Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Taper Time

I understand that many triathletes hate taper time. Random things start to ache or hurt and race-stress can rise. Over the years I have discovered I really love tapering. I figured I would share some of what I love about a good taper, in hopes that it might inspire you to embrace it.
  • My body gets a really good, deep recovery. This doesn't mean I quit training. The intensity of my workouts actually goes up during taper time, but the duration gets shorter.
  • Extra time! I use this time to plant things in my garden, clean my house, attempt to read a book, or work more. Working more isn't exactly exciting, but it does make up for some of those days when I miss work for training.
  • More time to prepare some healthy food! I really enjoy healthy food, but sometimes I don't have time to cook it myself. Taper time allows me to actually make things from scratch. Since strawberries are currently in season and I can buy them fresh-picked right down the street from my home, I want to make this:
Pretty sure mine won't turn out looking Martha-Stewartish like this one is, but it will most likely taste good. I am vegetarian, not vegan, but for those of you who are looking for healthy recipes you may enjoy this site. If you don't have time to cook - check out Simply Bar's new website for vegan, gluten-free snack ideas.
  • More sleep! Since workouts are not as long, I get to sleep in a bit more leading up to a race.
  • Time to reflect on the training I have done. Going into a race confident that the work has been done can help calm nerves and makes me excited to toe the line.
Still stressed about your taper time? What if someone told you that you were not allowed to race? Would you be upset? I'm going to guess most people would. Racing (& tapering!) is a privilege - don't stress about it, just enjoy it.

Keep in mind that we race for fun. Sure, it might be stressful to put your race wheels on or pull together the massive amounts of gear you will schlep around at 4am on race morning, but don't forget that come race day you have prepared for this and now is your chance to enjoy the hard work! Happy tapering for those of you racing with me this weekend.

18 comments:

Rebecca DeWire said...

Good luck! I like how you embrace the taper. I have never understand how most athletes hate it since I love it.

Kim said...

go taper go!

and what/where can i find a recipe for that ridiculous looking treat!!!!

Lauren said...

happy taper! I love your outlook on racing...often times we get too caught up in going fast or winning that we forget how lucky we are to be out there in the first place.

Beth said...

That strawberry treat looks sooooooo good! :)

I love taper time too!! More sleep and more time to get stuff done. :) Have a blast on Saturday Charisa! I'm cheering for you!!

Teresa said...

Bring on the much deserved taper!!!
Go Charisa!
tn

elizabeth said...

How great is it that you embrace taper!! That looks like a berry whoopie pie :)

Matt said...

that pie looks yum, please do make one ;) I hope your taper is going well, looking forward to seeing you rip it up on Sunday!

Running and living said...

If I trained as hard as you do, I would probably enjoy the taper, too:) Although I get stressed during taper, I do enjoy the extra time and ability to do things I don't do.

ali said...

Happy tapering and racing to you!

Stephen said...

ENJOY your race!! My last 2 races here in California were cancelled the last 2 weekends in a row due to rain :(

Lindsey Jerdonek said...

Sounds like you're ready to race! I hope you enjoy yourself at o-side.

Meg said...

More sleep, gardening and reflection sound wonderful...not sure about the cooking but I don't mind eating :) !
My garden is getting cleaned up this weekend, I can't wait!!

m said...

That looks delicious!

Enjoy your taper.

Caratunk Girl said...

That looks so good!

Enjoy the taper. I usually don't mind it so much, just I am all jittery. Have so much fun at Oceanside! You are totally going to ROCK it.

Christi said...

"Racing (& tapering!) is a privilege - don't stress about it, just enjoy it." That is a true statement. Lately I have missed to many races and tapers because of injuries. No Fun!

Have a great taper and then go kick some butt!

Running Bums said...

Great perspective on this Charisa! I used to not only hate tapers, but even recovery days. But you really can see and do things in a different light when you are nice and rested:) Enjoy!

Andrea said...

Bless you for reminding us to keep it all in perspective. My first race isn't for another month, but I'll come back to this post when it's time.

Good luck this weekend!

Barbie said...

I recently had a week off due to illness and I started to stress. Many friends of mine put it all into perspective for me. SO with a month to go to my first 70.3 I look forward to Taper and what life has in store for me.