Tis The Season ...

By Marilyn Trout | 12/12/11
Tis The Season ...

Photo © Jonathan Devich/epicimages.us

We’ve teamed up with Marilyn Trout, certified USA Cycling Elite Coach to answer Voler Newsletter List members’ training questions. You can view her coach profile at http://www.linkedin.com/in/mountainpedalscoaching80903 Send your cycling inquiries to Marilyn, and for a limited time, if yours is selected to be answered in our Training column, Voler will send you a $20 gift certificate that can be used towards any purchase from the Voler Store at http://www.voler.com. To submit your inquiry, e-mail her at Marilyn@MountainPedals.net, and type “Voler Training Question” in the subject line of the e-mail.

The following tip is a reprint of a December 2006 article from Marilyn. Still great off-season advice!


Jolly? Well how about jolly and fit.

We are in a season that is so very different than any other of the year. With it, come all the joys, or stress, of getting together with friends and family, holiday parties and homemade goodies. To be honest, there is some kind of increased stress level that comes with all the routine changes in our work and family schedules as well as nutritional indulgences that affect us in some very significant ways. For us as athletes, this can spell disaster with our training regimen and lean body mass index, or in Santa’s terms, jelly belly. However, it doesn’t have to be that way. I believe you can enter the New Year being able to build upon your December fitness instead of dealing with your fitness carnage.

Here’s a few things to keep in mind for December’s training and dealing with the “homemade goodies” (adapted from the 3/06 article):

  • Change your mindset. Realize that December is different and some training changes will have to occur to accommodate all the ingredients of the holidays. That’s OK! Realize that less is better than none and even three days of training in a week will help maintain a certain fitness level.
  • Plan ahead. As your daytimer fills in with evening activities, start planning ahead as to when you can fit your training in. You might have to get up a little earlier or do a lunch workout. It just won’t happen without a bit of forethought and it certainly won’t happen at the end of a long day or evening.
  • Go into a “maintenance mode” when things are busy and chaotic. If you can’t get your planned training time in, don’t beat yourself up. Make use of the time that is available, even if it’s 30-45 minutes, hop on the trainer, go for a run or do a core workout with the fitness ball. You want to guard against one missed day moving into 2-3 days. We want to save a missed day for the unexpected, “you can’t make a workout happen” situation. Consistency, consistency, consistency is the absolute key for the season.
  • Plan an additional day off during your training week. This allows for a guilt-free day to get some extra activities in that are pulling on you. There is a different mental outlook on a “planned” day off which doesn’t have guilt or laziness attached to it.
  • Enjoy the holiday goodies but in moderation. Put a limit on “empty” calories you consume, those food items with little nutritional value and excessive calories (refined sugar/processed foods…).
  • Stay away from foods that “control” you ie) “I just can’t have one.”
  • Don’t eat after 8:00pm or for those on shift work, after your last meal before you sleep.
  • Eat slower and enjoy each bite.
  • Don’t skip meals.
  • Enjoy smaller portions.
  • Overeating means overweight.
  • Brush your teeth after meals, it helps finish a meal.
  • It never tastes as good as thin feels.
  • Feed your brain first and then your stomach…this is the key to losing and keeping the weight off.
  • Overeating is not a response to hunger.
  • Calories do count and the reduction of them is what really matters not necessarily the proportion of fats, carbohydrates and proteins.
  • “Good health starts with good choices.” How bad do you want it?



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