Recently while coaching a Saturday morning running session Coach Laurie spoke about how to motivate yourself when you are doing your long runs and on race day. After all, half marathons and marathons are largely mental.
It made me think of my recent battle with cycling (as I started taking part in triathlons a couple of years ago) so I thought I would write a blog post (found here on my own website) on just how I am getting through the mental and physical toughness of spinning classes over the winter.
I thought that many of you, especially new to the (half) marathon might be able to identify with it. With interval training about to start in our training groups, I hope it inspires you to take part in these sessions and to keep going even though it’s a hard workout.
Read below or click here to read on my website.
The truth behind the photo
Those who follow me will know that cycling is my weakest element of the triathlon. This photo appears that I (at the back) am working with the team of three other girls and we are doing a great job. However, the reality was that once we turned the corner, the other girls left me for dead. Luckily, it was the first three women to cross the line that counted, and I had done my job in the swimming pool. This was early in 2015 and I have done a lot of work since (see here for my marginal gains post about my summer training).
My experience with training for triathlon
Over this winter I am training for the London Marathon but I am also keeping up my cycling, so that I am ready for triathlon training in spring. I am happy to run in (almost) all weathers, but that doesn’t go for cycling, which is why I’ve been going to spinning classes. One of the first I went to was just horrible. I remember I sent my triathlon coach at Endurance Rebel a message, complaining about how we had had to do 120 rpm and how tough I had found it. I was hoping he would say how useless this was for my training, but in actual fact his reply was that he often recommended it to his clients who train on static bikes at home. Grrr!
So here are my recommendations for whatever sport you’re new at:
Suck it up
The reality of training to perform is that sometimes you have to do training sessions you don’t like, that feel bad and where it seems like you’re going backwards. This first session I could barely make 120rpm, but four or five classes later, it was a lot easier and I could hold 120rpm for a lot longer. I knew though that if I wanted to get better, I just had to get on with it.
Keep going back for more
One bad session doesn’t make you a failure. I hadn’t done a spinning class for months. It was horrible, but the only way to get better is to keep going back for more. The second class wasn’t an awful lot better but now I feel progress.
Celebrate your achievements
On that first session the teacher shouted out the gears we should have been at. The whole session I was two gears below what she said. On Sunday I went again and mostly I was at only 1 gear below and sometimes I even managed to get into the range. In my mind I gave myself a fist bump and yelled yeah!! I was really happy with myself and acknowledged it.
Get your Intrinsic Biomechanics right
And if you are still struggling to improve, there may be something lacking in how you move. Get in touch by sending me an email and we can organise a screening and then help remove physical imbalances – so you can go further, harder and faster.