Staying motivated in the Winter

Pro Triathlete, Brittany Warly of Blue Competition Cycles

I get asked the question “how do you stay motivated in the winter?” quite often really. I am human, like everyone else, and the cold, dark mornings make it that much more difficult to get out of my warm bed in the morning. I have a number of tricks/ideas that I use in the winter months especially to stay motivated and maintain consistency in my daily training.

  1. Find yourself some training partners.
    Having training partners is a great way not only to hold yourself accountable, but also to keep the sport fun and fresh. A training camp can also be a great way to change your perspective and environment, while motivating you to work hard on the daily. Surround yourself with like-minded people and it’s amazing what you can do together.
  2. Plan out your season goals.
    Before the next season begins, I like to write out specific outcome-based goals, and then process-related goals of how I will get there. I also like to plan my early season races, which gives me incentive to build fitness in the off-season. A goal on the horizon, can make a significant difference when it comes to finding motivation to train.
  3. Music.
    Music has been a great friend of mine in the winter, especially to keep me motivated and entertained while on the trainer with my Blue AC1 Limited Road Bike or running on the dreadmill (yes I spelled that correctly). I also like to have different genres of music based on the purpose of each workout. Even when the body doesn’t feel great, music has a way of inspiring.
  4. Go outside
    Even when it is cold outside, sometimes it can be beneficial and give you a fresh perspective to bundle up and run outside. Think of the snow on the ground as a change of scenery and fresh perspective on your typical running routes. Every Wednesday, I run a 6 am sunrise run with my roommate, Caryn. We both bundle up and hit the roads with our headlamps. It’s a nice morning adventure that motivates me to wake up early 🙂
  5. Yoga.
    Practicing mindfulness in the form of yoga or meditation can be very helpful in defining your purpose, letting go of your past, and channeling your energy to future goals. Given I have a body-type that struggles in the cold, the heated sessions especially are beneficial to my overall recovery and ability to relax.
  6. Get in the gym and hit it hard!
    In the summer season, it’s typically race season so gym training is usually a supplement to training and not the core part of training/racing. In the winter time, change it up by hitting the gym hard three times per week. Gym has become one of my workouts in the winter. Building strength will translate to a stronger, healthier body when the season comes around.

Tri Coach Tuesday: Get Out the Door, You’ll be Happy You Did

It’s early in the season, but sometimes that motivation just wains.  Coach Alison helps ‘Fire Up Your Motivation’

 

The D3 Triathlon Minute, Episode 107, Fire Up your Motivation from D3 Multisport on Vimeo.

 

Tri Coach Tuesday: Motivation Tips that Work

From USA Triathlon  By Mental Specialist Coach Will Murray

 


Are you sure you’re getting the full benefit from your training sessions? With a training plan aimed at a particular race or set of races, you likely have a number of workouts of different kinds and different durations carefully ordered over the months to get you in peak condition for your top races.

Completing this sequence of training sessions — as prescribed and in order — is key to arriving at your most important races in optimum form: fit, healthy and rested. Fit, meaning in top physical condition for the type of race, whether sprint distance triathlon or ultramarathon; healthy, meaning freedom from injury or illness; and rested meaning fresh and ready to go. Achieving this three-way goal to let you race to your potential is not always easy to do.

Having a good annual training plan is vitally important. Just as important is executing that plan by completing the workouts — as prescribed and in the right sequence. Some athletes succumb to the temptation of taking an easy run when they are supposed to be doing 600-meter hard intervals at the track or chasing a fast pack of cyclists when they are scheduled for an easy recovery ride. Some athletes skip the workout altogether, because they “just aren’t feeling it.”

An athlete who too often replaces a recovery swim with a hard masters set is possibly digging a hole toward overtraining. An athlete who skips the high-intensity bike sessions is raffling off key fitness. And one who skips workouts altogether too frequently is not only giving away fitness but also generating unhelpful emotions that undermine the training and also come back to haunt on race day — if the start line appears at all.

Fortunately, there are easy, quick and effective techniques to help athletes do their scheduled workouts. Here are two that athletes find useful…

Read the full USA Triathlon article here

8 Tips to Make Your Long Run a Bit Less Hellish

From Shut Up & Run by Beth Risdon

Let’s talk about the long run. Let’s talk about the mental fortitude needed to complete the long run.

When I woke up on Saturday morning, my head wasn’t in the game. It was kind of a cool, grey morning. But, that wasn’t really the problem. The problem was wrapping my head around the distance and how long I would be out there. It had been along time since I had done a 16 mile long, steady run on the road. I wasn’t worried about finishing the run, I knew I could that. I was more in my head about the number “16” and how that seemed so far. I’ve run 16 miles so many times before, but it just felt different. I think it’s because I wanted to nail a certain pace and that would mean plodding along, steadily, without many walk breaks like I find on the trails.

There’s no magic to getting motivated for the long run. You just do it. It can be mundane. You are out there a long time. It can get lonely. But, it can also be a time for reflection and zoning out. The long run is a test in perseverance, discipline and determination. And, believe it or not, there are some tips that can make it just a tad easier.

1. Plan a Route You Can Get Excited About. I like to use Map My Run to get creative. There’s nothing like starting a 20 mile run already bored to tears with where you are going. I’d rather drive a bit to start somewhere that inspires me versus following some old worn out route that puts me to sleep. Here was this weekend’s run. I do love the back-roads of Boulder County.

2. Drag Someone Along. Distraction is a wonderful tool. Bring a friend and talk about every mundane thing you can think of like Beyonce’s even fuller breasts since getting pregnant or how long it takes corn to move through your system (this is very easy to figure out. Just keep a diary of when you had corn chowder and when it showed up later). A good friend will also share supplies with you like toilet paper, an extra gel, a tampon or condom (now that really would make your long run more fun).

3. Bring Happy Fuel. If you hate the taste of gels, but you eat them because you are “supposed to” or they were on sale, that’s no fun. Bring along your most favorite candy or gel flavor. Maybe companies should market cocktail themed gummy treats for runners (jam packed with electrolytes and carbs of course) like Rum Runner (get it?), Sex on the Beach (for the wild crowd), Bloody Mary (for those running in the morning or during Sunday brunch time) and Mint Julep (for the Southerners).

4. Tell People Even If They Don’t Care. I like to let a few friends know if I’ve got a really long run (say 16-20 miles) because in my head I think they are cheering me on and that they really care if I finish or not. Somehow it holds me accountable. Ok, maybe my mom just cares, but so what?

Read the remaining four!