The Other Activity of Endurance Training…Home Life
The other day I was discussing with a friend of mine all the various aspects of Ironman training. He is prepping for his first and I was telling him about some of the challenges that I run into. Of course the obvious aspects were discussed like long rides, nutrition, getting all the hours of training in, etc. One of those little pieces of the puzzle that isn’t always addressed in training for an Ironman is training to adapt your body to a normal family life. One of the big conflicts that people run into isn’t the long hours on the bike or running, but the long hours spent sleeping or on the couch after the training. Your spouse and/or family have to sacrifice when you prepare for an Ironman as well, since you spend a lot of time away. I think that the bigger problem, that can quickly wear people’s patience out and start fights, is how you act when you’re not training. People expect you to be gone more when they agree to let you do an Ironman. What they don’t expect is for you to be a zombie when you are home. In order to keep the peace, this needs to become part of your training. When you get home Saturday afternoon from the 5 hour ride, you need to be able to hop in the shower and continue on a normal day with your family. This is going to take some time to adjust to and may, from time to time, cause you to adjust how you train. In the end, though, you will have a more supportive home life and hopefully the blessing to continue this sport you love so much. So the next time you are 95 miles into your 100 mile ride, don’t think of it as 5 miles to go. Think of it as 5 miles until you transition into an energetic person at home who is happy to go to the mall or out for a lunch with your spouse. They did, after all, just let you spend half a day doing what you wanted, right?