British Orienteering is publishing a series of interviews this week with GB athletes and continues with Hector Haines GB elite athlete and member of Auld Reekie Orienteering Society (AROS).
Club (National): Auld Reekie Orienteering Society (AROS)
Club (International): IFK Lidingö, Stockholm
How have the current restrictions impacted on your training?
Hector: “No big change really - living in Sweden we are allowed to train as normal. The competitions have all been cancelled though and this would have been a bid part of my spring season with one or two races a week on average at the moment. Given the situation, I've struggled with motivation some days for training. I've thought about doing just easy and base training again, but found that interval sessions and 'virtual races' have been much more effective at keeping my fitness on a high level.”
What advice have you got for other athletes or members in a similar position?
Hector: “Variety is key. Don't run the same route every day! Explore and find new places, do new sessions/activities. Even small changes can make a big difference in the motivation to get the kit on. And don't worry about the amount/volume/intensity. Push hard when you want to, go long when you feel like it - but don't stress about it day-to day.”
What is your number one Lockdown training session?
Hector: “Indoor biking on Zwift (virtual racing). Additionally, Yoga is great for de-stressing after a day at the 'home' office - especially if I can do it out in the garden in the evening sun.”
Have you still been able to access support from your coach or orienteering athlete friends, and if so how?
Hector: “I've found that I talk with friends online a lot more now, which is nice. Here in IFK Lidingö, we have a full time coach still, so we have been able to have great support from the orienteering club to keep us motivated and give the team cohesion at this time.”
What box sets have you been able to catch up on during Lockdown?
Hector: “I've actually watched very little TV! I grew up without one, and have never really been into TV box-sets. But I have re-watched the Lord of the Rings movies in recent weeks, and also the original Matrix - which felt like it had a strange relevance at this time! A classic movie too.”
Have you been doing any DIY tasks – anything you want to tell us about?
Hector: “Not so much DIY, but some spring cleaning and general maintenance. I've de-greased and been giving my bike a lot of attention too.”
Anything else you wish to share on any other aspects of Lockdown training?
Hector: “I would say that keeping the big picture in mind is key. Right now is a temporary situation and things will improve and we will be able to race once again. So train to maintain, then train to race once the timings for races are more clear. I would also like to note that for me I've realised that I have lost some of my personal identity as an athlete during this time - which has been mentally quite uncomfortable. But just coming to this realisation has been important for me to be able to deal with the uncomfortable feelings you get during lockdown.”
Thank you Hector. Great to hear from you. We wish you all the best with your on-going training.
As a sport, we must work together to resume orienteering responsibly as and when the relevant government determines it is safe to do so.
The Board of Directors at British Orienteering have committed to following the respective advice of each government, and therefore there are likely to be periods when types of orienteering activities permitted, vary between different parts of the UK, depending on the government guidelines and regulations.
The latest statement from British Orienteering can be found here.
Resumption of Orienteering