Week 11: Listen to Yourself

After completing another decent week of training, I’ve been averaging 7-8 hrs the last four weeks, I am feeling sore but strong. Is this what its meant to feel like when things are finally coming together? My swim times are down, my bike FTP is up and my running, er… still needs work. But I seem to have a default setting of self sabotage. I can’t possibly be doing well, I’m sure I’m not good at this. It must be a mistake. Its like I’m surprised that my training and hard work is actually paying off and I am achieving my goals, as I seem to assume that I’ll always fail. This little wobble is enough to send me off course and it can be hard to clamber back on track.

Coach Laura: “You’ve put in some hard yards the last few weeks, maybe take it easy for a week? You don’t want to over cook yourself again and go backwards. Plus, your in the later stages of your cycle, so your recovery needs to be greater and you will feel flat. Why not switch out those sprints for an endurance set and make sure you are eating right?”
Me: “Yeh, nah. I still feel good lets keep going.”
Body: “I will give you crippling stomach pains and force you to slow it down!”
Me: “OK. OK. I surrender. I’ll lie down, I’ll spin easy, just make it stop!”

So in reality, I struggled through my training with stomach cramps, until Thursday during my race pace run set on the treadmill where I doubled over in pain, wondering if I was going to vomit or poop myself. Ok, so maybe its time for a rest.

I am still enjoying my swimming and have seen my times consistently decrease from the 1:55-2:00/100m zone to more 1:45-1:50/100m mark. Could not be happier about this! I guess its right when they say ‘Consistency is key and perseverance pays off.’

My bike efforts have also been rewarding. I did a ramp test to re-set my FTP and make sure that I am getting the most out of my trainer sessions, as I felt things weren’t as hard as they should be. Its good to measure your progress with threshold tests every 4-6 weeks and I had increased my FTP score from 187W to 197W. 10 Watts in 5 weeks isn’t too bad. The indoor smart trainer was the best investment we made and I have noticed a significant improvement in my bike strength, both in my trainer sessions and on the trails. I really love the convenience. Not having to layer up to go outside, or plan a route or drive to the trails. Just hook your bike up, laptop on, select workout and away you go. It feels like barely a week goes by without news of a fatality on NZ roads, and I’m glad not to be out there with the traffic. I don’t mind road riding and I do kinda miss it, but would much rather be with other people; you know, just in case!

So after taking Friday and Saturday off, I think I’ve recovered a bit. I still don’t feel 100% but I know that I suffer with GI issues as a result of stress, so I’m hoping it will resolve itself when I reduce the to-do list. I’ve also been a bit slack with my eating and sleeping, which probably hasn’t helped.

You should talk to yourself, as you would your best friend. I would never tell a friend that they are incapable and pathetic, so why so I tell myself these things? Next week will include more positive self talk, naps and veggies.

Do you get physical symptoms of stress? How do you cope with it? Let me know in the comments.

Don’t forget to follow along on Instagram for more insight into how my training unfolds.

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