THE DAY

-THE DAY-
その日、それはシーズンを通してトレーニングを重ね、自分にとって最大の舞台に立つ日。
私の場合、THE DAYは今年10月にロサンゼルスで行なわれるUCIのマスターズ・トラック世界選手権の日です。コーチングを受けて8ヶ月が経ちました。THE DAYまであと半年あります。これから半年間どのようなメニューをこなし、どれくらい辛い練習が待っているのか楽しみでもありますが、怖い部分もあります。

これまで8ヶ月間、毎日決められた練習メニューをこなしてきました。これからもそれは変わりません。
時にはかなりハードなインターバルをこなし、物凄くキツイ時もありました。
ジムではレッグプレスは720ポンド(台を入れて340Kg)を上げ始めました。
e0095029_01301394.jpg
これから先はもっとキツイのがあるのかも知れません。でも普通、こんなにキツイ練習を重ねているんだから、自分は前よりもっと強く・速くなっているんだろうと思うでしょう。しかし実際はその実感は正直全くありません。
何も変わっていないか、逆に遅くなったと感じることさえあります。
実際、3月にはトレーニングクリテリウムで2回、集団から遅れに遅れ、無残なまでに疲れ切ったこともあります。坂だって、一生懸命走っているつもりでもタイムは前よりずっと遅くなっているのです。

こんなんじゃとても来月から始まるトラックレースシーズンをまともに戦えそうに無いと感じます。
ましてや、6月末のトラック全米選手権、10月の世界選なんて夢の又夢・・・というのが今の自分の正直な思いです。

そんなジレンマを抱きつつ、練習メニューをこなし、時にこのジレンマをコーチに相談するのですが、コーチからは、THE DAYを目差してJust Do Itを言われています。そんな時、コーチからアスリート達に一つのメッセージが届きました。これを書いた本人も私と同じメニューをこなし、同じように不安を抱えつつも、練習を信じ、自分を信じ、ワールドカップでメダルを獲るTHE DAYを迎えた現役トラックエリート選手です。彼女は私のコーチでもあり、私の娘のコーチでもあります。USAのオリンピック強化選手でもありました。コーチにして現役エリート選手の彼女も私達が抱えているジレンマを経験し、ブレークスルーした経験を基に発するメッセージは、とても重く心に響きます。

USAでレースを初めて14年。ロードではCat5からCat2まで12年もの時間を要しました。それまで自分なりに練習を考え、実行してきました。しかしそれ以上余り伸びを感じませんでしたし、次第にレースへの執着心が薄れて行きました。2年前、娘がトラックを始めた事で全てが変わったように思います。
自分もトラックという全く未知の世界に足を突っ込んだおかげで、ゼロからのチャレンジを楽しんでいます。コーチングを受けるきっかけもトラックです。
トラックを始めていなければ今頃、レースをどれ程熱心にやっていたか?

とにかく、練習を信じ、自分を信じ、コーチを信じて実行あるのみ。
この先自分がどれだけ強くなるのか。THE DAYを信じてみたいと思います。

-コーチからのメッセージ-
The picture above was on one of those days. Slugging throughtraining...actually, I don't even think I slugged through this day. I pedaledmaybe 100 meters and stopped. Another 100m and stopped. I'd never been sotired, or so SLOW, or so demoralized. Little did I know, just a few short weekslater, I'd be flying faster than I'd ever gone. This was the spring of 2015.I'd just won my first world cup medal, and competed at the elite worldchampionships.

The number of times Andy heard me say that when I was slugging my way throughtraining sessions, slow as a snail! I didn't have the patience, or theunderstanding to really know what training was REALLY like, or how training should REALLY feel. Weekafter week we all get on our bikes, striving to make the smallestimprovements, so the next time we get out there, we do better, ride faster, andwin more...right? Well in short, that's the point. But we do things alittle different.

Throughout the early years of my career (and while I realize my"career" was only 3.5 years long, bear with me here...), I trainedwith short sight. I trained from race to race, maxing myself out before I evenreached my potential. I slowly climbed the ladder within the US, then in theworld. But the gains I was making were so minimal. At the rate I was going,having a highly competitive flying 200m time was going to take well into my40s. I was at my wits end...then I figured I'd try something new.

I struggled. Like many of you are right now. I didn't see the lightat the end of the tunnel. You're eyeballs deep in training, wondering whyeveryone else is dropping you, out sprinting you, and riding circles aroundyou. Well, my fellow athletes, I'm here to tell you this: There is a light, andit's what I call, "THE DAY".

Ever gone from riding a 12.2 to an 11.4 in under 36 hours? I did. Anyone who'struly been through the training program will be able to tell you - you're doingeverything you're doing for a reason. That's the point of our programs - everythinghas a reason. In the early time of the year, you're training hard towardsyour goal, whether it's the state title, national title, or world title.While your competitors are still going from weekend to weekend, trying tosqueeze the smallest ounce from their minimal training, you're in a swing,building momentum, strength, power, endurance, and speed. You're racing fortactics, experience, and developing the hunger for more.

But it is a struggle. When you are used to finishing in the mid pack, qualifyingin the top bunch, or hanging with the group....to remain mentally tough canbecome a challenging task. Believe in yourself, believe in your program, andbelieve in your goals. Put your blinders on, focus on the task at hand, and gointo each day with a clear vision, a hunger, and relentless determination. Eachday you're building yourself stronger, faster, and better... so when "THEDAY" arrives, you haven't wasted it on early spring races, which seeminglymean nothing compared to your big goals.

I speak from experience, as someone who has been through the training,through the emotions, and through "THE DAY". I have talked many ofyou "away from the cliff", because I have been there, I have doubted,but I stayed true, and I became an athlete I never knew I was capable ofbecoming. We break through the impossible, reach new heights, and becomeathletes who are strong, courageous, and mentally unbreakable.

We train for what reallymatters - We admit - our training philosophy isn't for everyone. Wedemand only those capable of the strongest of mental challenges, the mostobsessive in their training logs, and the most determined to reach their goals.Many quit before they reach "THE DAY", simply due to lack ofstrength. But for those of you who stay the course, remain strong, balanced,and committed, "THE DAY" will become a day you will always remember -when everything comes together, your hard work shines through as championships,PRs, and incredible memories.

In that picture, I was broken. I just wanted to go fast. I was tired, so tired.But on days like that, you get back on your bike, you put in the work, and putmoney in the bank. I wanted to go to the Olympics, and I knew this programwas going to get me there. It was the spring time, I had 7 months until thefirst world cup of the season. This was the time to put in the work.

When you catch yourself in the slumps saying, "I just wanna gofast!", remember your goals, remember the work, remember the time ofyear...and say, "I'm doing this today, because I'm gonna go fast onTHE DAY". And on "THE DAY", you're going to be glad youwaited. Believe me.


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by sprockets | 2017-04-12 01:32 | トレーニング | Comments(0)

米東部在住のトラック&ロードレーサ。レース・トレーニング、機材など


by sprockets
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