I can’t believe it’s been so long since I’ve sat down to write a blog post. There has been so much going on, and I guess time slipped away from me. Maybe I need to put a time on the calendar to write each week. So let’s just get started with a quick recap of events, and then onto newer things. So here we go…..
Since I last wrote, I have run in a couple half marathons; The Drake Road Races half and the Dam to Dam. My running wife Kara was surprised at the finish line of the Drake half by her boyfriend, who proposed to her at the finish! It was awesome to witness, and I am so happy for them both. They are wonderful people, and I wish them a lifetime of love and happiness!
The Dam to Dam was brutally humid; to the point were I got nauseous for a bit on the run. It was a hard race, and there were a lot of people having heat related issues. So the elusive sub 2 hour half still eludes me, and stands at 2:02:37. One day, I’ll break that time….
We also did the Copper Creek Sprint Triathlon this past Sunday. My coach decided that we were going to use it as a workout and train right through it with no rest days, so we did. On Saturday before the event, I rode 66 miles in 3:47:33, then ran for 20 minutes off the bike (about 2+ miles). So when the triathlon rolled around the next day, I decided that I shouldn’t expect much as far as timing goes. Boy, was I wrong! I PR’d the race from my previous time by 9 minutes! Other than horrible wind on the bike, it was a great time. I was the calmest in the water than I have ever been at a race, and ran sub 9 miles for the 5k. It was a great day!
So, onto change and what I’ve been noticing lately. In the past, I would have looked at my training schedule and freaked out if I saw a 4.5 hour ride and 20 run off the bike. Now, I look at it and think ‘Hmm…if the wind is with me I should make 80 miles.” When I saw that this Sunday’s workouts were a 3500 yard swim and a 13 mile run, instead of saying “How the heck am I supposed to do that all in a day?!?”, I think about it and say “I might as well bring my running stuff to the beach and make a brick out of it.”
These are the changes I’m seeing. There is a confidence growing in my abilities, and it’s coming from within. Instead of wondering if I can get it done, I’m wondering if I can make it harder. Instead of doubting myself, now I tell myself that I need to “finish this off and you’ll have the rest of the day to yourself.” But then, after a bit, I wonder why I can’t throw in another workout because I have some free time. It’s this positive mental state that makes these workouts seem a lot easier than they truly are. Because believe me they are hard! That 66 mile ride? First 33 miles were headwind. My legs were screaming until I got to the turn-around point. Then, with a tailwind, my legs wanted to push faster and enjoy the speed.
I hope that confidence continues, as it is an awesome feeling. Yesterday I went to the lake to swim. It was extremely choppy, with whitecaps all over. I watched two swimmers as they swam a short distance and quit. As I geared up, I thought “What if Maryland is like this? This will be good practice!” So into the water I went, getting pushed around by waves, some of them slapping over my head like some kind of sandlot bully. But I wasn’t about to be bullied out of the water, not until I finished my workout. I pushed on, swallowed a little water, had to stop and sight more than once, yet it was the calmest in the water I have ever felt. It was amazing! Now before, I would have said ‘no way” and went to a pool. Now I was happy for the challenge.
So before I end this, I want to thank Kara Palczewski for the bike pictures above and the swim pictures below. We are working on a photo journal of my training leading up to IM Maryland, and she is just amazing with the camera. We still have run photos to do, so I’ll have more to post. But if you are in need of a photographer, give Kara a call. You will be extremely happy with the results!
So now it’s time to prep the bike for a ride (did a 5 mile run this morning) and then maybe post a time on my calendar to write…
Live healthy, be happy!