This time of the year I find myself just going through the motions in training. I spend most of my sessions disregarding the Garmin and focusing more on fixing some technique flaws. I was doing a long ride with one of my training partners and we were discussing training verses racing. So many professionals come in and out and we see some train so well and so hard. It is really mind blowing, people training 40 hours a week. It is sometimes intimidating because I look at my weekly hours totaling around 20 and I wonder if I am even training enough to make it to the top. Don’t get me wrong; I think training consistently translates into racing well. However, I strongly feel in order to be successful and get to the top, regardless of how strong you are, you must be able to adapt to any obstacle thrown in your way.
I personally feel that for me to be able to adapt on race day I have to train in uncomfortable situations. Since starting triathlon I have trained a winter in South Bend, IN, 2 summers in Clermont, FL and 1 summer in Tucson, AZ. When I was moving to Tucson at the end of May everyone told me I was crazy and that I would not survive the heat. However, I know myself well enough to know that it is that uncomfort that keeps me hungry and motivated to get the best out of myself everyday. When the environment is easy I tend to lose focus and become sloppy. I guess I need that stress of environmental conditions to keep me on top of proper nutrition, time management, and focusing on the details so that I survive the cold or the heat. To continue my trend, I will be moving to Boulder, CO at the beginning of January and spend the winter training there. It is going to be cold and mentally challenging but I am looking forward to making the most of it.
Whether it is training in tough climates, training with athletes that are much faster, or even taking a risk doing whatever you need to do to get to the next level …make sure the fire inside you is hungry and motivated to accomplish any goal you set for yourself. I know it sounds cliché, but really anything is possible. The only person standing in the way is yourself…get out there and make your dreams realities.