Recovery for Master Athletes

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Master AthleteGetting old does not have to suck. In fact, quite the opposite. Many athletes fear the passing of time and see it as a negative:

My joints will begin to hurt…
My metabolism will slow down…
My times will get slower…
My sex drive will be even lower…
I will not be able to train at the level I once did…

These all have a seed of truth but only if you let them happen. With the proper adjustments to training and lifestyle, these statements can be reversed and prevented.

Unlike football, ice hockey, rugby, and other sports, the great thing about swimming is that it truly is a lifetime sport; you literally can swim from the cradle to the grave. Moreover, with swimming, you have the potential to get faster with age.

The endurance athlete usually peaks in their mid thirties and early forties. Just look at Dana Niad Look at any master swim team and more often than not, the people in the fast lane are not all strapping 20 somethings but a mix of all ages.

So what adjustments do you need to make as you get older to ensure continued growth in the sport? Your major focus needs to be on recovery.

It is true that recovery become more important as you age. Since your ability to circulate blood declines, try wearing compression garments after workouts and during the day. We like Pro Compression socks which not only look normal underneath work clothes but also provides compression beyond just the calf to under the ankle.

Nutrition also plays a critical role in recovery. While this could be a separate article in and of itself, a few basic tips are to limit alcohol (do not try to relive your college years), make sure you eat your vegetables, and get your omega 3 fatty acids.

If you are really struggling with recovery or want to take your recovery to the next level, then try a supplement like Enduropacks, which will shotgun essential vitamins and amino acids into your system when you need it the most.

Finally, it is an old joke that old people sleep a lot, but as master athletes sleeping is critical to helping you recovery and athletically improve. 6-7 hours a night may not be enough like it was in your teens, so consider boosting it to 8 and potentially including a nap mid day.

Don’t let age define your athletic career; it is merely an opportunity to hit a new PR!

What are your concerns about aging and triathlon fitness?