It’s as if October didn’t exist. Yesterday, I was in Nice and it was the end of September and today is already…November 1st!
In my own vocabulary, October was what I call a transition month. When I speak about triathlon, I know what transitions are about. How long it’s supposed to be and what I am supposed to. But in Life, man, transitions are not like that. You don’t know how long it’s gonna be and there are sure too many new elements for you to handle it properly. So you hang on but still you kind of lose your way in the middle of this. So you gotta stay calm, patient, not depress too much and not worry too much. Of course, I am completely unable to do this but at least I know the theory 😉
After last month’s Nationals, my coach gave me a complete week off. Then we spoke on the phone, said how encouraging 2014 had been and chatted about our 2015 goals: the national title in my age group, the qualification for the World Championship in Chicago and to register for my first half-ironman.
So I resumed training in early october and I could feel we were on another level. To swim 4k and bike 4h per session was becoming the new normal.
But I finished that week with a disappointing long run where quality…was just not there as I couldn’t even keep up a 10km/h pace. And since I was already a bit disappointed by my run at the Nationals (41 minutes), I thought it was time to talk to coach. I told him that thanks to him, I had become a beast in the swim, my cycling improved well but that my running was becoming slower and slower. I told him I thought we should do more quality sessions: track, hills…I told him running is my speciality but that I feel he’s training me as if swimming was the key. You got it. I told him what goes on in the mind of an athlete who’s doubting.
His answer: “I have nothing to say. Take another coach. You’re out. No time to explain why you need to run slow. No time for this bullshit”.
Needless to say, this made me speechless. I’ve talked about this this with several person (okay, everybody I know actually 😉 and we always come back to the same analogy. When you “break up” with a coach, you feel the same as when you break up with your girlfriend. Yes of course, it’s not the same pain at all. But it’s the same “fuck, what am I gonna do now, what am I supposed to do now?”
Anyway…you know about life as much as I do. When something happens, there’s always a good reason why.
So I tried self-coaching me. Thought it was the dream opportunity to try out everything I learnt with Benjamin (coach). I thought my approach had a lot of good points (of course, it’s mine! ;-). My family was encouraging me to do this, follow my instinct and reconnect with my inner-runner.
But after 10 days, I stopped! It’s impossible to self-coach you. I mean, we athletes are crazy. How can a crazy person successfully coach himself? “Can’t”, as they say in Singapore.
Is it the right session? Is it the right volume? When you self-coach yourself, you have an endless list of useless questions in your head that you absolutely need an answer for! 😉
Also, it’s a lot tougher to respect your program when you don’t have a coach. You never want to disappoint your coach so you do everything. You’re also proud you did what he said so you’re excited about saying it. Whereas when you’re by yourself, well…it’s just you, yourself and you.
So I went to my family and screamed: “Enough of this! I’m gonna take myself another coach!”
So I chose Guy Hemmerlin. He was a member of Chris Mac Cormack’s team when he won Kona 2007. He lives close to my place. Organizes lots of training camps in France and Spain. I should be in good hands 🙂
In October, I had a lot more work than usual, therefore less time to train, to stretch, sleep, study japanese and everything I usually like to do when the workflow is stable. We also switched to Winter time so the sun is setting one hour earlier.
In my opinion, next year, I’ll be out of France by mid-October!
But I feel that November is going to be a fun ride. I contacted some sponsors. I’ll soon be in touch with my new coach. A life coach wants to work with me. The Toastmasters season is also starting and I am contacting various sports conferences and National training centres to offer them to come speak and inspire their athletes, audience. Gotta do it one day, right?!
World Champion of public speaking and age-group World Champion of triathlon in 2015. Sounds cool, right?
Keep it up in November.