All through these past months, I’ve been plugging away at the training plan, focusing on getting the workouts in and trying to learn from each workout. And at the end of almost every single week, I’ve carried over my nervousness over tackling something huge like a 70.3 Half Ironman. How is someone who does not know how to bike, who is a pathetic swimmer and who is an incredibly slow runner to get to cover 70.3 miles in 8.5hours?? Each week I’ve lamented over the fact that I’m not just *this* bit faster or just *this* bit lighter.
This weekend showed me how – I will be ready by showing up to train day after day after day, giving my best effort from the heart and leaving race day to be the finale. The weekend of a short Open Water Swim, then a long run and a long bike ride on Sunday is what I think is a breakthrough training week.
I attended an open water swim clinic that GA Multisport Productions puts on every year leading up to the Acworth Women’s Sprint Triathlon.
I HAVE to get out of swimming in the 84F bathtub water at the YMCA. The hyperventilation that I go through EVERY.SINGLE.TIME I hit water anything less than 84F is pathetic! It is the only thing that is giving me anxiety about the swim portion. And one that I can very easily fix.
I have to learn to breast stroke and tread water. I panicked when someone stopped right in front of me. I thought I was too close to go around without being kicked. And I flipped on my back and could never get back swimming on the first loop.
After the OWS clinic, and dropping the minions off at a class, I did my 2hr long run in the middle of the day at 12noon, when it was 90F outside
Even though it was super hot, I felt that I had a good steady run.
I better get used to that heat without a second thought as I’ll soon be running for almost 3 hours at that time, after a swim and bike!
I think I had a breakthrough bike ride with a lot of firsts, even if I say so myself.
I went aero. And I was comfortable enough to try it many times.
I did 55 miles (almost). My longest ride so far.
I learnt to drink while riding. I still need to practice of course, but it is much easier now that I know how to do it.
I learnt to eat while riding. I ripped open a bonk breaker bar and ate it while riding, deciding that I’d rather confront my fears and learn to eat rather than bonk on the ride!
I kept thinking – what was different about this ride that I was able to tackle so many of my fears at once?
Sometimes all it takes is someone you believe in to believe in you.
I believed in Marietta, who rode with me (She “coached” me on my first up the 2 mile monster hill on our running route 3 years ago). She believed I could do it on the bike, and she gave me the steps to do it. she gave me steps to tackle it. Not a SIUP or just do it. But acknowledging that it was nervous but easily overcome by these XYZ steps.
Looking back, In none of the three sports was I fast. (Fast being a relative term, fast to “me” refers to a time where I wouldn’t have to worry about cut-offs). My “fastest” bike pace would have people laughing in splits.
And that is ok. (Well, … almost ok. Because that time goal still hangs over my head.)
Because this weekend, 16 weeks out from Augusta 70.3, showed that the cumulative effort of the past 11 months is coming together. And it will continue to converge to the point of race day. (Yes, I said the past 11 months. Because I view training for Dopey as building an endurance base for tackling Augusta 70.3)
There are going to be many more long weekends and harder ones in the next 15 weeks.
But the memory of this one weekend is tucked away for me to remember when the going gets tough.
To remember that hard work does indeed show up in results when you least expect it.
And to remember that facing every single fear that you irrationally/rationally have is a step you take in redefining your impossible.
I’m Linking up with Tara from Running’n’Reading for the Weekend Update.
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