Sunday 2nd July 2017
I hate it when the weekend is over, especially when it’s a weekend where I’ve done little writing.
However, with the knowledge that I’ve been feeling a bit run down together with the fact that I was seeing Danny yesterday, it made sense to take a little break and refresh ready for the next stage of the edits. I still feel like I’ve accomplished nothing though.
I woke this morning feeling knackered, something I’ve felt all day. I expected it given how late I got back home, but it meant that my fencing was pretty poor. I was doing all the right moves but I wasn’t sharp like I’ve been in previous weeks.
There was only 3 of us at sparring today. We had people fighting in Ireland (more medals) and it seems that people are not in the mood for training hard. This should play to my strengths but I need to drop some weight before I get to Astolat, if only so I can fit into my fencing britches. Bloody America and their weight-gaining food.
This points to a wider issue and one I need to overcome.
I’m pretty good at taking an impossible problem and working out how to do it. I genuinely get a buzz doing what people think is impossible. So whether walking 26 miles with a 6” hole in my shin or dropping weight to become a decent fencer, a large part of me is driven by wanting to prove people wrong. It’s not that their lack of belief makes me angry but rather that I take their negativity and use it to fuel my determination to do something positive.
I’m tenacious enough to not know when to give up. I like that quality about me. Not everyone has it and it’s the thing that often drives my success. But there’s a downside.
If I know I can do something, if I’ve already done it, the task becomes infinitesimally more difficult. Because, once I have done something, that motivation to prove to people it can be done, disappears and I struggle.
So I know that I could drop 1.5 stone really easily. I just need to start measuring all my food and monitoring it all very carefully But do I? No, because I know I can and therefore there’s no challenge in it.
I’ve tried to trick myself by challenging myself to do it twice (“I bet you couldn’t do it a second time”) but my subconscious is wise to that game and refuses to play.
Don’t get me wrong, there’s a lot to be said for just turning up. In swordifghting that’ll see me make progress but I should be perfect with my diet, I should be training thrusts every day. I should be doing extra cardio… all of which I lack the motivation.
Perhaps I’m just being hard on myself, but I worry that this same lack of motivation will be the thing that stops me trying to push boundaries with my books in the future. I hope that each book presents its own challenge and as a result I keep my edge, but that doesn’t stop me worrying.
So today, I fought rapier & dagger, backsword, single sidesword and sword & buckler. I enjoyed backsword and might go in for the competition at fightcamp just for shits and giggles. Perhaps that’s what I need as a counter to this internalised stress over training for tournament.
I just can’t help but feel that whilst everyone else is off their game, now’s the time to stride forwards.
I suppose I should be pleased that despite feeling like I want to go to bed all day, I fought OK. It’s possible that the frustration I suspected I’d feel around this time is manifesting itself. I know if I do badly in tournament I’m going to be so upset with myself.
Chris and I went to the pub for a drink, and then I popped into see my mum before driving home.
But rather than start work on the next stage of the novel, I watched some TV (American Gods and Doctor Who) and played a bit of Warcraft, which I enjoyed but has left me feeling twitchy because I’ve not accomplished anything on the novel all weekend.
I suppose it’s good that I miss the novel, and I’m sure that I’ll look back to this weekend and see the break as a good thing. Tomorrow is a new day, and with it I start the next stage of this edit.
I just need to maintain that optimum level of motivation and unlike my swordfighting, not let it slack off even the slightest amount.
If you want to follow more of my journey, then be sure to check me on my social channels. Likewise, if you’d like me to expand on any point mentioned above, please say so in the comments.
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