Definition of STRENGTH: The quality or state of being strong: Capacity for exertion or endurance. (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/strength)

If you have been following me for a while, you probably realize how much I LOVE STRENGTH and what it does for the human body. As a coach, when I have given my athletes a strength program specific for triathletes,  I have seen such AMAZING results. I see that they have better body awareness. I see fewer injuries. I see CONFIDENCE with these athletes that takes them to a different level.

So, we see athletes build their strength physically through swimming, biking, running, and lifting. How often do we see athletes build strength MENTALLY?

As a coach, I think a lot of athletes lose their “strength” from a mental standpoint.

For example, you may hear athletes talk about themselves and their training:

  • “I suck at swimming. Will I make the cutoff in the Ironman?”
  • “My run is so slow; I am a turtle.”
  • “My race was TERRIBLE. Now I need to train more.”

As an athlete, what do you think happens to athletes when they actually think that? It’s true. They will NOT make the cutoff on the Ironman. Their run will be slow. Now this athlete may overtrain since they don’t think they are “good” or “fast” enough. What happens when you overtrain? Injury.

After the Ironman World Championship, I was on cloud 9. I felt AMAZING and felt like I could have done anything and everything. As time was moving on from October 14th, I started working out again but I wasn’t doing your typical swim, bike and run. I went to The Tribe in San Antonio, along with going to Inferno Pilates at the Union, eating extra cookies and gaining a little bit of weight. You know doing the things that you should be doing off season. It was AWESOME.

I started noticing my lower back was bothering me, which it has off and on for years.

Our Christmas Vacation to Florida was a success but coming home (December 29th), I decided to twist and lift my luggage. #notrecommended. 

Let’s look at the timeline:

December 29th: I laid down that day for a bit, took some Aleve and fell asleep. I woke up. I was in pain and I couldn’t move.

January 2nd, 4th, 9th and 11th: Went to Stratton Sports and was hurting. Bad.

January 8th: I tried to swim but I felt this pain in my back to my neck. That isn’t right. January 9th: I woke up crying. It hurt so bad. I had a business to run. I had to drive up to Austin that day. AWFUL!

January 10th: Doctor’s appointment with Dr. Saenz at San Antonio Sports Medicine Associates

January 12th: Three Bulging Discs…dose of steroids and three months of PT!