Once you dedicate yourself to a sport it is very easy to get caught up in the latest gear and equipment. Also. As you get more in to any sport, you want to make things simpler, more direct and…..to do so you usually acquire more stuff. This seems true just because it occupies a bigger pat of you life. You need more clothing so you aren’t doing laundry every night and/or wearing a shirt still drying. You acquire gadgets that will help you train more efficiently. You acquire items to hold your gear when you aren’t using it. Or to help you transport yourself and gear from event to event.
Heck, I can tell you that I bought my car as a lifestyle choice. It is much easier packing my bike in to my Subaru than my little Jetta. And when I carry
multiple bikes and/or carpool, there is a lot more room in my Subaru. I love my car. It was 100% a lifestyle choice.
And one reason my husband and I hope to move in the next 3-5 years is our little condo is not really big enough for a work-from-
home triathlete and her cycling husband. My swim gear is in the front bathroom and we have 4 bikes scattered across 2 rooms. And my work “desk” is the dining room table (a lap top with a docking station and a second monitor make it a permanent perch) with various pieces of gear scattered in the chairs. Yeah…it’s all a little crazy. But….I really do love what I get to do…and all the chaos that comes with it.
However, not all things are complex. Not all solutions require more space. And not everything is chaos. Sometimes little (and I mean very little) things can make life simpler. It often can be a reuse of things you already have…or just being aware of something such as equipment limitations.
Simpler is always relative….so these make things a little simpler for me. Hopefully you can take these and apply them to make things a little easier for you.
1) We use our dishwasher. We have one and didn’t use for a long time as it didn’t drain. So, when we replaced it my husband and I kept hand washing dishes. It’s just the two of us. But Carlos got sick one day so I decided to use the dishwasher. I was stunned when I pulled out the dishes and they literally sparkled. And since then I have started I wash my water bottles in it, mold has stopped growing in my bottles (so I haven’t’ had to bleach them occasionally since starting to use the dishwasher!).
2) To stop the chafing from my heart rate monitor (ouch when I got in to the shower) I use Johnson and Johnson waterproof medical tape. Two little strips where the battery is and….wow. Life is good!
3) When carrying extra nutrition for a long ride (Century is what I am thinking, but long is relative) I use the small snack baggies. And when emptying it into my bottles, I hold the baggie so all the drink powder falls to one side, tear the other corner off, and then let it pour in to my bottle. No mess at all, and all the powder goes directly in to the bottle. So much easier than opening the baggie and trying to pour it out from the zip lock end. Yes, I do feel a pang of guilt that I can’t reuse the baggie but, it is SO easy and I don’t have mix everywhere. I take simple where I can!
4) My delicates laundry bag works great for accessories with Velcro like cycling gloves. It keeps them from snagging my Jerseys and shorts.
And my oh so exciting training insight.
4) When I am at the track I don’t trust my Garmin for pace. It’s a great device but that track oval is just too small for an accurate reading. And really – I am a proponent for being able to go by feel and leave equipment at home (I just love collecting the data, even if I don’t train by the tools all the time). Ever look at the loops after a track session? They are a bit crazy. So I now look at my workout ahead of time and know the pace my coach wants me to hit, and then use an on-line pace sheet to let me know my goal time intervals. This way there are no false standards set up since with my Garmin it can be 15-20 seconds per mile faster than I really am which, is a great ego boost but…let’s be real here! One track pace calculator that I recently found is here. It even goes to 100 and 300 meter intervals.
Nothing ground breaking here. This is stuff you realize when chatting with friends before or after a training session. You hear things, and adapt them to suit your needs. No one is alone in having to improvise and find solutions. It’s a matter of listening, trying, and modifying to find something that works for you. I just appreciate these little details – makes life a little simpler for me. And as you may be able to tell from the top of this post – I have enough chaos (without having kids or pets) to deal with that something easy is appreciated.