Wednesday, January 15, 2014

9 Months.. 3 TRImesters

 I have 9 months before my half iron man race, its like being impregnated with half iron man training! I will look at this training in trimesters,which is fitting because, the half iron man is a triathlon! So,for the first three months of training (Jan-March) I know what I should expect(kinda). There already has been a range of emotions from excitement to what the heck was I thinking?? There has already been a few times I have actually puked, from training. Ok,so I didn't exactly puke, but continuous dry heaves are much worse! And I know people can look at me and think is she or isn't she... training for a race? Because,really at this point my body hasn't made any significant changes,so people can only guess. My level of exhaustion has increased due to the fact that I am doing more training. My appetite has even increased, like I'm eating for two! This first trimester is going to be a time for getting used to my new schedule, my new clips(I already have visible injuries ),  changing my eating habits, taking better vitamins, and getting much needed sleep. Whew, did I miss anything? Oh yeah, my boobs... well, those haven't changed much,but here's hoping! haha
  During my second trimester (April-June),which was by far my favorite trimester in all three of my pregnancies,I know my energy will  return. As my body becomes accustomed to my training, it will  actually start to crave it. People will begin to see the changes in my body, as it grows more defined and strong. They will start to be bolder with asking me questions like, Are you training for... and then once I say yes, they will be only too eager to share with me all of their own stories of races past, and training schedules!I will probably start to look for my new tri outfit, and be able to eat guilt free, because of my training schedule.I will also see the exhaustion subside, because I will be getting well deserved rest.Less accidents on my bike, because, I will be used to the clips. I will start swimming in the open water, without the fear of drowning., and I will be doing shorter races for practice.
     My last trimester(July-Sept) I will actually break up into two 6 weeks.The first part of this trimester I will be starting to anticipate the race. I will be using this time to make sure my hotel is secure,buy new shoes if needed to break them in, checking my equipment, and doing the last of the long bricks. I will start to see that the end is near. However, by that last 6 weeks, I will be ready for this race to come so that I can complete it. I will be tired of hearing everyone else's stories and want to have one of my own. I will start getting scared, and having doubts about whether I made the right choice. I will start to wonder if I  will be any good at it.All of these mixed emotions, with anticipation for race day. I will  want to get back to a "normal" routine, eat the pizza, drink a beer!I will be over getting up early for a swim, while everyone is sleeping. Biking in my living room long after the little's have gone to bed. Even running the same route will become mundane,I will just want it to be over!
     And then the "BIG DAY" will arrive! All my hard work, all my sacrifices, all the long hours of training will be on autopilot. During the race there will be tears of joy, and tears of pain.There will be moments when I want to give up from pure exhaustion.There will be thoughts in my head .. Why? I will be reminding myself never to do something like this again! I will be cussing at the Captain, for even encouraging me ... and then after hours of racing, I will cross that  finish line! They will call my name and  I will  know.. IT was all worth it!.. I will  look down at that beautiful medal, representing all that I have accomplished, and in an instant, I will  forget all about the sweat, the tears and the pain.  I will only remember the feeling of finishing my race, and I will  turn to the Captain and say... SO... "When's the next One?!"

Sunday, January 5, 2014

It's not 1/2 bad!

      The new year has begun, and I am ready to start working on one of my goals. You see, I don't believe in New Year's resolutions, I believe in goals.
      This year will be my year of the 1/2.. I am not talking about a 1/2 marathon, I'm talking about the 1/2 iron man! Yes, its out of my comfort zone, a little irresponsible, and a tad bit risky,  yet, I have been contemplating this for two years. I have competed in road races, 5k, 10k , and 1/2 marathons. I have participated in triathlons and a mud race(Tough Mudder), but nothing will quite compare to this. This is a race that is a 1.2 mile open water swim, 56 mile bike, and 13.1 mile run (70.3 mile race!) This will be a race, that I will only have 9 months to train .
       However, for most people, dreams are just that "dreams", some fairy tale that they wish for, imagine, but never pursue. For me,turning my dream into a reality, makes it my goal. That is the difference.  Goals are supposed to be a little crazy, a little far out of your reach, even a little silly. It's something that excites you, scares you and exhilarates you all at the same time. I think a goal should be something that requires commitment, of your time and energy. A goal should be risky, but attainable. It should be something that engages your whole body, mind and spirit.It should teach you, reach you and challenge you. It requires faith. Goals, keep us alive, they give us something to strive for,something to believe in (mostly ourselves) and something to anticipate. Goals will take all of your courage, your strength, and  your passion. It is life. I think without  goals in our lives, we fail to see what we are fully capable of, and created for. Usually, when someone has a goal, its never just about the goal itself, it becomes about the experience, the journey,and  the lessons along the way. For me its about having hope, defying doubt, and pursuing life head on.
     I've already been asked,"Why, would you want to do that?", and I think with goals, you don't always have to have the answers,you don't always have to know the outcome, you don't always have to understand the reason, after all that is part of the appeal. I think you you have to hold onto the reason that you started, but, I think you also figure out all the reasons that you weren't even aware of along the way.
     I will have to stay focused, and motivated for 9 months,when the excitement of training wains, the monotony of running the same course, swimming the same lengths, and biking the same route become boring, (and they will) I will stay committed. Part of my process will be to stay in it, even when I want to quit, or give up, when I start doubting myself, my body, even my goal( and I will). I will continue, in spite of it all, because those are the moments  when you truly find out who you are, what you stand for,what your made of, and more importantly, that is where you will find yourself. 
Today, 9 months seems like a life time away, and yet it seems like tomorrow, all at the same time.  I probably won't win, okay most definitely, but that isn't my goal. (that would be a dream:) Right now in  my life, it is to compete in the race, complete the race and cross the finish line.My dream-turned reality,became my goal, and that's not half-bad!