Maintaining Baseline Fitness

Everyone has different abilities, needs, and requirements when it comes to fitness. What stays the same is that for everyone, baseline fitness should be considered a state at which you can safely exert yourself at medium intensity without significant preparation.

Maintaining Baseline Fitness

We take a look here at some top tips for ensuring this baseline.

Regular Stretching

One of the hidden challenges to fitness in the modern world is the amount of time we spend sitting at desks in front of computers at work.

While you may think little harm can be done when not moving, our body requires regular stretching and activity in order to stave off injury, cleanse toxins from the body and ensure a healthy posture.

Fortunately, there are ways we can mitigate these concerns.

Most people know yoga is beneficial for their body and mind, but few know where to start or have the time to commit to a full-hour session. London-based Yoga instructor Lauren Gasser has developed a special five-minute yoga routine for professional poker athletes to use in-between games.

Poker players face similar challenges to office workers, as their sport requires them to sit in a sedentary posture for extended periods of time. Using these targeted stretches regularly can help ensure you’re giving your body what it needs to stay in good form throughout your workdays.

Fitness Standards

There are a variety of ways of measuring fitness, and our goals and requirements are individual. There are, however, certain baseline measurements that everyone can work towards in order to maintain a reliable level of fitness and safeguard against injury.

One such standard especially recommended for runners, is to be able to squat the equivalent of your body weight. This should always be done with the assistance and supervision of a competent spotter or professional.

The reason this is a key measurement is due to the fact that when generating explosive power off of one foot when running, each leg has to displace our entire body weight. The most common injury that befalls runners is tendonitis as a result of over-working the ankle region.


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    Ensuring you can displace your body weight in a controlled environment is the best way to safeguard yourself against this type of injury.

    It is also recommended to develop cursory competence in basic calisthenic bodyweight exercises, with a full range of motion. Of these, the most effective compound movements are the pull-up, the dip, and the push-up.

    Finally, strengthening our abdominal chain and core ensures that we can transfer force effectively through our bodies without risking injury. Working up to 2 minutes of a full plank is the most simple and effective way to achieve this.

    Sleep Quality

    There is a growing awareness among the public as to the importance of a good night’s sleep. With the current pace of our society, most of us are sleep deprived, instead choosing to rely on caffeine in order to get us through the day. This is a vicious circle, however, as caffeine itself impacts the quality and depth of our sleep.

    There are a few simple things anyone can do to improve the baseline quality of their sleep. For one, it is advised to consume your last meal at least 2.5 to 3 hours before going to bed. This gives your body adequate time to digest the food before you turn it in.

    One of the greatest challenges to sleep quality in the 21st century is the amount of blue light we take in from our screens, phones, and even LED lights. This light frequency tricks our brain into thinking it is the middle of the day, which hampers the release of the sleep hormone melatonin.

    Most smartphones now feature optional color-shifting software that adjusts the display to an orange hue after the sun goes down. This prevents the blue light from the screen from adversely impacting us, and helps us maintain our vital circadian rhythm.

    There is also a range of blue-light filter glasses that can be worn when using a computer to the same effect.

    It is recommended that we sleep for between 5 and 6 full cycles each night. The sleep cycle lasts 90 minutes, as such, it is advised that we go to sleep for between 7.5 and 9 hours a night.

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