This week we challenge you to sign up for a race or event that will require you to train and prepare for. It can be hard to self motivate when it comes to working out. Having a goal to work towards is a great way to get your rear in gear, meet other healthy individuals and get involved in your community. We suggest picking an event that will challenge you but not overwhelm you when it comes to training.
Over the last couple years we gave it a try! In the process we learned new sports, met new people and balanced our exercise routines by incorporating new activities. In the end, we suffer less injuries and have more options available for exercise when at home or on the road, regardless of the gym, weather, etc. So there is always something to challenge ourselves with and this keeps exercise from becoming stale and boring.
For example, we signed up for a running race. To train for the run, we began cross training with cycling and weights. Then we needed to balance flexibility, so we incorporated yoga, which you can do anywhere and it helped strengthen our core as well. Since we were already training with running and cycling, we took up swimming classes to train for our first triathlon.
So before all of this, all I would do on the road is go for the occasional run. Now I have weights, yoga, swimming and more at my disposal. I also signed up for a nation wide gym membership to give me even more options outside of the usual hotel gym with class workouts, lap pools, etc. All of this has improved my fitness so I am able to enjoy the things I really love to do at home like surfing and climbing even more, at a higher level with more confidence!
So what road will this lead you down and what are the positive impacts a simple race can bring to your own life? You won’t know until you try!
Some examples of races to sign up for are:
* Running: Run or walk a race in your area! You can often find races ranging in distance from 5k to 100k. Check out Runner’s World’s Race Finder!
* Trialthlon: Triathlons have varying distances from beginner to advanced distances and difficulty. Some of the distances include: Spa, Sprint, Olympic, 1/2 Ironman, Ironman. Find a Triathlon in your area!
* Tough Mudder: ” Tough Mudder is a team-oriented 10-12 mile (18-20 km) obstacle course designed to test physical strength and mental grit. Tough Mudder puts camaraderie over finisher rankings and is not a timed race but a team challenge that allows participants to experience exhilarating, yet safe, world-class obstacles they won’t find anywhere else.” Find a Tough Mudder in your area!
* Spartan Race: “Spartan Race is a true adventure that anyone can do, and everyone should try. With course lengths of 3+miles (Sprint), 8+miles, (Super) and 12+miles (Beast) each course is filled with mud, water, and signature obstacles designed to help you discover your inner Spartan. Athletes of all fitness levels will enjoy participating in a Spartan Race and the feeling of accomplishment that comes at the finish line.” Find a Spartan Race in your area!
* Adventure race: “Adventure Racing offers an easy crossover for cyclist, runners and water sport enthusiasts just to mention a few. Adventure races can vary anywhere from 2-5 person teams, with some events now offering solo categories. The disciplines can also vary from race to race. Adventure racing can include shredding through tight single track on a mountain bike or orienteering and hiking through a dense forest. Adventure racers may find themselves ripping down rapids in a canoe and then rappelling off a 100 foot rock face. The races can last a few hours or several days and can cover 10 – 100 miles or more!” Find an Adventure Race in your area!
* Masters Swimming: “USMS is a national membership-operated nonprofit organization that provides membership benefits to nearly 60,000 Masters swimmers across the country. Benefits include training, instruction, events and more. A directory of pools across the country with coaches available to help you along the way along with seasonal race schedules.”
For support, join our community forum! Also, look into your local running, cycling or triathlon clubs. There are also masters swim clubs, cross fit clubs, and many other organizations to help you along the way with training plans and more to help you meet your goals! Trade magazines are another good source of information if you are just starting out. Lastly, look into apps like Strava or Training Peaks to help keep track of your exercise routines and stay on track.
We would love to hear what you sign up for!
* Image by Stuart Miles