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Train in vain

Many of my posts mention the weather. In Britain, talking about the weather is pretty much a given, so we shouldn’t be too surprised with this.

I talk about the weather because it’s the main thing I can’t control when planning what workouts I’ll do in the week. Since setting up my site I’ve written about a scorching summer, a mild autumn, and some strong, bitter winds in the past few weeks.

But there’s many other factors that affect what I do and when. The big one is work. For some reason I’m compelled to go to work all day rather than carve a massive section out of it to run ten miles away. There’s also family, but I can be a bit more flexible with them. As long as I can get up early enough and tiptoe downstairs quietly enough and get out the door without waking anyone then I’m ok!

Even just the drive to do something can be a barrier and while I sing the praises of exercise and the positive impact it has on our wellbeing, sometimes life can be overwhelming. On bad days, just getting out of bed can be hard enough, how can we expect ourselves to jump out of the front door in a brightly coloured top and run around the park smiling at anyone you see. 

A lot has been written about young people unable to find jobs, unable to buy their first house, being told to pull themselves up by their bootstraps. Things are different now, and the toll of our digital lives on our mental health emerges. The digital world can be a wonderful place, but our 24/7 reliance on screens perhaps isn’t.

I’ve been wondering how we can accept our good days and bad, embrace them as part of our journey through life, and try to step back and see the bigger picture. I’ve written about how I need a goal to get motivated – a half marathon or 10k race with a pb to beat.

At the start of this year, I weighed more than I wanted to and decided, as a new year resolution, I would downsize my body. I weighed myself every day and recorded it in Garmin (I also kept the data in my own spreadsheet because I’m a bit of a nerd), and focussed on my seven day average, rather than the daily numbers. My weight went up and down all the time, but the overall trend was downwards, which boosted my confidence no end.

Can we learn from this? Is there a way to track our trends over time – specifically our fitness, or our progress towards a goal, simply by taking the data we have and using it in a less granular way, a step back to see the bigger picture. 

Does anyone have any thoughts on how we can do this and ensure positivity prevails, even in the face of some miserable days in our path?

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