As a moody, brooding teenager, The Crow was one of my favorite movies. It had all the elements of awesome – sticking it to the man, industrial music, gothiness and leather pants, and lots of cursing. However, the song I listened to on repeat often was It Can’t Rain All The Time.
I still get my gothy out sometimes, but usually it’s just Halloween…
I had a really, really terrible training week. Tuesday was the perfect, perfect day to run and I had it scheduled but I couldn’t drag myself outside. You don’t understand, it wasn’t laziness, it wasn’t just being tired (but there was that), it was like this mental block. Best I could do was the trainer. I got out for 4 whole miles Wednesday, and rode the trainer at night. Actually felt like a training day. Thursday, I got up and eeked out 6 miles (which were actually decent, but took FOREVER to get going) before I shut it down for the week again with the lack of motivation and just couldn’t face the pool, the road, even the trainer.
I figured I was saving it all for the weekend. I didn’t even have anything lengthy planned, but a feat of
strength speed – trying to see how close I am to my 5k PR. Let’s just say it didn’t go well. I’ve ran about the same pace in half marathons. I made about five mistakes:
1. Lack of motivation to get up, like I had all week, put us outside starting after 10am, which Saturday meant no breeze and mid 80s. I was sweating standing still.
2. Y’know that one day of the month where you have no energy and feel awful due to cramps and hormones and whatever? Yeah, that was this morning.
3. Trying to PR at Lake Pflugerville is like running on quicksand for me. I’ve learned to love the crushed trail for easy runs, but running fast on it, I feel like my feet are slipping every step. They don’t grip it like pavement.
4. To add to the 80s and no breeze, this route has ZERO shade.
5. We forgot to hydrate properly before (it’s just a 5k, right?) and bring enough water.
I was a little bummed with the result, but the slight sensitivity I had all day to temperature made me realize that I’m glad I backed off a little. I don’t need to burn it all on a training day and end up with heat sickness like I had last summer.
Instead of getting depressed about it, “It Can’t Rain All The Time” popped in my head and I realized two things:
One: 5k’s are great because you could feasibly race one every weekend and recover pretty quickly. So next Saturday, I’m going to give it another go. Closer to sunrise. On pavement.
Two: While the 29:31 is up there with some of my worst standalone 5k race finishes ever, it would be one of, if not my best triathlon 5k split ever. Considering I was already tired starting, and it was balls hot, it replicated the conditions quite well. That provides some silver lining.
What’s a little more concerning to me is this lack of motivation and fixing it.
Me, sportily, I really and truly am about 1 week past where I need season to end and break to begin. It’s hard to get up in the morning, hard to get on the bike or to the pool at night, and I’m dragging myself to training a lot of the time in the last few weeks (minus the last week where I just didn’t show up half the time).
The solace is that a) I feel good once I get going so I’m not physically over-trained (minus the 5k) and b) I only have this week and next week, which is a week for taper, and then two races and I get the break I need. Light, meet tunnel. I’m not having the overall freakouts (omg, how I am going to make it through all this), which is good, but there is a lot of half assing or skipping sessions. The exception seems to be the trainer. The only reason I’m able to make myself trainer with any intensity is that I can put on TV and convince myself it’s not that much different than being on the couch.
I’m pretty happy with the length I’ve been able to string this latest season along without more than a week break/second week easy after races (Jan 2013-now). I’ve also measurable and solidly improved in all 3 disciplines. It’s nice that I am really and truly just showing the signs of burnout now, but it’s definitely rearing it’s ugly head just a few weeks too early.
My focus these next two weeks is to get hungry to race again. Right now I have to realize it’s not time to pile on the volume even though I want to cram just one more solid workout in before the races, before offseason, before I lose fitness, before whatever. I’ve grown as much as I’m going to grow as an athlete right now without a little rain (rest). However, I need to remember, it won’t rain all the time.
My plans for offseason are as follows…
1. Run 5k twice. Fast, slow, outside, inside, whatever. Put feet in front of the other fast enough not to be walking for approximately one hour a week split up into two sessions. I really think a full month off running will do bad things and I’m scared of completely losing this nice base I have. From what I have read – just a little is much better than none.
2. Weights twice a week. The other component to not completely losing fitness. Lift heavy things, and enjoy the fact that I don’t have to hold back because I have to also do x workout after and then x in the morning.
3. Probably not get up before work to do workouts much. Aka – enjoy lots of sleep.
4. Be active a few other times a week, but do what sounds fun. Kayaking, SUPing, ice skating, climbing, roller skating, walking to the store, whatever.
5. Nothing that would qualify as long distance workouts. Unless it is TRULY in the spirit of fun (a slow bike ride meandering around all day, etc).
6. Cleaning up my damn eating.
Number 6 is key. I know it’s not a true offseason if you don’t get a bit fat and lazy, but my eating right now is completely out of whack. That was the first sign it was getting to the end of my motivational rope – the 4-6 weeks nothing has been off limits, in terms of food choices or portions. I ate what I wanted, when I wanted, and how much I felt like.
By and large, the biggest percentage of what went in my mouth was healthy food because that’s what I keep around and that’s what I like. But slowly 90/10 slipped to 80/20… and then over Memorial Day weekend I forgot what vegetables and fruit tasted like.
It is time. This last week, I tracked my food and assessed diet quality. No rules, no limits, just step #1, being, actually be accountable for what I ate. Honestly, it wasn’t too, too bad in terms of calories, but the diet quality left something to be desired. Baby steps. I’m going to actually get on the scale this week sometime to assess where we are with that as well.
I’m going to continue this until after season ends. Then, I’m going to get all diet quality on this mother, but I’ll save that for another post.
And, for added randomness, I give you cool stuff May!
Racing Texasman in the blistering heat
I got to go see Warhorse care of Yelp and Texas Perfoming Arts. It was spectacularly awesome!
Distance PR for outdoor swimming: 2.75 miles
Impromptu BBQ party and bush cutting and gorilla suit happy fun times (I love my random crew of people)
Birthday Crab Boil for our neighbor’s birthday!
Distance PR for outdoor riding: 70 miles
Had one of those nice long chatty, easy runs around the like where it feels like just a long walk with friends. I haven’t had one of those in a while since I usually get antsy and push the pace.
Volunteering for Cap Tex Tri at the packet pickup was a LOT of fun. Talking to all sorts of athletes – pro to newbies, and got a good dose of race energy. So, so glad we didn’t volunteer the day of (it was pouring rain).
Having our friends from Denver in town over Memorial Day weekend kicked ass. We got the gang back together two days in a row and played games, drank beers, ate good food, and had a blast.
New blender means a lot more blendy drinks. This is a good thing (I think).
Lotsa good food, both batch cooked, and new Costco finds.
Talking to a bunch of teenagers about getting into the tech industry. I love to talk, and they seemed geniunely interested about me sharing my experiences and wisdom gained in the last 13 years.
Game Jam! Work set aside 3 days for us to work on a side project, and I got to team up with my husband. We never get to work together because of the married couple stigma, and we spent 3 days making a kick ass board game. There are actually some pretty cool prizes for the winners, and it will be really cool to see what everyone did!
And, because it’s Texas, here’s the random wandering cow picture taken right outside the steakhouse.
With that, I’ll leave you – send me good mojo thoughts or leave me a comment telling me what you do to get your mojo back in a pinch!