Tuesday, August 04, 2015

A new strategy, and two new sports!

After a successful 2014-2015 season, I took the chance to review my performances and looked for areas of improvement.  I feel I can improve.  Firstly, my strength preparation wasn't as good as it was the previous year, which may have contributed to injury issues.  Secondly, I haven't been satisfied with my top speed and have been looking for training options in that area.

To address these issues, I've stepped up the gym work to deal with the strength issue.  This has been going extremely well over the past 2 months, with good gains all over, and key muscles are as strong as they've ever been.  Resistance training has proven in previous seasons to be effective in both injury prevention, as well as developing the power required to haul the reel down the track.

To improve my speed, I decided that coaching by a sprint coach would be the way to go.  Through contacts, I was put in touch with the local athletics club, and have commenced cross country running (for a bit of stamina, as well as social interaction and networking), and have just started training with the club at the local athletics track.  Coincidentally, the week after I started cross country, there was a winter athletics meet, so I entered in the 100 and 200 metre sprints.  Despite being at the end of a 4 month break from any sprints, not having spiked and the weather being wet, I did quite well ib the 100m event, especially in the start, where my power worked to my advantage.  The 200m was a bit more of a struggle, but I've never been particularly good at this distance.  Definitely need a lot more work there.  Anyway, I've got the athletics bug, and though the season overlaps the fire competition season, I should be able to compete in a number of meets over the warmer months..

So I've now started training.  Tonight was particularly well suited to me, being focused on speed work.  I think the process of rewiring my motor pathways is already beginning, I felt a noticeable improvement as the drills progressed, though there's still a long way to go.  My goal is to take more than a second (preferably 1.5+) off my 100m time, which will give me the time I need in one of our key events to get down the track and up the ladder in a time that would give us a State win.

Anyway, the big experiment has begun, how successful it is, I won't know until at least the summer.  Pushing this boundary is something I have seen no documentation on for autistic people.  However, I have noticed one side effect, my mood in general has improved, even in the middle of the coldest winter I've experienced for over 20 years.

- Tony

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