As the title suggests, that is what I’ve been doing for the last couple of weeks. Following on from my last post about the Summer I thought I’d throw another one in about what is probably the most difficult stage of any training for a big event, the final taper ready for the event itself.
What is tapering? In a nutshell it is what it says…. You reduce the amount of training you’re doing to ensure that you are in the best possible shape and injury free ready for the event.
Is it difficult? In my view, yes it is. If you’ve been training hard for your event then I feel it is difficult as all you want to do is get out and train. If not then you should have no problem easing off as you probably haven’t done a great deal anyway.
What does it involve? Basically it is ensuring that you do enough training to stay in good shape and fit for the event without injuring yourself or “over doing it” and having nothing left for race day. In my case with triathlons it is making sure that I do enough swimming, cycling and running to keep my body in top form without wearing myself out and having nothing left for race day. No amount of carb loading can get you out of bed if you’re shattered on the morning of the race. I still do the usual sessions but they are not as heavy or as long and for about 4 days before the race I will do no training at all apart from a 5km run on the day before.
Side effects may include being irritable as you have too much energy and want to get out and train but can’t or because the self doubt is setting in. You may become obsessed with the weather for race day, very important though in terms of fuelling and hydration. In addition you may become spontaneously excited as you approach race day or very grumpy as the reality of what you are doing hits you. My partner says that she can tell when it’s nearly race day as I get a bit snappy about little things that I wouldn’t normally bother about and I also get a bit grumpy…….
In terms of nutrition in the lead up to a big race I keep it on point. My diet has a lot of sweet potato in as standard and good clean protein as well as good fats using what I’ve learnt from the Six Pack Revolution. I will stay on that plan right up to the day before the race. That evening I will have a quite high carb evening meal which will have both simple and complex carbs in it as well as good protein eg chicken, homemade sweet potato wedges and salad with some garlic bread and probably a sweet consisting of some cakes and biscuits. Supper will be a bowl of porridge with a drop of peanut butter in made to the Six Pack Revolution recipe along with a serving of Niteworks (a Herbalife product that works wonders and aids my sleep). That will do me then. Race day nutrition will come up in the post about the Ironman itself as that is a completely different ball game.
Thank you for reading this and see you on the other side…..