Triathlon nutrition is something that all triathletes have to constantly think about and refine as they gain more experience and learn what works best for them, even during the holidays. While enjoying my Tofurky on thanksgiving this week I slipped into my old eating habits and overate big time, I even ate a massive slice of pumpkin pie which is really unusual for me, I have not done that in 4 or 5 years.
While I am constantly thinking about triathlon nutrition all year round, we all know that the odd bad day here or there is not going to do any harm, in fact it may do some good on the psychological and physical fronts. The off-season however, especially around the holidays does present us with many temptations to totally let things go, the next race is a long way off after all and there is plenty of time to get back on the wagon and into shape.
If you live where it gets cold in winter, getting up early and swimming or riding in the rain is not very inviting, and I always find that staying in gets you into a different frame of mind, things start to slip, and who cares? Who is going to see the few extra pounds when you have 3 layers of clothing on?
I actually think that it does not matter too much as long as you do not get too lazy, this is in fact very often a much needed recovery period from a hard season, you need it. While it may be nice to be ripped and in race shape all year round, it is not optimal for building the strength of your immune system and being ready for some serious training. Just do not overdo the r and r and find that you have 20 pounds to lose come race season.
As with many things in life it seems that somewhere between the two extremes is the place to be. Have a great time in the off-season, eat some of the stuff you have stayed away from, but always have next season in the back of your mind. As long as you eat a healthy diet for the most part and do not go over the top and you maintain a decent fitness level you should be refreshed and ready to go in the new year.