Hockey Players – 3 Tips for Getting Strong This Summer….Fast!!

By Nunzio Signore (BA, CPT, NASM, PES, FMS)

Microsoft PowerPoint - Presentation1With the summer almost here and many athletes being in their off-season, I thought now is as good a time as any to talk about a few simple rules to help maximize your strength gains and get ready for next season.  Although there are quite a few factors that impact maximal strength gains, below I have listed a few big ones for today’s article.  Here we go…

1. Eat Real Food – Eating some grass-fed red meat will get you stronger faster than anything else I can think of. It’s loaded with protein and has none of the hormones such as estrogen that create inflammation.  Let’s not forget about vegetables, they’re packed with vitamins and minerals that will keep you feeling great and able to train hard daily.  Throw in some healthy fats such as coconut, olive or avocado oils, some seasoning and you can eat them to your hearts content. As for pre-workout supplements and protein shakes/bars, they’re great if used in moderation (approximately 10% of your total nutritional intake). A morning shake and a mid -afternoon snack would be also be great. Bottom line, if you want to get strong fast eat real food:

paleo diet

2. Train Heavy in the Off-Season – Here at RPP, we utilize sets of 5-6 reps (sometimes 3’s) in the early and mid-offseason with a load that makes the set difficult to complete usually somewhere between 80-85%. We’re all about technique here so expecting “perfect” reps with a maximal load (90-95%) each set is not very practical. Working at a slightly lower (sub-max) load and utilizing special equipment like a safety squat bar can help reduce the risk of injury to both the joints and the central nervous system.  If an athlete gets hurt they cannot train and if they cannot train then they cannot improve their performance, period. Below please check out West Milford/NJ Hitmen’s Chris Dressler:

(Chris Dressler – SSB Split Squats)

3. Get 8-9 Hours of Sleep / Day – Between the hours of 11pm-1am many of the “anabolic” (muscle building) hormones such as testosterone are released naturally while we sleep. On the other side, if we’re not getting adequate rest, our bodies produce “catabolic” (muscle destroying) hormones such as cortisol instead. If you want to get strong and you’re only getting 6 hours of sleep a night forget about it. Great things happen to our bodies when we sleep.  For young athletes 8-9 hours/day is ideal.

Seems easy right?  You’d be surprised how many young athletes aren’t getting it right.

If you’re looking for a great off-season workout this summer check out our Skaters Program or simply click here for Personal Program Design, programming designed around you.

See ya’ in the gym.