Tough Mudder done! So what the hell do I train for now? Time to take stock of my progress, identify my weak points and set some goals for the future. I need to try and stay motivated in the absence of a specific training goal (other than next year’s Tough Mudder).
After the Mudder, I had a week off training. Then I had another week off as I caught a stomach virus and spent most of that week puking my guts up. I returned to the gym the following week for a boxing circuits class at Mick’s new gym http://www.fitnesszoo.co.uk which I thoroughly enjoyed (well not so much at the time!). I was a hell of a come back session, but having never boxed or done any boxing training previously, it was something new and exciting to try. Unfortunately my training stalled again that evening when I twisted my ankle getting of my bed somehow and ending up in A&E. Luckily it was just a sprain and with a little patience and deep heat I was able to walk on it again the next day, but it through off my ‘comeback’ yet again.
I had a proper fat bastard weekend of cake, cake, crisps, beer and cake, so today represents the ‘comeback’, hopefully will represent a continued period of training hard, eating clean and making gains, rather than injury or illness!
After work tonight I’m hitting the ‘zoo for Crossfit, which I did some of during my Tough Mudder training and I enjoyed a lot. My plan for the rest of the week then is to get some running in, hit the gym for some all-round conditioning/circuits then more Crossfit on Friday morning. I really want to get back to regularly training at least 3-4 times a week.
With Tough Mudder done, I need to find a new way to motivate myself, otherwise I’ll lapse back into 3 weights sessions a week, not really pushing myself and making excuses to avoid running/cardio work. I think for the interim period at least I need to change the way I train and instead of sticking to a rigid three-day split weight plan with a bit of cardio thrown in, try something new. The classes at the ‘zoo present a good opportunity to try different sorts of training and mix it up, but also I need to develop what I do by myself too as its not always convenient to attend a class. I think I need to find an alternative to long boring runs, whether that me doing hill runs or more trailing running I’m not sure yet. I also need to move away from the more ‘traditional’ training I do at the gym and find a way to mix it up. Rather than do splits I think I’ll do more full body routines, with cardio elements worked in. Maybe work on things I don’t often do like snatches and Olympic lifts etc.
I also need to have a look at my diet, nutrition and supplements. When I do train uninterrupted, I train quite hard but feel I don’t make the gains I would like. This is most likely down to my penchant for curry, pies, pizza, cake and beer. I don’t have a terrible diet, I eat quite clean during the week but tend to lapse (severely) on weekends. I need to come up with a workable clean diet I can fit around also cooking kids meals and shift working. I also need to have a look at sports nutrition/supplements and either commit to a decent supplement regime, or not other at all. I think my current habit of buying whey protein and having a scoop now and then after workouts probably does little for me.
On reflection, I think the way forward is set a short term goal while I’m looking for something more long-term and specific to work towards. So, here’s the plan:
For the next 4-6 weeks train as hard and as often as I can (realistically 3-5 times a week on average), eat as clean as I can without too many ‘treats’, get on a decent regime of supplements, Whey Protien, Creatine, iBCAA, CLA etc. which I need to take as directed and see what gains I can make in this period. I would like to think if I am disciplined, I should see some gains in fitness level, hopefully beer gut will begin to diminish a little and you never know, I may even put on some noticeable lean muscle. I’m not expecting marathon stamina, washboard abs and Schwarzenegger’s biceps in this time, just enough gain to notice, to motivate me to continue with the discipline and hard work I’ll be putting in.
In the long term, I need to find a new goal I can build some specific training plan around, be it a sport/event or specific body building goal or fitness goal (such as run a half marathon in sub two hours etc.). Any suggestions?