For the last couple of weeks I have been in Spain, preparing for my next race, the Trail World Championships. I was away from all distractions and could really focus on my training and recovery. It’s crazy to see what you can achieve if you really put your mind to it.
My final training block for the Trail World Championships was always going to be tough. The World Champs is my “A” race for the first part of 2018. I have been lucky enough to already have raced a handful of times this year (including TCC Costa Rica and The South Downs Way 50), furthering my experience and gaining understanding of my strengths and weaknesses. I’m a very self-critical athlete and have some big goals for the future. With the help from my coach, Allison Benton (AB Training Group), we came up with a training program that was going to push my limits, mentally and physically.
The course for the World Champs is going to be tough. The heat, the distance (85km), the ascent (5000m) and the technical ground under foot all combined are going to make the race challenging. Knowing the course well has a huge advantage, like a Formula 1 driver spending hours knowing the intricate details of a course, I spent time on the course getting to know it is well as I possible could. A phrase from my school days came to mind “Fail to prepare, prepare to fail.”
When I was not running I was focussing on my recovery, something that we all sometimes neglect. Recovering between sessions allows you to stick to your training program, stay motivated and hopefully, injury free. I have a go to recovery routine (I will go into detail in my next blog) which I try to use every day. The Spanish like to have a siesta in the afternoon, something that I have become very fond of!
If you are training hard, burning lots of calories, you need to refuel correctly to help recovery and also fuel for the next session. I love my nutri-bullet and experimenting with different ingredients. I have been working with Matt Hodges from Buff Box Nutrition who has some great smoothie recipes for recovery, reducing inflammation and fuelling for a training session.
At the end of the day, whatever your goals are, you have to be willing to go that extra mile. For me, most of my goals are running related but it’s the same in whatever field you wish to excel in. What you put in IS what you get out. Stay focussed, stay motivated and go smash your goals!