As this 2021 progresses, many of you would be forgiven for feeling a sense of déjà vu with regards to how it’s all begun.
The weather, at least in the UK, is as wet as it was last year, and covid is still lingering around like a bad smell.
Also, with the cancellation of festivals such as Glastonbury, it is looking like many big events may not go ahead this year as we all previously hoped in the summer of last year.
Rather than worry about this, or get downbeat about it, I want to use this as a chance to motivate you and put your energy into something else. Something that, while it may not be that big event. Is still going to provide you with a sense of achievement when you complete it.
It is ok if you are demotivated about an event not taking place, we know how you feel. Last year was meant to be a big year for everyone, but let's look at some ways you can make the most of the year regardless.
Non-event based events
Instead of looking at organised events that might get cancelled, have a go at a virtual event. If you're a runner, there was a virtual London marathon last year as well as several other smaller distanced challenges for you to take part in. A simple google of virtual events will bring up a whole heap of events to take part in.
If you really fancy pushing it on the bike, why not set yourself an Everest challenge, where you climb the height of Everest in hill reps.
Doing these challenges requires little to no one around you, and can be done during times of restriction.
Pick an event that you will need to work hard to achieve, so you can increase your development as you train for this other event. That way, when everything returns to normal you can go back into the events that have been cancelled this year with more fitness, more skill and more potential for a great result.
Increase your skill base
While it is easy to see how you can increase your skills on the mountain bike, what about road cycling or running? Are you riding correctly, could you hire a coach, or do some research on your technique that will improve it?
While both cycling and running are based on simple movements, there is a technique to both that will make you more efficient, less injury prone and ultimately increase your enjoyment when it comes to performing. On the cycling front, why not learn to track stand, manual or pick up some other forms of slow speed bike control.
Increased skill, brings about more confidence, more enjoyment and more speed.
Learn to love other things
One of the key things we should have learned over the course of last year is that we never know when something could be out of reach. Look at the gym, for example. It was once something we probably took for granted. But now, we have no access to it and a lot of people are struggling to find access to appropriate equipment to train.
Dipping your toes into new sports can bring fresh motivation into your training. You may start looking at new goals, in other sports.
Having one clear passion might never be a good thing. Be open minded and try something new.
Take away the pressure
Putting pressure on yourself is great as long as it is positive, but it can also eat away at the fun element of your sport. Try something that you might find less competitive and more fun. Go back to your routes and rediscover the reason you got into the sport.
In summary, if you do have events cancelled again this year, try to enjoy the lack of pressure, focus on fun and find something personal to keep you motivated.