Workout Secrets of the 3 Star Athletes of Rio 2016

The Rio Olympics have been amazing so far. Records have been broken multiple times, often by athletes who were already world-record holders such as Usain Bolt and Michael Phelps.

How do these top athletes excel? And what lessons can be learned from them?

To help you improve your own game, here are some training tips from Olympic champions in Rio 2016.

Simone Biles

American Simone Biles, just 19, is already a household name and an Olympic superstar. In Rio de Janeiro in 2016 the gymnast became only the fifth woman to win four gold medals at a single Games, after Agnes Keleti and Larisa Latynina for Hungary and the Soviet Union respectively in 1956, Vera Caslavska for Czechoslovakia in 1968 and Romania’s Ekaterina Szabo in 1984.

But how does she win? And how can you incorporate her training techniques into your own routine? Here are 3 hints:

1. Be Able to Lift Your Own Weight

Most of gymnastics is about bodyweight exercises—you have to be able to lift your own weight in different situations. You want a lean and light frame but we also have to be strong.

To build real strength without unwanted bulk, switch to bodyweight exercises such as triceps dips, pull-ups, chin-ups, press-ups and leg raises. Read more.

2. Challenge Your Core Muscles

Before each training session we do a warm-up circuit which really works your mid-section from the front, the sides and the back.

3. Build on Different Skills

Most gymnasts follow a cycle of gymnastics workouts are designed to build on each other into a series of complimentary complexes. If you want to try out this method, this is an excellent introduction.

Ultimately, it’s about persistence. Says Biles:

“I train 32 hours a week over 6 days. On Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday from 9am until 12pm, I focus on basics and skills so I can break everything down and really get a hold of them. In the afternoon, from 3pm until 6pm, I put the skill sets together that I worked on that morning. Monday and Wednesday from 12:30-5:30, I work on basics for about 15 minutes and then a combination of everything from skills to routines. Same thing on Saturday from 9am from 1pm. ”

Usain Bolt

Speaking of icons, Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt has done it again. Regarded as the fastest person ever timed, he is the first man to hold both the 100 metres and 200 metres world records since fully automatic time became mandatory.

This year in Rio, Bolt clinched a record third Olympic gold medal in the 100 m sprint. But how does he do it?

While Bolt is obviously naturally talented, his training program provides lessons for everyone:

1. Runners Should Never Forget the Weight Room

Training on weights increases your strength and stamina, and also adjusts your metabolism (you’ll keep off fat more easily).

2. Don’t Forget to Warm Up

When out on the track, don’t forget to warm up. But also don’t forget that there is a science to warming up for track. Read more about it.

3. Remember to Eat Right

Unlike distance runners, whose diets comprise of carb loading for longer periods of running, sprinters lean more towards high amounts of proteins and healthy fats for short bursts of explosive strength.

Read more Olympic sprinter training tips.

Also see: Nine Exercises For Sprinters

Michael Phelps

American swimming sensation Michael Phelps has won 23 Olympic medals–more than anyone else.

But what’s his secret to success? For one thing, in peak training phases, Phelps swims a minimum of 80,000 meters a week, or nearly 50 miles. He practices twice a, for around five to six hours a day, six days a week.

In terms of a training regime, Phelps has a complicated, three-part process that includes:

  1. Swimming
  2. Weight training
  3. Endurance

The key takeaways according to Phelps?

  • Keep your goals nearby—They must act as a daily reminder and motivation factor.
  • Become friends with the weight room and make sure it makes you work much harder
  • Learn from your mistakes
  • Have a proper and apt rhythm for working out
  • Be your own critic. Always try to find for faults and repair them.

You can read Phelps’ detailed training regime here.

What’s Your Secret?

Are you an accomplished or amateur athlete with your own training tips to share? If you are, or if you have any questions, let us know in the comments below.

More Posts