Saturday, January 12, 2008

How to stay motivated

Someone asked me a question the other day. How do I stay motivated? The timing of the question was actually a little ironic. Because quite honestly I am not very motivated at all for cycling at the moment. It's quite a contrast to the uber focused cycling intensive mindset I typicall have.

It bothers me a little bit. I've put a lot of effort towards meeting some cycling goals over the past few years, and it would be a shame to just let them fall away. But for the moment I just can't fight how my mindset works. It's bouncing around at the moment with lots of things on my mind that is currently leaving cyling a little on the short end of the stick right now.

However, what I'm trying to do is keep the training going but in a way that I don't have to think about it too much. Sort of like brushing your teeth. It's something that you just do and have to do, but it's not something that you have to get all pshyched up for or have the think about obsessively. You just do it.

I'm also lucky to have a friend on the similar training periodization plan and we motivate each other to get out there. We are in the endurance phase right now, and it is tough to get some long days on the bike with work during the week and then family time on the weekend. Taking two days in a row for a 3-4 hr ride back to back probably isn't going to happen. But I have gotten a few good 3-3.5 hr rides in with some good muscle endurance work. Sprints have been very half hearted and not very fulfilling.

Today on a ride I noticed the legs starting to click a little. As if they are remembering what they are supposed to do. Rather than the choppy up/down pedal stroke that has been prevlant the last few weeks, for a few fleeting moments I felt that smooth pedals stroke where power is delivered across the entire pedals stroke each revolution feeds into the next. That's a nice feeling to have and is encouraging that the legs are starting to come around a little bit.

I imagine that I'll get more motivated for cycling when the legs are back in form and I'm on the mountain bike. We've done a few mountain bike rides but honestly they have left me with a little negative feeling. The ground was soft, the legs felt tired and the end result was a ugh that was hard. However after a few more weeks of some solid rides and then getting into the interval phase, the legs and heart really start to come around. Then getting on the mountain bike is really fun. Because you've got the power in the legs and the cardio to back up intensive efforts. Now that is good time.

There are good races coming up this year. To tell the truth they have been far from my mind, but races and especially being scared of the race is a good motivator for me. Dragon's Back is coming up in April. Now that is something to be scared of.

One of the things I need to do and it's something I preach to everyone else is to get my schedule written down and on paper for the next several months. Doing this gets the huge training monkey off my back. I just look a the schedule and do the workout to the best of my ability. If I can't do it because I'm tired or work or some other event than move on, pick it back up when I can. Removing the thought process from the training makes it more like brushing my teeth.

It all comes down to consistency over the long haul. Doing a little bit throughout the course of the years has proven to the be the key to success for me.

One thing I've realized over the years is that I may get into and out of many different things, but the important hobbies always come back around. It always seem to be like a flipping a switch. One micro second I'm not into something and the next it has become my obsession. So for the moment, training continues but on a lower plane of existence, but in time it will move back to a forefront position.

1 Comments:

At 4:42 AM, Blogger Hilton Meyer said...

Also finding it hard to get up in the cold, wrapping myself as best possible and heading for a ride. I found the gym quite useful for this, only started this season training for racing and the coach highlighted that I need to get into the gym. It may not be riding but at least its a bit of a distraction from the cold so it may be something to keep in mind. Good luck in preparing for the race.

 

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