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Waiting for motivation to strike

The biggest kick in the butt from the book How to Write a Lot was a summary figure depicting how many new ideas academics generated relative to their writing strategies. Those who only wrote when they waited for inspiration to strike had way fewer new ideas compared to those who maintained a consistent writing schedule. In other words, just get in your seat and get to work.

Similar simple lessons apply to being good at other things.

And so it was that even though it took me a couple of extra snooze cycles to wrest myself from bed, wrest I did, and off I trotted to the boathouse this morning. It was so tempting to give in to that voice that said, "I don't wanna," but I have been making enough of a stink about prioritizing rowing time and wanting to get in rowing that I had to go.

I have been thinking about this line from Emmil Kossev's obituary on row2k:

"He had the ability to be sensitive when an a friend or athlete needed someone to listen and conversely knew exactly "how and when to turn a whiner to the mirror to move on with it." He made many stronger mentally and physically because he believed in them even when they may not have, one of the greatest gifts a coach could employ."

My timing wound up being perfect for meeting up with Serious Double and Matrix Man (whose name I don't know yet but who's been rowing in a Matrix 27). Four repeats of 5 minutes 30 seconds at race pressure, stroke rating no higher than 24. Having company helped me shut off my brain and just go for it. I finally loosened up enough by the fourth piece to the point where I could feel I was finally getting much better reach at the catch. I had to start with a huge head start over the double and Matrix Man and then try to fend them off for as long as possible. The only way to get better is to keep getting out there. The 1x sculler who beat me by a solid 10 seconds at Gold Rush made some efforts to arrange a local scrimmage, but it looks like those efforts are falling through. She's also a source of training motivation. Ten seconds is a lot of time, but it's not an insurmountable amount of time.


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February 2019


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