LEARNING THAT THE OFF-SEASON ISN’T REALLY OFF

Learning That The Off Season Isn't Really Off
It’s getting cold, shorter days and an increase in rain which mentally equals time to pack away the gear for another winter and go into hibernation, pack on the weight and worry about next season when that first race weekend approaches. How wrong I was. I am quickly learning that the end of an athlete’s season signals the start of the next and is one of the most important periods in an athlete’s season and there is no “off” season.

The advantage, like most people that have been engulfed by the endurance or triathlon bug, is that switching off is near impossible for me, there is always something burning in the back of my mind regarding training, performance or racing and after 16 months or so under the guidance of a coach and a daily routine of train, eat, work, eat, train, eat, sleep, repeat just clicking the on/off button is near impossible.

Yes there is a call to reduce your overall level of activity but keeping active will allow me to maintain a substantial amount of the fitness I have worked so hard to accomplish in the past season and it will also allow me to easily work back up to that level once structured training commences again.

I have mates who will train for and then race a key event for a season and once that is done and dusted, they go into shutdown mode, they don’t do anything until they identify their next race in the following season. I like to refer to this as the Yo-Yo approach – and while every time they seem to manage to crawl back to a good level of fitness and passable performance, every year and as they age it gets harder and harder for them and if you are late to the game in triathlon like me then it’s a matter of being patient and consistent over a longer period of time.

There are six things I am aiming for this off-season:

Prev1 of 6Next

1. Rest & Recovery:

Learning That The Off Season Isn't Really Off

More mentally than physically but overall rest is needed, the relentless day after day of ticking off the sessions, juggling other commitments and seemingly always wanting to sleep I have been slowly driving my body and mind into the ground, its hard for an endurance athlete to say but rest is ok.

Most of us who get drawn into this lifestyle will want to remain active and if you have been injured you will be chomping at the bit to get going, it requires patience and also dedication to give yourself a rest. It’s also a good time to address those small niggles you put aside during the season to make sure you are in tip top condition come day one of the new season.

Prev1 of 6Next