Years ago I heard a quote…it was something like “it is better to be 10% undertrained, than 1% over-trained.” I have tried to live by that rule over the last several years. With the guidance of an amazing coach I have gone into each a race, usually an Iron Distance feeling amazing and great!
As I head into Ironman #11 I am hoping for the same feeling. I can honestly say that this is the first time that I have really wanted to taper. My training has been going great and my recovery from Ironman #10 has gone well…but my training since August 26th has been intense and long!
All of my hard training will pay off on race day, it will all come together! I have one more week of intense training until it is taper time. The most important thing that I think comes from a taper for me is rest. I significantly reduce my volume of training and keep the intensity up. I feel that this taper allows my mind and body to recoup and resupply itself. I often get a little crabby during this 2 week period but it will help this year because I will spend the last week of my taper on a beach relaxing.
The taper allows my mind to recover, not only from the Iron Distance in August but from all the hard training over the course of the entire season. It allows me to work on the mental part of an endurance race and become mentally ready! I like to train my mind to stay quiet while racing and not really think about anything but just getting the job done. I also like to focus on why I do this and what a gift it is to be able to do what I do. One more week of intense training and then it is time to taper.
The taper is one the greatest gifts to an endurance athlete..it can make or break your race! Embrace the taper and feel the win of the finish line
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