Being a competitive fighter is not for everyone. This sport is one of the most physically and mentally taxing out there. You have to have great stamina, strong muscles, fast recovery time and stable mental health to tie everything together. It can be easy for any of these factors to be diluted by the intensity that competitive fighter training requires, but there are things that you can do to mitigate the often-draining nature of training, fighting and daily life. If you have found yourself struggling with your mental and physical health as a fighter, then here are some things you can do that will help you reach and stay at your best potential as a person and as a competitor.
Utilize Proper Nutrition
A key part of keeping stable physical and mental health is to make sure you are eating healthily. For a training fighter, that may look like eating a lot more than an average person. It also may look like eating mostly whole foods. This refers to foods that are as close to their original form as possible, for example, a salad with lentils as the protein source, a myriad of vegetables and a complex carbohydrate like a whole grain pasta.
Eating filling, whole food-based meals is a great way to get started, but you should also consider supplementing your food with supplements. Taking something like a hormone balance supplement every day can help you supplement your meals with the nutrition you need to continue regulating important processes, such as your hormonal balance. Nutrition is important because it helps keep you physically fit, but it also helps keep you mentally fit. Pay special attention to what you ingest!
Meditation can help you physically and mentally. Taking even five minutes every day in the morning to sit quietly and follow a guided meditation can start you off on the right foot for your entire day. It can help you clear your mind and strengthen your ability to control your thoughts and, as a result, your decisions. While meditation is known for its mental benefits, it has physical benefits as well, and may even help regulate your central nervous system.
Take Sleep Seriously
Sleep is one of the most important things to pay attention to for any human being, especially someone who is spending a lot of their time training and fighting competitively. A lack of sleep has been attributed to many different bad health conditions as well as a general feeling of being unwell. Sleeping allows your body to repair itself from your thought training sessions as well as any injuries you may have sustained during a fight. For an adult, around seven to eight hours is considered a good, moderate amount of sleep to get every night.
Figure Out Stress Relief
Stress is always a major factor in people’s lives. It comes in all different shapes and sizes, but our bodies react to both physical stress, such as that from long training sessions, as well as mental stress, such as a fight with a loved one. That physical stress response then takes its toll on your body and can hurt your progress in your fighting career. One way to relieve stress is to find a peaceful hobby that you enjoy doing, such as knitting, reading or taking relaxing strolls down your street.
Training as a competitive fighter is no joke, but it is also extremely rewarding. Being able to step up to the mat and give everything you have during a fight is an experience that is so unique. If you have the fighter spirit in you, then you will want to keep entering the ring, no matter what the outcome is. However, all of that training can take the wind out of you sometimes. Following one or all of these tips can help you stay at the top of your game so you can keep doing what you love.
Mikkie is a freelance writer from Chicago. She is also a mother of two who loves sharing her ideas on interior design, budgeting hacks, and DIY. When she’s not writing, she’s chasing the little ones or rock climbing at the local climbing gym.
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