Maintenance Mode Motivation

I’ve always struggled with maintenance mode. I do well when I have a race scheduled and a goal to work towards, but it’s unrealistic (among  other things) to keep up intensity and certain training patterns all year. From mid-November until the beginning of April, I tend to be in maintenance mode, as the winters in Ottawa aren’t always runner friendly – especially at 4:30am, which is my designated running time.

I don’t want to risk getting injured and I don’t want my level of fitness to decrease, so I need a plan and some motivation for maintenance mode.

In order to do this, I’ve decided to treat maintenance mode like a race, in the sense that I’m going to develop a schedule and stick to it. The distances and paces will be much different than when I’m training for a race, and there will likely be more rest time than a typical training cycle. Instead of a desired finish time, my goal for my ‘maintenance cycle’ Is going to be to listen to my body, stay healthy, avoid injury and keep a good foundation going for my next training cycle.

I hope this will help me get through the next few months and will pay off in the spring when racing picks up again. Hopefully having a schedule will keep me on track and I won’t use this time to slack off. For the past two weeks I’ve already slowed down my paces, which, given a fixed running time on weekdays, means my distance has been shortened too.

It’s difficult to slow down sometimes, but then I remind myself that it’s even more difficult to have n injury, or be unable to run for other reasons.

What are some of the things that help you out when you are in maintenance mode?


3 thoughts on “Maintenance Mode Motivation

  1. I would at least try to keep up your turnover during this time. Hill repeats once a week should help. 60secs to 3min in duration depending on how you feel 6 or 10 reps. This should help keep what you’ve earned, but still allow you to get some needed down time from hard training. My 2 cents!

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