A brand shiny new 2014

When I last updated this blog I was all excited and happy – training was going well, I felt like I was finally making some progress and all was good with me and my world.  Very little has happened since …  except that training kind of fell off a bit.  A few of you commented that I was already training kind of long hours this far away from my target race – and that threw me into a bit of a tailspin.  I know a lot of people – probably more serious ironman competitors, to be fair – who are putting at least 10 hours a week in already and whose distances covered are demoralisingly long.  But I get what you were trying to say – it’s kind of hard to keep that kind of focus and intention for a long time.  To be fair, some of the training time I was putting in were workouts with my clients.  My clients are strong and fast, and workouts with them are workouts for me.  However, they are, in most cases, not focused Ironman workouts.  Overall, my specific Ironman training load is not so heavy.  And in the past weeks, it has not been heavy at all…  Usually I’m great about keeping up marathon training in the holidays. This year?  I took my eye off the ball.  I overcommitted myself socially in a way only I seem able to manage. In general, I veer between behaving like a hermit and wanting to be the life of the party – I spent a little too much time on the far side of that equation this holiday.  I did not treat training like my job, and, of course, it promptly fell off the end of the list.  However, it is what it is and here I am on January 1st filled with determination that between now and July training is my job. The job that needs to be done first, importantly.

Which leads me into what I’m going to share with you today.  Instead of telling you about my new year’s resolutions, I am going to share the things that I know are true but which I seem to choose to sometimes forget about and pretend I don’t know are true.  This year, I’m going to try to acknowledge these truths and not waste endless time and much emotional energy rediscovering these truths every time.  And feeling like an idiot when I do.

  • I am a morning person.  I need to train first thing in the morning.  This works best for me, for my family and with my job.  So no procrastination – those of you who see me on FB first thing in the morning feel free to ask me if I’m procrastinating and need to get on my bike / out on the run / into the pool.
  • Comparing myself to others is stupid and a complete and utter waste of time. I know this.  I really know it.  But I still waste endless time feeling incompetent comparing myself to faster, better, better-looking, more disciplined others. (not just when it comes to triathlon or running but in all aspects of life).  That just has to stop.  Any tips?
  • I need to write about stuff.  Writing about stuff, whether here about my training or in my journal about life in general, helps me find more direction in my life, helps me to think about how I’m living my life and to ensure that it’s in line with my bigger goals.  When I don’t blog or write in my journal, I become very reactive.  I’ll do my training, but without considering why and often not pushing myself hard enough.  In life, I find myself caught up in endless errands and paperwork, with no clear prioritities.  In both aspects of my life I then make little progress and get even more frustrated.  5 minutes a day of figuring out what I’m intending to achieve that day, as an athlete and as a mother, wife, friend and trainer makes life feel so much more focused.

And my final word is this – I am slowly, slowly beginning to realise just how much I am able to affect my mood and overall wellbeing myself.  How much difference a change in attitude can make.  And so that is my resolution for 2014 – to remember that, when the crap hits the fan (which it inevitably does, for all of us) I always, always, can change my attitude.  Let’s see how that goes!

Changing my attitude works, even in a grim carpark on January 1st in pouring cold rain.
Changing my attitude works, even in a grim carpark on January 1st in pouring cold rain.

5 thoughts on “A brand shiny new 2014

  1. You go girl! And do write, I enjoy your musings on other parts of life besides training… maybe its that issue of comparing my lame attempts to your mojo…. but nope… none of those comparisons! Wishing you all the best for a great new year and triumphant Ironman.

  2. Hey, just stay positive, I might ask for a weekly Saturday report!

    Not a great ‘blog-type’ person but I am going to follow your journey and make sure you stay on track towards the end goal.

    Good luck, see you soon.

  3. It’s hard not to compare to others. I just have to say STOP when I feel the sentences coming on or just breathe in 1 2 3, breath out 1 2 3. It makes me think about the things I’m saying or thinking.
    Sorry I couldn’t meet up with you in England. Next time for sure.

  4. Gah, I always read your posts at work on my phone and can’t comment from it and then forget to come back and let you know I was here for about 5 days. Yah, I suck…but maybe only on certain days! 🙂

    So I think you just have to be 50, my friend, to stop comparing yourself to others. I swear, I have done less and less of it this year than I ever have. I think a lot of that has to do with me entering a whole new world of running where I’m not racing against past race numbers.and others I’ve run against for years. I do remember this summer running a trail marathon that kinda left a sour taste in my mouth when a women beat me that I beat in Leadville, but I like to think that’s more a competitive creature shining through than jealousy or envy. I work with people who have so, so, SO much and I actually think that though life is super sucky for me personally right now, I’m learning how to persevere. And you can’t tell me I can’t carry some of these coping skills to the trails with me this spring. So just look start looking at you, at amazing Petra who can do anything she sets her mind to, and compete on the inside – within your heart – to make yourself the best person you can possibly be. And I know you will succeed. Because that’s what you do – succeed.

    You are such an amazing woman with a soul and heart of gold. I’m glad the cobwebs in the little corner of your head are being cleared away and light is shining in in full force. 2014 is here…time to shine, baby!

    Love you tons!! Happy New Year, my dear friend!

  5. I am just now getting around to responding to this beautiful post. I need to work on not comparing myself to others, too. And even to stop comparing myself to my younger self! I had such a great running year in 2013 that part of me doesn’t even want to try anymore. What is the point, I ask myself, of training hard for another marathon when there is so little chance of running a PR? But I love running and I really do love the marathon distance. So I am working on convincing myself that it is not all about the time on the clock.

    And I love what you said about giving yourself 5 minutes to just focus on what you want to achieve that day, in all aspects of your life. I need to start doing that, too. Ideally, I’d give myself a half hour for some yoga and meditation, too, but that may be dreaming a little too big. Haha.

    Anyway, I hope you are having a great year so far and I can’t wait to follow the rest of your Ironman journey. You are such an inspiration and I love your smile! xoxo

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