This is a sponsored post brought to you by 3cConsulting. The opinions are completely my own based on my personal experience with the product.
Do you ever set goals that make your brain think “YO GIRL. WHAT are you doing?! Aren’t you WAY out of your league here?”
I seem to do that on a pretty much yearly basis now. Signing up for triathlons despite not knowing how to swim (and subsequently falling in love with the sport). Deciding to start a personal training business. Quitting a really comfortable job to focus on said business full-time.
I make an effort to stretch myself on a regular basis, and yet it never really gets any easier. The internal conversations of “what the heck am I doing???” never seem to go away. Although I have to admit, those Negative Nancy voices get a lot quieter.
This year’s “are you insane?” goal? Committing to completing my first half ironman.
The race itself actually seems pretty doable. It’s a 1.9km swim, a 90km bike ride, and a 21.1km run. Towards the end of last season my swims were usually around the 2.5-3km mark, so the swim doesn’t seem too bad. The bike is where I feel the strongest, and although the longest ride I’ve ever done is 60km, another 30km doesn’t seem like that big of a deal. And I’ve done 11 half marathons before. Maybe 12. I’ve lost count.
So all that’s left is to just do those things one after another. Easy peasy, right?
Maybe not so much.
That Elusive Thing Called Balance
I should probably reframe my goal “I will complete my first half ironman in July 2017” to “I will maintain my sanity and feel awesome while training for and completing my first half ironman in July 2017.” I think that’s much more fitting with what I want to accomplish, and that’s where the “can I really do this?” comes in.
The last three years, it hasn’t usually been until around March where the reality of what I’m trying to accomplish sets in. Multiple workouts a week combined with running a business all while making a conscious effort to practice the self care I’m always preachin’ make me question why I’m doing what I’m doing.
But now that this year’s race is almost double what I’ve been doing the past few years, those inklings of overwhelm are starting to sneak in earlier. The workouts may not be long yet, but there are a lot of them. 3 swims a week, 3 bike sessions a week, 2 runs, and 2 strength training sessions. Then there’s the recovery – yoga, foam rolling & stretching sessions, chiropractic and acupuncture appointments to keep my body in working order, and sleep – sleep is important. And don’t forget proper nutrition!
Now let’s factor in 21 clients, each with their own programs, needs, and goals to keep track of. 23 hours of training sessions per week, all my regular biz activities which include blogging, live streams, creating challenges, a new program dropping in a few weeks, 3 speaking gigs lined up within the next 3 weeks, and a trade show I’m helping to organize about 6 weeks from now.
And SOMEWHERE in there I’m supposed to meditate, journal, take some downtime for myself, pay attention to my boyfriend, and prepare to move into a brand new condo in a few months.
Suffice to say, “balance” is not a part of my vocabulary at the moment 😉 Unless we’re referring to the craziness that’s evenly balanced amongst all areas of my life. Fortunately, I have a few ideas about how I can maintain at least a little bit of sanity during this craziness.
Fuelling My Awesome
One of my overarching goals in life is to feel as good as possible as often as possible. And just because life gets a little crazy at times doesn’t mean I can’t accomplish that!
It’s often been said that nutrition is the fourth discipline of triathlon, and that couldn’t be more true. I’ve made the mistake of under-fuelling in an attempt to hit my racing weight and ended up spraining both of my ankles within a few shorts weeks of each other. I’ve made the mistake of over-fuelling and have managed to put on weight pretty much every time I train for a triathlon, which just goes to show you can’t out-train a bad diet.
I have an energy usage assessment coming up that will help me really dial in my nutrition strategy, but I already know that my trusty Bulletproof products are going to help me get across that finish line strong and healthy.
My Bulletproof Coffee has been a morning staple for about three and a half months now (if you’ve ever wondered what all the hype is about and how to make a REAL Bulletproof Coffee, watch this), and I don’t see it going anywhere anytime soon. The healthy fats from the Grass-Fed Ghee and the Brain Octane Oil not only make my mornings SUPER easy and stress-free because I can just whip up my coffee and go, but they also keep me full until late in the morning.
I get most of my own workouts in during the late morning once my morning clients are done for the day, and for most of my sessions my 5am Bulletproof Coffee is enough to sustain me through 3-4 clients and a workout. I have a couple of higher intensity workouts a week where I’ll eat some carbohydrates before, but for the most part, my body is loving the caprylic acid triglycerides from the Brain Octane Oil.
Saying Sayonara to Sugar
A couple of weeks ago I mentioned I had been working to cut all forms of processed sugar from my diet. That includes maple syrup and honey, two staples amongst triathletes. This has been hit and miss, but even though I haven’t been as consistent as I’d like I’m still noticing an improvement in how I feel.
When I’m bogged down with sugar, as I was through most of the holidays (and let’s be real – most of the year), my performance suffers. My IT band issues flare up more frequently and more intensely, I have less energy during my early morning workouts, and I feel heavy and bloated.
On top of that I feel moody, anxious, exhausted, and my skin gets super angry with me. Not exactly a great way to feel when you’re trying to live a healthy, active life, am I right?
I’d been trying to play the discipline card and just stay away from sugar. And it worked for a few weeks, but then the cravings came back. I found a bunch of recipes for sugar-free baked goods and snacks, but when am I supposed to find the time to bake all these things? And as my training picked up I started needing more mid-day snacks that so easily come in sugar-laden bar-form.
EVEN if these snacks didn’t taste totally delicious (which they do), and EVEN if they weren’t super convenient to toss in my gym or swim bag (which they are), I’d still be all over them.
The bars are all loaded with collagen protein, helping my body repair from all the madness I’m putting it through, as well as the Brain Octane and XCT Oils that are so good at keeping me full, focused, and on fire. Oh, and did I mention there’s no refined sugar? Hallelujah 🙌 the Snack Gods have heard my cries, and boy did they ever deliver.
Looking Out for Number One
At the end of the day, while it’s incredibly important to make sure I’m fuelling for and recovering from my workouts properly, it’s even more important that I take care of myself. I’m a firm believer that you can’t pour from an empty cup, and I need to make sure I’m practicing what I preach.
Little actions like designating “no tech time”, getting up 15 minutes earlier to journal, making time for meditation throughout the day, giving myself plenty of time to get to and from workouts, and asking for help around the house are all things I have been doing and plan on continuing to do as my journey progresses.
A big area I used to struggle with was asking my boyfriend for help with cooking. I genuinely enjoy cooking, so for the first 6 or so years of our relationship I did it all. But within the last year I started to get really frustrated. Almost resentful, even. My boyfriend has a long commute and a physically-demanding job so I felt guilty asking him to take care of dinner, but I would end an exhausting 16 hour day by coming home and angrily whipping something up for us.
I started to realize that doesn’t benefit either of us, so I began asking for help. Sometimes I would get things started during the day and ask him to take over in the evening, other times I would tell him what needed to be purchased and what he needed to do with it 😛
We were both really excited to receive Dave Asprey’s Bulletproof: The Cookbook. All of the recipes are in line with the Bulletproof Diet, and while I don’t subscribe to any specific diet, I can totally get behind the whole-foods principle it’s based upon. This guy accomplishes A LOT of stuff in a day, so if these foods are what keeps him going, sign me up.
So while Jordan is excited to try some exciting new dishes like Duck Spring Rolls, Beef Bacon Loaf, and the Bulletproof Cupcakes, I’m excited to hand over the cookbook and say “here honey, find something that looks good and make it for dinner tonight” 😉
I’m not kidding myself by thinking the next few months are going to be easy. But I know that with some proper fuelling, my trusty Bulletproof coffee, and some simple acts of self care, that I can get myself across the finish line of my first half ironman and feel good about the way I went about doing it.
When you have big lofty goals that take up a significant portion of your life and energy, how do you handle it? What strategies do you have in place for simplifying things? Where do you ask for help?