Saturday, 4 August 2012

Training for Life?

One of the secrets of happier living is to have a goal.

Superman plank; Phil and Adam

With the Olympics in full swing at the moment, there’s plenty of talk about goals, drive and ambition. How do rowing athletes at Eton Dorney or the pedal pushers in the velodrome keep smashing records? As the lactic acid builds and their bodies enter oxygen debt, they power on. BBC pundits keep reminding us - it’s because they set themselves a goal, and then committed hours to their sport in training over the last four years (admittedly with some natural talent and high-tech sciency stuff thrown in to give them an edge).

In the last year at Leeds, we’ve built a community of people in the Hiking Club, who are willing to commit at least one night a week for the sake of training, and for the sake of the team. Just remember, the whole can be greater than the sum of its parts.

Spearheaded by Matt Fuller, our training group started as a core group of ‘keen beans’, circuit training over Woodhouse Moor on a Tuesday night (some would just call it rolling in the mud). But it mushroomed. The word spread, and although people trained for different reasons, with different goals, we were united in training. For me personally, the training involved mud, sweat, pain, injury, disappointment, annoyance, determination and finally elation. So it paid off.

There have only been one or two other times in my life when I’ve been as proud as I was this year. My goal was never to be the best at anything, but to try damn hard in many things. I will let Matt explain.

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