You know that feeling when you’re feeling good? You’re feeling so good that you feel as if you have limitless energy and could ride, ski, or run forever? Well, I’ve got that feeling these days. This is awesome (it has been a long time since I’ve had this) – but it is also not so awesome.
The thing is, sometimes I struggle with listening to my body. Particularly when I don’t have a “set” training plan. Right now I’m out there having fun doing whatever I want. This is great. But often this results in my riding the trainer for an hour before work and then going out for a ski later in the day or meeting up with XCZone crew for a snowshoe run. I can sustain this for a couple of days and then I crash. And I crash hard.
My body simply speaks up and says “hey – you don’t have the deep fitness base you used to have. You can’t do three things at your max everyday. Back off and relax a bit!”
So this is what I’m trying to do. Listen to my body and to that little voice in my head that says “take it easy. Enjoy what you’re doing.” I’m so programmed to be “training” for something. It’s strange to not have a training plan that I have to follow. Some of you would likely think that this is a good thing – that life is too short for training plans and structure. Some days I think this and other days I crave this rigour and structure.
I guess this new “phase” of my cycling life is all about learning how to find the balance. How to balance getting out and doing everything I want: skate skiing, snowshoe running, running, road cycling, mountain biking and cyclocross racing – with not burning myself out and actually building some fitness. I don’t want to be mediocre at everything – I want to get my cycling fitness back, use this fitness when I’m out running on the trails or snow and simply enjoy being outside.
It’s not easy to make this transition. I’ll keep chipping away at it day-by-day – finding the groove and balance that works for me. I suppose this all any of us can do.