Are the glory days really behind us? I’d argue that the “glory days” are actually upon any one of us right now. Racing in your 40’s, 50’s or even at my father’s age of 75 (he rowed in the 1st and 50th HOCR) holds just as many wonderful benefits as it did back in the day. However, the one true bonus of racing in your “post-prime” is that you can leave the nightmarish pressure of making the team, making weight or winning a medal, back in your college locker.
The entire race process – from saying, “I’m in!” to crossing the finish line – is a joy. From having teammates again to renewed motivation to hop on the rower or get out for a run, gives you a greater, almost more noble goal, than “just staying in-shape.”
So … what’s your next race? Don’t have anything on the radar? Here are some suggestions to help all of us stay motivated and have fun with some creative cross-training.
- Obstacle Course Races: They sound silly to “real” athletes, but they are hugely popular for a reason. Coming to a city near you, they combine running/hiking with obstacles and tough conditions to get you outside your comfort zone. As rowers, you certainly know how to do that. Check out: Toughmudder.com and Spartan.com
- Trail Running: Trail running is a great way to combine running and the outdoors. One reason I truly love trail running is its meditational quality. You can’t think of much else; it’s pure focus, incredible beauty and a worthy challenge, all at the same time. Find races at active.com
- Stand Up Paddle Races: Ok maybe not as much on the East Coast, but there are plenty parts of the country or travel destinations that will still be doing these all year long. Rowers typically pick this sport up quickly. Get on the water and work your rowing muscles in a new way. Check out: supracer.com
- Misery Challenge: Take on the misery challenge 2017! Start training now for a once a in a lifetime opportunity. Perfect for the competitive athlete or a family adventure. Racing starts and finishes from iconic manchester by-the-sea’s tuck’s point park with a spin around historic misery island and back. Choose your “weapon!” kayak, sup, row or even swim these waters. Besides your “fan club” cheering you across the finish-line, music, micro-brew, tasty treats, kid games, awards, prizes and more await you on shore. MiseryChallenge.com
Oh yeah, and if you don’t like any of the above… you can always hit the indoor rowing circuit!