With races cancelled or postponed through June, or potentially longer, it is time to revisit our goals and the inspiration we get our motivation from.
As we often solely focus on our one goal of a race, physical achievement, or set time frame of commitment, we can lose sight of our WHY’s and feel down when that specific focus is removed or completed.
Keeping a view of the big picture is crucial at all ages and stages of our journey to improving ourselves, and specific goals should be part of that journey, but never the destination.
The so called “Ironman blues”, where people feel lost once they complete their goal event could be put down to the fact that they lost sight what they enjoy outside of Ironman. When they complete their goal it has been so long since they had another thought of a hobby, interest, fun activity, socialising value of laughter and friendship, etc. that their brain has forgotten how to link these other parts of life to feelings of accomplishment and happiness.
Their ability to be grateful for anything other than a solid training day has been lost, and needs to be rekindled.
So if you are currently feeling down because an upcoming race or special event has been cancelled, and you, like all other athletes now have no big goal to aim towards, try to take this time as a forced reminder to not forget what else you have that you can be grateful for, and what other parts of your life need to be sparked just a little to keep a balance between training for life, and living your life.
Upcoming races are further away, so here’s a few ideas of restructuring your training, and your motivation.
1. Set new goals for yourself physically.
Create new goals for yourself, or get together with friends, but not too close, maybe use phones, and plan a different goal you have never achieved before. Maybe it’s a marathon (not an official one), a 5km time trial, a tough long trail run somewhere new that you have to build up to. Perhaps to ride a hill climb personal best, or the longest ride you’ve ever done. Follow your instinct, your heart, be creative, and live the life that makes you smile when you think about it.
2. Become fat adapted.
For some people the first few weeks can be tough and not something you want to do during high intensity training in the race season. Optimal adaptation is a continuous process over many months, and now is the perfect time to get started or to double down if you have been dipping your toe into the low carb approach and want to find out how it really can work for you. Yes, I can help, and along with Jaimielle we support all your needs to improve health and performance.
3. Be grateful.
Calm down, breath into your belly, and think about what makes you a lucky and special person. Practice this daily, or 3 times a day for 1 minute.
4. Get focused on the big picture.
Why did you have these race goals in the first place? Probably as motivation to improve your fitness, health, and sense of accomplishment and pride in life. Well there are a thousand other ways to get the same results, and it’s all just a matter of attitude and outlook.
What you respond to is your choice, and what you perceive is also in your control. So is there a stressful situation? Well if you think there is, then there is. If you don’t focus on things that make you anxious, or perceive there to be an anxious situation, then you won’t be anxious. Be like the person you admire, I bet one of their key attributes is they don’t worry about things they can’t control.
6. Be adaptable.
Also be creative. A creative adaptable person is never focused on the problem, but on the solution and new opportunities. Use your mind for good, not evil. That is, don’t let negative thoughts of worry cloud your ability to think about the new opportunities, options, solutions. Get creative, because creative is different, creative is fun, and different and fun is motivating.
7. Practice, practice, practice.
Now there is longer to your next official event, take this time to practice technique, mindset, fat burning, prehab/rehab routines, strength workouts, drills, morning routines, etc. Focusing on establishing new routines and behaviour could help maintain and improve motivation, as well as physical and mental strength and capacities.
8. Be thoughtful, caring, and considerate.
Be tolerant, be patient, and keep your opinions to yourself if you have nothing nice to say. Be kind to one another.
Get in touch with Jaimielle and myself here to start improving your health today.
Written by Pete Jacobs, co founder of Live Your Own Fit, Health and Performance Coach and Speaker