This year I have really struggled to find the same level of motivation that I have had previous years for training. For much of this year I have pondered what the reason is for this, and I haven’t yet figured out.
When I consider what the causes could be, I have been able to eliminated certain things, firstly my training plan supplied by “Iron” Mike as he is tailoring it to the feedback I give him, and to be fair the sessions on paper are fine. Secondly, support from the wife, she is as ever very supportive and offering help whenever possible.
To compound things, we recently lost a family member and rather than making me realise ho lucky I am to be in a position to not only be alive but also fit enough to train etc it has had almost the opposite impact..
With the help, of Mike, I have been trying to find activities that rekindle the fire, I think that is why singlespeed mountain biking has helped, it’s something new, a challenge that doesn’t really make any sense. I have been doing some trail running which is easier on the mind than road running and that is helping, I think.
I was supposed to have raced a couple of time already this year, the first one I missed due to being simply too tired, and the second was postponed due to snow. The next one I doubt I will do as I just don’t feel mentally in the right place, physically I am not too far off.
The one overriding thing I have lost is the sense of fun, I am not a pro athlete, I do all this for fun, something to provide a level of challenge but ultimately because I enjoy it and so to be in this position of not really enjoying it is hard. I am not defined by my results, and as a person I am not defined by exercise and so perhaps I just need to find the fun again.
I do realise that I am in a good position in life, and that to some people the fact that I am not enjoying training is probably seen as a “so what”, but when you stop enjoying something you have loved for years it is an issue to me.
The “what next” question is still there, but I think that if I keep on the mountain bike and throw in some trail running I will eventually find the right path.
Will I race again? I honestly don’t know at the moment, racing takes a lot out of you both physically and mentally and the thought of it currently is something that does not excite me.
I hope that something will provide the spark, it might just take a ParkRun with other people where I don’t worry about the time and just run and enjoy it, or perhaps a good bike ride, who knows. The one thing is though I really don’t want to quit and don’t intend to quit I just need to re-find the fun!