Wow…what a whirlwind this past week has been! I’m so grateful for all of the kind words and congratulations from all of you. Additionally, I’m rather happy that I’m in recovery mode as this past week has been full of some amazing, albeit time consuming, opportunities! I’ll do a bit of shameless self-promotion here, but I had the privilege of joining Ryan and Aaron on the Tempo Talks Podcast as well as joining Finn on the Singletrack Podcast!
Everyone who believes in me as a coach (mostly the entirety of the people reading this) has been instrumental in my development as both an athlete and a coach. I learn so much from all of you every day and thank you for including me in your journeys! I truly love my job and this sport and my experiences over the past week have only solidified these feelings.
I promise we’ll get back to some more structured newsletters shorty, but I wanted to do a short write-up on my main takeaways from after Bandera:
Respect the reset! This is so much easier said than done and I think most of us either walk away from a race with a good/bad taste in our mouths that leave us hungry to fix problems or hungry to jump right back in and carry momentum into the next training cycle and event! Last year, I made the mistake of jumping back into training too quickly after a bad race and paid the price. Luckily, I’m a little more content with my most recent performance, and laying off of the gas hasn’t been terribly difficult… but no matter how badly you want to make up for perceived failures or double down on successes, allow your body the opportunity to rest and adapt to the ENORMOUS stimulus that it just undertook!
Following up…and likely a predictable point for me at this point…FUEL like your life depends on it! I wouldn’t go as far as to say that your life depends on it, but longevity in the sport and reaching your athletic potential certainly does! If you find you put a few pounds on in the weeks following a hard effort, you’re doing it right! The body needs these resets to promote healing both with things we can and can’t measure. Sure…you know when something is mechanically sore or not working properly, but there are things going inside our bodies that are less measurable and likely more destructive if not respected. I’ve been guilty of skimping in the past, but if you’re waking up hungry following an ultra (or any really hard race effort/or even hard training) you’re going too light and need to adjust accordingly!
Use the time away from training to catch up on the things that have been neglected. This is a long list for me and traveling for the better part of the week means I have plenty to keep me busy following a race! Additionally, I have a lot of energy once the system is back to normal and that energy is better served in areas independent of running as I’m still adapting to the race and running too soon would likely just prolong that adaptation window!
Lastly, and likely most important, be proud of your effort regardless of outcome. I struggle with this one a lot… Even when a race goes well, I’m often left thinking…did I give it my all? Was there any competition that made this a true success? Why do people not ‘respect’ me as a runner and racer? I remember talking with an ‘elite’ following a race where we both felt like we underperformed. I was a fan of this guy’s and wanted to wish him luck moving forward with the understanding that he was likely to crush his next race! Instead of reciprocating, this runner hardly looked my way as he walked off…I felt exceptionally foolish. Why would I think that I could approach someone of his status? Why would he even know or care who I was?
In hindsight, this was an incredible learning opportunity. This past week has been full of external validation and has served as an incredible reminder that I'm on the right track athletically and professionally. However, that shouldn’t be a prerequisite for self-belief, nor should it be a prerequisite for acceptance from your peers, regardless of athletic capabilities. I’m so inspired by each and every one of you. We’re all packing in hard training amidst busy lives and that’s so admirable. I’d rather chat with all of you as you’re interesting people with other things going on that extend past your athletic careers. Don’t lose sight of this and don’t think less of yourselves depending on where a performance falls compared to what you expected!
First, Ellie and I got Starlink at the house! This is an UNBELIEVABLE upgrade to our lives and will allow for me to do some things that I haven’t had enough bandwidth for in the past! So…starting this year, I’ll also be uploading newsletters to the website (wereprobablyrunning.com). I’m sure I’ll find other uses for high speed internet, but this is a good start :)!
Additionally, I’ve been cleaning up a bit of the…’business’ side of things (gasp…I like coaching and am less inclined to do the overhead stuffs as well). Sometime in 2020, we started using an invoicing system on Paypal to make it easier for everyone. For any athlete that has been with us since before that point and would like to switch over so that you receive an invoice, please let me know! This is 100% your decision, I just know I forget plenty in my own life and that can certainly help!
Paul U. completed his first ultra this past weekend at the Coldwater Rumble 52k!!! Paul suffered his fair share of setbacks before this race and even had a bit of forced time off rather close. However, he kept a positive outlook and managed expectations, having an amazing day out there!
Matt C. ran the Rock n’ Roots 40k! He ran a good race and walked away with some good experiences and ideas about what we need to dial in for bigger objectives moving forward!
Anisa S. finished third at the LKL43 this past weekend despite a rough night of sleep and feeling rather rough on race day! Anisa has so many big races in her future and is going to totally rock it on the days where the stars align!