After eight weeks of not training (and instead, getting married, drinking wine, eating cake, honeymooning, drinking bintang, eating noodles, drinking bintang, eating chips etc), it’s safe to say my body is well rested. And overly nourished. Opting for an off-season (non)training regime to coincide with a wedding and honeymoon was an epic win, as any other option would have been impossible.
To justify all the relaxation, I did my best to research the benefits of going all-out with a feet-up regime. The first place I usually find a suitable answer is by asking myself the question: what would Chrissie do? (WWCD, obvs.). She gave me some great non-training motivation here: http://www.chrissiewellington.org/blog/seasons-end-‘having-it-off’/ especially her recommendation of marathon Top Gun sessions (does this girl just get more and more legendary the more you read about her?).
Next port of call, the daddy of coaching advice, Joe Friel, offers up this in support of my feet-up approach: http://www.trainingbible.com/joesblog/2009/10/training-and-transition-period.html although he does say that your off-season shouldn’t be about eating potato chips and watching Oprah. But hey, I followed the rest of his advice.
So with all of this off-season wisdom behind me (and now with new terminology that I have been chucking around when people ask me why I’m eating ice-cream and not exercising: “De-conditioning”. It makes being lazy sound so scientific.) I went forth into eight weeks of indulgence. Overboard in fact; last year, I had a total of four hangovers. In the past eight weeks, I have also had four hangovers. Major ones at that. So yes, I would say I have taken ‘de-conditioning’ next-level. And probably a tad too far. But on the upside, my muscles have been getting rest from the relentless pounding on the pavement, as well as getting cosy beneath a nicely developing layer of warmth (read: fat).
But the eight weeks is up. And as you all know, after Friday’s lucky lottery win in the dash to get Ironman spots, I am now less than a year away from competing in this merciless bloodsport they call long distance triathlon. So we need to start reversing the de-conditioning trend…
To find out just how much fitness has been lost over the break, I managed to bag a last minute entry into Run for the Kids. At 14.4km, it’s a nice middle distance. Last year I ran it in 71 minutes, and was training for a marathon. So reasonably fit. This year, after 8 weeks of gluttony and inactivity, I was expecting to add at least five minutes onto last year’s time. Surprisingly, I finished in 68 minutes, which was a genuinely unexpected time. And bodes well for the training to come.
Saying that, every second was painful, with stitches, stomach cramps, sore knees, and I longed for it to be over immediately. In fact, the entire event was bloody agony due to a major lack of conditioning. De-conditioning, I believe they call it…