No, it’s not because the cooler of beer is constantly calling your name. I am talking about an even bigger danger: the mid season slump. For athletes who race from March through late September and beyond, this time of year can drag. Your alarm clock goes off, but the motivation to get out of bed and begin your workout is just not there, so you roll over and go back to bed.
“I have trained enough this year. Skipping one workout is not going to ruin my next race,” you think to yourself. You may also begin to cheat here and there on your diet, thinking that an extra beer or burger will just get burned up in your next long workout. If you do get through the workout, instead of cooling down and then stretching—like you know you should—you just plop onto the couch. That’s cool down, right?
It’s skimping on these details especially now when your training is really heating up, that can make or break your late season A race. Here is how I stay motivated through out these summer weeks and cruising into championship season:
- Just get moving: A body at rest stays at rest while a body in motion stays in motion. If I do not feel like working out, I make a bet with myself: If I warm up and am still not feeling 100% then I can stop. However, more often then not, after the first few strokes or steps, my motivation comes back with full force.
- Envision your next race: Before each workout, I like to picture myself on the starting line of my next race. Standing there, will I think to myself that I did all that I could to prepare for that race or am I going to be regretting those missed workouts and second helpings of Aunt Bee’s pie.
- Think about the competition: If all else fails, I think about those whom I am racing. I can guarantee they are not resting or skipping workouts. If I am going to beat them, I cannot cut corners.
- Think about the clock. The clock doesn’t have an opinion. A PR won’t happen unless you do better than last time in your training. Can you skip 1 less workout? Can you focus 5% more on your diet? Get 15-30 minutes more sleep per night leading up to your race? All of this will make a difference.
Summer is a great time to train, so go out and enjoy the heat so that you can bring the heat in your next race!