Occassional thoughts about orienteering

Friday, September 19, 2003



I ran with Dan and Nadim last night. I struggled, really struggled, to keep up with them. Both are older than me. Both are probably better "natural" athletes than me. But, I really ought to be able to keep up with them. Last weekend I struggled to keep up with James Baker (a competitor since we were both juniors).

My problem is motivation. I haven't been motivated to train. I feel like motivation is coming back...it might be just around the corner... So, here are a few quick thoughts about motivation:

Compared to just a couple of weeks ago, I think I'm closer to being motivated. Check out my post from August 28.

As I think about when I've been most motivated, a couple of things have been in place. First, I've usually got a mid-term (say 1-2 year) goal. Second, I've usually been doing a lot of orienteering (both technique training and racing). Third, I've had some reliable training partners; people I can get together to train with. Fourth, I've had some outside advice/feedback.

Right now I'm looking for a mid-term goal -- the 2005 vet's champs in Canada and the 2004 U.S. relay champs seem like good possibilities. I expect to be doing plenty of orienteering during the winter. I can -- I think -- count on Dan to be a reliable training partner. I don't have any systematic outside advice/feedback. Maybe I'll look in to setting something up.

I read an interview with the skier Vegard Ulvang where he talked about motivation for masters skiers. He said, "DonĂ‚’t let it be too serious, training and competition is supposed to be fun." I guess that seemsobivouss, but it is sometimes good to be reminded that the whole point of doing something like orienteering is to have fun. If it isn't fun, why do it?

Looking back at my list of what's been in common when I've been motivated, I'll add a couple more. Fifth, I've often made a change in my training (maybe training more volume, or less volume but more intensity, or less running but more orienteering, or less running but more biking).

After yesterday's run (and after watching James Baker pull away from me in the forest last weekend), I feel like I'm a step closer to being motivated. I'm not yet there, but I'm close....

posted by Michael | 12:50 PM


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