I have had two full weeks of track practice, and I am still (grudgingly) adjusting to my new, 2.5-to-3-hour-track-practice-right-after-school-schedule. During the off-season, I enjoyed having the ability to work out on my own schedule; I could exercise in the morning during my open period, right after the final school bell, or later in the evening if I wanted to work on homework or study directly after school. Also during the off-season, I felt that I could complete a quality workout in a short amount of time (in comparison to the length of a track practice). However, although I really miss my off-season schedule flexibility and quality:time-efficient workouts, I think the track season is an ideal way for me to practice patience, be more social, and give my body and mind a chance to breathe.
My off-season running workouts rarely, if ever, included “easy” runs or elliptical sessions. While I enjoyed my rigorous cardio workouts, I grew both physically and mentally burnt-out (remember my “tired” week?). It is mentally difficult for me to not always push myself to my limit; during the off-season, I think I listened to my mind’s needs more than my body’s. I now have the daily, intelligent guidance of my coaches (especially my distance coach), and I believe that from the wisdom they offer and the diverse workouts they devise (I am enjoying these diverse workouts, as my body is being worked in different, challenging ways; I feel like I am becoming a more well-rounded athlete.), I will see more improvements in myself than I did during the off-season because I am not working myself to the bone every day. Incorporating easier workouts and resting into your training are important in order to become a (sane), successful athlete, and I am still working to grasp this concept of restraint.
The new weightlifting program is being introduced on Monday, and I would like to return to having quality strength training workouts, which, believe it or not, I miss!
Most importantly, throughout the track season, I want to remember to make a conscious effort to be the best athlete I can be, and be happy doing it!