I’m taking a year off. No one seems to believe this. In the last year, I completed a lot of goals–some big, some seemingly smaller, but all mentally and physically taxing. The most difficult hurdle was to train so wholeheartedly for a race and, though the race was conquered, to feel cheated. I’ve lost that competitive drive, though I don’t know that I ever had it.
Now, it may look as though I’m taking no time off. I have started CrossFit and am still running. I have also begun incorporating yoga into my weekly training. I will start cycling and swimming more regularly when I feel like doing so. I am not training for anything, after all. I can decide when and how I want to stay active. It’s quite liberating!
It is not difficult to get up at 5 or 6 am for a workout when you do not HAVE to do it. It is not hard to eat better when you have time to cook, sleep, and think straight. I enjoy having the time to slowly learn about what foods and exercises will make me stronger and to incorporate them over time. Additionally, it is freeing not having to worry that I didn’t incorporate this or that training method into my program or that I did too much–the dreaded OVERTRAINING.
My only goal, I suppose, is to be strong. This one word has so many different meanings and I do not scoff at any of them. I have no doubt that CrossFit will make me physically stronger. “[It would be insane to do the same thing over and over again and expect different results.]” Am I correct Albert E.? Why, then, would I continue to spend 10-12 hours per week swimming, biking, and running and expect anything other than a barely decent performance and complete exhaustion at the event’s end?
More important than any physical training, is the stretching and testing of that inner voice that says, “I can’t” or “I won’t”. You have to shut that little asshole down. After cycling up a mountain in France, something I’d not done prior to that event, I realized “I can and will” do a lot more than I thought even without having trained for it. The realization that a lot of the battle is won by convincing yourself that you can perform a task and ignoring* anything that opposes this effort led to a 10K PR on a tough course in my hometown (a PR by almost 1.5 minutes).
I am also getting extreme enjoyment out of Husband’s new love–ROCK CLIMBING! It is not something I am very interested in doing, but I love watching him compete with himself and train for something. Playing guitar with him is still one of my favorite hobbies.