April 06, 2007

Time to take some notes...

Having to deal with an injury really set me up for some serious reflection on my training schedule and what lead up to my stressed IT band. It has now been over three weeks of dealing with the pain and not being able to get a good workout in. I also feel like I am loosing my fitness from the base I have built. Too much time to look at other races and think! I think that I have reshuffled my race schedule ten times in the last few days…

I have learned a lot about myself from my training and blog already… Some of the things I already knew about and are just “in my face” obvious when I look back at my Polar training log or the list of races that I was contemplating on competing in this season. The first is the fact that I love being out on the trail and working towards a goal. That is a good thing. . . I also love to multitask and I believe this is why ‘multisport” is so much fun for me. Adventure racing or Triathlon offers the diversity that I crave. This is why I love my job too. I would get so bored focused on just one thing but I tend to thrive when I can pull multiple things together. That can be as good as it can be bad. . . Professionally, I find myself spread thin too often. In my training I find the energy or excitement for the next thing without resting enough or having enough focus on the sports needed for my next race.

Although I can push my schedule to make time or my money to make it happen it only lasts so long before it is time to pay. It is usually one of the two running short or my body that needs the balance. Balance.... I want to be on the trail for a long time so I have to think "endurance" : - ) Maybe I don’t want to get so focused on race results but I don’t want to get injured or cut myself short from being overzealous. What I need is a plan. What I need is the discipline to stick to it. What I need is someone from the outside to keep me honest with these two points.

Despite my pain and the bad start I really had a wake up call from my first Xterra this season. I started the year with the RioBravo and had a first place overall finish. That felt great and I had focused on the Bike/Run for that race but my training was suppose to turn “triathlon” after that race and it didn’t. I have not been swimming but once a week. I had not turned the intensity up or stuck to any schedule. What is a tempo workout? Where was my training schedule? Where was my technique work? What was technique work? I have to admit that I just was not prepared with a plan.

I learned a very valuable thing from this race and recent injuries. Hopefully, not too late for this season... I needed to stick to a solid training schedule for three major reasons(and maybe look for some help in keeping it)

1) Injury prevention – I don’t want to be limited by an injury for races or life in general. A planned training schedule will limit my exposure to injury incorporate rest, etc.
Work + Rest = Success

2) Race readiness – Even if I love being out on the trail and training I need a purpose. I need to work towards a goal with an organized plan. This should be obvious but I need discipline in this area and a map to keep me on track.

3) Focus – Similar to above but specific to my schedule or session for the day. This will help my intesity level either hight or low, technique and sport specific training. Maybe I wouldn’t be paddling three times a week before my triathlon if I was not injured or maybe I wouldn’t be injured if I wasn’t paddling when I should have been swimming? Chicken or the egg but the result is the same. A solid training schedule will allow me to focus on the task at hand and support/be supported by the first two.

Now that I have been enlightened I need to put it into action!

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