Why my 2014 is done; the completely honest version…

Keeping it very Real!

 Firstly, I would like to thank everyone who has sent me positive thoughts, and reviews regarding my new website; it has been an adventure for sure.

There will be regular updates from free recipes, training advice and exercises, so look out for them.

My monthly (ish) LTTA Telegraph will be starting in January, but you can sign up now (on the right hand side of this page) so you don’t miss out, it also comes with a free cookbook; what are you waiting for?

Secondly, never underestimate the effects that everyday stresses of life can place on your body, its performance, and recovery.

I wrote in my previous post about listening to your body, and this week I’ve not only had to carefully listen to my body, but have been at its mercy.

I was supposed to round out my very up and down 2014 with a picturesque 75 kilometre trail ultra marathon along the beautiful Jurassic coastline in Dorset. I was excited for this race, as I was looking forward to simply enjoying the scenery while running along one of the UK’s most famous coastal paths.

With my tight calf from last week subsiding, and having four full days of recovery (no exercise) I thought this might help me be ready for the start of the race. But with moving house, and lack of any real quality sleep due to this disruption, my lower back has still been giving me some trouble with its constant tightness.

 

I simply feel physically and mentally drained from the (mostly) self-inflicted stresses I’ve put my body and mind through recently.

 

I didn’t see the point lining up on the start line of this ultra (although it would have been gorgeous as it was a cloudless day) forcing my body to dig deeper into its reserves, thus pushing me into further fatigue. I made the difficult decision to pull out of yet another race (two in two weeks) and draw a line under my 2014 with a big “complete” next to it.

I’ve had an amazing year with many firsts and personal bests!

I’m now a triathlete (Double Brutal), I competed in my first ever ocean swim race (well 3 actually), for the first time ran 100 kilometres in a day (NDW100), and these are just the physical achievements.

With a big, well huge to be honest 2015 coming up for me, starting with a six hour swim at one of Adam “Oceans 7” Walker’s swim camps in March, I need to be feeling fresh and rejuvenated coming into the new year.

 

My body, mind, and soul need a rest!

 

My year hasn’t all been just triumphs and personal bests; I’ve struggled mentally quite a bit.

I have battled with insomnia, depression, and struggled to maintain any sort of balance in my life. After a tough separation in 2013, I found myself struggling to overcome this sudden loss, and wanted my 2014 to be “my year” but it couldn’t have been any further from it; I struggled with almost everything.

I wanted nothing more than to feel normal, have a weekly routine where I was productive, and happy; this never happened.

My training was up and down, I started the year injured, and finished injured, but in between I was able to be somewhat consistent when my motivation levels allowed.

It was a constant battle to drag myself to the pool several mornings a week at 6:30am, just bearable to get on my bike and out the door due to my fantastic cycling partners who supported me throughout the year. When I won a rare battle mentally, or felt sluggish due to my over indulging of food (although not bad foods) but simply eating too much; I would punish myself with long and hard runs.

 

This is no way to train, live, or exist.

 

Don’t get me wrong, I love my life, and I am living it every single day, but it’s simply not all rainbows and unicorns when your day starts with having only two hours sleep, and a feeling of being completely deflated and burnt out!

I’ve now began to take action to move forwards and bring peace to my life, while finding a balance where I can not only live life everyday (and share through my social media channels) but enjoy it for what it is; a wonderful experience.

December for me will be getting settled into my new house, having plenty of rest, eating just enough fresh seasonal foods, while enjoying some quality time with family and close friends.

I will be relaxing, de-stressing my life, and using this time to focus on slowing down, being more present for each minute of everyday while finding a healthier balance across all areas of my life.

So with these thoughts I urge everyone to find time for yourself at least once a day, even if it’s 30 seconds to focus on your breathing; but find a moment of calm in your life.

What I’ve experienced throughout the past 18 months (and learnt) is that although it may seem possible to “do it all” no matter what your circumstances may be, it will catch up with you eventually unless you take time out to relax, recharge, and rejuvenate.

 

Smile, learn something new, and live everyday like there is no tomorrow!

 

The Adventure. The Travel. The Challenge.

 

Luke

 

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