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Cotswold Ladies Only Triathlon

Last weekend I did the TriFerris Ladies Only Triathlon at the Cotswold Water Park. This was the first sprint distance event I’ve do e. It was a 750m swim, then a 20km bike, and a 5km run.

I was really pleased with the event and was lucky to have lovely weather again for my second triathlon of the year and that means I’m half way through my goal of four triathlons this year as part of Project Lifestyle!

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The swim set off at 8:10am and it was great! I loved every minute of the swim and wish it could have been longer. I was on the feet of the front pack the whole way and came out of the water in 21st place.

The transition was good. I got my wetsuit off quickly but did get my t shirt stuck longer than I would have liked. I the. Ran the transition with the bike and got to the mount area. No broken toes this year!

The bike course was good with no big hills just a few inclines. I rode most of the way with my hands on my bottoms bars which felt great. I knocked almost 13 minutes off my time from last year as the bike course was the same but I think that was mainly to do with the new bike more than anything else. I even overtook four people from the wave in front. Although I dropped down to 98th position!

The next transition was good just. Quick swap of the shoes and I was away.

The run felt horrible. I got overtaken by everyone or at least that is what it felt like. It was two laps round the lake and was nice and flat. I still had to walk a few times but I kept going and finished in a better time than I realised. I also managed to finish with a sprint but then couldn’t talk for 5 minutes while I caught my breath.

Overall it was a great race. I know the run is where I need to work the most, but the fact I can do all parts and finish on a high is amazing to me.

Project Lifestyle June Career Workstream

This is the job where I have actual objectives written down and I will have to work towards achieving all of them over the next 8 months. Some I have achieved as they are officially from April, but it’s taken a while for the new team improvements to be accepted and planned out around the wider team. But I got them at the start of the month and plan on spending June making sure I fully understand what is expected of me and where I can plan to exceed expectations.

I also have some work to do on my strengths and weaknesses. This in turn will help me work out what kind of roles will be suitable to me in the future of my career and start working towards them now, rather than wait for my contract to come up.

It feels an exciting time and the money worry seems worth it at the moment. I know next year after a year of no international travel I’ll be fighting for more money, but fingers crossed if I work hard and prove myself there will be the opportunity for promotion.

So this workstream isn’t that simple this month, but it feels very focused and that is what I need. I can also spend time on this during my working day, rather than trying to fit it in with everything else I am trying to do outside of work. I’ve also got some travel time this month so the train is the perfect time to sit and focus for a couple of hours.

Project Lifestyle June Mental Health Workstream

This workstream for me has come on leaps and bounds this year. I feel so much better in myself and use the tools and tips from CBT last year when I need to. I also talk to my sister and my friend Ingrid about personal things more than I ever had (I’m not a sharer, which is weird for something who writes a blog). I’ve also been doing a mindfulness course and that will be finishing this month so I’ll be recapping that at some point.

This month those the focus is to start going through the Mind Over Matter book my CBT therapist recommended to me. I am of the impression it is good to do a little of something like this as often as possible, so combing it with mindfulness practice and Headspace meditation I feel this is creating a well-rounded routine for my mental health. I also use Moodscope and Moodgym (usually in work) as they are on the computer and are good helpful distractions when I’m stuck at my desk.

It’s taken a while for me to understand the importance of mental health to my life. I wouldn’t say I am 100% healthy, but I am healthier mentally than I was even 6 months ago. I am creating better attitudes to myself and others and that spreads to other aspects of my life.

Project Lifestyle June Social Workstream

I have come to realise I am not as anti-social as I think I am. But I do need my own space and my alone time and I struggle to be around people when I haven’t had enough of these. There were a few times in May I felt I pushed myself to be around people for too long and then felt rude for the mood I was in, but I couldn’t shake it. So I need to learn to spot when I might have too much on social wise and learn to say no.

I also need to learn to say no without feeling like I have to explain. Sometimes I just don’t want to do something. That could be because of the activity, who it’s with, or the time planning – anything really, but I don’t need to worry about explaining that to anyone but myself. It’s not that I feel I’m missing out, but rather that I am letting people down, but in a way I am letting myself down by doing things when it doesn’t fit in with the lifestyle I want to create. Don’t get me wrong there will always be things I have to do without choice, but when there is a choice I need to make the right decision for me at that moment. I can change my mind, but often our gut instinct is what we really feel about something.

Part of me is realising I have to let some things and people go. It’s not that I don’t like them anymore, but rather we have moved apart and find it harder to come together. I’m going to stop forcing this and focus on the things I want to be doing and the people that also make an effort to see me as well as me them. I also want to make time for new people in my life, specifically those helping me with my triathlon goals and who I can help in return. I’m accepting that people and things move forward and we may cross paths again. Relaxing my grip on things is the aim for me, rather than letting go.

So thinking a head I have a couple of busy weekends at the start of this month so the end of the month I am keeping to myself and only doing things I want to do. They might be social, but they also might be going to a coffee shop alone with a book or to blog. Or sit in my garden and watch the sky – or cut the grass, which is something I really need to do!

Project Lifestyle June Fitness Workstream

My fitness workstream is going well overall. I am pleased with how I am doing and although I wish I could do more I know I am making the most of my time. I am also volunteering at events, which was something I had not done before and it makes fitness fun. It’s also really enjoyable being around like minded people is really great and makes me feel motivated.

I may have joined an Ironman relay team to do the swim for next year so I know I want to do well and not let the team down so need to look at my overall fitness and make sure my nutrition workstream is helping me work towards this. Sometimes I think I’m crazy, but actually I look forward to challenging myself. The thought of doing all 3 aspects of an Ironman freaks me out, but doing the swim would be good.

So this month I am keeping it simple with challenging myself to be active in some way every day. This doesn’t have to be structured activity, but rather not sitting at my desk all day and then coming home and collapsing on the sofa (normal Friday night for me). So I am including things such as walking at lunchtime and swim coaching as both require me to be on my feet and out of the house or office. I will maintain my swimming, running and cycling and also try to get strength training back into my routine after my triathlon this month. Also there will be some sailing in the mix. The hardest part will be the week after the triathlon where it will be tempting to use rest as an excuse, but that’s where walking comes in!

This will be a challenge as I am away with work a couple of times and I know I tend to limit what I do because I’m somewhere new or too tired. So the aim is to get out and explore and make time to do so and not just return to my hotel and watch TV (again totally normal for me when away with work).
I have started off the month well as I did the local Race for Life event on the 1st and then have been swimming, lake swimming, running, and walking since. I feel good and when the sun is out it’s a bonus!

In a spinning plate analogy this plate only needs a bit of attention this month as I have a good routine and attitude about it. I know I can keep this going and therefore can focus on the nutrition workstream over anything else this month. I’ll update on the triathlon towards the middle of the month.

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