V Cars Diary of a Novice Triathlete – Day Five
Days to first swim (Sunday August 5th): 37 Weight: 90kg
Date: Friday June 27th 2012
Cycling – 4 miles, 30 minutes. Football: 1 Hour
Drinks: Two pints of beer, two glasses of wine. Okay, three. Three cigarettes.
From a building fitness point of view, this is the hardest part of my week by a distance. Thursday night football takes as much as it gives. I reckon I cover 5k in ‘sprints’ over the course of an hour and might record it next week. That move would prompt some strange glances from my fellow players. However, one time I thought it might be cool to listen to an i-pod while playing five-a-side but the isolationism didn’t go down very well. I suppose cutting yourself off from a team experience is sort of counter-productive and counter-intuitive all rolled into one.
So, yesterday I got a bit of exercise in but not a lot of training, and I think that’s where the difference lies. It’s perfectly fine to addle along, but gentle cycling and football isn’t real fitness – shouldn’t exercise, fitness and training equal pain?
Isn’t the agony of wanting to stop and ultimately conquering of that pain the reason we do it in the first place? Isn’t the pursuit of personal fitness a journey of exploration? Aren’t endurance athletes like intellectual (and spiritual, whatever that Godforsaken word mean) potholers? Don’t we (I know I’m not truly part of the ‘we’ yet) investigate the extremities of our determination? Those extremities extend over time so we can explore even greater reaches. The Olympics motto is Swifter, Higher, Stronger when really it’s about Deeper, Further, Longer?
All of which brings me on to Zumba.
I’d like to put my flag in the sand here. Zumba is not exercise, nor is yoga, or dancing classes, or walking to the shops, or housework, or any of those other points of reference non-exercisers use to validate their general inaction.
Looking into the history of the word, exercise was first used somewhere around the 13th Century and seems to be derived from the idea of putting farm animals to use. It wasn’t derived from wearing one trouser leg shorter than the other and dancing to some up-tempo pseudo-latino beat while a fluorescent, headseat wearing, half-naked idiot yells ‘AND… ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZUMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMBAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!”
Exercise is supposed to be hard. That’s the point. You are only exercising when you really don’t want to be there. When you want to stop. Anything else is just warming up. It should be as close to exorcising as possible – driving out the demons.
On that, I’ve got to try and ditch the smoking thing. Three cigarettes is a pathetic amount. I should either commit to it or not. The half-way house means I don’t think of myself as a smoker, but I smoke. It’s idiocy really. Two to three after Thursday football, two or three Friday, two or three Saturday then abstain Sunday to Wednesday. If I am going to get to full triathlon level, I suppose I’m going to have to give up. But then, there’s that internal voice inside my head telling me not to quit. Gets everywhere, doesn’t it?
Swimming this afternoon at 4.30pm. Virgin Active, Nottingham – 30 lengths. Next update on Monday. Have a lovely weekend.
V Cars proudly sponsor RG Active and are title sponsors of two of the popular RG Active Training Races.