Hola, I’m Ryan Davin AKA The Chilli Shamrock. I’m half Irish, half Mexican, I grew up in Ireland but live in London now for almost 10 years. On the 1st July, I ran, rowed and cycled from The Spire, Dublin to The Shard, London. The event was a 400 mile triathlon, sponsored by So.Beer.
The run led me through Dublin’s fair city out onto the Wicklow Mountains for 60 Miles south to the port town of Arklow, Co. Wicklow via the stunning Wicklow Way. From Arklow, I embarked on an ocean row of 96 miles across the Irish Sea to Aberystwyth, Wales via the Celtic challenge route navigating harsh seas with raging tidal currents.
The remaining 245 miles were painstakingly cycled from Aberystwyth, Wales to London. The fun doesn’t stop there! I am participating in a series of Tough Mudder events on behalf of So.Beer. I’m giving you my top tips on how to get started and hopefully it gives you the courage to join me at one of the upcoming Tough Mudder events.
Just Start – there’s no perfect time
Over the years, people always say the famous line “I would love to do something like that but I don’t have the time”. It still makes me laugh to this day and same phrase always comes to mind when I hear it.
If it is important to you, you will find a way. If not, you’ll find an excuse.
The above statement has always stuck with me and it’s a mantra I live by. Getting started is the hardest part. A useful trick I use is the 1 mile run. I always tell myself just run 1 mile and see how you feel, if you aren’t feeling it, we can turn back and go home. To this day, I never have gone home after a mile, once I’m out there I love it but getting started is the hardest part.
Motivation doesn’t last – set goals
How many times have you watched something and now you feel super motivated, this time I’m going after it, no excuses! Only for a couple days / weeks later and you start slipping, the new found motivation has vanished. By setting mini goals, it allows you to stay interested and maintain focus because you are achieving daily/ weekly goal which I write out weekly and tick them off after each session.
Motivation is an emotion. We simply cannot depend on our emotions to do things or to become successful in life. We need systems and habits. When you have a system, you prevent yourself from falling into the “no motivation” trap. And when you develop habits of taking action, you don’t really need that much motivation to work.
Accountability and Discipline
These go hand in hand, excuses are the lies we tell ourselves to feel better. I’ve learnt some much about myself by holding myself accountable and after a while a weird sense of joy is found in doing the sessions you didn’t want to do. Do the things you don’t want to do and great things will happen. Another trick which works for me is to share my goals on social media, this helps keep me accountable for the workout.
Be Grateful You Can
I never view my training as a chore, I’m grateful that I get to. That small shift in mind set really helped enjoy my training so much more. The training is the biggest part of any event, the day of event is parade lap. You’ve put the hard work in and it’s now time to bask in the glory of the day.
Train with a friend
The majority of my training is done solo due to long hours and double daily sessions but when I can train with a mate, it makes it so much more enjoyable. I suggest getting a mate to sign up for an event together and work together to the goal.
A little healthy competition never hurt anyone, right? Training with a friend can often bring out the competitive side (or, at least the side who feels like they need to keep up). The increased motivation will help to keep you moving. After all, you can’t hold up your workout buddy.
Say Goodbye to the Comfort Zone – Do Things That Scare You.
In many ways, we’re more comfortable than ever before in human history. I believe life’s greatest moments and deepest connections are outside your comfort zone. By pushing past that zone and realising you are capable of more is an empowering feeling. A favourite saying in any exercise class I’ve ever taken is that you should get uncomfortable, because being uncomfortable is where you begin to see changes. And it’s true, not just in the biological sense that your body responds to harder work by adapting and becoming stronger, but because your mind becomes stronger. You begin to withstand the scary things, the things you never thought you were capable of. And in this, you become more resilient
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