Offseason = a time of year when a particular activity, typically a sport, is not engaged in.
For a triathlete offseason would in theory mean a period without swimming, cycling and running. For me that sounds just horrible. How can I live a day without doing at least one of these sports? How about a week or two? Why? My first thought after my Ironman race was however that offseason is very welcome. I was very happy with my race result and season in general. I thought a short, week or max two, offseason period isn’t a very bad thing for training motivation either. It was very different from last year, when I was quite disappointed with my Berlin Marathon result and wanted to start training immediately after the race.
Well. I was too fast with my thinking. As I came home from Mallorca, gave my body a little rest, and thus got sick, I was mentally totally done with resting. All I wanted to do was to start training for IM Kona 2017 and all other things in my to-do list. Luckily the flu lasted only a few days and I could start training again. … to notice that offseason break would still be a good idea. Both my body and head said no to all kind of structured and decent training. Going to a swimming hall after work, no way!
I am person that needs every day sporty after-work activities to give my head time to relax and other things to think about. It just feels very bad to go home and only watch TV after a work day. In addition, I think it is stupid to keep long breaks from all training, when competing in a high level. Building up the fitness and losing gained extra kilos takes quite long after a break of doing nothing. However, there is a big difference between doing nothing and training 20 hours a week with a structured plan and almost minute schedule. Thus, I decided to live in between these two quite different options. I won’t schedule any interval trainings or minute-schedule days before November or stress about losing time to trying something new, like hot yoga, which I would otherwise think as non-sense, waste of time. Skipping a ride in rain is also now allowed.
Knowing myself, this kind of unstructured “I train what I want to” mentality can also end up in 5h MTB rides in far too hilly tracks, coming home half dead, but at least I try to skip almost all morning trainings and enjoy sleeping longer than usually. In addition, I have one rather big thing in the bucket list: fix my right buttock that again became very sore in the marathon. I am happy that I “have to” run a marathon only once year, since my weak legs don’t really appreciate that. :)
To sum it up: Yes I need offseason, but I cannot live a week without swimming, cycling or running. I have been doing this: