Getting The Correct Balance Between Life And Training - For Triathletes And Triathlons
Getting the right balance
Learning how to balance your triathlon training, racing and aspiration can seem far away when you first enter the sport. However, it is an addictive pastime and the time has come to look at learning how to balance the sport.
Prioritization At times, you may miss training sessions, even races, due to other commitments. Learning to accept this and move on is invaluable. By taking time out from tri, you can keep things in balance and make time for the other things in life that are important to you.
End of season This is the ideal time to recover by taking a month out. However, this doesn't mean becoming a couch potato; just back off from a regimented plan. Learn how much training you need to do to keep sane, but try to lose enough fitness to get you motivated to start your winter whilst catching up on other interests and commitments.
Find out about your reserves
Take your energy and positive outlook into other areas. Finishing and competing in triathlons is not about being fast; it can also make you a more rounded, and complete person. However, this is not the case if you take yourself too seriously, start training far too many hours and set unreasonable goals for yourself. It's good to want to excel, but it's also good to be well-rounded, not just seeing life from a tin-angle all the time.
Loves and hates
By viewing the training sessions and events in your diary, you can see what makes you tick and what makes you seethe. You may have mental blocks or hate things for good reason. Knowing this is invaluable to continued future participation in the sport.
Make it enjoyable If you truly hate a certain session or race, don't punish yourself by making it into something you feel you must do. This is your hobby and you should what you do. At times we need to do things to take ourselves out of the comfort zone, but that's a million miles from seeing triathlon as a penance that must be made constantly hard and difficult. Look at the sessions, people and events you love, and make these central to your future plan. The positive sense you get from these will increase the quality of your tri lifestyle. Professional athletes may be fast but they love what they do and therefore they can keep on doing it when others give up. If you love what you are doing, where's the hardship?
Challenge, not change You can stretch your limits, achieve personal bests, maybe even finish on the podium, but you are you and will never be anyone else. Do not set too much importance on being good as an athlete - you must aim to be the best you can be. This is as worthy an achievement as those athletes who are the very best. Challenge yourself but do not believe it will make you a different person. Triathion is your hobby, not the most important thing in your life.