750 motor club, billy blanks, Birmingham Superprix, covid, CRPS Racing 4A Cure, formula vee, Heritage Parts Centre, iZone Driver Performance, lockdown, Primrose Hospice, race fitness, tae bo, training
The amazing thing is that this is where I had my first ever Formula Vee race back in 2015, and so will be a bit like a re-birth after my two year lay-off.
The Covid lockdown was tough for my fitness. Actually, that’s not entirely true – it’s been so damned long that I’ve put on weight, lost loads, then put on even more into the start of 2021.
More serious than that, was that my overall fitness was terrible. Working from home, rarely going out of the house, no gym, and with no real fitness routine, things had got pretty dire.
I started doing quick five to ten minute online workouts – mainly from Billy Blanks’ Tae Bo program. This was brilliant to get me moving again, and quick enough to fit in on a morning work break to get me away from staring at a PC all day. Highly recommended if you don’t think you can face full-on fitness malarkey (and if you can, he also has hour long, 5000 calorie killer workouts).
There is a fitness program provided with the iZone Driver Performance Training, but that looked far too full-on, so I’ve saved them all to work through when I want something more hardcore. My main focus was to get back to the gym ASAP, which I finally got to do. Oh how I’ve missed that heavy bag for slamming in Thai-style elbows and shin kicks, rather than just filling my face with Thai Pla Sam Rod!
Other than working the bag, my two or three weekly sessions have been all about getting my aerobic fitness back up, and flexibility. I have a strong martial arts background so losing my flexibility for the first time since I was eight years old has really bugged me!
Lots of cross trainer, indoor cycling, rowing and pounding it out on the treadmill. I will switch my focus back to core strength by picking up my weights and going back to 100 squats per day and stuff.
iZone also helped with other things that are often overlooked, and I planned to change this year anyway: I barely used to drink liquids, but upped that to at least two litres per day. I switched to an ‘intermittent fasting’ diet (basically skipping breakfast and having two meals per day between 12pm and 9 in the evening – you just need to learn that feeling hungry doesn’t mean you have to eat). Kevin from iZone recommended healthier snacks that you might not expect – like greek yoghurt, peanut butter or cheese so that your body gets the fat it needs to think it’s full. And I always have a nut mix of almonds, Brazils and walnuts as they all give great nutrition.
This has all lead to me dropping a stone of weight I’d put on, but more importantly hasn’t been anything so extreme that I can’t easily sustain all the changes. It also means I’m not denying myself the odd takeaway or fried breakfast – hey, I still want to love food and this isn’t exactly Formula One!
All of this has also massively stabilised my blood sugars and generally seems to suit me. So that must be worth a few seconds a lap, right?
I have plans for a few other things to boost my performance when I get back on track – some of which I might tell you about in another blog, but possibly not all of it!
I hope you have all been keeping yourselves in shape – you never appreciate your fitness until you don’t have it any more. Go on – do a quick Tai Bo Body Blast and see how good it makes you feel!