Getting the work done

Heather here – sorry it has been so long! I joined this new-fangled thing called facebook and have been caught up in the “two lines a day” false sense of actually being in touch with people thing! Not that a blog is much better, but at least you have a bit more room to share and synthesize some thoughts. So here goes…

First a brief history of the past few months. Trevor and I spent the holidays in St. George where we got some solid training done and had a great visit with my parents who drove their 5th wheel down to spend Christmas. Mom, who recently broke her femur in a bike crash, was hiking up a storm in Zion National Park, and it was great to see the sights together. It was a great holiday despite some nasty weather – yay rides to the

Mom and Dad Danforth on a pretty epic hike in Zion National Park

pool in Dad’s truck and 2hr trainer rides under my parent’s awning! I feel pretty privledged to have parents, and parents-in-law, that are so invested in our lives and who take the time to travel around and hang out with us.

From there, Trevor and I drove to Las Cruces New Mexico where we trained for a couple of weeks before the start of the first training camp of The Triathlon Squad. We knew from the lead up – 6 days/week in the pool, 8 runs per week, 5 rides – that it would involve a lot of consistent work, but the level of consistency that we’ve been able to maintain and the quality training that gets done in a group atmosphere has far exceed our expectations! It is really impressive to see people backing up their training performances day after day and to feel more and more confident about what you can do when you put your mind to it.

Time seems to be compressed, and stretched all at the same time.  You go go go… swim, food, bike, food, legs up, run, food and all of a sudden it’s 7 pm, yet it seems like it has to be much longer than a week since we’ve all been together and the training camp started. You start reminiscing about that long ride with the intermediate dog-sprint… but, wait, that was just the day before yesterday!

All of the other girls on the Squad, at this camp, are “ITU chicks” and most of the guys are strong swimmers regardless so Trevor and I are definitely on the B-team in the pool! Some days, like this morning, I feel totally

We'd be the ones not at the wall yet!

overwhelmed in the water. I feel like I am trying so hard but not getting faster and I just get agitated and things are no good. I screw up a flip turn, cut my hand open on the lane rope, get a mouth full of water, get to the wall a mess and fail the Paulo quiz about my lap time! Keeping “real” track of when you leave (like not just 5 seconds after the guy in front!), trying to focus on form and descend a set, and note your splits, all become activities that I struggle to do concurrently! I’m sure this sounds totally lame, but Trevor and I do not have much experience swimming with big groups in a pool…  Paulo even wrote “Garmin” on the pace clock as an extra dig because we are always so on top of our outputs on the bike. Ha ha. Classic!

On bike rides, as usual, I feel a bit more in my element. It is so great that Trevor has other dudes to ride with and I have new boys to chase for my hard intervals 🙂 It always seems like in a group environment there is a bit of testing each other out, and throwing it down to start, but I think that we all get that good days happen and bad days happen. It seems to me like we are doing a great job as a group of pushing each other, but

10 meters, 10 meters, 10 meters!!

staying within ourselves too.

One of Paulo’s core mottos is “get the work done“. This may seem contrite, or obvious, but really it is brilliant. How many times do we self sabotage by thinking – oh man, I’ve never had that short of a rest interval before, X person is always way faster than me, how will I ever go that far? What the mind dwells on, the body reveals. But when you just shut your mind off – or narrow your focus, to finishing the next 100 in the pool, or holding 270 watts for the next 5 minutes on the bike, or speeding up the pace for the last half of the run –  to just getting the work done – voila! Good things start to happen.

Self-oriented thoughts such as the fear of finishing last or not running up to expectations are negative, destructive and purposeless. Conversely, task oriented thoughts are constructive, positive and purposeful. They reduce anxiety, fear and stress levels. They enable the athlete to fulfill his/her potential and to do justice to training efforts
(`Mind over Matter`. Derek Parker. Veteran Athletics Magazine. Spring 1997, p. 23, from Steve King’s website

“Getting the work done” is a super simple concept on the surface, but it is really an elegant way to step up your game. I am prone to over-analyzing, and as a rule I am very hard on myself… traits that have some usefulness, but can make me internalize things in a negative way. When all I have to do is focus on getting the work done, I feel like, 1) I can free myself to perform and 2) I can come away from training feeling

DYJ = do your job. The mystery was randomly called all-out efforts!

positive about what I accomplished (and have my body absorb all the work better). Okay maybe I got my ass kicked in the pool and really suffered for that last set, but man, I did it! And that’s the thing with the Squad… it is always challenging, but always doable – and a big part of it is stepping up and believing that you can do it.


~ by trevorandheather on January 25, 2011.

4 Responses to “Getting the work done”

  1. LISTEN EATHER……. What paulo know s is because of me…i m the encyclopedia of knowledge and wisdom….but good blog anyway…

  2. Awesome post Heather!!!

    Thanks for that quote, and link!

  3. What the mind dwells on, the body reveals.
    SO TRUE!!!!

    I’m passing this on to some local friends, who, like me, beat themselves up for not doing ‘this or that’ better in thier training, or who have convinced themselves that they’re only capable than less than positive outcomes.

    VERY well said Heather!!!

  4. Honey,
    What a great post!
    A very memorable Christmas for us.
    We are so proud of you and admire your great work ethic.
    Looking forward to some great events this year.
    I know you don’t like to “toot your own horn”, so thanks for allowing me to do it for you!!!
    Love you,
    Mom….and Dad XXXOOO

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