A blog about happiness and healthy living...

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Back to the Gym Post Triathlon

I just recently completed my first ever sprint triathlon. By recently I mean three or four weekends ago. It was something I signed up for completely spur of the moment because I was going through a lot in my life and needed something positive to focus my energy on. I had always wanted to do one and I absolutely LOVED it.
I did it :)

As I was preparing for my triathlon I would hear all the time that I needed to also remember that once I finished the race, it would be done. Especially for people who are doing their first one it is normal to experience a mild depression of sorts when it's over. This big goal that you've been setting your sights on and striving for is suddenly all gone. Obviously for the most part my mind was focused on  the sheer fact that I had to somehow run this thing, but as I came closer and closer to race day I started preparing myself for the idea that it was all going to be over soon.

Except in all honesty when I crossed the finished line, I wasn't bummed in the slightest. All I could think about was "AH! I want to do it again!" and I immediately started deciding when I wanted to do another.

What I was not prepared for, which I probably should have been looking back, was how difficult it would be to get back in the swing of going to the gym regularly. I so naively assumed that I'd just keep at it and have the motivation to continue the same workout plan and schedule I had stuck to in preparation for the triathlon. Yeah, no.

I took the entire week after the triathlon off from working out. I wanted to allow myself the time to thoroughly enjoy my achievement and such. I mainly used a gym in preparation and had been loyally going every other day for good thorough workouts. On the rare occasion that I missed a day I made up for it immediately by going two days in a row. And let me think... I've only been to the gym three times since the triathlon. Why is it so much harder to fit it into my schedule when I don't have this monster of a task looming over me?

I really need to get back into the swing of things. When I work out I sleep better, eat better, feel better and the list goes on. So to do this, since my more passive approach has obviously not been doing much for me, I need to be a bit proactive. I have a nice easy plan to follow and have broken things up into more tangible goals. It is so much easier to go after a set of nicely laid out benchmarks than a massive glob of elusiveness.

Here it is:

My gym days will be Tuesday, Thursday, and then either Sunday or Saturday, whichever works best on the given weekend. Three times a week is enough for me to feel the effects of working out full force without over doing it, and those are the days when it fits easiest into my schedule.

I'm going to focus on increasing my speed on the treadmill for my cardio, and then cycle through the weight machines. I have had ankle problems galore in the past from running. I mainly focused on running distance pre-race because I expected to have some sort of something going on with my ankle throughout the training and figured distance was more the priority since my goal was finishing, not speed. Now I want to see if I can’t get my pace up to a comfortable 8 minute mile.

 Simple? Yes. Achievable? Absolutely.

So I hit the gym tonight. It IS Tuesday after all and therefore a gym day ;) I was not as out of shape as I thought. I did about 1.5 miles on the treadmill to get back into the swing of things which included a cushion off walking on either end. I only did the ab machine after since my gym was pretty crowded which I don't love but I took my time on the machine to get a good thorough workout.

I’ll keep posted on here about how I'm keeping up with my new plan and how my running is going.

See, this is easy now. Wahoo!

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