Jul 23, 2010

Pronunciation: \ˈdi-sə-plən\
Function: noun

1) Definition in use before US National Team Comeback: stop at two glasses of champagne, squeeze in an ab workout before skipping out of the gym, run the full Central Park loop instead of cutting through the middle, or erg on the Concept2 Indoor Rower instead of sleeping in after a long night out.

Fast forward several months to the present day…

2) Current definition of discipline: receptive to coaching, accept my sky-rocketing heart rate during the easiest of workouts, ignore the splits the girl next to me is “pulling” on the erg, and avoid “over-pulling” during steady state practices. Essentially, having enough discipline to train efficiently while respecting the boundaries of my present physical limits.

Warming up for my first 30 minute erg test!

Easing off and accepting the state of my fitness is almost (note… almost) as tough as the actual workouts themselves because I am routinely dismayed by the numbers I’m presently seeing on the erg screen, when instead I should be focused on the heart rates and split targets in my current program for the current phase of my comeback. The toughest challenge is to accept where you are and move forward from there. This is mental vs. physical toughness at its finest. For those of you new to rowing, the only comparison I can think of is the frustration of not being able to fit into your favorite jeans or little black dress from last year.

I am confident that I am tapping into a deep reserve of experience and believe that my ability to work within the new definition of “discipline” and to accept my limitations will make or break my comeback.

Without mental toughness on the erg, in the boat, in the weight room, and in my day-to-day life, I will wind up injured, exhausted and discouraged. The saying really is true, training “smarter not harder” is critical. So with that said, I am going to take my own advice and stick to the plan, trudge along, listen to my coaches, make small strides in my fitness level and continue to lead a healthy lifestyle—everyday.

In the spirit of this “Discipline” blog entry, here are my *specific goals* for the next seven days:

  • In bed by 9:30 p.m. every night
  • Strong technical focus while erging on the Concept2 Indoor Rower
  • Drink approximately 32 oz. of water per hour during the day
  • Eat tons of veggies, fruits, lean meat and beans. Cook in advance of hunger!
  • Take the week off from processed sugar. No gummy worms!
  • Erging within my prescribed heart-rate for ALL pieces
  • Continue to adhere to my quasi-gluten free diet

Stay tuned. I’ll ‘fess up with goal results next week.

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