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Wednesday
Aug012012

Train like an Olympian

PHOTO COURTESY 24 HOUR FITNESS - Kerri Walsh shows her side planks workout on the 24 Hour Fitness "teamusa" blog. Which Olympic athlete’s body do you want yours to resemble? What sport do you aspire to compete at a higher level? Do you want to be in the same shape as those you are seeing in London? 

Regardless of the answers to those questions, you can at least train like a world-class athlete. 

A quick Google search of “Olympians training regimen” will bring up pretty much any sport currently in London competing in the Olympics – track & field, fencing, water polo, beach volleyball, and more. 

And the range of workouts is as vast as the sports that you find. Ryan Lochte, the multi medal-winning swimmer in the London Games, shows how he dragged empty beer kegs as a form of resistance training, while Kerri Walsh, the 2004 and 2008 gold medalist in beach volleyball, goes through some of her simple gym activities like single deadlifts and side planks, as part of 24 Hour Fitness training videos with Walsh, Tony Acevedo (water polo) and April Holmes (track & field). 

Even Forbes (“How to Train Like an Olympian”) and Huffington Post (question and answers with soccer player Christine Rampone) have jumped on board. Everyone has Olympics fever! 

WebMD has a series of interviews on its YouTube with American athletes, but surprisingly it is not the physiology of training or other medical-related agenda. Rather it explains what they eat, how much sleep they get, what sort of training they do and how far in advance do thy start. 

Jennifer Muzzey, Fitness director at River Valley Club in Lebanon, N.H., and a certified trainer, said that if someone indeed wants to train like an Olympian than they should certainly make sure they make it worth the time they put in. She stressed volume and power . 

“The more power you have, the faster you will be,” she explained. “Instead of just dragging a sled, put weight on it. Instead of running, run with a parachute for some resistance.” 

Of course if you want something quick (140 characters quick) there is always Twitter where you can learn about what the athletes are doing, training- and preparation-wise, while they are in London. 

Muzzey noted that there are plenty of options at the gym. She said many athletes take part in popular routines like CrossFit and Tabata, the latter actually originated for the Chinese Olympic speed skating team. 

“Everyone is different,” Muzzey said. “In our facility, we believe everyone needs some sort of training.”

So, get out there and train hard.

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