Another month passes by, and as the world opens up it brings with it yet more changes to my training regime.
Having only returned to sprint training in any real consistent capacity last November my indoor season was cut short after my GB golds back in March. Then came the influx of cancelled events European championships – postponed, Manchester marathon – postponed, Brighton 10 km – postponed, world championships – postponed, southern championships – cancelled, British championships – cancelled.
Pretty much the whole track season looking like a non-starter in 2020.
Came with this was a surprising sense of relief, for the first time in many years I had no goal, no focus and for me that meant none of the anxiety, emotional stress and pressure that came with racing, PB chasing and sticking to a plan year round. I am lucky enough to be motivated to workout for the love of all things fitness so how much I love a plan it was nice to have one that I could be flexible with.
With the extra time that lockdown brought it’s been great not having to squeeze my training in at that one and only slot or time of day that I had free. With no travelling to and from the track, my PT or gym I could mix it up, train morning, noon or night depending on how I felt and my children’s daily exercise requests.
It’s been so lovely to just train for me, be able to step back after my wrist injury and rebuild my strength slowly without the pressure to be in tip top form for a particular event or date.
The world of sport is gradually returning, my sons are back to football training and my youngest and I are back to some basic sprint training but on grass as he returns to runnning following his accident in June. My daughter now books a slot each day with me Monday – Friday for her 45 minutes training together and even my eldest has called on his mum again to help him with his pre-season football running demands.
There are a few track races looking set to go ahead and my coach asked me if I was looking to track race this year. He was actually quite shocked but pleased to hear my reply. No.
Year after year for the last 6 years I’ve turned up in the summer months to sprint for Reading AC in the veterans league. Just for a bit of fun over summer. No specific track training, in fact no track training at all. I learnt the hard way, over the years I’ve torn my calf, sprained my Achilles twice and continued to have issues as soon as I put spikes on. This last winter saw me track train for the first time in 16 years. With a specific focus on technique, most training was done in trainers with only some done in spikes leading into the indoor championships and following this I raced the indoor season injury free.
Having had 5 months now with no access to a track and only training on grass I decided that based on my history of injury I wouldn’t race this summer. I am looking at the bigger picture, as I head into my final year of the V40 age group I want to build a solid fitness base, get back to consistent track training in September and look to building my strength and speed over the next 2 years for that all important first year in the next age category.
A lot of my fellow GB athletes have managed to continue to track train through lockdown, they are all gearing up to race later this month but I am happy to sit back and look at the bigger picture – building a solid foundation for 2022.
August for me now is about my return to training in the gym (I’ve missed that squat rack), continuing my home gym sessions and enjoying the rest of the month being able to training with my children before a return to school brings yet another change in routine.
Life from September certainly looks a lot different from the last few months but from a family perspective we’ve had an absolute ball training together and I’ve no doubt it will become part of a new routine moving forward.