I landed in Portland and it rained for three days straight. Summer isn’t sticking around.
Right now I’m on a short break from running. It’s my one vacation for the year. I don’t cross-train or try to fill the time with other physical activities (well, maybe hikes or dancing, but not planned exercise). I want to go back to training a bit antsy to get started. Then for about a month I’ll be on my own getting back to running, at which point we’ll start meeting for workouts.
I try to use this time to reflect on the season, take stock of what went well and what I’d like to improve, and put plans in place for implementing changes. ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀
This isn’t only about workout specifics, all of that will go through talks with my coaches. I’m interested in the background system and habits, in any hiccups that arose, and planning how to avoid those. Were there trends in injury or illness that I could use to anticipate next year issues, to avoid repeats? What PT or prevention habits might help? Did my diet support my training goals? If I deviated from my plan, what cause that? And so on down the list… from mind space to morning routine.
Of course not everything is controllable. I don’t see the value in regretting events that are part of the normal human process. Injury and illness; distraction or decision fatigue; boredom, loss of motivation. That stuff is going to happen on the path of any long-term goal. The point here isn’t to beat myself up. But rather to identify where I faltered, if I can learn from that experience and put guardrails in place for next time. It’s about putting myself in the best possible position to succeed.
As athletes, it’s arrogant to believe that we can anticipate or avoid every error. But it’s similarly prideful to think we can ignore past signs or self-awareness and still be our best. I need to be able to ask for help where I fall short, which means being able to identify shortcomings to start. And I need to give myself a lot of put ups along the way, a reminder that even if it’s not perfect, it can still be good.
The motto for now and for ever: Believe in yourself, know yourself, deny yourself, and be humble.