In seven days, just a short week, I will be racing at Rev3Tri Cedar Point!! YAY!!
I am so darn excited. I feel like every part of my mind has been consumed with the training, planning, expecting, wondering, and more, of this day. There has definitely been a lot of other stuff going on in my life that has caused a lot of stress over the past 2 months, and sometimes I think that this race, this goal, has kept me focused and helped me to not totally freak out about everything else going on in my life. Also, I have been praying a lot! :)
Anywho, I have been enjoying my taper and have been busy making lots of lists - some written down, some in my head. It's amazing how much organization it takes to make a race like this happen. There is just a lot of stuff to remember!!
I have also been thinking a lot about the training itself. Now that the hard stuff is over I can actually let myself analyze a bit of it. First of all, let me say that I have really loved training for a long race. This comes as no surprise to me because I have always looked forward to going long more than I have looked forward to going hard. I have never been one to get excited about tempo workouts or mile repeats. When I see the word HARD in my Training Peaks, my stomach does a little flip-flop. What I found was that, for the most part, a super long bike ride is just an amazing way to spend a day. A long run can clear the head better than any therapist. I can sink into a long swim and just listen to the water swishing past me and it's done before I realize it. I did have some very tough, mentally challenging sessions in the past few weeks, but I tried to relish them as great mental training that will come to play at some point during the race.
One of the hardest things about the training has been logistics. For real. I kind of wished I had tracked how much time I spent this season packing bags, checking Training Peaks, filling water bottles, driving to the pool, showering multiple times a day, pumping tires, washing bike shorts and sports bras, organizing nutrition...the list could go on forever. For example, to get an hour swim in, I have to pack my bag (5 minutes), load the kids into the car (5 minutes - at least!!), drive to the gym (20 minutes), check Noah into childcare (5 minutes), get to the locker room and changed for swim (5 minutes), swim (1 hr), shower and change (10 min.), get the boys back to the car (5 minutes), and drive home (20 minutes). So for an hour's worth of training I clocked 2 hours and 15 minutes of actual time spent. I tried as much as I could to do workouts from home so I limited the driving time, but when you add kids and summer into the mix, sometimes you have to go to the gym to get your run done! (Actually, I think training for a full with kids is a whole other post that I will get to at some point.)
Also, just the sheer energy of thought that goes into figuring all of this out is unbelievable. I am fortunate enough to have a wonderful coach. Sometime people ask me why I have a coach if I am a coach myself. Well, this is why. It is one less thing to think about. One less thing to worry about. I can put all of the weight and responsibility of the training into my coach's hands and let her do all of that for me. A good coach, especially for a busy mommy, is worth every single penny!!
Another thing that I have thought about a lot is how much easier all the training has been because I have the amazing support of my wonderful husband. As the weekend would approach, I would let him know what my training looked like and he would say go for it! There was no guilt, no "you-owe-me" kind of feelings, no "looks" (you know the kind I am talking about), just support. If he wanted to get a workout in, he would just let me know what time he wanted to leave by and then I would make sure I got going early enough to make that happen. I am so thankful for this low-stress approach to my training. I stress to athletes over and over that if you are thinking about doing a full triathlon, the support of your spouse/partner is ESSENTIAL. They are the ones taking care of the kids, cleaning up the messes, fixing lunches, and making sure you are able to be successful while you are out on your bike! Sonja told me at the beginning of all of this that I needed to make priorities during the hardest training and those should be family, work, and training. All else is secondary and you can't feel guilty about that. I have really tried to embrace that and let go of all the unnecessary guilt. Kel really helped me with this!
So this is where my head is right now. So grateful for what I have been able to do and so grateful for what will happen in one week. ONE WEEK!!!