Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Staying on Target

Do you remember this scene from Star Wars?

Gold Two: [the Y-wings are running the gauntlet toward the Death Star reactor-port] The guns - they've stopped!
Gold Five: [realizes why] Stabilize your rear deflectors... Watch for enemy fighters.
Gold Leader: They're coming in! Three marks and 2-10! [Gold Two is slain by Darth Vader and his wingmen; Gold Leader starts to panic]
Gold Leader: It's no good down here, I can't maneuver!
Gold Five: Stay on target.
Gold Leader: *We're too close!*
Gold Five: Stay on target!
Gold Leader: [shouts] Loosen up! [he too is picked off by Vader and Company; Gold Five tries to escape but is fatally winged]
Gold Five: Gold Five to Red leader, I Lost Tiree, Lost Dutch. They came from... behind!
Gold Five: [crashes]

Exciting stuff right. "Stay on Target" was one of the phrases I used during Ironman training and the race. Gold Leader had a hard time keeping focused on the goal of the reactor-port with Darth Vader breathing down his neck.

In Ironman training it is also hard to ignore the outside forces that can compromise your training.

Bombing down a hill is dangerous enough that you don't need to be distracted away from the road and risk a crash.

Getting the phone call from friends to join you at the bar the night before a long training day instead of getting the needed rest your body deserves.

Focusing on how the person running in front of you is unreachable instead of worrying about maintaining your own pace.

Being drawn to the dark side of Ben and Jerry's, or Mitchell's, ice cream when trying to follow a good diet.

Getting caught up in the excitement when exiting transition and starting off too fast.

I think you get the picture. The mental aspect of triathlon training/racing is often overlooked and not practiced. Training the mind to "stay on target" will pay dividend in all aspects of your life. Remind yourself when the mind starts to drift. Say it out loud to yourself.

Keeping on target will make help you make the best of your workouts and races.

Stay On Target = Game On


TriSaraTops said...

Nice Star Wars reference! I don't remember it but I'm sure Matt will...

And hey, are you making fun of my Mitchell's addiction? I swear it's just once a week...


Bolder said...

timely advice!


JenC said...

I shall try Obi Won Kenobi. : )

SkiRough said...

LOVE IT!! bookmarked this entry to read on days when I am being pulled to the dark side :) Thanks Eric

qcmier said...

"It's not impossible. I used to bullseye womp rats in my T-16 back home, they're not much bigger than two meters."

greyhound said...

Great post. I now have a new mantra.

John said...

I used to try Jedi Mind Tricks on girls at bars when I was single.

Me: "Yes, I am incredibly handsome."
Girl: "What?"
Me: "You find me very attractive."
Girl: [stunned look on her face]
Me: "I am your Brad Pitt."
Girl: "Go to hell."

Maybe the "stay on target" will work better for me.

hak / john

E-Speed said...

ooh I will add this to my mantra list tomorrow!