Wednesday, April 7, 2010

the possibly impossible

I've written before about the infamous two minutes.
it began during my first encounter with power camp three years ago: one of the instructors, one day while talking us through a tough work effort, said to us, you can do anything for two minutes. that's the length of a commercial or two ~ come on, you can do that.
and of course, then, it grew to
come on, you can do anything for three minutes.
or four minutes.
or five.

this past year I've heard a lot of those you can do anything for . . . motivational comments.
but this week it's been switched up on us.
this week it's been our recovery, not our work effort, that's been scrunched into two minutes.
and I've learned that I can even find recovery in a brief two minute stretch.

during this past year the elite, blue-card people have experienced interval workouts with three and two minute recoveries between intervals. but remember, I'm a white card person, and we've always been allowed a minimum of three minutes between intervals.
for example, we've had a workout where we take our heart rates up to zone 5 for four minutes, then recover in zone 3 for three minutes, then repeat this process six or seven more times. the elites were made to go to zone 5 for five minutes, then only recover for two minutes, and then (lather, rinse and) repeat.
so those blue card people had already experienced the challenge of a two-minute recovery.
I hadn't, and it seemed slightly impossible.
but what I've learned this week is that I can do it, too.
monday we had 6 visits to zone 5, five minutes each, with two-minute recoveries in between.
I survived.
today we had 4 visits to zone 4B, eight minutes each, with two-minute recoveries in between.
I survived.

this may not seem like much, but it's powerful;
small victories often have great impact.

and it brings to mind all of those times in life when we get by on much less food, sleep, love, rest, refueling, whatever, than we truly need. we adapt, we learn to keep going, becoming stronger with each new test of our selves.

but as I said to my fellow-biking friend patty the other day, I would never make myself do this kind of ridiculous effort on my own.


okay, well, maybe I would, if I could only learn to remember how great I feel when I conquer the unknown, the scary, the possibly-impossible.
small victories.
that's what it's all about.

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