Winter Training Camp, Half Time Report

What a great week I’m having.

I’m totally inspired by the people I’m mixing with everyday.

First there is Brett Sutton, the legendary coach himself. I love his wisdom, I love his individual approach to coaching (and by that I mean the way he thinks about what each athlete needs to help them be better). There is no one size fits all solution to performance improvement for him. I love the way he wants to understand what is going on inside the head of his athletes and what it is they are trying to work on as they perform the swim, bike and run. I love the way he asks questions. I love the way he shows how principles about performance can be so easily translated from one sport to another. And I love the way he gets his message across.

I’m inspired by the performance levels of the world class professionals that we are training alongside. Observing them in action is something else. The commitment to practice and the level of consistency of effort is so impressive. As an example, 80 x 100m in the pool this morning (don’t be silly, not by me!) performed at such a high and consistent level was a sight that will stick with me for a very long time. Nicola’s rhythm and balance in the water is what I’m aspiring to.

I’m equally inspired by each of the other athletes on the Camp. Everyone is here because they want to get better, they want to be the best they can be. Some, the youngsters are just starting out and yet have travelled from Hong Kong to be here. Others are coached regularly by Brett and have such a professional approach to training. Its hugely impressive.

Finally, there are also the other Age Groupers like me and this is the most inspiring bit of all. There are only 3 of us on this Camp and each of us is beyond 50 and yet we are all here because we want to improve, we want to go quicker and we do not see age as any kind of barrier to performance enhancement.

If ever I needed further affirmation about my goal of inspiring others to chase their dreams beyond 50 then this Camp is it.

Thanks TriSutto.

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The Night Before Winter Training Camp With TriSutto

A mixture of excitement and anxiety are the key emotions I’ve been feeling during the build up to my week with Brett Sutton at his training camp in Maspalomas in Gran Canaria.

 

I’m really excited about joining in with his elite environment, even if its only for a week and I’m also excited that I’m putting myself out there for analysis, criticism and anything else that might come my way. I’ve set myself some lofty goals over the next few years and I’m excited to be taking the next step towards achieving them.

 

Most of the surface level anxiety has been about all the silly unknowns. Will the accommodation be ok, will my bike arrive on the same flight, will the weather be good, will I get on with the others on the Camp etc etc ?. And guess what, I’ve been here for 24 hours now and the answer to the first three unknowns is a resounding yes, so I reckon I should be putting anxiety in its place.

 

Me and my bike have arrived safely. We’ve been reunited on a lovely little ride today up into the hills behind Maspalomas to get the journey out of the legs and really enjoyed the 25 degree temperatures.

 

However, its never simple with me and my over active “chimp”!

Another huge unknown that’s been causing me concerns is what will the training camp entail ? Unlike any other training camp or event I’ve taken part in the only pre Camp information I’ve been given is “be outside the pool at 0755 on Monday morning.” For someone who likes to prepare by visioning what is coming up, this has been quite a challenge and I’m expecting the rest of the week to be a sequence of leaps into the darkness where even in the middle of a session I might not know what’s coming next. This really will put me way outside my comfort zone, but because I trust in my coach, Annie Emmerson and she trusts Brett, ( he used to coach Annie) I believe I’ll be able to ensure that this discomfort doesn’t become debilitating.

 

As I sit here the night before the Camp I realize that this is probably why I’m here. I want to be taken so far out of my comfort zone that I can discover new things about myself. How will I react to everything that is thrown at me over the next week?

 

And of course, how will my swim stroke, the biggest source of performance anxiety cope?. What will he think, can he spot any potential in it and can he help me improve?

 

Over the next few days we’ll find out!