My five rules on how to survive #Juneathon

I normally don’t write for specific people, but this blog post is focused on my friend Matt, who’s decided to try #Juneathon after learning about it yesterday. Yes, it’s that time of year again, and the ‘festival of activities and excuses‘ has kicked off today. So back to my friend – he asked me for ideas on what to do during Juneathon, so here’s my advice:

  1. Don’t get injured: I know, the training part is the cool bit (and I’ll get to it later), but injury’s the biggest risk. Those little twitches and pains you have, over the next 30 days, they are only going to get worse. If you train daily, you will get tired, and much more prone to injury. Sleep, rest, hydrate, relax – try to make sure at least two workouts of your week are focused on recovery: swim, stretch, dance, foam roll (my favourite).
  2. Vary your training: The key is to do something else every day, to avoid repetitive stress. This is my game plan for this time around: I’ll do two types of jiu-jitsu this month (German – yes, that’s a real thing – and Brazilian), I have set up a training plan (based on the basic training phase four of Shuler & Cosgrove’s excellent New Roles of Lifting – Supercharged) with three different days – two classic lifting days, and one for metabolic training (with lots of fast and exhausting jumping about). For endurance training, I run (probably is short run around 5k, and then the occasional longer run), and for more relaxed days, I’ll jump on the cross-trainer. That’s about six, seven different days.
  3. Keep it short: Juneathon is about regularity, not all out effort every time (see number 1 above). What I found most freeing about it, is that the question ‘when do I get time to workout next’ has been answered – it’s today. And I’m surprised how easy it becomes, when you’re committed to not give up.
  4. Keep going: Last time, when I did Janathon (I guess that’s kinda self-explaining), I decided to just keep going. I trained all through January and February, and by mid-March, I only had about 8% of all training days in the year missed – none of them in January. It’s great when the routine kicks in, and you’re just going on. Train like it’s never going to stop, and daily is the new normal, even if you fall back into a more reduced schedule.
  5. If you get injured – don’t give up: Never, ever ‘work through the pain’, it will only get worse. If you need to take time off, take it. Chronic injury is not worth risking, however motivated you might be. There are – especially with resistance training – many ways to avoid the injured body part. Feet sore? Work on the punching bag. Knuckles sore from punching? Go swimming. Lift the next day. Go dancing on Saturday night. Do yoga the next day. Rinse, recover, repeat.

There they are – my five tips for surviving Juneathon. And that’s my first post – I’ll probably, as every time, mostly tweet, but here we go.

June 1st, 2014 by