I posted this to facebook last night but I've been on a reading/audible kick and made a goal for the remainder of this year to really start reading at least 15 minutes every day. It truly is NOT hard and just need to get off my phone for that amount of time scrolling mindless social media and then you rock and roll through books and it's so awesome.
I also am really good at skipping all the "extra" words while I'm reading so I can read pretty fast. I might miss a few details but not enough to worry. he said, she said dialogue words I just don't even read. My mind jumps right over them. BATTLE OF THE BOOKS QUICK TIP NERD ALERT! ; )
Motivation is something that I have had in abundance since I was a little girl. I have made lists since the age of 5 with goals and dreams. I've always been obsessed with the ideas of goals. When I found out there was a book about getting to the deeper parts of my brain to be able to do better in endurance sports-I WAS ALL IN! SIGN ME UP! I listened to the audio book 8 hours in one day. lol.
"How bad do you want it" is a sports psychology book written by the infamous Matt Fitzgerald. It details the science behind the phenomenon that your mind controls more than your muscles in endurance training and racing and that we can push far more than we ever imagined by tapping into this potential.
While I'm not blogging full time, I had about 40 people tell me they were going to get this book on amazon when I thought "Hey! Why not throw up an affiliate link because why not?" LOL! So, if you use the link above..."NANKS" as my nephew Jackson would say.
Each chapter outlines an accomplished endurance athlete and the mental triumphs that they made or did not make to get them where they are today. I feel like my mouth is just gaping open sometimes when he explains about the science behind some of the things that our body's can do when we just simply can tap into the mental. It's not just a matter of mind over muscle, but actual brain images showing changes that can benefit you more than even illegal doping.
It outlines how many endurance athletes have been through trauma and that trauma, as long as it's not intense trauma in life's hardships can lead to the potential to be able to push yourself further. It allows you to be able to handle lay offs and deaths easier. If life is just peachy all the time, then these athletes have a harder time pushing themselves at the end of a marathon because they have not exercised their brain muscle tissue. I can first hand say that I feel that hard things in my life have been able to be used directly in endurance training and race days.
As you continue in training over the years, your perception of effort changes with the amount of miles that you are doing. I have seen this first hand. Each and every training cycle, I do more and more miles and it just doesn't feel like a big deal. Eight miles to me now is literally nothing when that used to be such a huge deal. Everything that we do is relative, so if we can convince ourselves that what we are doing is not as big of a deal then it becomes easier to handle.
This may seem obvious but it's really important to athletes especially on race days.
Another really incredible thing that our minds do is that we "choke under pressure" if we think about the race TOO much. There's a healthy level of obsession about your race day, but chilling out about it can prove benefit time and again. The same mindset goes along with weight loss. If you are fantasizing and thinking about it constantly then research shows over and over again that you will have a much harder time actually doing what your goal is. It's the art of being able to execute what needs to be done without obsession.
Siri Lindley is one of the examples in the book and a really well known triathlete. Listening to her story alone made me want to jump right back into ironman, I was so inspired. She simply had a voice in her head that told her that she had a burning desire to be a really good triathlete and so she literally dedicated her entire life to it when she didn't even know how to really swim. I know that's not realistic, but Tanner and I talk frequently how people don't understand that all of these pro athletes that we see and get to experience their greatness-we wouldn't get to do that if people weren't extreme. If people weren't willing to run 125 miles in one week or train for 30+ hours while working full time jobs then we wouldn't get to experience the world records they shatter. It's because of their mental aggressiveness that allows it. So, yes, they are extreme, and I freakin love it!
I hope this inspires you to 1) read this book because it'll change your outlook on some things I really believe and 2) KICK BOOTY AND WORK YOUR BUTT OFF!! No one can take that away from you!
Now for my training!! I just want to say that even though I know I haven't talked much about it online, I am having the best training cycle of my entire endurance career. It's unbelievable really. The reasons that I have come up with for this are:
1) I haven't been traveling as much which I think put way more stress on my body than I realized with all the constant change in routine, having to find weird times to get hard workouts in
2) nervous system adaptation over the years just getting used to things
3) slow base miles even if it's lots of them
4) running lots more and I know that sounds weird but I truly feel like because my body feels almost as if it's always moving, it's always loose. Before, I would skip days at a time due to travel then pop out and just run 8 miles and then of course I was getting injured.
So how many miles are we talking? 55-70 miles/week build up for my first 4 mesocycle. I am slowly cycling up, peaked out at 70 miles last week then did 48 this week.
For the next 4 weeks, I will do another mesocycle topping out at 70 miles/week then have a deload week. These two mesocycles are focused SOLELY on volume and not intensity. Many many miles are done at 9min/mile. I have thrown in 2 speed workouts of just 400 x 4 (so literally 2 miles of speed work) and that's it.
For the following 4 weeks after that (July), I will top off at 80 miles/week adding in one tempo workout per week. The efforts per week will still be very minimal with most miles being slow & easy or conversation paced.
August will also be 80 miles/week but this is when I will start adding in anaerobic work in the form of more speed workouts and also faster, longer tempos.
September is the final month before Chicago where I will top off at 90 miles/week before the taper which will be a slow gradual taper over 3 weeks.
The structure of training for a 70 mile that I'm following is:
Monday- 8 miles AM , 5 miles PM
Tuesday - 8 miles AM, 6 miles PM
Wednesday - 8 miles AM, 6 miles PM
Thursday- 8 miles
Friday - 8 miles
Saturday-Long Run (14-16 miles)
Sunday - Full rest day
I PREFER doubles. I would much rather do doubles ANY day than do the mileage all at once. I'm also aware that this is A LOT and it may not work. I've done a lot of research and I know I'm not a pro. I'm not even close, but I want to see what I'm capable of and if a sub 3 is something that I can do. So, I have structured the entire cycles over these months strategically and if I end up doing too much which is possible, then I just live and learn and know better for the next time! :)