Thursday, May 2, 2013

Here Comes the Boom

This post is dedicated to my Twitter Pal Ian.

This post AND this song

The other day, I read Ian's post about running a marathon. The timing was perfect. I was thinking about all the years that I've spent trying to find myself, figuring what distances I want to do, what distances I can do (based on personal obligations) and then also what different type of racing do I want to do.

Sometimes (ok....many times) what I WANT to do, doesn't line up with what I CAN do. 

It causes disruption and stress. How many times have you signed up for a race and only to figure out during training that you really don't have the time to commit to making it a great effort?

Well, I've done that a lot. My time was spent lying to myself, insisting that my fitness level was WAY beyond my actual ability.

I always wanted to be faster or be able to longer.  But wanting it isn't always enough.

For the past year and half, I've peeked out from behind my ego and decided to start from square one.

Many of you, I've known for a long time. You've seen my struggles and success. Unfortunately, I think there have been more struggles than success.

That's why I decided to start over. 

Last year, when I focused on sprint distance tri's, I had a blast. But, I was unfulfilled. I'll do my best to explain.

For me, a race is a success when I feel like I've given everything and I feel "competitive". Not that I have to place, but that I *feel* like I've found my race.

At the sprint distance, as much as I tried, I can't get up to speed like those women can. At the end of every race, I'd say to Mr. Tea: "If the bike portion was just a little bit longer. I could have caught her. I know it."

That's because once we got to the run, I was dust. I don't have any problem with that. We all have our strengths, and mine is the bike and swim. 

It's because my bike and swim are strong that the longer I can be out there, the bigger I can make my lead....the better I'm going to feel about my race.

I don't mind being hunted down on the run, as long as I know that I'm giving everything I've got.

I guess what I'm saying is that I want a fighting chance, and I don't think the sprint gave me that opportunity. It was too short. I need more time for my speed to kick in. On the one sprint with a 20 mile bike, I was first on the bike. FIRST, and I was just getting warmed up. It killed me when I was passing everyone, only to catch two other women and know that I wouldn't be able to catch them on the run. I NEED MORE TIME.

SO---here we are. I've moved up to the Olympic distance this year. (For my non triathlon friends, that's a 1500m swim/40K or just under 25 miles bike/10K run)

As much as I was looking forward to making the jump, I'm nervous about it. Doubling the distance from a sprint to an oly, it seems daunting to me right now.

I've done many many olympic distance triathlons, just like I've done many many sprints. But I never RACED them until last year. 

For me, the most important part is the run pacing. I thought I was doing ok until my race last weekend, where I didn't run my best race. Yes, it was a PR for that race, but we all knew it was going to be. 

Maybe that sounds like I'm being too hard on myself? But I think all my athlete friends know exactly what I mean....placing and PR's don't mean much if it wasn't a good effort on your part. I guess it's a mixed bad. That's how I felt on Sunday. A few weeks early, I'd run a 10K in a blizzard at a faster pace. So, yea. I got a 5 mile PR, but it didn't reflect my current fitness level.

Now, I'm a couple of weeks out from my first Oly race of the year. Coach Mike MADE me set A, B, C goals....which I didn't want to do. And then, he went through and made them even more challenging! WHAT?!

I mean....that means I might have to deal with DISAPPOINTMENT, people! 

I'm going to focus. 

On the swim, it's form, form, form and speed.

On the bike, it's HERE COMES THE BOOM. 

On the run, pace, pace, pace.....RUN HARD, don't give up. 

We'll see where that takes me.