I started my 10 Days of Rest yesterday, but that doesn’t mean I’m being lazy. I think it’s important to restate that this will be intense mind and body work to rebuild my foundation. I will be very active in my relaxation.
Last night I performed a fairly intense cycle of stretching and strengthening exercises. The base of the stretching is from Tim Ferriss’s 4-Hour Body book, and can be seen performed by this young man or look at this picture for a sample.
The first thing I learned (which I already knew) was that I am super tight in my pelvis and hip flexors. This is a major problem, and whether it’s true or not, I think it is basically the root of my plantar facetious (not to mention strain and stress in general). It sounds strange, but my heel is measurably better today after spending about 30 minutes with these exercises last night.
I also did a handful of planks only to realize, not only am I tight, I am weak! Crazy how you can workout so much and feel like a you can’t fight your way out of a paper bag.
Triathlon was the perfect cross train discovery for my running woes, now I realize I need to cross train the cross train. Triathlon makes you very straight-ahead-easy-pace-strong, but doesn’t round out the body as much as I need. It’s those same, repetitive motions that build the same muscles. When I was going good last season, I was doing yoga at least twice a week, along with leg exercises that worked unused muscles. But, time is a rare commodity in triathlon and something as simple as 30 minutes to invest in your long-term success becomes expendable.
So, I have no idea if this experiment will pay off, but my gut is telling me it will. It’s a little risky to drop all endurance training for 10 days at this time of the season, but health is the key to fitness and I’m hoping this slight detour will get me there faster.
I’ll probably repeat this routine a couple times today, then add some Beso ball step-ups and balance stuff, along with a full round of yoga. I’m also looking forward to incorporating a bunch of plank varieties along with push ups and modified pull ups.
Obviously this is far deeper than training. Last year’s Ironman training knocked me off a lazy and directionless foundation, and now I’m working on putting these pieces together in a way that makes sense. The “excitement” WAS Ironman. Now, I feel like I’m looking for that deep and genuine place in training (and life) that fuels me on a more natural and consistent level. Pure excitement for the day ahead, period.