Monday, February 18, 2008

What now?

Whenever I am in the middle of the all consuming training for an endurance event like a marathon or a triathlon, I can't wait for it to be over so I can return to more normal, singular daily workouts in which I can seek pure fitness and fun. And then the minute I finish the race and am working out without a specific goal, I start to feel aimless. This Catch 22 situation is compounded by three other factors.

1) It is really hard for me to peak for a specific race because I have an addictive and insecure personality. If I workout for less than 45 minutes, I feel anxious, bloated and lethargic. Miss one workout and I feel like my whole "endurance guy" persona is a fraud, my abs soft and my will to get up at 5:00 am damaged. With this baggage to deal with, I am not particularly good at tapering before a race or resting when sick or injured. I know this hurts my race performance but my psyche is willing to concede a few minutes for the emotional fix of the daily workout.

2) In the last year, I have learned that doing a race a second or third time, particularly if I did well the first time, is not fun. Vineman 2007 and the 2007 New York Marathon were nowhere near as fun as the first time I did them. I am not sure if I am bored of doing the same distances (half ironman, half marathon, marathon) as well or if I need to do completely new races. Whatever it is, there is currently no race out there that has me excited.

3) I am getting old and am probably about to start slowing down. I am not sure if it is the residual affects of the January flu, running in the winter morning or the December hamstring problem but my habitual 8 mile run has gotten slower by a minute or two. I will give it a month to see if I recover before panicking.

So I am searching for the next endurance fix.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Re: 2): Surely doing the same race more than once is not fun, because running (biking, swimming) the same course again is boring, no?
Maybe if you competed for a cause other than beating your time you might be more inspired. If you did your next Ironman to raise money for the Livestrong Foundation, you would be spurred by a cause that is greater than yourself and by the financial and emotional support of everyone you begged for money from. I reckon Lance would fall in love with you for it as well.

2) People are more likely to sponsor an old decrepid man who is competing to raise funds for the Livestrong Foundation anyway so don't panic.