Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Welcome to off-season 2007


I was so happy to cross the finish line Saturday. Not because I has set the world on fire with some blistering pace, or had broken through some fantastic distance barrier. I just wanted the competetive season to be over. Burn out.

All in all, it was a good race. I felt strong in the water, held a decent pace on the bike (especially considering some of the monster hills on the course), and had a good run. No podium finish, but 5/17 in my competitive age group, and 18/145 overall. During the bike leg, toward the end, I realized I still had to run and was filled with dread. I had noticed the burn out building over the last few weeks, but it really peaked at that moment. Much like Paul noted recently, I've been having trouble gathering enough motivation to train like I need to be. I just wanted the season to be over.

I know I'm not alone when it comes to these end-of-season sentiments and attitude. While some people can keep charging on at a constant pace, year in and year out, I think it's a function of truly maximizing your training and ability, along with cycles of peaking, that drive an athlete to desire - almost require - a break in the intensity. Surely many elite athletes also attribute an off season to injury prevention, be it soft and connective tissues due to altering the training focus, or joints and bones due to recovering focus and intensity and reducing complacency at the limits of performance.

So, I have done nothing since Saturday's race until today. I will probably ease into some training this week, but it will be low-key. My plan at this point is to:
  • Rest tired muscles, connective tissue, and brain cells
  • Get/keep moving with some aerobic benefit
  • Hit the gym hard to build up some muscle mass in key areas, for about a month
  • Begin base mileage and aerobic capacity building
  • Chart my reentry to next season's training cycle

For the last step, I will need to decide on next year's race schedule. For sure, I will be more selective than this year. I also intend to include a greater variety of events, such as more running events and a couple of purely cycling events. I think that there's a different dynamic to competing in the single event races that will help me achieve and keep an edge in multi sport. I hope to break through some barriers that I'm sure exist, wherein I'm holding some of "it" back for the next leg of the race.

There are also some exciting things brewing for next year that I will share with you guys as soon as I'm able to. For sure, it's going to be an awesome season and I will realize a hope/dream that I had toward fall of last year, around the time that cycling was forever infused with my life and running was becoming a personal challenge.

But before all of that, it's going to be a great fall and winter with my family and friends, tons of good food, and reflection on my first of many years training hard and competing in triathlons. The good people I've met and relationships I've formed this season have opened my eyes, and the community that came together to help and support me when I tested physics was incredible, as were all the well wishes, thoughts, and prayers from you awesome folks. Thanks for listening to me, laughing with me, helping me, educating me, and entertaining me. Don't go getting slack on any of it, though! ;-)

Okay, enough of the sappy stuff.

11 comments:

josslynsmom said...

You're talking as if you're done blogging until next year! Say it isn't so! I really enjoy reading your blog entries...

Mendy said...

Rox - can't post on your blog! Ouch....

David - I know you are thrilled to have the season over with and this fall/winter you'll do what you actually need to do which is off-season workouts.

I'm very proud of you! You did fantastic this season and you'll do even better next year.

Marcy said...

What?!?!? Is this like a good bye to all til next year? :-( You know you have to at least fill us in on the pounds of fried food and beer you consume while "off" and who are Lisa and I going to ask the most ridiculious biking/running questions too?

Nikki said...

Dear Mr. Sappy,
I'm going to continue to stalk your blog so you better not stop posting.
I have enjoyed reading ALL your posts(even the ones filled with advice that I dont understand :p ) and hope to read your taper or "off" season posts too.
I can't wait to hear about you pumpin iron! Maybe Mendy will take a pic for us...*drooling over someone else's dh* (sorry Mendy, just admiring! )

Hey wait, I just had an idea...Marcy was looking for dancers right? hahahaa

You did great things David..CONGRATS on a great season!

David said...

No, I won't be going anywhere, just shifting the focus of my blogs for a while. I still need to do the race report from this past weekend, but then I'll be focusing on discussion of life and maybe some core health/training issues, moving away from concentrating on speed and competition.

J~mom said...

Do you like how Marcy lumped me into the stupid question category? Sheesh. :>) If only she knew the questions that I email.

I appreciate your perspective on the off season. I think I am going to take that to heart. I am so afraid of losing this momentum I have gained but I know I will burn out fast if I keep it up. It's all so hard to balance.

I hope you know how much we all appreciate your advice and that you inspire us. You and Mendy both do.

I will look forward to the race report and of course will try to come up with 50 more questions before Sunday.

Marcy said...

Ok phewwwwwww. So we can still talk about 80's hair, mullets, and Nelson after all, you had me worried.

And who is Lisa kidding, more like 100 more questions :P

Jess said...

The funny thing is that here in FL, the season is just getting going -- winter races are what it's all about here.

So, I know you're not going anywhere...because I said so. That works with most people (I'm very bossy -- comes with being the oldest child) so I expect it to work with you.

Now, for a new format: I suggest you discuss subjects like "Will Pam and Jim get married?" And "Will Dwight and Angela get back together despite the fact that he mercy-killed her cat?" These are pertinent issues, right? Discuss.

Christopher said...

I'm not sure your 'plan' really covered this, but you left off the most important thing...have fun! The first thing I do when my season is over (after a couple of weeks of TOTAL rest) is to look for an event to do - just so I can NOT go fast. I plan on doing the Dan Davis Turkey Trot 5k with Janis. We will WALK the course and I won't be wearing a watch. This is the time of year when I focus on remembering why I love riding and running...the leaves turning, the cool air, the company of others. Well, for me that time starts November 4...hope we can do some of that fun stuff then. G

P.S. I hope Dwight and Angela don't get back together anytime soon...I like to see Dwight beg and plot...

J~mom said...

Questions? Who me? :>P

Ok, I posted a race strategy. See what you think. Let's start with that. :>)

J~mom said...

I love it. More great advice. Ok, only bend over once. Got it. I know I am not going for podium but I am going for it all. I want this baby.

On the bike...can I go hard from the beginning or do I have to start out like I said. I really want to go out and just goooooooo. I think my best time can be on the bike and where I make my biggest gains. What do you think? Should I hold back a bit like I said?