Keeping in mind the theme of 2009 (be less of a pussy) I've added a few things to my weekly routine to help toughen up a little mentally.
The first thing was to pick up a book recommended by Bree Wee and Paulo Souza. It's called 'In Pursuit of Excellence' and so far it's been, well, excellent. As a side note, I ordered it from a local library by way of Google books and was reminded once m ore why Google will one day rule the world. Three clicks and my library card number and the book was on it's way to the library nearest me. It was awesome. Yeah, that's right, I just said that ordering a book to a library using the internet was awesome. You know what else is awesome? Nerds like this guy.
Anyways, I've only read a few chapters but so far it's been really helpful in breaking the idea of mental preparedness into small action steps. The plan is to read it once through to get a feel for what it's all about and then go back and start working it.
Last season I started off strong with the core work but later in the year faded off because of having 'no time'. For 2009 I stole a great idea from my friend Brad who did this as his New Years resolution in 2008:
On Jan 1st, Brad did 15 push ups. On Jan 2nd, Brad did 15 push ups. Brad did 15 push ups every day that week. And on the first day of the next week, Brad did 16 push ups. And every day that week he did 16 push ups. On Monday the following week, Brad added one push up and did 17. And so on, and so on. Brad was doing push ups while his wife was in labor giving birth to their first child, a daughter. Brad did push ups EVERY DAY in 2008. And by the end of the year he was doing 67 a day. Brad was pretty much a machine. I voted him 'Most inspirational pecs 2008".
So that's what I'm going to do. I've added one challenging core exercise to the set as well and I'll be doing a few of both every day. In addition I'm doing a really rad core workout that I saw on Matt Fitzgerald's blog 3 times a week (the routine, aimed at runners, is at the bottom of the linked post). That should toughen me up a little. I debated taking a picture of my flabby ass once a month as a way to track the changes but there are probably enough naked pictures of me on the internet already.
A sad thing I discovered about myself last year was that I didn't really like pain. I was OK with a little but I didn't like 'race pain' and I never learned to handle that. When the big pain came, like I knew it would, I started to panic a little, tried to employ any one of my three feeble mental 'tricks' to make it go away, and then slowed down. Not this year. This year, I'm doing wall sits, using the same methodology as above. Started with 1 minute everyday. Added one minute a week. Three minutes of wall sitting gets the pain going in the legs pretty quick. Once I get to 10 minutes I'll start adding weight.
I read a cool quote from Lance Armstrong's book 'Every Second Counts' that my homeboy Jackson picked up for me at the thrift shop. I'm adopting it as my motto for 2009:
I have the will to suffer.
Oh, and I think I'm starting to learn to swim.
Wayde Van Niekerk 300 meter world record today
3 hours ago