And now we are in the fall season. Every year since this started I’ve had a “big deal” race in the second half of my season that I was trying to “peak” for. I did the Beach2Battleship Half Iron-distance race in 2011, Rev3 Anderson in 2012, and IM Arizona last year. But this year my only half-iron race was in June. I’d planned to do another one this fall but “life got in the way”. The only problem with being your own boss is that any minute you’re not working directly impacts your bottom line. I need to be spending time selling consulting and training services, not preparing for a long triathlon, so here I am…
But what is my next challenge? After failing to qualify for Worlds in June, I needed something to look to. Of course there is 2015 – and I am still planning to have a great season next year, but that’s somewhere outside of my “motivation horizon” – so what can I do THIS year? What will get me out of bed in the mornings and keep me focused? I wish I could say “Well, since I know I’m a role model that’s always motivation enough”, but that wouldn’t be true. I need a race or athletic challenge in addition to all of that.
So… I’m doing the Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon in November and the Kiawah Marathon in December. That means that between now and then I’m training like a single-sport athlete. More running than I used to do and less bike, swim, and weights.
But somebody forgot to tell my ego about that.
I’m doing one swim workout a week and suddenly workouts I was doing in May are impossible. I’m missing intervals and getting winded in the pool faster than ever. I sent my coach a note complaining about the “discouraging workouts”. He sent a great reply reminding me that I’m not training like a swimmer now. I’m getting in the pool occasionally, sure, but I’m going to lose some swim fitness. It’s all part of the plan. But my run efficiency is improving, isn’t it?
And that is a key for me. Every time I have a tri, I’m always thinking about how I can have my best swim ever, my best bike ever, and my best run ever. That’s the multi-sport mindset that keeps me going. But I’m not doing tris right now, am I? So I better readjust my expectations to go along with my readjusted training plan.
And this gets to my latest big learning – just like I was OK being bottom 20% of athletes at USAT Olympic-Distance Nationals in August (because I am not a short-course athlete!), I have to be OK not setting swim PRs in the pool while I’m training like a runner. You set your goals and commit to them – and then you can’t worry about failing to meet other non-goals. If it’s a non-goal, who cares anyway?
So in 2015 I’ll be back to tearing up swim and bike courses, along with my newly-revamped run! But for the rest of this year, I’m a runner and excited to see what I can do!