Since finishing my half-ironman last month, I must admit my motivation has disappeared. Without my A race on the horizon, it’s been difficult to find the drive to go out and train every day. After months of following a training plan set by my coach, I’m now on my own with no real focus or direction. I’ve felt quite flat and uninspired.
However, the season isn’t over yet and I can’t get too complacent as I’ve got my first century- Ride London at the end of July. It’s important to build up my cycling mileage and give this ride the respect it deserves. Here is how I’ve been finding my motivation again…
Recover and relax
It’s essential to take some downtime to recover and reflect after your A race. Too often as athletes, we move onto the next thing without really celebrating our achievements. The body and mind need time to repair so I gave myself a break and consciously didn’t rush back into swimming, cycling or running immediately. After the Cotswolds, we stayed in a spa hotel for three days. I thoroughly enjoyed the jacuzzi, sauna, steam room for easing my sore muscles and completely relaxing.
Race for fun
The next event on my schedule is definitely just for fun. The Club to Pub is a summer evening 1.5km swim in Henley with a beer and BBQ at the finish. The medal is even shaped like a bottle-opener! I’m looking forward to a relaxed atmosphere with no pressure, just for enjoyment and catching up with friends.
Volunteer and spectate
Volunteering or spectating allows you to experience the race day atmosphere without actually doing any of the hard work! I was incredibly proud to watch Glen race the Sprint Distance National Championships at Leeds Castle and place 5th in his age group. The castle grounds made for a fantastic venue and I felt envious that I hadn’t signed up for the race myself. On the same weekend, my triathlon club hosted a duathlon at the Olympic Velopark. The event was a great success and I really enjoyed working as a team to help organise the race.
Set a new goal
Having a goal which challenges and excites me is the way I stay motivated. I’m already thinking ahead to 2017 and considering whether I’ll try another half-ironman or stick with shorter distances. One challenge I’ve definitely got in mind for next summer is to swim the Solent, from mainland England to the Isle of Wight. A longer sea swim like this will really take me outside of my comfort zone and give me something big to work towards.
Buy new kit
New kit never fails to inspire me to get out and train! I tried out my new dhb Blok cycling jersey and bib shorts at a 68 mile sportive last week weekend, plus I’ve been running in my Fabletics kit. Bold colourful kit definitely gives me the feel good factor especially on a bright sunny day.
Go somewhere new
A change is as good as a rest, so they say! Exploring a new location, finding a new route or even trying a different activity can help to get the motivation going again after your A race. Last week, I ventured to a new open water swimming venue- Redricks Lake. Whilst the water was quite murky and full of weeds, it definitely helped to mix things up to swim in a new lake. I’ve also been running the trails at Bedgebury Forest, just enjoying the scenery without any focus on speed.
How do you find motivation after your A race?