Strength And Conditioning, Nutrition, Health
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Staying on Track While Traveling
Whether you are an athlete or a coach, keeping your team and yourself on track is a vital to the team’s and your performance. A key part to making sure that travel does not sideline your progress or performance is doing the proper prep prior to. As a sports physical therapist, I have traveled the majority of my work life over the last 15 years. Short trips are no problem, but the majority of this travel includes 5–7-day trips for several weeks on end. As a weightlifter and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu athlete, keeping on track with my fitness and training goals are essential. In this blog, I wanted to share a few tips that I have found helpful.
* As a note – I mention several products that I use. This is not an endorsement of these products but are products that I used based on my own research and desire for cost effective products that are proven and help me achieve my goals. I simply include them here as an example so that the reader has something to compare to *
- Pre-Trip Preparation. There are several things that I do prior to a trip. It takes a few minutes but frankly, for the benefit, it is time well spent.
- Picking a hotel – first thing I do before picking a hotel, is check out the gym. Most hotels “say” they have a gym but what some define as a gym and what I think of as a gym is totally different. If you find a hotel that says it has a gym and no pictures of it on their website, don’t do it. I always look for a gym with some form of cardio, dumbbells and cable machine. With that, I can do 90% of what I need. In Covid times, I also call to see if the gym is 24 hours. Most are but some have moved to limited hours. I hit it at 3 AM so this will determine whether I can use or not. Just because says on the website, confirm with a quick call.
- Pre-picking restaurants – there is nothing worse than trying to pick a restaurant when you are hungry. Looking for healthy food choices at that point go out the door. I will look for ones close to where I am going to be at and even take a step to look at the menus. I save these in my google maps and gives me quick reference of where I can go in time of need.
- Score a gym – for me, in addition to my weight training, I also like to keep consistent at my Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ). I pack my Gis with me wherever I go. I always pre-search gyms in the area, look at the reviews, contact the gym to make sure they are open to guest and see what the mat fees are. For BJJ and as an upper belt and mature (older) athlete, it is vital I get to a gym that has a good culture and not a place that just shows the out of towner how much we can kick the dog out of you. This aspect has led to some of the most amazing training experiences, expanded my game and led to some amazing friendships with people all over the country.
- Pre-packing snacks and protein – below is a sample of what I take with me. I pre-package my morning protein load in separate baggies. I also include supplements including:
- Vitamin Code – mixture of multiple vitamins that helps with stress, recovery, heart and prostate health and mental acuity.
- Magnesium – helps with migraines (which I tend to get and helps prevent)
- Vitamin C – I super dose my Vitamin C, especially while traveling. I use a mix with water that allows easy absorption and typically at 1000-1500 mg/day. This keeps my immune system healthy especially while traveling during current times.
- Quality Greens Superfood – this is a mixture of organic greens that is considered a superfood. This helps with recovery, overall health and building the immune system. I personally use Beauty Greens Superfoods.
- Whey protein isolate – this a soy free, all organic protein mix with minimal additives and preservatives and no sugar (pictured). One quick tip for finding a good quality protein. Scoop a scooper full and pour it out slowly. You are looking to see if it flows like a fine mist vs. in clumps. The cleaner the protein is, the finer mist you get. Clumper the protein, the more additives, and preservatives.
- Fulvic Acid – This is a key element for recovery. Simplistically, this helps to reduce the buildup of CO2 and lactic acid and as such speeds up recovery. I use Black Oxygen but there are a lot of others out there.
- Protein bars and drinks – I use pre-made protein drinks as good supplement. I personally like Orgain as it is all organic, comes from grass fed sources and low sugar.
- If you are looking to evaluate the supplements you choose and want a good non-bias resource, use labdoor.com They do independent analysis of all supplements and then rank on purity.
This is just part of the prep for travel. Next time, I will talk about some additional things that you can do for your trip to help you and your team stay on target.