TGIF friends!!! This has been one long week! It's been sunny and hot in Texas so I can't complain. I'm just happy that the weekend is here and the pool is in my near future. I hope you're all planning a restful and joyful weekend. I wanted to take some time to check in with you guys today. If you've had a chance to review my race calendar this year you might see a whole-lotta-nothin' and that's pretty much what I've been up to. Let's take a trip down memory lane shall we?
January - New Year! Me: "Oh man this is my year! I'm going to get things done! I'm pumped! Let's do a marathon"......
January-March - train, train, train!
April- Rehab,, rehab, rehab...cross-train, cross-train, cross-train! Me: "Say doc, how are these feet coming along? Can I run a race yet?" Dr: "Nope! but you're close, let's try for May." 2nd Triathlon - CANCELLED
May- Dr: "You are free to run my child!" Me: "hooray! I think I'll sign up for an open water swim triathlon!" wait what!? Apocalyptic rainfall in Texas?! Lakes turn into oceans?! 3rd triathlon - CANCELLED Me: "asdlfjalsdjfaljsde!!!! I'm NOT giving up! I'm determined to do this race! Indoor triathlon at the gym it is!"...that felt GREAT!
June - It's my birthday!!! Let's do a race!!! Rain stops...water stays. Me: "I don't think I'm going to sign up for this race until I know 100% that it wont be cancelled, I'd rather save my money to be safe" (week of race) No rain! (Two days before race) Triathlon officials: Texas flooding caused sewage leak in the lake, water isn't safe to swim in - 4th triathlon changed to duathlon. Me: "holy h#$%!!!" I give up! I'm saving my money!
So that pretty much brings us to current day. If I sound a little bitter in the above recap, it's because I am. That last race was about two weeks ago. There was another triathlon that same weekend that I considered doing, but honestly I've fallen into a slump. I feel a little defeated. I was so pumped when the year started. I've spent 5 solid months training and hanging in there only to have race after race cancelled for one reason or another. I decided this week to take a step back and gather my thoughts and find my motivation again. I took the time to have wine during the week, eat a ton of junk food, clean the house, skip the gym every day and sleep in. I told myself not to feel guilty and not to think once about training. Do you know what happened? It felt great....sort of. You see, training has become such a part of my life that it feels like something is missing when I'm not doing it. Like a person is missing from my life. How strange is that? I literally felt like I was ignoring someone, me. It dawned on me that I don't need to stop training, I just need to stop waiting for a race to justify what I'm doing.
I'm sure many of you have experienced set backs and may understand this feeling so I'm just going to let it all out. I'm among friends right?
The thing I keep telling myself is to keep going. Don't give up. My biggest fear is that I won't race Ironman 70.3 in Austin. Last year I had the same goals and life just got in the way. I was so disappointed. What if something happens this year? What if my training doesn't go well? What if I never get there? What if! What if! What if! Here I am waiting for a race to justify what I'm doing all over again! My progress should speak for itself right?
I've made leaps of progress. This year has been filled with so many firsts and PRs. My first marathon for example. Even though I didn't race, I stilled trained for it! I ran 24 miles on my last long run. I did that!
I joined my first triathlon club and got the courage to attend my first open water swim clinic and survived it. I did that!
I dedicated countless 5am training days to swimming lap after lap until I reached a 1600m swim. That's 1 full mile, I did that! I think I'm most proud of that one.
Not that long ago I couldn't even swim 50m without needing to stop and catch my breath.I started taking spin classes and feel in love with them, I purchased a wet suit and made an effort to get comfortable in open water.... I have made progress.
So why do I feel so blue? I think I'm getting caught up in the bling. Does that make sense? I'm chasing race day. Why do we train? Well, to race. So, if we don't race, does that mean we didn't work hard to train in order to get to race day? No! Just because I'm not racing doesn't mean I'm not an athlete. It doesn't mean all my progress was nothing. I just means I didn't race. That is all. I have forgotten to appreciate my training.
"The will to win means nothing without the will to prepare"
This year has felt like a failure but as I look back at it I know that it's not. I've been dedicated all year. I've been motivated, I've done the work. Yes, I'm disappointed that things didn't go my way but race day is just the icing on the cake. I'll be dammed if I didn't take the cake this last six months and for that I'm proud.
So, today I sit here writing after a week off from training and I know that I just need to stop whining and get back out there. The weather in Texas looks slightly sane. We're still not in the triple digits which means if I get up early enough I can get my butt out in beautiful sunshine and do some training this weekend without melting. After the last six months, I've refused to register for another race. Not because I don't want to do one. I just think it's wise to save my money. I fully intend on following my race calendar but it will not dictate how my year goes. I'm just going to keep training and keep on moving.