Written by Jax Mariash
"How to fit in preparation for a 273km stage race when you have a busy lifestyle?
Hey Folks. JAX MARIASH here. I am thrilled to take part over the next year to supply tips and tricks to preparing and succeeding through your self-supported stage races with G2G or M2M.
The first topic on the docket is one of the most important in my opinion. It is 9 months from G2G and that is an intimidating look at a 273km race across magical but brutal terrain. As a previous world champion and the “Queen of Stage Racing,” even I get intimidated at this phase. And if that wasn’t enough, we are all choosing to haul everything we need to survive.
If that wasn’t daunting enough to think about for training, then we must add in life, family, children, business and social obligations. The task to manage all of this becomes a dance in itself. To kick off this column, I would like to share five tips and tricks to accomplish the task from a gal that can relate. Pulling off the lead female position with running and owning a coffee business is a hefty feat. Enjoy!
#1 PLAN YOUR WEEK IN ADVANCE:
Looking ahead at a weekly schedule of tasks in addition to your every-day life can be daunting as a sum. Many of you may meal plan for the week so a trick is to take another 20 minutes and plan out your week in advance on a planner, digitally, or a calendar on the wall. Lay out each day with your training sessions, strength work, mind work, social and work. And then stick to it like glue. Some days it will feel like two full time jobs, but the goal is to conquer each day’s schedule by the end of the day. Pat yourself on the back, settle into bed, and wake up to do it all over again.
#2 TAG TEAM TASKS
Another trick with trying to add in training is to multi task. I tend to tag team tasks to try to get to the end goal and create those habits over the training period to fit it all in. For example, doing certain stability exercises are key for me to not get injured. So, I brew a pot of French press coffee (that takes around 9 minutes total) and I do my stability work while it brews. Then the coffee becomes the reward and I can check that off the list. Another tip is working on strength by working standing up with a weighted vest on to start to build the natural load you will carry across space for a week. I use a 42lb vest, which is a lot heavier than our packs out there. Lastly, at times I have had conference calls while doing zone 1 runs. Anything you can do to piggyback time to get to the end goal will help open up more time and also make it so you can get it all in.
#3 COMMUNICATE YOUR SCHEDULING NEEDS TO YOUR SUPPORT CREW
Being an entrepreneur, parent, or working in corporate jobs takes a lot out of you already. I tend to get overwhelmed at times trying to get back in shape, fit in all of my training, or at times sacrificing or modifying social fun. Find those key people (I have 5), that you can show your entire program to and ask for their help in holding you accountable. Some support may be for certain pieces (like nutrition), or strength. Or some may be there to support you through them all. The key is to have honest and transparent check in’s with them so that you can push forward with confidence and have that aid when you are feeling very unmotivated or exhausted.
#4 PACK YOUR BAGS
Some may work at home (like me). But most have a routine to head out to a work place and then come home. Motivation can be lagging if you work a full day and then training is still on the docket. Going home for most can lead to the point in your day when you want to crack open a beer and sit back and cook dinner or socialize with friends. This can easily lead to bailing on the training. One tip is to pack your bags with all of your gear for the day to run, lift, etc. Then do your run at lunch or right from the office after. Or head to a fun trail to jam it out. Then slip by the gym and get your strength in and then go home. This way the hard work is complete, and you can go home and enjoy the rest of the day.
#5 HAVE AN ACTION PLAN AND GOAL EVERY DAY
The first tip talks about planning out your week. This tip is diving a bit deeper into that topic. Each morning, write a goal on a post it or as a note in your phone. Wherever it can be present and seen often. Then create an action plan to achieve that daily goal. With so many components of stage racing training, this will help you to develop strong habits and have something to focus on each day. It could be a nutrition goal, strength goal or any element that is achievable and will set you up for success and to build confidence. Those few minutes that you take to focus on that goal and achieve it will lead to slipping in to bed that evening feeling proud and confident.
Go get ‘em! Seize the day!
Follow Jax: @jaxmariash or http://www.wonderwomanjax.com