Adjusting our sails

Hi Everyone!


Hope you’re all having happy and healthy holidays. I know this year they’ve been filled with a fair bit of anxiety and plan changes for most, but man – are we ever working and strengthening those resiliency muscles!


I’m currently surrounded by and hanging out with windsurfers. A different species from runners to be sure. In order to become a good windsurfer, you have to be fairly driven and hard-working as there is a significant learning curve – especially at the beginning. But the interesting thing about windsurfers is that while they are driven and focused, they also have to be incredibly flexible and open-minded. When your entire sport relies on wind and waves, you have to have the right attitude or you’ll go crazy. There is just so much you can’t control. You have to be optimistic, and ready to go when it’s good, but accept the waiting period when it’s not. You also have to be ready to make changes when the weather changes. You may have rigged up a certain sized sail and headed out, only to find the wind has changed. You then have to come in, de-rig, and rig up a new sail to fit the new conditions. That’s just what you accept as part of the sport – you adapt and change according to the conditions. And when the conditions are good, you delight in it, and don’t take any of it for granted. Because you know it will change again.


I think there’s a lot we runners can take from this attitude and approach to life. We are used to being able to control so many variables. We plan out and strive to hit specific mileage and pace targets weeks and months in advance, without holding a space for the things we can’t control. We are not used to adjusting our sails or waiting with patient optimism and excitement for a new window of opportunity to open up. We stress when things go off plan and have a hard time waking up and saying “I will approach my day based on what the day and conditions have given me”. Instead, we try to force our plan into the day, even if it really doesn’t fit.


Fair: planning and training for running and endurance events is quite different than action sports. But as we make goals and plans for the new year, maybe we can borrow some of the mindset and attitudes from other athletes that might serve us better – especially in times of unpredictability. I’m going to try to be better at adjusting my sails based on conditions, delighting in the good days, and patiently waiting out the bad ones.


Workout for this week:


For this week I know many are still away and on different schedules, so let’s do a fartlek workout which you can do when, where and with whom suits you:


10-15 min easy jog warm-up, 4 sets of 3-2-1 min Hard with 1 min easy, 3 min easy b/w sets, 10 min easy jog c-dn


Have a great one and HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!! Looking forward to seeing y’all in 2022 