-out” for them. For example, instead of going out for 1 hour of continuous walking try interval walking/jogging. Interval walking should consist of alternating every 3 minutes with low-intensity walking and high-intensity walking (fast pace). The results will be significant reductions in fat mass, visceral fat, and fasting glucose. These are all precursors to weight loss and not achievable with continuous walking alone. 


Cardio Option for Weight Lifting:

As another option, I recommend a different form of interval training called HITC (High Intensity Continuous Training). This differs from HIIT training because it stimulates fast twitch muscle fibers and doesn’t cut into possible muscular growth. Before we get into the benefit of HICT lets talk about the benefits of weight lifting. The main goal for any weight lifting program is to gain size and strength. Although weight lifting does burn fat stores, it will never melt away fat entirely to reveal six pack abs or ripped arms. The reason for that is almost all weight lifting programs lack a key component to fat loss: cardio exercise. Until now, traditional cardio was the only method to achieve fat loss and a lean appearance. 

Since there’s a way to bypass traditional cardio, more people are starting HICT. After adding this to your routine you will get more out of your workouts than you ever thought possible. If you’re a weight lifter or if you’re looking for a “jacked physique” this is going to be a godsend. 

Traditional Cardio isn’t for Everyone

 

Cardio has always been sort of taboo because it allows for a catabolic state of muscle wasting. Once you go beyond your aerobic limits you actually start to lose muscle. That’s exactly the reason many weight lifters avoid cardio like the plague! Luckily for you, there is a middle ground that will allow you to get the best of both worlds…

HITC is designed to enhance your aerobic development in explosive movements over an extended period of time. Workouts will last anywhere from 20 minutes to 60 minuted based in your physical preparedness. Depending on your specific aerobic needs the workout can be shorter or longer, with 5 minute breaks in between 20 minute bouts. During the workout your heart rate shouldn’t exceed 150bpm. Each exercise consists of an eccentric and a concentric movement lasting 2-3 seconds. Rest 3-5 seconds in between reps then continue. 

Take a look at this example of a weighted step up HICT workout—> 

Ideally you would use a weight vest weighing 20-40 lb. and hold 10-15 lb. DB’s in each hand. Using a weight vest will help balance the load without placing too much weight in your hands. I set up a box so that my thigh is around parallel to the floor or slightly higher, and set a metronome app on my phone (or stand in front of a clock) to ensure that I perform one rep every 2-3 seconds. You can use whatever method you’d like to ensure than you perform a repetition every 2-3 seconds. I typically switch legs every 15-30 seconds to avoid fatigue.

Chris Creveling performs weighted step up

High Intesnsity Continuous Training (HICT) is the best form of cardio to aid in muscle building. This includes exercises like weight-vest step ups, sled pulls with heavy weight and stationary bike with high resistance. These exercises are explosive and powerful, but at a much slower pace than normal. The key is to enhance the muscle fiber’s endurance so it can handle heavier loads for longer durations. This is all done without exhausting the muscles completely. For best results I recommend implementing this at the end of a hypertrophy workout.

As your online fitness coach I aim to create a fitness plan that matches your unique needs. Working out without a detailed plan and expecting to reach your goal is useless. There has to be a vision that aligns with what you want to achieve. To get a fitness+nutrition plan designed specifically for you, visit the Crevfit website and schedule a free consultation. 

What is Trainerize?

As your fitness coach, I would like you to know a little more about the training software I use. This is a step by step detailed overview of what a training plan looks like using Trainerize.

Operation Abs – Week 5 – Trainerize (workout training software)

Over the next 6 months I’m going to be tracking the performance of my newest coaching client- Mr ‘C’ (not his real name). His quest, to have a 6 pack for Christmas 2015! I will be posting blog updates every 1-2 weeks, tracking his progress, explaining the protocols that he will be using.

Week 5 – Trainerize

This week we are going to look at how I deliver my training programs to Mr C. Gone are the days of pen and paper notebooks. Even excel spreadsheets have come and gone. Today everyone has a smart phone in their pocket, and (unfortunately) this comes with us out onto the gym floor.

For that reason it’s an obvious step to deliver clients their programs via their phones. And that is exactly what I do – all my clients programs are delivered to them via a software app called Trainerize.

What Is Trainerize?

Trainers s a web and smartphone (iphone & android apps included) software tool that allows coaches and trainers to track and build custom programs for their clients. Things like exercise notes, demonstration videos and rest timers are all built in.

Mr C just needs to open up the Trainerize app and can see what workout I have scheduled for him for that day, what mobility warmup he needs to do, all the set and rep ranges for each exercise, and any videos or notes that I have left to help him with each exercise. The best thing for both of us is all the weights and reps that he performs during that session are saved in the software for me to review and for Mr C to build off.

Alex Fergus Coaching Trainerize Review

Benefits to Mr C

As part of the onboarding client process, I sat down (or I would do it over skype if it was an online client) with Mr C and discussed his goals, lifestyle habits, access to gym or training resources, injuries and anything else that I need to build a training plan. Using this information, I combine it with the clients initial screening results to build the optimal training program completely tailored to the client. There are no cookie cutter programs used here.

This program is build from a database of exercises that I have added to my Trainerize library. Every exercise has my own notes and cues, along with a video attached. The program that is delivered to Mr C then includes all of these videos and notes so Mr C knows exactly how to perform any unfamiliar exercises.

Mr C then simply opens up his app, and will see the scheduled workout for the day (email reminders are also sent every morning, explaining what todays workout involves). Along with his upcoming workouts.

Trainerize Review

Once Mr C has loaded up the day’s program, he will see all his warmup routines, an overview of the session, prescribed exercises (with a button to view a demonstration video and my own notes on the lift),  and the sets, reps, rest and RPE for each lift.

The other great thing about the Trainerize app is that all your workout data is stored. So you can see the weights you performed for every lift – whether it was last week or last year. With a simple click you can see all previous data and use this to make informed decisions as to what weight you should use today (or what weight you need to do to hit a Personal Best).

Trainerize Review

Mr C, and my online clients can also leave notes at the end of the session. These notes, along with the data from the workout, are then sent to me to review every morning. Perhaps Mr C couldn’t get access to the bench press, so he performed DB presses instead – he would add this to the notes so I know exactly what’s going on and why the numbers may look slightly different today.

The Trainerize App also tracks body metrics and body photos. Body fat percentage, weight, limb circumference, it can all be tracked and graphed from within the app itself.

Trainerize ReviewTrainerize Review

Finally, Mr C can also login to his profile through the Trainerize Website and see even more data such as his training calendar with all his scheduled workouts and reminders.

Trainerize Review

And also his progress graphs and how he is improving with his lifts.

Trainerize Review

All in all, Mr C has his complete training program with all his data at his fingertips. It makes training without a trainer so much easier as:

– The program is built for you, no more turning up to the gym and not knowing what to do.

– There are video demo’s for each lift to help with your form and technique.

– All of your past workout info is saved. No more needing to bring in notebooks or having to remember what weight you did last time.

– I, as your coach, oversee all your workouts and use this information to build your next program.

– It keeps you accountable as not only can you see your own progress, but so can I!

Please don’t hesitate to comment if you have any questions or concerns! I would be glad to talk with you. Also visit my Trainerize website for more —–> Trainerize Website

Yours in fitness,

Chris Creveling
Founder of Crevfit
Visit http://www.Crevfit.com for more info

Introducing Crevfit Nutrition Services: Evolution Nutrition

Why is Nutrition a Bigger Deal Than Fitness?

How many times have you heard stories about “the secret to fat loss” or “the magic weight loss supplement”? It’s a standard sales pitch for any current supplement company and usually not true. There’s no replacement for a proper diet for healthy weight loss. Not only do those supplements not work, most of them contain filler ingredients that have basically no nutritional value. The plan for most of these supplements is to provide a shortcut to weight loss that people will pay extra to have. Please don’t believe the hype, and definitely don’t take any supplements that could negatively impact your health.

Since we now know that there is no magic pill to take, what’s the alternative? In short I will say there is no better way to change your physique than by changing your diet. It’s important to understand what’s going on inside your body before changing your physique. In order to recover from workouts your body needs healthy amounts of quality- sleep, appropriate caloric intake and hydration. Other important factors are Vitamin-D, Testosterone, Cortisol, Glucose and vital nutrients. These need to be in the correct range for your body to be on track for a transformation. Until this happens, supplements and insane training routines will not help. This leaves me with a solution to this ongoing problem.

The best way to achieve healthy weight loss is a two pronged  approach- a proper nutritional program and a high intensity fitness program. No matter what you hear on TV or see online, this is the framework to any good weight loss program. In fact, adequate nutrition is the only way to see noticeable results from a fitness plan.

Now comes the tricky part. How do you use nutrition to enhance your fitness plan and reach your weight loss goals?

By identifying your nutritional deficiencies and individual needs we can design the best plan for you. There is no need for sweating the details for your daily calorie requirements or weighing your food before eating. With Evolution Nutrition software everything is done for you and fitted alongside your fitness plan. The best feature of this software is the food exchange program. This allows the client to choose their own foods based on macro nutrient requirements. This puts the power in the client’s hands by giving multiple options for all food option.

Nutrition plan in PDF format

Nutrition plan in PDF format

It’s no secret that many supplement products are not what they appear to be. The reason behind this is based on nutrition and dieting trends as well as marketing ploys. Now I would like to provide you with an alternative to this madness. Crevfit Online Coaching is a complete fitness plan with 24/7 coaching support along with daily workouts and nutritional support. The application which makes this process possible is called Trainerize. Trainerize, the fitness software leader in online personal training, announced a strategic partnership with Evolution Nutrition, the leader in customized meal planning software, establishing a powerful combined offering that allows fitness professionals and studios to provide a flexible and complete health and wellness solution to consumers worldwide.

Clients can access and follow meal plans from their Trainerize mobile app, anywhere (yes, including at the grocery store or at work). The meal plan displays in full view, so clients will be able to scroll, zoom in, print and even save the meal plan to their computers or devices if they wish to do so.

Nutrition Software

Evolution Nutrition Software 

I’m very excited to unveil this nutrition service to all my clients. It’s the perfect combination of technology and simplicity that will guarantee results with everyone. I personally welcome all of you to try the new features of Crevfit Online Coaching and get a free one week trial of Evolution Nutrition. There’s a limited amount of spots available for this package deal so take advantage of this exclusive deal!

Yours in fitness,

Chris Creveling
Founder of Crevfit
Visit Crevfit.com for more info

Finding Your Passion

In the past year I’ve discovered my new passion. Obviously I’m passionate about my sport (speed skating) and competing. This sport has shown me what I’m capable of and what is possible if you truly set your mind on something. What could I be passionate about beyond my Olympic aspirations?

The answer is Crevfit, my personally developed fitness program. The main areas I will address are fighting obesity in America and creating a fitness program that’s accessible to everyone, everywhere, anytime. By providing daily workouts and weekly meal plans I have an answer to this growing obesity epidemic we are facing in the US.

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The fitness industry is growing at an exponential rate. Everyday there’s a new workout trend or fad diet that will fizzle out over time. Since the 1970’s there have always been fitness programs available. The problem isn’t finding a good one, it’s finding the time to complete the program successfully. Now I ask you, What does everyone have in common? EVERYONE faces issues with balancing a lack of time, energy, family life and a busy work schedule. The number one complaint I’ve heard from people is “I can’t get the results I want with my busy schedule.”

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Perhaps some people really don’t have the time to workout. Especially if you’re a working mother with kids and can’t afford a personal trainer. But could all the time during your day be vested in working and family activities? What about those twenty minutes of peace and quiet when there’s nothing to do?

Crevfit Online Coaching is designed for use with your mobile device. Everyday is a chance to check in to a workout and follow the video instructions to reap the benefits of at-home goals. This leaves no room for error since we can keep tabs on proper form and exercise technique. Along with 24/7 direct messaging and email sport the app also features the ability to make a Skype call directly within the Trainerize app.

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The best feature of all is that you can now have a personal trainer with you wherever you go. No more guess work for what the next workout will be, how the workout should be done, or questions about proper technique. Even if you don’t own a tablet or smartphone the workouts are still available in a printer friendly format. But enough about the app…

Training should be made easily accessible and fun. By committing to a goal and following a precise plan you’re already closer to finally achieving that goal. The only thing left to do is try it out for yourself. Right now I’m hosting a Crevfit Summer Weight loss challenge via Facebook. Join my 4-week event Crevfit Summer Weight loss challenge and like my Facebook page  Crevfit Online Coaching to keep up on everything that’s happening. It’s not too late to join!

-Chris Creveling
Founder of Crevfit
http://www.Crevfit.com

Silver in Sochi

We knew our friends and family would be watching from home. We did it!

View our thoughts on our Olympic medal here, at the USA house

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This was easily one of the best nights of my life. We took home the silver medal in the men’s relay on the last day of competition. I guess you could say, “better late than never!” It was the only medal for team usa in speed skating. I’m extremely glad I got the opportunity to win my first Olympic medal.

We raced on Saturday night at 10:30pm Sochi time. The arena was sold out with thousands of Russian fans who made their presence known. But I always knew where to look in the stands for my team usa cheering section. Especially where my mom and girlfriend were sitting, anxiously waiting for the race. All season long we had waited for this moment, and the other four guys on my team had fire in our hearts. We had only one thing to do, go out there and win. 

Going into the race there was no nerves, no worries at all. When we had a pep-talk that day, the only thing we talked about was just skate confident. We were the world cup Champions going into the race, so it was ours for the taking. But to prepare for the race we made sure to have a team moment and watch Warrior. The stage was set and our team was ready. 

At the start of the race I was on the outside position. We knew that I needed to get to the front of the race, so I just imagined what we had gone over in practice the day before. The gun went off and as I made my way around the first corner there was a crash! Two teams fell directly in front of me and I hustled up the inside into second place.

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The relay had literally exploded in the first lap and the cheering was intense. We had second place in our grasp, so I moved up right behind the Russian team to make the first relay push with Jr. We made sure to stay behind them for most of the race, making them use all of their energy to lead the race. But make no mistake, every move in that race was hard fought and difficult. It was probably the roughest ice I raced on all year, since we were the last race of the competition and there was no time for ice repair.

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Here is a good shot of Jr as we moved to take the lead of the race. After letting Russia lead most of the race, we had to pick up the pace to win. It came down to the last exchange, and we were edged out by Victor Ahn. He had a crazy Olympic performance claiming 3 gold medals. If I could be edged out by one person I would go with Ahn. Needless to say, winning the silver medal brought tears of joy to our eyes. We did everything we could to win that race and that is all that matters now.

We celebrated on the ice, during the flower ceremony, and back at the USA house. Actually the next the days were a celebration for us! I couldn’t sleep and it was basically a whirlwind of media, medal ceremony and podium hijinks, and the buildup to closing cerimonies. It was the end of my Sochi experience, but definitely something I will never forget.

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Four Days To Go

When I left the USA I had no idea what waited for me in Sochi. The park has lived upto its reputation and there’s been almost no problems so far. In the couple weeks I’ve been here the place has changed. Thousands of people have flooded into the park to watch the events. The venues are bright and always pretty full, but have not been sold out.

My take on all the events so far: incredible. I haven’t been to another Olympic Games but this Olympics is massive. The hockey games are exciting, speed skating is packed (but not sold out) every night, curling is a pleasure to watch, figure skating is fun,  all the events I’ve watched are great. I got a US hockey Jersey and went to a game with my dad. That was for sure a proud moment, and hopefully not the last game I goto.

Luckily I got the chance to go up to the mountain cluster and watch the men’s bobsled. The USA team for two-man bobsled won the bronze medal and we witnessed all of it! The trip up the mountain took about a hour on the train. Then one gondola ride later we were there. The views from the mountains did not disappoint. We could see the Alpine skiing areas and plenty of places to shop. The buildings were not completely finished, but the mountain village is beautiful.

The Russian fans there are what really surprised me. They are actually nice to us (Americans) and are very respectful. When there is a Russian in the event, that’s when you hear them cheering. It’s not necessarily because they want them to win. Mostly it’s a moment for their country and they want you to hear all about it. The Russians won the gold medal that night, but the US team was close behind.

So far my events have been hard fought and aggressive. It’s too bad that I didn’t make it to the final round individually and that’s now in the past. I have my sights set on the relay event in two days. It’s the US team’s best chance to medal at the games. The Olympics are almost over so I’m pouring everything into this full-on battle. Let’s hope there is something shimmering (and metallic) waiting for me as well.

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Happy Valentines Day!

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Bringing my experience home

I love speed skating, and I love the Olympics!

This is a quote from Sugar Todd, a long track speed skater on team usa.  She was so excited to skate her first race, and make her dream come true.  I just thought I would share that with all of you. My Olympics had been great so far, I’m making every second count.  And I want to say that making the Olympics is a crazy achievement, not many people can say they have competed in the Olympics and I’m honored to be here. But living every moment to the fullest and racing your full potential is the goal at the Olympics. I want everyone to know that I’m not here just to have fun, but to be on top of the podium.

Most of the time I have spent here had been skating, eating sleeping and riding from one place to the next. But now that races have started is a whole different experience. I’m starting to hit my stride and it couldn’t have come at a better time. It’s time to make my country and hometown proud. And of course for me to go out there and have no regrets. Take a look at some of the pictures I took off opening cerimonies, riding around the park and just hanging out at the Sochi Winter Olympics.

I have had the opportunity to meet some really awesome people and make new friends. Also its nice to see familiar faces when I’m at the Team usa house or Proctor and Gamble house. I took some pics with a couple of them but there will be more top come later. I also got the chance to take pay in the gold medal celebrations with the slopestyle snowboarders. Fingers crossed that I get to do some celebrating of my own.

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Sochi, we’re here!

The games are upon us.  When I arrived in Sochi I didn’t know what to expect. Now that I’ve seen everything, it is amazing and  beyond what I thought was possible.  Opening cerimonies are tomorrow and we are gearing up to walk as TEAM USA! Take a look at the Olympic village and keep in mind that I took these pictures a few days ago. 

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These are the apartments we are living in for the next two weeks.

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Short track and figure skating venue

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Opening cerimonies

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I have to say that these Olympics are going to be great. The venues are awesome, the food and facilties are up to my standards.  Actually the best part ofmy trip d so far has been using our team bikes. BMW donated bikes for the alleys use in the Olympic village. Each country had their own b bikes and it’s are the best I’ve seen.

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View from my apartment

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These pictures are just a hint of what Sochi is like. Please stay tuned for more posts coming soon.

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For more info on events and athletes please visit NBC Olympics

The Wait Is Over

The wait is over. World Cup season if finally here, my second season with the World Cup team. The races start on Sept. 26 in Shanghai, then Seoul Korea right after. That means we will be spending about two weeks in Asia. I’m looking forward to seeing the cultures, getting some deals on merchandise, trying new foods. My favorite thing about traveling to Asia is the jet lag (hint of sarcasm). There will be a period of about a week that time has completely flipped. China is 15 hours ahead of where I’m from in Salt Lake City.

Last night we arrived in Shanghai for World Cup 1. It’s still a little difficult for me to make sense of where the time has gone since mid- April. A lot has changed for me with training, my recovery techniques, my mentality has changed. For the first time I’m feeling familiarized with international competition and the demands that are made on my body. The jet lag, changes in diet, competition layout, the racing and resting schedule. I have started working with more people (Doctors, trainers, therapists) to help keep me healthy and ready for anything.

Some of the best recovery tools you have are right in front of you. I’ll say that nutrition and hydration are the most obvious parts of recovery. I have learned a lot about these in particular since I am sensitive to gluten and have a tough time staying hydrated. When it comes to my sport (speedskating) I take all of this to the next level. Without letting my body rest and recover, I would never have gotten to the World Cup stage. That’s why many world class athletes use massage therapists, athletic trainers, medical professionals and others to force the issue of recovery. Like a lot of the skaters in SLC I goto Ryan Yakiwchuk (massage therapist) with Ultimate Body Work. He is amazing with helping athletes, especially elite athletes. When I go in to see him there is always a healing and positive atmosphere, which is important for physical and mental well being. He’s genuinely good with taking care of injuries, special needs or anything regarding recovery. That is hard to believe coming from a speedskater, and trust me we are not easy to accommodate… The latest technique we use is called fascia stretch therapy. Visit www.stretchtown.com to see what it is all about!

So what’s the main reason to get this treatment done? Getting a massage and stretching/ unwinding your tight muscles is going to help facilitate recovery. But that means nothing if you aren’t taking care of yourself and getting to know your body. It takes a long time to learn how your body can handle different types of training and recovery techniques. By acknowledging how your body feels and removing any doubt, you allow yourself to fully recover. That’s why I say that my mentality has changed. It affects everything including my performance and lifestyle. When I’m not training I can also feel the difference in my energy and general health. So maybe I was a little overworked in the past, but the fact is that with rest and recovery I can actually extend the lifetime of my career.

If you are an athlete or a workaholic, it’s probably difficult to keep your body hydrated all the time. Drinking more than you think you should is the best bet to make sure dehydration isn’t an issue. Other recovery tools I would like to stress are sleep (lots of sleep, zzzzzzz) and active recovery. Your body is constantly playing catch-up with muscle and tissue breakdown, so getting enough rest is the only way to let your body recover fully. I don’t have to preach about how important sleep is, but Americans are notorious for being sleep deprived. And when you’re not sleeping, another way to recover your body is light, low heart-rate exercise. That can be an easy spin on the bike, swim, jog, yoga, whatever suits you. Your body is a amazing machine which can filter out lactic acid, toxins, and anything you put into it.

Now that trials are over we have actually kicked it up a notch. There is only a limited amount of time to get good training in which means its time to work! But not only are we working hard, but recovering as well. That means cooling down after workouts, stretching, eating well, massages, etc. It’s amazing how much we can accomplish during the week. When I started with the national team it seemed like I had a lot to do. But now we can accomplish so much more as a team. When we decide as a group  that it seems ridiculous. This experience has been truly remarkable and shows me that so much more is possible. I guess that is what the Olympic movement is all about!

Here are a few photos from the past couple months of training. They are pretty interesting since I have been all over the place for training, sponsor events, traveling, so enjoy!

Look for an update after World Cup 1 coming soon

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2013 USANA Convention.

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