It’s summer time, which for most means fun in the sun and relaxation. But, if you plan on being a competitive athlete at boarding school in the fall, you want to stay in shape and prepare for your preseason practices. This is something most varsity athletes are required to do before high school sports start in the fall. I talked with Cheshire Academy’s Head Athletic Trainer Jenn Tirillo to get these tips on how to prepare:
Focus on nutrition: A balanced and healthy diet is an important part of your exercise routine. Summer is the perfect time to savor fresh fruits and veggies, and grill your lean meats outside. Even a family barbecue can be stocked with healthy and delicious food. But, it’s not only what you eat that matters, but how much. “It’s important to make sure you’re getting the appropriate amount of calories,” Mrs. Tirillo points out, “you’d be surprised how high the calorie count is for a growing body practicing and competing six days a week.” She also encourages students to focus on food first for their health. “Examine what you’re eating before turning to other things like supplements.” Start those good habits now!
Hydrate: Drink lots of water to keep your body hydrated, especially as the temperature rises. Hydration is particularly important when you’re exercising and sweating. Whether you're a post grad preparing for high school football or looking to up your game to get recruited at one of the best high schools in America to play high school basketball, athletes of all ages and skill levels need to make sure they drink enough water.
Exercise: Your high school athletics coach may have given you set training and conditioning exercises to follow, but even if he didn’t, you can always focus on improving your cardiovascular workout and strength training. “Now is the time to build strength and endurance,” says Mrs. Tirillo. “There are tons of creative ways to work on both while away on vacation or at home without fancy gym equipment. The only thing you DO need, is motivation! Put in the hard work now to stay healthy, energetic, and to avoid injuries.”
Mindset: Mrs. Tirillo reminds students, “Athletics, coupled with academics can be a juggling act! Start working on your time management now. In boarding schools, there’s also the aspect of dorm and community life, so there’s lots to do.”
The last thing you want to do is show up for prep school preseason workouts completely unprepared, so make sure to take care of yourself over the summer.