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24 February 2015 1 comment

The Winning Formula

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By Juliet Elliott
The Winning Formula

Every year I get the urge to start racing. I have a little go, I enter the odd race, and I usually do ok. Then disaster strikes – I start training and it all goes wrong.

Last week I found myself skiving off in my Sufferfest class at the local spinning studio, seeing how little I could get away with doing and just not putting any effort in at all. Essentially it was a half-hearted mutiny against myself, seeing as it would affect no one else, I had signed up for the class and I was paying to be there. The problem for me is that the minute you call anything by the name ‘training,’ it immediately becomes unappealing and I turn into a petulant teen, somehow rebelling…. against my own self…. yes, I’m that dumb. But I’m sure I’m not alone in having this reaction to training – the number of people that sign up to gyms and then fail to attend is testament to the troublesome word and it’s way of turning something that’s essentially quite fun into a chore you’d rather avoid. Put simply, tell yourself you must do something and you often wind up not wanting to do it. School is a good example of fun things being made crap because someone tells you that you’ve got to do them. When I was younger I really didn’t like PE and didn’t consider myself sporty which is mad really, when every after school hour was filled with swimming, dancing, riding and gymnastics. But I didn’t consider these activities sports because I wasn’t being forced to do them; I was just playing around and doing something inherently pointless for pleasure. It was only after several years as a professional snowboarder that I realised what I was doing was actually sport - the word had been totally ruined by PE teachers! But if you want to get faster, get fitter and maybe race without looking like an idiot there’s no magic way to progress, so training is unavoidable… or is it? I think I’ve come up with an alternative, so switch over to the shopping channel now to view my simple no-effort device… Just kidding. The solution? Just call it riding. Stop calling it training and just go ride your bike. Much like fell-running has been rebranded as trail-running and is now all hip, or going for a walk has been made over as ‘an adventure,’ you just need to reimagine and remarket training to yourself and pull the wool over your eyes a little. So ditch the word and just go ride your bike because all ‘training’ really is, is cycling. And we like cycling! So ride fast, ride long, ride hills, tracks or woods, but just ride the darn bike and you’re all good. You can come up with a schedule, you can plan hours and frequency, but just don’t call it training, it’s cycling to me and I love it! www.bikes-n-stuff.com Photos: Dave Noakes
Well said! In my son's PE class, they have homework. Homework in PE! Talk about sapping the fun out of everything. Ride on!
Harmona 23 May 2016 at 17:07