The last couple of weeks have been brutal. It is cold, wet, icy and running and cycling on most of the local roads is frankly dangerous. Many of the paths here are next to the harbour — which is just above freezing right now — and there is zero traction.
So we are concentrating on the diet, and under stress this is difficult. If you go zero carb — and we have been close to that for the last few weeks (a) you will lose weight and (b) you will have zero energy for workouts. If you are trying to workout and/or are dealing with stressful issues — and I have — you will need some fuel available. Ideally fat.
But in winter, most things are lean. There is no fat on the animals at present because there is no feed and we are trading again — so the good meat is exported. So things have not been good over the last week.
So what to do?
- Don’t run. Even if you love running (and I do). You need time away and you need to heal up. It is too risky. The same thing applies to cycling –you can’t keep a bike up on black ice, and many of our trials are black ice. Instead consider what you can do inside.
- Plan your meals. This is quite hard at present: the winter is when things are hardest. But making stuff the night before and then taking it to work, trying to one meal a day on non heavy workout days, and staying low carb will help. A lot
- Do hit the gym. Or, in our case, do bodyweight exercises at home: we are trying to lose weight — and struggling right now — and high intensity workouts won’t help there
- Care for each other. When you are at the end of your life, your sport achievements will matter less than the people who you love. In the last two weeks the family has been a priority. Be generous and loving to each other.
- Be imperfect. You are not an elite athlete: that is an imbalanced, selfish life. You will have bad hair days, bad food days, and days when the workouts don’t work. That is immaterial. It is doing something each day that matters… so.
- If in doubt, walk. It may be a penguin shuffle. You may need some Yaktrax to stay upright. But walking at lunch in winter is more sustainable than the six am runs. They can wait until the black ice stops.
Neither of us are being perfect, but we are slowly heading towards our goals.