Catching a wave….
I have always said training goes in waves. When you are on a wave everything is going well, you feel motivated and feel you are making progress. Hitting your daily targets seems routine and you look forward to the next session. The other side of the coin feels more like treading water. Effort levels are the same, but everything seems a bit of a slog. Targets are more difficult to reach which is harder to be motivated for. The thing is you never know how long each respective streak will last so you must remain consistent and dig in through those perceived hard times as they are ultimately building the foundations for catching the next wave.
Up until 7 days ago I had definitely been treading water for what felt like an eternity, to the point I questioned whether my peak was gone. It was ever since I had got back from a family holiday, had a bug and missed a whole nights sleep that I just seemed to fight with the machine to hit my numbers. I started to resent how hard things felt and the thought of another ‘hurt session’ was bottom of my list, but I kept the faith. My relentless consistency and a change of mindset last Saturday and things felt like they were on the turn finally. The mental side of all sports, not least rowing, is huge and tentatively it felt like I had at long last found a wave.
My last week of training has felt brutal, but positive in the way I am attacking things again. I have been mixing the start of 2km training with half an eye on the City Regatta 1000m final on Wednesday this week where we head as a team of 4 in good shape. Yesterday I finished on my target pace for a 10km TT which I had set up as a race at FM HQ. This is another savage distance where the mind is at least as important as the body.
What can influence the stage we are at will vary from person to person. I believe I am at a point in my life where I need to feel a balance and harmony outside of performing to ensure I get the best from myself. I will always try my hardest at any given time no matter what, but without that mental balance I feel limited and distracted. I now strive to include positivity and eradicate as much negativity as possible. So if you are currently on a wave, make the most of it and push on as we never know how long they last. If things are not quite feeling in a groove, hang in there as the tide may well be about to turn.