So, How Many Hats Do You Wear?

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Pensacola, Florida, United States
Husband. *Dog Dad.* Instructional Systems Specialist. Runner. (Swim-challenged) Triathlete (on hiatus). USATF LDR Surveyor. USAT (Elite Rules) CRO/2, NTO/1. RRCA Rep., FL (North). Observer Of The Human Condition.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Excuse Me, I Swore There Was A Box Here...

My friend, Steve, & I read training advice & counsel from several different coaches. Some of these we apply into our personal training plans, some we set aside for later testing, proof or adaptation. While we might not use the recommendations ourselves, the objective is to keep an open mind to sound advice. Naturally, it's good stuff to know when we're dealing with questions...that ol' here are some alternatives stuff.
One of the concepts we've both ascribed to we borrowed from Patrick McCann & the Endurance Corner coaches. It actually is a four-concept process:
1. Race day is about execution more than fitness. Execution is defined as the ability to run well off the bike in triathlon. Conservative bike pace strategy can be corrected on the run, but riding too fast will bite you in the behind.
2. Everyone will reach a line where running, or running at the same pace you started, will be very hard. Focus on execution is critical to not slow down.
3. To execute & create conditions for success you have to define what you can & cannot control; what you cannot control you can only adapt to.
4. We all hit the line eventually. That's where the goal or the reason you're doing what you're doing becomes critical, or else your day becomes very long.
Steven Covey talks about the circle of influence & the circle of concern in his Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, & it's much like EC, except EC calls it the box. Stuff you can influence or control are inside the box, stuff for which you have to adapt, adjust, endure or get around are (of course,) outside the box.
Approaching the half-way mark in this training cycle, things are beginning to become...interesting. I've started to see the box because the week's training volume is slowly increasing, both mileage & time (mileage more than time) spent. As you start moving closer & closer to the target event & the longer swims, rides, & runs start popping up on the calendar, you're praying like mad that nothing else infringes on the time you're going to have to spend training, recovering...or working at the real j-o-b.
The j-o-b usually can be worked around if you have an understanding boss and/or a reasonable amount of holiday time at your disposal...for which I am fortunate to have both. (It's always a good idea to tell your boss you registered for an iron-distance triathlon. Easier to explain those mornings when you're walking around like a person ten years older than yourself.) Sometimes, the j-o-b stuff requires you to be there. Those are the box things you just have to deal with.
When companions, contemporaries or loving friends start throwing unprocessed fertilizer base material in your general direction, either intentionally or unintentionally, then you have to figure out whether it deserves to be in the box - & controlled - or thrown out of it & either adjusted around or plain flat out ignored as an inconvenience.
Telling your boss about your event goal is probably an inside the box action. Dramatic situations initiated by factional groups in the local running community...more likely outside of the box.
Lately, there's been a little too much drama for my own taste. I prefer to keep my box as small as possible & hope like mad the rest of the world doesn't begin to drag the boundaries of said box outward.

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