The “Off-Season” is kind of an inside joke to those of us at NWT. Each of us had a scheduled off-season of about one week, and hopefully everyone made the most of it. The biggest lesson that our Head Coach reiterates throughout the tri season is that consistency is the key to improvement. We are reminded constantly that we need to train at a level that we personally are able to back up . . . day after day . . . week after week . . . year after year. Since that is the main point driven into our heads throughout the race season, it seems a bit counter-intuitive to then take an “off-season”. Though our coach still refers to off-season quite a bit – and most of us laugh at it.
Here at NWT, off-season simply means a brief time to shift your focus a bit. When doing normal swim, bike, and run workouts, intensity and duration are cut back quite a bit. Technique becomes a focus for all three sports as we go back to the basics and work those drills that we haven’t seen in months. Though we are still training daily, this is the time of year to ”mix it up a bit” and throw in something that you may have had to cut out when the training got too intense, or even try something new. Several of our teammates are killing it at CrossFit, while others of us are hitting it hard with yoga. One of my favorite things about off-season is that our group rides turn into mountain bike rides. I love hitting the trails! It’s such a fun alternative to the trainer and there are usually some pretty good stories to follow. Also, MC and I do tons of hiking with the boys since it keeps us active with low intensity, and they love it! We love to explore new fitness activities in which we can include the boys. And since we both thrive on competition, we are quite creative in finding ways to compete when we aren’t racing . . . just ask our boys who got to the top of the rock wall in under 40 seconds!
One really important thing to do during the off-season is to take stock of all your gear and decide if anything needs to be repaired, replaced or upgraded. This is the time to make any major purchases, especially if it’s a new bike or shoes or something you will need time to get used to. It’s also a good time to buy gear because most shops will have end-of-season sales, so you can probably get a pretty good deal. For me, this year it means sending my bike out for a bit of touch up painting. I got a couple of dings this year, and I couldn’t be without a bike until I was done racing. For now, I have my mountain bike as backup or I can always hit the spin bikes at the Y. Continue reading