According to the American Automobile Association (AAA), more than 41 million Americans will kick off the unofficial start of summer — Memorial Day weekend — with automobile travel. An additional group will travel by plane, train, and other modes of transportation to destinations in and outside the U.
Before my wife and I had our two sons, I traveled one week a month for ten years to develop my reputation in sports performance management.
This past Mardi Gras weekend, we decided to drive two and half hours to the Grand Hotel Golf Resort and Spa, located on Mobile Bay.
Standing as a hospital during the Civil War and later as host to key training operations during World War II, the Grand Hotel, on the sands of Point Clear, Alabama, was where Allied forces trained in Operation Ivory Soap, a classified military operation that played a vital part in World War II’s final push.
I know what it takes to prepare myself mentally and physically.
It’s about consistency – keeping the same daily schedule, training plan, and meal timing. Like many people in my field, it’s also about keeping your health and performance age below your chronological years.
The Grand’s 24-hour access fitness center has a standard Life Fitness equipment package – treadmills, ellipticals, stationary and recumbent bikes, both free standing machine and dumbbell resistance exercise options – along with stability balls for core training, and an assortment of resistance rubber tubing, stretching mats, and Reebok steps to round out additional fitness options.
In the summer months, we’ll see an uptick in the 25-35yr males, as well as, an increase in female visits of the 45-65 age range,” notes the director.
Then, high intensity interval training composed of twenty treadmill intervals of thirty second duration at intensities between 6.5 to 9 miles per hour at an elevation of 4 to 6 – with 30 seconds of active walk recovery, while the treadmill continues to move at the chosen speed.
That’s not something I would recommend for the novice.
New Orleanian, OJ Lacour, a 70-year old former Tulane University basketball player (1962-66) said, while on the treadmill next to me, that he’s been actively exercising — running, elliptical, and biking, along with yoga and weights twice weekly, since his college days.
The Grand offers its guests an excellent breakfast buffet that allowed me to stay consistent with my Mediterranean-style eating plan: fresh fruit, low fat, homemade yogurt, egg white omelet with spinach and mushrooms, and dry rye toast. The newly renovated resort’s multiple restaurant venues also provided similar ways stay on any diet.
It was a Grand, FITT time.
Mackie Shilstone, a regular contributor to NOLA.
com | The Times-Picayune, has been involved in the wellness sports performance industry for 40 years. He is currently a fitness consultant to Serena Williams, has trained over 3,000 professional athletes, consulted a litany of professional sports franchises, and volunteers his time to train members of an elite U.
S. Special Forces Unit and NOPD.
Contact him at mackieshilstone.com.