Dear readers and followers of my road to the Ironman 70.3 World Championships,
As we all know, nothing is certain these days and we all go through ups and downs. I hope you are still healthy and safe. And special thanks to all those people working really hard to cure people, to deliver food to the grocery stores and others trying to help where possible. Keep going and my thoughts are there with you!
With this blog, I want to make you laugh and give you a few minutes not thinking too much about everything going on in the world. I think there is enough to read about the COVID-19 and I find myself reading too much about it. Therefore, in this blog I want to focus on the positive things and I hope to put a little smile on your face. It is definitely not that I think the current situation does not need attention, but we all should try to stay positive (and a side note; we should definitely not forget to follow the social distancing protocol!).
I will give you an update on my life, my trainings and my way of dealing with the current situations. The funniest thing is, that one of my worst nightmares (if you would have asked me 2 months ago) became true. I am currently living at my parents (by which I mean my mum and stepdad in this case) in Limburg. And as much as I love my parents, sharing a small house at an age of 26 is not what I dreamed about. In my dreams, I usually live in a penthouse somewhere in Australia, looking at Bondi beach while Zwifting on my Giant Liv TT at the balcony and a hot surf dude on the side to fill my water bottles when empty. Too bad this will never ever happen. Lets get back to reality. Maybe you wonder why I am not living on my own nowadays. For those who know me, also know that I hate being alone all day. As much as I love training on my own, I do need some people around me every now and then. And, since I am taking the social distancing quite serious due to some infected people around me, I deleted all social events, party’s and dates for the upcoming weeks in my agenda. You must also be wondering by now if I already turned crazy when living at my parents? I must admit, after one week of adaptation, it is not as bad as I expected it to be. My parents take good care of me, cook dinner everyday. For those who know me a bit, I hate cooking (and doing groceries). This is definitely a plus one for living at the parents. But these are more good things when living at the parents;
- Waking up and having a cute fluffy dog waiting for you at the bottom of the stairs.
- A new pain cave with 4 new walls to watch while spending hours riding inside. I have studied the walls in my own apartement already quite some hours. As I don't want to be the cause of cycling accidents, I try to ride inside as much as possible.
- Not getting lost while running and finally being able to run a different course than just the roads you cycle to the office each days.
- Sore quads from running decent hills in Limburg. In Utrecht, I always have a hard time running a viaduct. But now I again know how running 'hills' feels.
- Having people around you to argue with about stock returns and other financial information can be quite satisfying. Yes, besides spending a lot of time training, I love speculating on the stock markets. And the current situation definitely brings some opportunities on the investment side. With all those cancelled races, a good way to compensate my lost registration fees right!?
- When you need coffee during your daily Microsoft Teams, you just send a text and they bring you coffee. Some of my colleagues can still learn from this!
I definitely forget some other advantages, but these are the ones who came up first. Usually, the things that come up first are the best. I also will not bother you with the disadvantages, because I promised to stay positive! And, I think you can all think about them yourself. Enough said about my current living situation. How long I will stay at my parents is still uncertain. I am taking life day by day, for as much as possible. As I am working for a real estate fund, I need to make new forecasts for 2020 very often, and that is already a hell of a challenge. Therefore I take the other things in my life by the day and I try not to worry about the things I can't change. It also depends on how long my parents can stand my high level of energy and me and the dog making a lot of noise while playing with its stupid toys. Yes, my dog barks on my commands, so that is a good way to frustrate people. And I sometimes really enjoy making people go crazy :)
Now, let’s go back to the real shit, my current trainings and races (in which I also have to mention the Corona virus), before I start writing too much. I know you all have a lot of time these days to read blogs but I also know that some people stop reading when there are more than 200 words on one page (with this I also refer to myself). My trainings and race plan, has changed a lot compared to writing my last blog.
Before the world turned upside down, I ran a 8K personal best in Apeldoorn (running 3.56min/km) and I was training more than ever (averaging 16-17 hours a week). Fair to say that I was in the best shape ever. I was also more focused than ever. Eating healthy, which has always been a challenge to be, and not drinking alcohol since the first of January was definitely paying off. Maybe I should not write in the past sense, because I am probably still in the same shape as I am referring to. However, my focus, especially for eating healthy, and putting everything aside for triathlon, drained a bit. I think most people can relate to this nowadays. Working at home makes it so much easier to keep eating shit. Especially when in Limburg. Whether this is a bad thing, I don't know. I think that most of us will get the focus back when the world is in recovery. When this will be, I don't know. When the first race of the season will be, I don't know.
Whether I will go to New-Zealand and start at the Ironman 70.3 WC, I also don't know. A lot of uncertainties, we all have to deal with. And we all do this on our own way. There is nothing good, nothing bad. As long as you feel happy with your own choices these days. For me, being less strict to myself and enjoying an extra cookie (or 10 extra cookies in my case) each day helps me dealing with stuff. Luckily I did not lose motivation to complete my trainings, to compensate for all those cookies. Probably because I can lose my thoughts in my job and often have a hard time finding a way of stress release. Checking boxes and going for a ride or run helps me a lot. I don't need a race goal when I enjoy training so much. In addition, I prefer training on my own which makes it easier for me to train when club training and group rides are not allowed. Races are also a stress factor for me, therefore cancelled races are not my biggest concern nowadays. I guess I am kind of lucky with that. Well, I definitely want the pool and the gym to open soon again. Until that time, I enjoy sleeping 'in' each day (till 8AM instead of 6) and focus on the positive things. Being creative with home workouts can also be a lot of fun. I hope you all also find a way to keep motivated and to deal with the cancelled races.
This of course does not mean that I want the whole season to be cancelled. I am definitely looking forward to the world championships. Especially since I booked my flight and planned my trip already. But I keep in mind that it might not happen this year. I am also willing to let it go if this means that the coronavirus will die completely. Writing this on a Friday evening, craving for a party, drinks and some quality time with friends, I prefer the whole social distancing to be over. Until that point, I will try to make the best out of it. Focus on the things we can do and normally don't do! This means for me; the virtual 'vrijmibo' on Skype, the Houseparty app, playing the Sims 4, cuddling with the dog more often, whatsapping my friends regularly to check if they are doing fine and refreshing my Instagram to see what you are up to! AND I will be more than ready whenever we are allowed to go free again. Ready to race, ready to party and ready to hug all my friends!
Stay safe all and hope to see you in person soon or to race against you even sooner! When all this is over, we will be even more grateful for the things we can do.
Enjoy your weekend, stay inside and be positive.