10 Healthy Habits of Top Athletes Worth Emulating

Think about this: what sets us apart from top athletes out there? Is it their unstoppable mentality and drive? Their unshakeable will and discipline? Or is it their talent and athleticism?

Of course, some people are naturally built for fitness or peak performance — some are even born great. But what truly leads them to greatness is the routines and habits that they cultivate.

While not everyone can kickstart their athletic careers as and when, here are some of the highly effective habits of athletes we can all pick up no matter our age, gender or lifestyle.

  1. They maintain a healthy mindset

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One of the main factors of staying healthy is taking care of your mind, which is the source of inner strength and motivation. 

Good mental health helps you enjoy life better and focus on becoming a better person because when you have a healthy mind, creating a healthy body comes naturally and easily.

  1. They practice mindful eating

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Athletes pay special attention to how and what they’re fuelling their bodies with, and don’t get caught up in current fad diets or societal expectations on what they should look like. Food, to them, is necessary to build muscles and store energy for their next training session.  

They don’t deprive themselves of certain types of food, and even have cheat days. The goal is to listen to your body, fuel it properly and don’t go overboard with restricting or overfeeding. 

  1. They constantly hydrate

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We’ve all been told time and again to drink at least 3 litres of water each day — and not just because. 

Keeping yourself hydrated is crucial for a variety of reasons: it regulates your body temperature, keeps your joints lubricated, delivers nutrients to cells and keeps your organs functioning properly.

  1. They go easy on the alcohol

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Athletes make sure that they don’t consume too much alcohol, despite how much they may enjoy it. And in the days leading up to a big competition, they stay away from alcohol completely, knowing that this might throw them off their game.

Just like all things in life, be sure to take alcohol in moderation as heavy drinking can take a toll on your body and cause liver, pancreas and kidney damage, high blood pressure, stroke, heart disease and certain forms of cancer.

  1. They are open to trying new things

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As important as a fixed routine is, athletes understand and appreciate the beauty of getting out of their comfort zones. Apart from challenging themselves and combatting the fear of the unknown, they also constantly adapt and embrace any changes in their lives.

All too often we let fear stop us from trying new things, but conquering that fear allows us to expand our minds and learn new things.

  1. They set daily goals for themselves

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Whether it’s off-season or game season, athletes never stop setting daily goals for themselves. Setting daily goals helps them focus, avoid potential distractions and prioritise what work needs to be done. This way, they can easily get back on track when the time comes.

This can certainly work in your favour as well, as it will help you to cut out all the noise and lead a more productive and meaningful life.

  1. They take nutritional supplements

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You might think that eating all your fruits and vegetables might give your body all the vitamins and nutrients it needs. Unfortunately, that’s not the case. We don’t get all the nutrients we need from food alone, and athletes know this best. 

Just as how athletes take supplements to ensure that they get enough nutrients to help build muscle, maintain health and boost recovery, we should all fill up on supplements like multivitamins because they hels us fill that nutritional gap, improve nutrient absorption and prevent diseases. 

  1. They prioritise sleep

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Getting enough sleep is important for people of all ages to stay in good health. The Sleep Foundation recommends that adults between 18 to 64 get at least 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night, whereas those over 65 need 7 to 8 hours. 

However, according to the National Institutes of Health, the average adult sleeps less than the recommended amount, which may put them at a higher risk of high blood pressure, diabetes, heart attack, heart failure or stroke. 

Athletes prioritise sleep, and so should people from all walks of life, as sleep is directly responsible for helping the body repair and heal itself.

  1. They make sure they don’t overtrain or overwork themselves

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Working out and exercising regularly will help us maintain our health and fitness levels, but there is such a thing called overtraining or overexercising. Yes, we should push our boundaries every now and then, but we ought to be careful about not crossing the line.

Overtraining not only causes damage to our bodies, but also leads to fatigue, irritability and loss of appetite and strength. 

  1. They take rest and recovery very seriously

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Rest is a vital part of health, happiness and success. We all have personal goals in life, such as becoming better, stronger, healthier or even more successful, but we must remember that hitting the pause button is an important part of the process. 

Just like the athletes who train for days on end and still make time to do low-key activities like getting a massage, spending time with family and having fun, be sure to make rest and recovery a key part of your everyday life. 

Healthy habits for a healthy life

Most of us lead a busy, stressful and demanding life that sometimes prevents us from being and feeling our absolute best selves. But one thing to note is that we don’t necessarily have to make major tweaks for us to change our lives for the better.

Take inspiration from the healthy habits mentioned above and try to incorporate them into your daily routine. These changes may be small and easy to make, but they can significantly improve your life.

What life-changing habits have you picked up recently? Let us know in the comments!

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