Saturday, March 5, 2011
Monday, October 11, 2010
Which leads me to the future of this blog. Honestly, I had such a blast creating it, but the content of it is not what I want to share anymore. I've put myself "out there" quite a bit and while I only regret a few things I have posted, I do feel like I need to be a little more private about more of my personal life in the future. I know what most of you are thinking, but no, nothing happened to me to make me feel this way, but I know other people that have been burned by putting themselves out there online and I don't want that to happen to me.
But more than all of that, life is really just very different now and I no longer want to write about recipes, my dogs, and random weekends (although all those things are still awesome). All I honestly want to write about is running, races, tri stuff, etc. and I kind of pledged that I wouldn't turn this blog into completely running, so I'm thinking starting a new blog is in order. It will still share a lot of personal stuff but all related to my journey of trying to become an athlete. I feel like while I still have a ways to go with my personal goals, I have picked up quite a bit of knowledge that I should be sharing.
I'll keep you all updated.
Monday, July 19, 2010
As I said, while I feel like it is impossible to put into words exactly what I was feeling, I really want to try my best to express it. The sense of accomplishment after the tri was overwhelming. I was (and still am) to a point in awe of what I had just done. Now, I know I didn't break any major records or anything, but the tri was a really big deal for me.
I had a fear of biking which I put aside to complete the tri. I had never had swim lessons or swam a lap before May and I managed to finish the swim portion with what I consider to be a very respectable time on a somewhat intimidating open water course. I dedicated myself to working out 5 days a week doing 6-7 workouts for 6 weeks.
But even more than all that, I had a lot to overcome mentally. I made a mention of this in the last post, but after the marathon going far from how I had planned it, I felt like part of my heart was, just, well....dead, for a lack of a better term. Yes, I know finishing the marathon was a big deal, but I didn't finish it the way I wanted to finish it and it has weighed on me ever since.
While I know that I know enjoy triathlons way more than just running, I can't help but feel like I have unfinished business in the marathon department and I need to resolve it so that I can move on. So I have a winter marathon picked (and hotel booked!) and have started easing into training. I will spend the fall running with swimming and biking for fun, and plan on going strong into triathlons next year.
I think my biggest challenge will be more mental than physical and I've already been very aware of that. I know it's not going to be easy this time around, but this is just something I NEED to do for me.
As always, the support from everyone on this blog and in my life has been amazing. I appreciate everyone sticking around even as my posts become less frequent and consumed by running and triathlons.
Sunday, July 18, 2010
(I was so focused on quickly getting in I don't even remember that person sitting on the dock)
Not even a mile in I realized I had forgotten my iPhone. There were no headphone rules, but I had planned on getting around them by just playing the music through the little speaker on the phone, and I also wanted to have it just in case something happened with the bike and I needed rescue. But at that point, there was nothing I could do but just keep going.
I realized that the pain was from the bike seat. I had probably been sitting slightly off center and my thigh had been pushing down on it resulting in the pain. It wasn't unbearable but definitely uncomfortable. In the midst of thinking about the pain I had forgotten to start my garmin, so I was already a good quarter of a mile in.
At mile 2 I came around the corner and got some much needed water and was happy to see my friends and Mom cheering me on. I tossed them my now empty water bottle and continued on.
I continued to alternate running and walking in no set pattern. I was starting to get hot and was really missing having my water bottle. (I always run with water and I drink it constantly) I got to the mile 3 aid station and couldn't wait to get my hands on some cold water...of course, they were out and only had this awful sports drink. I normally love sports drink, but whatever was in that cup was GROSS.
After a few more big gulps of Gatorade I walked over to the Results booth. The timing company there (Ultramax) gave you instant results. As I waited in line I was preparing myself to be a tad disappointed in my finish time. I had originally said that I would be happy with anything under 3.5 hours, but I really wanted to be right at 3. With all the walking I had to do during the run, I figured there was no way I was going to hit 3 hours. When the official handed me my print out I screamed.
Once I calmed down we snapped a few more pictures.....
Of course, we had to get a group shot of my amazing support team!
Sunday, June 27, 2010
Only a few days after the mini tri, I decided that I NEEDED to do another tri and one that would help me get over my fear of the bike and push me to get better at swimming. I spent some time looking at tris in Missouri, and decided that the one I really wanted to do was the New Town Triathlon. The distance of New Town was a little further than I was looking for (over double the mini, and more than a traditional sprint) but what really appealed to me was the flatness of the bike course and that it was pretty close to home.
The catch? It was the end of May and New Town was July 11. That meant that I had about 6 weeks to train. I looked over lots of free training plans, but ultimately ended up making one of my own because I hated all of the ones that I had found. So since June 1st I have secretly been training for New Town doing a 2x a week plan for each area, making a grand total of 6 workouts a week.
I didn't sign up until last night because I wanted to see if I could handle the training. Four weeks of training, one open water swim of the course, and a ride of almost the exact bike route, I feel pretty good about it. I still have reservations of course, but not enough to make me not want to attempt it.
So in a mere two weeks I will be doing a .62 mile swim, 20 mile bike, and a 4 mile run. I'm scared and excited, but mostly excited. I will hopefully have time and energy to write another blog between now and then, but regardless of what good, bad, or amazing things happen during the triathlon, I will be sure to write about it afterwards.
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Before we arrived, we both knew that most of the cyclists would be on some kind of team, but when we showed up 98% of the participants were on teams and looked super serious. The combination of that and the race disorganization completely added to my nerves. When Nathan finally started (5o minutes later!) it was HOT. Nathan had never trained in this kind of heat, and I was practically dripping with sweat just standing waiting for him to start.
About 8 miles into the 35, he called me. He was super discouraged because he was riding by himself at that point. The group he started with had taken off and the group that started after him had passed him as well. I told him that it was really up to him what he wanted to do, but he should just think of it as a nice bike ride by himself and try and enjoy it.
At this point, I was pretty sure he would be turning around shortly and going back. I mean, getting wayyyy behind that early in the race is pretty discouraging. Personally, I don't think I would have kept going knowing I was pretty out of my league.
I didn't hear from him for another hour, and I was going a little nuts. About two hours after he started I tried calling him and got no answer. A lot of the cyclists were starting to return, and I just hoped that he hadn't gotten too hot or dehydrated.
30 minutes later Nathan called me and the convo went something like this:
Me: (no hello) You ok!?!?
Nathan: I'm close to finishing.
Me: Finishing!?!? Like you did it?
Nathan: Yeah, I did it!
Me: HONEY!!!! You want so fast! It hasn't even been 2 and a half hours!
Nathan: I know. Bye!
Just a few minutes later, Nathan flew by!
(Thanks, sis, for the great pic!)
At this point, I had tears in my eyes. He had done it. He trained for this race while working 6 days a week, braved the heat, and didn't let being last get him down. He did amazing, and I could not be more happy and proud.
Unfortunately, Nathan doesn't think he is going to do another bike race. A big part of that is because he said he didn't feel welcomed at all by the other race participants. I think he and I were both expecting the atmosphere of the race to be one similar to those that we are used to with running.
In general, I've always dealt with runners that have been very welcoming and encouraging. The runners I've been around have always cheered me on, offered support, etc. And Nathan accompanies me to many of my races so he saw this too. The participants at this race were QUITE different. Nathan said that when he put his number on wrong, a group of bikers proceeded to make fun of him for it. And then they continued on by talking about his bike and how it wouldn't make it on the course. All in all, they were pretty much pricks.
And while I could write PARAGRAPHS on how terribly disorganized and poorly run this race was, I won't because obviously I'm not an expert on bike races, but seriously, you don't have water at the start or finish? And three bathrooms for hundreds? I don't think so.
Luckily, Nathan plans on doing some fun rides and helping me getting over my bike fear. I'm just so proud of him so I had to share!
Saturday, May 22, 2010
I got off the bike and shortly after a race official came up and asked me if I was having problems. I told him yes and he offered to look at the bike. He said it looked like the front brake wasn't releasing from the wheel completely. The course was hilly so I felt super scared to continue on not knowing if my front brakes were ok. Because of that, I decided to pull myself out of the race.
Obviously, this race did NOT help my fear of the bike. It's clear to me that I don't know enough about my bike or how to troubleshoot problems. But even with that, I'm not going to write off doing a triathlon in the future. I feel like the bike won today, and I don't like that. Plus, I REALLY enjoy swimming and I really want to keep doing it.
Getting a DNF for any reason sucks, but I keep telling myself that in my active life, races aren't always going to be awesome, but the benefits of doing these races are worth it regardless of the results.