What is motivation? The Webster dictionary defines it as:
1. The act or process of giving someone a reason for doing something.
2. The condition of being eager to act or work.
3. A force or influence that causes someone to do something.
Every year around this time, everyone starts chatting about motivation. Days are shorter, holidays are around the corner, the race calendar is coming to a close...
But on the flip side of that same coin, there are those who looking ahead, diligently maximizing their time, while attacking each session with focus and purpose.
Regardless, which 'side of the coin' you reside, we all could use a positive influence or force to pump us up and get our mojo flowin'!
Here are a few ways to keep moving forward and give yourself "No Excuses!" to stay on top of your fitness and training:
1. Get Real.
What would make your 2017 triathlon season a "Win!"???
Do you want to get faster? Stronger? Leaner? Step up a distance?
Guess what... Whatever the goal might be- it is going to take some discipline, dedication to a detailed approach, and lastly- it has to fit your lifestyle and commitments to family, friends, and professional aspects that fulfill your life. Consistency and Congruency in and out of sport will always help keep the athlete motivated and 'in check'.
Consider sitting down with a coach or individual who has 'walked the walk'.
Evaluate what you 'say' you want, what it 'really' will take, and make an educated decision to establish your 2017 WIN!
2. Break it Down.
So now that you have your goals in mind for 2017- break down the sport into small weekly steps. So what if you can't run a 10k off the bike at a 6min pace!
Week one, try starting at a simple interval like 30seconds at that 6min pace, recovery may vary between 30sec-90sec, and repeat for the main set of the workout.
Remember, when adding load onto the body- first always consider decreasing the recovery rate then safely you will be able to start increasing the duration of effort.
Yes, this approach will take weeks if not months to pull off that goal on race day. But guess what, nothing comes without a little sweat - and how satisfying is it to see on a weekly basis you are getting closer and closer to your goal!
3. Peer Pressure. (AKA: Group Workouts!)
No doubt, working out with others can bring out the Tiger in you. The atmosphere will expose your strengths and weaknesses.
Not only will group workouts push you but many times you will learn something new about the science of training and principles that may apply to other facets of the sport.
What do you have to lose really, try something new! Trust me, you can only gain from the experience.
4. Quit Wasting Time.
Time is limited for everyone, especially this time of the year.
Let's play the 'Instead of this, Consider that' game when attempting to add load onto the body without robbing you of more time away from everything you have going on...
A- INSTEAD OF THIS: Heading to the gym for an hour swim
CONSIDER THAT: Jump in the pool warm up for 5min, throw down 25-75yd/meter intervals with adequate rest for 20min and then head to the weight room for a 30min weights session focused on squats, lunges (forward, reverse, rotational, lateral, every which way), and core to simulate a quick swim to bike brick workout.
B- INSTEAD OF THIS: Riding outside every weekend for 3-4hr in your training pace (aerobic zone 2-3)
CONSIDER THAT: Hit the bike trainer for 1hr, alternating race pace (threshold zone 3-4) to HARD-VO2 efforts (zone 5-6)
C- INSTEAD OF THIS: Running the same route, on concrete, at the same pace
CONSIDER THAT: Find some grass or a trail. Tackle some rollers or hills for 30min-1hr.
There are thousands of ways to keep fitness on the body- really, your imagination is the only thing holding you back. Think outside the box and have fun doing it!
5. Find a Cause.
There are events all over the country to not only get people moving and healthy, but they also many times are designed to bring attention to a specific cause or non-profit.
If you can't get yourself to roll out of bed for your own reasons, think about heading over to one of the local 5k's to either race or volunteer for their purpose.
Whether you are contributing to support others or finally feeling a bit of fire from guaranteed positivity floating around, you will find a new enthusiasm to continue pushing your own limits.
6. All else fails, Take a Breath.
Sometimes, we just need a break. Part of maintaining the motivation to train week in, week out is understanding that there is a balance.
But guess what, THAT DOES NOT MEAN TO SIMPLY HANG IT UP & SIT ON YOUR DUFF.
No rather what is it,are you metabolically, mentally, or physically exhausted???
Use that same time you had set out for training to regroup: get a massage, foam roll, elevate the legs, focus on adequate and valuable nutritious meals, take a nap and ensure you are getting enough sleep at night, read a new book on a totally different topic...
Notice again, taking a break does not mean doing nothing- there is a responsibility in finding your reset button to help you recharge and get back to what you love doing!
These are all great ideas to keep your blood moving- but at the end of the day, you will have to be the one to jump in and break a sweat.
No one is going to do it for you, but hopefully with these ideas and the many more out there, will help you stay 'IN IT'.
Keep your mojo flowin'... 2017 season is roughly 16weeks away!
Amari is a firm believer in creating a life and training plan that is consistent and congruent - meaning that whatever the goal is, both in life and sport, we need to ensure that our mind and our efforts are focused in one direction. Amari is an Ironman Hawaii World Championship, 8x 70.3 World Championship qualifier. She has been coaching athletes in a variety of sports since 2002 with a wide range of goals from getting in shape to qualifying for world championship events. For Amari the next big thing is, SHORT COURSE! There is something about going back to the mechanics and sharpening the skills needed to compete with the best in the world. The goal is to focus on gaining speed at the Olympic and the 70.3 distances. Again, thinking beyond 2017, the hope would be to take the strength and speed gained next year, back to the Ironman distance the following year.
No doubt, as always, lots of racing on the 2017 horizon- hope to see you out there!
To learn more about Amari Click Here.