Follow Coach Sarah as she shares her training and racing journey. She will share not only what her training looks like, but her day to day nutrition, recovery, the mental side of training, the 1%rs, the ups and the downs, her favourite sessions, break throughs, realisations and more. She will show you that training to your optimal performance doesn’t have to mean spending every spare hour training or every waking moment tired….
It’s been over 3 months since my return to racing at IM Western Australia 70.3. A race that I looked forward to for so long and that went pretty much to plan. I could not have been happier! Post race I had some loose plans on ‘what was next’. But I wanted to ensure first and foremost my recovery was my number 1 priority before jumping straight back on the long course band wagon.
So post race, I enjoyed some down time to recover – which went super well and was feeling great just a couple of weeks after. A HUGE improvement on previous years when it would take anywhere up to 3 months to fully recover. I actually had to try and hold myself back – which as any athlete knows, is hard to do! Port Macquarie Half Ironman was my next target race and that was still 5 months away. So I pulled back and held back. Sitting back in my aerobic zone, working again on strength endurance – the key to racing strong in long course.
But just as quick as I felt good, I started to feel tired again. I found sessions a little harder and recovery a little slower. So I backed it off thinking maybe I hadn’t recovered as well as I thought I had. A few more weeks and then I realised a big change was ahead of me. My body was changing. It wasn’t the same as before and I’d have to change my race plans and aim for something new.
SO instead of being in final preparations for my next Half Ironman in Port Macquarie, I’m prepping for something much bigger now.
The event I’m now aiming for is early September and I have no doubt it will be far more challenging, a lot harder but at the same time way more satisfying than any other event or race I’ve competed in before. And I’m excited and maybe a little scared at the same time. For this one isn’t just about me anymore. This one is about a little human being that will be arriving early September, an event that I have 6 more months to prepare for. And I’m ready to embrace every part of the journey to motherhood… (eek!)
I’ve already had similar emotions and doubts to those I remember in prepping for my first Ironman. Am I ready for this? Can I do this? Ok I can do this. Argh. I know nothing about this! How am I going to do this. (And breath…) An exciting, scary, daunting but amazing journey all rolled into one.
I don’t know any other full time female triathlon coaches who have gone through the transition to motherhood – balancing their health, training and coaching all in one (if you do let me know!) but I intend to use my experience not only as learning for myself but further learning so I can share with other female athletes (and coaches!)
So far, everything has gone along smoothly. I’m training as much as I was before, but the intensity (and pace!) has certainly dropped. And to be honest that was the hardest thing to grasp to begin with – I’ve even had a few tearies with my partner exclaiming to him ‘I just can’t go fast anymore!” as I came to the realisation that my body was changing and it was getting ready for something far bigger than an Ironman!
Acceptance of this for me will be the key. Knowing that my body is now serving another purpose and putting as much energy and focus into that as I do my racing. And as I have always done I’ll be listening to my body and using my intuition to know when to go easier, when to have a day off, when to rest and recover. But all along my aim will be maintaining my health and happiness while creating the healthiest environment for the little being growing inside of me.
I can’t wait to share my new journey with you as I aim to share the highs and the lows. The challenges, doubts and the milestones. It’s going to be an amazing ride! 🙂