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How do you improve / train your tenacity?

Rich-TiRich-Ti Posts: 1,831
I REALLY want to work hard over the winter and get myself to a decent level of fitness so that I can begin to consider racing next year.

BUT I've had this thought in the past and started both 2007 and 2008 with the same intention (but more on the MTB), and it didn't really happen. I'd get back from work and find reasons not to ride / go to the gym, or at the weekends I'd ride but for nowhere near long enough or hard enough.

I'm starting to recognise the same symptoms already (was too cold the other evening so my planned 3 laps of Richmond Park became 1 and then I jacked it in, likewise yesterday when it was 'just too windy'!! :oops: :lol: ). I've ordered some winter kit that'll hopefully alleviate the cold weather issue thus not giving me that excuse, but I still don't hold much promise for myself!

What can I do? I really want to set goals and publish them... but I fear I'll just find excuses again! :roll: :oops: :(

Any advice is appreciated 8)

Posts

  • brownboshbrownbosh Posts: 602
    Dont be a lazy censored and jusrt want it more. No-one can do it for you. I diodnt want to go out in the torrential rain and 43 mph head winds today but i did. Despite the fact only 2 of us showed up for the sunday clubrun we still slogged 35 miles. Got home had lunch changed went for coffee then out to the garage for an hour hard interval session on the turbo. No pain no gain, nothing is free etc etc etc. My dad would just say " MAN THE F*&K UP"!

    Good luck!
  • Jeff JonesJeff Jones Posts: 1,865 Editor
    You've just got to harden up. Or get a home trainer and learn to overcome boredom.
    Jeff Jones

    Product manager, Sports
  • niponnipon Posts: 68
    Get yourself a keen riding partner or join a club that way its harder to say no plus time seems to go quicker when you are not on your own.
  • BeaconRuthBeaconRuth Posts: 2,086
    Rich-Ti wrote:
    I REALLY want to work hard over the winter and get myself to a decent level of fitness so that I can begin to consider racing next year..................What can I do? I really want to set goals and publish them... but I fear I'll just find excuses again!
    I think I might find motivation tough if my target was only to 'begin to consider' tackling a challenge. Everybody finds motivation easier when they have set their goal clearly in their minds and they then HAVE to train towards it. So, which race are you going to do? Commit to it. Tell your riding mates, friends, partner. Enter it as soon as possible. Once you have a target, you can set out a training plan to lead you up to it. Then you'll need to follow the plan because there's a reason for it.

    Ruth
  • was too cold the other evening

    HTFU. Where do you live, Pluto? ;)
  • nipon wrote:
    Get yourself a keen riding partner or join a club that way its harder to say no plus time seems to go quicker when you are not on your own.

    Yep, if you're south of The Park join one of the Kingston Clubs, if yo're north of The Park join the Archer.

    I can only reiterate wot Ruth says. Pick a couple of key events in the spring - us Archer boys are on for the Tour of Flanders and I have my eye on the West London 100 TT- and focus on preparing for your 'big ride'.
  • Set yourself some realistic but challenging goals. Either distance or time based and go for it. promise yourself a "prize" for completion of the targets. Make sure that your other half or someone close to you is in charge of the target prize or you will give in..
    17 Stone down to 12.5 now raring to get back on the bike!
  • BronzieBronzie Posts: 4,927
    Agree with what's been said - join a club and set a firm goal that you are committed to completing (tell your friends so you can't back out :x )
  • KléberKléber Posts: 6,842
    You soft wimp, you're nothing but a wheelsucking novice condemned to being dropped forever. I bet even a motorway bridge can make your bendy legs burn. Feeling motivated now? :wink:

    Seriously, you need to enjoy cycling every day, not just aim to peak for a couple of big rides per year. Go out when it's cold, enjoy the chill on your face but make sure you work up a sweat. Remember, cycling is hard but that's why it's satisfying, when you doubt whether to go out, think how you will feel when you come back home after a good ride and also, if you are a bike tart, only reward yourself with good kit once you've achieved something, so the smart winter jacket only after you've done a ride getting soaked, the warm gloves only once you can't feel your fingers! Get one of these.

    Like the others say, join a good club and hook up with some aiming for similar things.
  • ToksToks Posts: 1,143
    Rich-Ti wrote:
    I REALLY want to work hard over the winter and get myself to a decent level of fitness so that I can begin to consider racing next year.

    BUT I've had this thought in the past and started both 2007 and 2008 with the same intention (but more on the MTB), and it didn't really happen. I'd get back from work and find reasons not to ride / go to the gym, or at the weekends I'd ride but for nowhere near long enough or hard enough.

    I'm starting to recognise the same symptoms already (was too cold the other evening so my planned 3 laps of Richmond Park became 1 and then I jacked it in, likewise yesterday when it was 'just too windy'!! :oops: :lol: ). I've ordered some winter kit that'll hopefully alleviate the cold weather issue thus not giving me that excuse, but I still don't hold much promise for myself!

    What can I do? I really want to set goals and publish them... but I fear I'll just find excuses again! :roll: :oops: :(

    Any advice is appreciated 8)
    hey well done at least you've quickly acknowledged that you've got motivational problems. Its only October so I'm sure no damage has been done yet. Here's some points to add or endorce what others have said.

    1. Find some goal (sportiv, TT race, a distance goal, weightloss goal etc)
    2. Make short term goals easiy achievable and build up from there (2 laps of Richmond P v 5 laps of RP)
    3. Remind yourself that 1000's of others are pushing themselves to train - if they can do it so can you
    4. Join a club
    5. Make it a routine/a new habit 3 rides a week without fail etc
    6. If you're turboing; plan it, use a fan and find some distraction( music etc)
    7. Fight those negative thoughts re training. Usually if you're not thinking positively then you're thinking negatively about training and you'll probably quit.
    8. Come up with a mantra to push your self through weak moments: e.g. "POWER, POWER, I'VE GOT THE POWER"
    9. Promise yourself a little treat everytime you reach some new landmark
    10. Write down your goals, start a training diary and tell others what day you train on so that don't stop you from doing what ya need to do. Good luck :D
  • Rich-Ti wrote:

    What can I do? I really want to set goals and publish them... but I fear I'll just find excuses again! :roll: :oops: :(

    Any advice is appreciated 8)

    Maybe cycling isn't for you :shock: I just wish I had your commitment to finding excuses not to go out :wink:
    'How can an opinion be bullsh1t?' High Fidelity
  • Rich-TiRich-Ti Posts: 1,831
    Thanks all, some useful abuse, sorry, advice! :wink::lol:

    Seriously though, some of that advice will be taken on board and put into practice, I promise! I'm going to have a look right now at some winter road races so as to get my first target date in the diary. This week's comic has a useful starter training guide that I might use as a basis for my training, and I do have some cold / wet weather gear on the way (nice idea Kleber, but I'd much rather just not be uncomfortable before I start!) so that I can't use that as an excuse anymore... :shock:

    I was hoping that this might have taken off a bit more and become a bit more of a motivational factor. It hasn't yet, but I'm hoping this might help to turn it into a more regular thing if we begin to get to know some faces. I also hope to ride with Kingston Wheelers, Dynamo and now Archer over the coming weeks to see what their club rides are like with a view to joining one of them.
    Toks wrote:
    hey well done at least you've quickly acknowledged that you've got motivational problems. Its only October so I'm sure no damage has been done yet. Here's some points to add...

    8. Come up with a mantra to push your self through weak moments: e.g. "POWER, POWER, I'VE GOT THE POWER"
    I have a stem cap on my MTB that says "send it you gayer!" - if I struggle to ride something one of my riding buddies will come over and wipe my stem cap, just to remind me! :lol:

    So maybe that wrist band link up there isn't such a bad idea... :shock:

    As Toks said, I've recognised I've got a motivational problem which I think is part of the battle won - now I need to really act on it...
    Maybe cycling isn't for you :shock:
    Get outta here!! Cycling is all I have, I'm damn sure it IS for me - I just need to do it harder and faster!! :twisted:
  • One of my clients has had black HTFU wrist bands made up.
  • It depends on where you're based - but if you can get to the Hillingdon circuit on a Thursday evening Prime Coaching are running informal pace line training from about 5:30pm onwards.

    It's a nice alternative to The Park. Not as atmospheric after dark, that much is true - but there's no deer hazard and riding bit n'off is fun and improves your bike handling.

    http://www.primecoaching.co.uk/

    As your new to the area it's worth checking out the Hillingdon circuit scene anyway, as there's plenty of life ourside Richmond Park.
  • Rich-Ti wrote:
    Maybe cycling isn't for you :shock:
    Get outta here!! Cycling is all I have, I'm damn sure it IS for me - I just need to do it harder and faster!! :twisted:

    Just yankin' your chain, fella :wink:
    'How can an opinion be bullsh1t?' High Fidelity
  • Rich-TiRich-Ti Posts: 1,831
    Rich-Ti wrote:
    Maybe cycling isn't for you :shock:
    Get outta here!! Cycling is all I have, I'm damn sure it IS for me - I just need to do it harder and faster!! :twisted:
    Just yankin' your chain, fella :wink:
    Yeah I know, but maybe that's the kind of chat I need to hear to fire me up... :wink: 8) :lol:
  • CougarCougar Posts: 100
    I think you are what you are. If you aren't sufficiently motivated to train harder and longer given that you have the time to do so then you shouldn't beat yourself up over it. There will be perfectly good reasons (physicall and mentally), why you won't feel able to fulfill your training schedule.

    Pushing yourself when you don't feel like it may seem like you are following the "No gain without pain" mantra that is the price you must pay to get faster, but you build fitness over time. Trying to go too fast too quickly can be counter productive.

    You can't create motivation. It doesn't work like that. On the other hand it is easy to get de-motivated when things don't go well. If you keep training sensibly and consider your races as part of the training process then you will get results. The rider who beats you today may be the rider you beat in two or three months time.

    Good luck. Mike
  • Rich-TiRich-Ti Posts: 1,831
    Ok so here's the plan...

    :arrow: Sub 60-min RP3 (Richmond Pk 3-lap challenge) by Sun 16th Nov.
    :arrow: Start riding with a club on Sat or Sun (probably Kinston Wheelers or Dynamo)
    :arrow: Commit to Tues & Thurs as training evenings
    :arrow: Start the Hillingdon Winter Series on Sat 6th Dec (and do at least 3 of the series)
    :arrow: A winter sportive - TBC

    Good start point, or too much too soon?? :shock:

    I plan to reward myself after the RP3 and after the Hillingdon x3 as a bit of an incentive 8)
  • Rich-Ti wrote:
    Ok so here's the plan...

    :arrow: Sub 60-min RP3 (Richmond Pk 3-lap challenge) by Sun 16th Nov.
    :arrow: Start riding with a club on Sat or Sun (probably Kinston Wheelers or Dynamo)
    :arrow: Commit to Tues & Thurs as training evenings
    :arrow: Start the Hillingdon Winter Series on Sat 6th Dec (and do at least 3 of the series)
    :arrow: A winter sportive - TBC

    Good start point, or too much too soon?? :shock:

    I plan to reward myself after the RP3 and after the Hillingdon x3 as a bit of an incentive 8)

    sounds good, apart from the riding with the Dynamo bit. There's plenty of good cycling clubs in SW and W London, so I don't understand why people want to be associated with that shower of shite.
  • Rich-TiRich-Ti Posts: 1,831
    sounds good, apart from the riding with the Dynamo bit. There's plenty of good cycling clubs in SW and W London, so I don't understand why people want to be associated with that shower of shite.
    Pretty strong feelings there Gav! I just like the professionalism of the club from thei website etc. Might not be for me though as I've not ridden with them yet, so name some others - I know you're an Archer, but who else is there?
  • That professionalism doesn't extend to how they ride on the road. I was crocked by a bunch of them shoving me into the verge last September, and one of our riders hasn't touched a bike since being taken off by a Dynamo pack some time ago.

    It's a pity the Blue Bastards don't take time out of the park on a Saturday morning and visit Hillingdon - maybe some of the 11 year olds in the Slipstreamers could give then lessons on how to ride in a bunch. The sprogs certainly do it better.

    The 20mph limit in the park was introduced after a Dynamo caused a stack, and the police started to enforce it after athey had a switching incident with horrific consequences. Most clubmen in the area are convinced that the Dynamo will cause cycling in groups to be barred in the park in the long run.

    Other clubs I suggest you talk to are both the Kingston outfits (the Wheelers and the Phoenix - I don't know people from either on anything more than a nodding basis but they are both respected outfits), and also the Twickenham CC who are lovely people. There's also the Hounslow & District Wheelers, and moving more the the west - loads. Trying getting to one of the Thursday training evenings and you'll be able to meet representatives from most of the London West division.
  • Rich-TiRich-Ti Posts: 1,831
    Trying getting to one of the Thursday training evenings and you'll be able to meet representatives from most of the London West division.
    Is this the one at Hillingdon that you mentioned before? I did look into it and it sounds quite good so may well give it a go 8)

    Interesting to read about Dynamo, and much as I hate to say it what you've mentioned does put me off - I'd like to give them the benefit of the doubt and give them a go, but whether or not I do now remains to be seen... :shock:
  • Patrick1.0Patrick1.0 Posts: 290
    edited October 2008
    Enjoy it. If you don't enjoy it, find something else. If you enjoy it most of the time, then you will then be able to convince yourself to go out on the days where you don't feel like it. I find it funny when people talk about toughing it out through the wind and the rain. Is that toughing it out? I love it. Each individual training session is like a pebble that you're aiming at a jar. You need to actually go out and train tjust to be able to hold the pebble in your hands. Getting it into the jar depends on whether you hit your tagets. And as I like to think to myself, each session is different, just like each day is different and has it's own challenges. Sometimes the challenge is just getting out the door and spending time in the saddle.

    I shouldn't bother listening to the whole "meet up with club members crew" just enjoy riding the bike through whatever conditions and whatever terrain. With people or on your own.

    I know the difference between loving something and just grinding it out. Grinding it out is Ok but it's a lot harder than if you really love it. If you love it, it isn't grinding it out. That's why I quit athletics and took up cycling. I didn't love running even though I was in the top three in the UK for my age group for a nuber of years. I couldn't go on with it once my resolve to just "churn it out" had run dry. The feelings I have for cycling are totally different and that is what will make me better.
  • Rich-TiRich-Ti Posts: 1,831
    Thanks Patrick - I do enjoy it, trust me! Just sometimes more than others.

    The main reason I wanna ride with a club is to get used to riding in groups so that it's not completely alien to me when I start racing, but I get your point 8)
  • Rich-Ti wrote:
    Thanks Patrick - I do enjoy it, trust me! Just sometimes more than others.

    The main reason I wanna ride with a club is to get used to riding in groups so that it's not completely alien to me when I start racing, but I get your point 8)

    Just don't forget to enjoy yourself. Realistically, when we're tired, fed up and whatever else, that's when we need to remember what it is about the sport we enjoy. The truly hard go through it all because they find it exciting. Like a kid with an adventure. If your body and your mind is in the right place, you will work harder and for more reward and enjoyment than if one or even both aren't. The good times only roll if you let them. :P
  • This might be a weird nostalgia-based take on the whole thing, but I really find reading accounts of older races (from the 70's back) and looking at the brilliant photography of some of those races really inspires me and imagining I'm one of those guys has seen me through some gruelling solo efforts. I know it's stupid! I think because I'm 28 and didn't live in those times, there's a romance and spirit in those stories of Merckx, Coppi, Anqutil et al which might be fictional but nevertheless inspires me to go out in the sleet and think "I'm in the mountains on my way to San Remo and the inn-keeper is around that corner to revive me with rum..."
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