Active Blu - Open Water Venue.

Active Blu - Open Water Venue.

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Capturing special moments.

Why we do what we do - Capturing special moments.

5am Swim this morning. 

Sitting on the plane on another long haul flight allows a lot of time for reflections, 34 hours I have worked out door to door!! I am sleepy after a long few weeks preparing to leave the country again. I do not like leaving the squads for long, I am not really sure where I am staying, nor do I know how I am getting there, but I smile to myself, as my squads are in good hands and the other bits are just not that important - It always works out. 

I am in pain, my back is so sore I think I may have to find a spot to lye down, I start to sweat as my body screams for me to move, I have been traveling now for 22 hours. I find myself walking the isles of the plane hoping to see somewhere I could try and straighten up. Only another 10 hours on this flight I think to myself, but there is no where to lye, so I find myself back in my seat once again. 

Being where I love 

Mindfulness I think to myself - Well this always works for me, this may help my pain. It is painful, but my body is just making me aware its uncomfortable. Ok, so acknowledge that and maybe it will pass!! I am not sure how long it took, but it did settle and I was able to remain seated or the rest of the trip. 

World Record flip flop attempt

Awareness is an amazing thing, the reason I am writing this is that sometimes situations are uncomfortable and even distressing, physically or emotionally and we can question what we are doing either in that moment in time or in life. I certainly have at times questioned choices I have made, but it always draws me back to why I created this lifestyle. 

Coaches - Perth

I believe, knowing why you do what you do, helps it become a lot easier. I often remind myself of this, especially when jet lagged, staying somewhere new and feeling slightly nauseous with sleep deprivation. However knowing why I do what I do outweighs all those thoughts and moments of being uncomfortable, tired and in pain. Basically the opportunities, learning and experience I get are worth every minute of it. 

Coach development - South Africa

When you know why you do what you do.....everything becomes clearer.

As a coach and coach educator I am in a very privileged position to travel the world, start to understand different cultures, work with people expressing different ideas and opinions. I meet people from all backgrounds and in many diverse situations. It may not always be easy, but I get to support individuals and encourage them to push their boundaries and believe in themselves, all in hope that they travel further then they ever thought possible. 

Tutors - UK

I know why I do what I do; Because I get to support peoples journeys, either for a moment in time, or if lucky a bit longer. I get to see people achieve things they have been working towards for years, I get to see that smile on their face when they know they have excelled at something or simply noticed a difference in themselves. I get to see people progress, develop and grow. 
 Its sometimes the small things that are so big.

Coach Development - St Croix

Life is made up of special moments - We are not always aware of them, or focused on them at that time, in fact sometimes we can ignore them for too long. However special moments are always around, so when we do notice them, its worth acknowledging them, capturing them in some way and remembering thats why we do what we do. 

Windermere - UK

I know I am lucky, I am where I am now because of a dream I once had, because I kept exploring when I knew something was not right, because of the people around me believed in me. 

UK Coaches

I encourage you too explore the WHY and capture those many moments we have which make us smile and feel alive. 

Enjoy exploring. 

Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Fearing time off...what if you knew it could improve your performance?

Its a much feared word "Rest day" but what if you knew it would improve your performance?

I have just started back with my squads and coaching after Xmas and New Year - What has been interesting over the previous months is just how many athletes (I do not train) come up to ask my advice about their programmes. The general conversations start with them telling me how much they fit into the week and how fatigued and demotivated they are, their weeks include large volumes of training, managing family, work and social commitments. I mean - 90% of the time I am amazed just how much people fit into a week and still function. 

I say still function, but there seems to be a worrying trend that we need to do more and more within our lives and the idea of rest and recovery can often get over looked. 

Over the years I have trained many athletes that do not see recovery days as part of the training process. They often fear that if they do not train they will not get fitter and by taking a rest day, its wasting valuable time. I am sure for many of us this sounds familiar....

So what does a rest day or recovery day actually look like - It often does not actually mean you have to sit about and do nothing, in fact you can still be active, but the intensity, focus and duration is just not there. A bike to the cafe with a friend, a swim in the open water or pool with no agenda, a stroll in the park with the kids. This all serves you well, not only to let your body, repair, get stronger but mentally give yourself a rest too. 

The fear athletes have of rest, in itself is detrimental to their goals and ambitions. I am not talking about prolonged periods of time off,  it is just if you are training hard, it is important to think of rest days and sleep as a vital part of your training too. 

For a lot of athletes I start working with, its not about trying to get them to train - for the majority of people it is about educating people about the importance of recovery. 

The fear people have of stopping training when they are sick, injured or fatigued often result in putting themselves at greater risk of long term health issues. The best advice I can give is listen to your body, most people know the difference between those days you just can not get motivated for a session and when it is long term fatigue or injury and know deep down it is best to rest. Your body is an expert at telling you to may just have to listen to it. 

So some simple steps....
1 - Make sure depending on your training programme you have rest / recovery days built in. 

2 - Remember through out your season, you need to build your fitness, but this can only happen if you rest your system, sleep well and allow it to repair and recover. 

3 - If you miss sessions through illness or injury, don't try and make them up in one day / week, so that you can say you have done the training. 

4 - Recovery is about repair, sleeping well, mentally recovering and preparing your body for the next session or weeks ahead. Try not to miss these, as it will catch up with you in the end. 

5 - If unsure, talk to your coach, as they will support you in managing your training. 

Keep it simple, enjoy the recovery, know you are doing this to improve your performance and well being.

Enjoy 2017 - I look forward to hearing all about it.