So What Happens When Things Don’t Quite Go to Plan…?

So we’re halfway through September… And I’m failing on my healthy, sugar reducing goal. Big time. I just don’t seem to be able to do it!

I guess I am a lot better than I used to be, I’m certainly not having chocolate every single day, but probably 4 times a week (haha), so it’s a slight improvement.

As for trying to mix up my training and incorporating BBG and Yoga, I’m halfway there… I’ve been doing BBG religiously three times a week for the past 3 weeks and now I’m into week 4. I have started to have a couple of niggles in my shoulder and upper back the last few days, can’t really put my finger on anything that might have caused it but I have a feeling all the push ups probably aren’t doing me any favors at the moment!

So in my last post I waffled on about how people say don’t rush back into training after an Ironman and how I was feeling fine and so decided to jump straight back on it… Well sure as sure can be, I’m now exhausted. I’ve lost my training mojo, everything hurts, I can’t sleep properly and I’m tired all the time. Typical symptoms of overtraining. Great. I’ve been far too eager to get straight back into training that I’ve completely overlooked the rest element.

Last week I clocked up 3 hours of swimming, 2.5 hours of cycling. 3.5 hours of running and 3 hours of core/ strength work in the form of BBG. That’s 12 hours of training and I’m not even training with any focus at the moment. Yes I’ve entered another Ironman (woop woop!) but that’s not until June. That’s a whole 9 months away.

I know 12 hours is probably nothing to a lot of athletes, and it was probably on par with/ less than I was doing during Ironman training, but this year has been very hard on my body. I’ve done more races and training miles than I’ve ever done before, and as a result I think I’m starting to develop a bit of the old overtraining syndrome. And a slightly unhealthy relationship with training.

On Sunday, Simon and I were due to take part in a Wiggle Sportive in the New Forest… I’d entered us in the ‘Epic’ race, 103 miles. WHY?!!! I seem to have an extreme need for doing as much training as possible and covering as many miles as I can. Would it have been enjoyable? Probably not. Would it would have been an achievement? Yes of course. Did we do it? No.

The alarm went off at 5am (yes, on a Sunday) as we needed to leave at 6 am to get to the start for 7:45. Needless to say, we wordlessly turned off the alarm and went back to sleep. I fell back to sleep naturally and we didn’t surface until about 10:30. This says to me, your body needs rest, let it have some!

A number of factors, including runs feeling sluggish, legs being constantly sore and tired even when climbing the stairs and even down to not wanting to go for a lunchtime walk like I always do, has caused me to decide that I need a break.

Both physically and mentally.

This weekend I’ve got an Olympic distance triathlon in Wales on Saturday, which should be awesome, followed by Windsor half marathon on Sunday, then next weekend I’ve got Bournemouth Marathon, which I did last year and know is quite a challenging race.

After these races are checked off I’m hanging up my triathlon hat for a few weeks and I’m going to channel my inner lazy girl by giving my body what it needs- some R&R. I’m off to the US from October 9th-18th and the day after I get back I start a new job as a physiotherapist which will no doubt take a fair bit out of me.

I plan to get back to structured training towards the end of October, after a complete break  I will be ready to jump back into it with a renewed enjoyment and excitement after my holiday and then to be prepared for Ironman training when my Base training starts mid-end November.

Yes it’s going to be hard. Yes I’m probably going to want to jump back into it. But for once in my life I’m going to try and be disciplined with myself. If I want to go for a run, fine, but there will be no targets, no distances that I have to meet, just trying to find the fun in the training again and get my mojo back.

Over the past couple of years, triathlon has been what defines me. And now that’s moving towards Ironman (yes, I’m one of those, it’s all I talk about) so it’s a bit daunting the prospect off for a few weeks… I’m not saying cut it off completely (I’d be the size of a house with no exercise!!!), just not following any structure, not feeling guilty for any days I don’t do any training and trying some new things.

What am I going to do with my time?!!!

Operation ‘Find a Hobby’ (for a month) starts now…

Things that I’ve been meaning to try for a while:

  • Yoga
  • Climbing
  • Pottery painting
  • Jam/ chutney making

Last year while I was in the US my Dad bought me a book called ‘The Triathlete’s Training Bible’ by Joe Friel. I’m going to use this time out to have a read, and try and learn a bit more about training, adaptation, phases etc which I can use moving into my Ironman training. Hell, I might even try and swat up about heart rate zones and use these for once when I start again!

I guess I’d better start looking into some of these then!

A reluctantly resting triathlete x


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