I’m in week 11 of my training program. That’s pretty far into it! I’m going to be very honest straight away: I think I’m feeling a bit burnt out. It’s not because I can’t maintain the training, and it’s not because it’s not an interesting program, but it’s because I’ve had so many freaking hurdles thrown my way that it is starting to just feel like nothing but an uphill battle. And no, that’s an unintentional pun.
Here’s the thing. I know Spencer would tell me that THIS feeling is a part of it. These emotions of frustration, exhaustion, stress, and ambiguity are a part of breaking through mental barriers to improvement. So I’m going to pretend like he’s the little birdy on my shoulder right now telling me that this is the hardest part. This is the moment when I make or break it. I can say, “fuck it,” and just go back to my old ways of riding all the time with no focus or goal, or I can persevere through this downslide and climb out the other side even closer to my intangible goal of “feeling stronger on the bike.”
Here’s what happened. I had everything going my way. I was crushing my rides. I was getting faster, stronger, and less stressed about big days. I did my 4500′ day without any issue whatsoever. I could have kept going, but we ran out of daylight. Climbs that have haunted me in the past are less nagging than before. My attitude is better. I was feeling and seeing gains! It was rad! And then, I got freaking sick. So sick. I got so sick that I turned to social media to help me get unsick. “Eat chopped garlic,” they said. “Drink Umcka root!” “Netipot!” “STOP EXERCISING AND REST.” Wait, what? No! I have all this momentum and things are going awesomely well!
But my body had other plans and I was relegated to the house and netipotting my sorrows down the drain in a mucus-filled slobber fest. (Sorry. Graphic). I ate the garlic. I drank the root juice. I drank immunity smoothies. I drank Air Borne. I slept. I ate as healthy as I possibly could. I stretched. I went through seven boxes of tissues. SEVEN. I believed in Nyquil. And just as I was beginning to feel better the weather gods decided to crap on my parade and it snowed. It snowed so much that it became national news. We don’t do snow in urban Washington.
Still, I rode. We rode and slid and giggled and had a blast, and it was super fun, but it wasn’t helping me improve in any way other than a hit of endorphins. I confess that since this sickness and the snow my motivation is waning, and I’m struggling to see the point right now. I’ve been riding the trainer to the point where I feel like it’s all I can do to stay sane. Do you know how unfun sitting on an indoor trainer is every evening? It’s not sweet no matter what music you listen to or what movies you watch. But I am so god damn determined not to let my fitness slip that it’s kind of my main option right now.
Spencer has tried mixing things up for me so I can at least have fun with the trainer workouts. He has created an
As I sit here and type this I watch the over
Long story…long, I’m in a rough patch. It’s full of snow and snot and sub-freezing temperatures. But there is some kind of joy in knowing I’m not alone and that this will all go away. For now, it’s back to the trainer and yoga and sleep and sliding around on snow (I just ordered a new splitboard Woohoo! Cross training!)