February 27, 2012

I spent a few hours on Saturday morning staring at a wall. There is a nail in the wall and I don’t know why. The only time I look at it is when I am riding. The only time I even wonder about it is when I am riding. I have no idea why it is there. I have never thought to take it out. I just stare at it.

And so goes the life of a triathlete. Truth of the matter is this: I have spent the better part of 15 years doing these types of trainer rides. These days however they stay a bit on the shorter and more frequent sides….. I was just never the same after that one trainer I did a few seasons ago. Five hours in the dark. No music no TV no fan. Yeah, I hae not been quite right since.

Since I have put in my time I ride my 200 miles spread out amongst the weekdays now with a 3-4 hour-long ride. When I get outside…. I hit the road for at least 6.

I am beginning to feel like a bear in a cave.

Texas 70.3 is not far off and while I never come blasting out of the gate in PR mode….. I feel a little bit itchy. I have been on lots of race courses and this might be the most boring ever. 27-28 miles out…… turn around and come back. Flat as flat can be yet wind that is not only confusing, it’s downright hellacious. It’s a one gear, stare at the nail in the wall in front of you sort of course. And it’s hot. It’s Texas for crying out loud. If I wanted cold I’d not go to Texas. There is something about Texas though that keeps drawing me back. This time I am leaving with a cowboy hat.

Hopefully by then I will be aboard my new Kestrel, if not a Cervelo P2 Carbon ain’t a bad bike to … sigh…. have… to ride. .

I do know for sure that I am eager to get out there and dust off some of these cobwebs. A lot has changed this season. A lot. Me as an athlete. Me as a coach. The competition is stronger and younger, but I am stronger and older. And wiser. They might be running 1:15 half marathons but I have done 6 Ironmans. I know what it’s like to barf on the rocks and I know what it feels like to completely nail it. It feels good but oh so bad. You learn something about yourself through 140.6 miles. I can talk about it all I want but until you experience it…. well you just have to wait then.

I came out of last week… and everything it brought with it…. with a calm and focused feeling. While it ripped me apart emotionally I nailed my week of training to add to the previous weeks and blocks. It would have been okay to miss, to relax, but something about achieving miles day after day helps me deal with the miles I was traveling in my mind. Not only did I nail the miles I nailed the restoration. That’s the real key right there.

Sunday I was fortunate to spend the day on the couch (after workouts were done) with my feet up and my laptop. It was like the guys knew I needed a decompression day, that’s what they gave me. No one body slammed me, poked at me, harassed me or made bodily noises around me (if you have boys you know what I mean). It was exactly what the doctor ordered.

Along with a pretty big dose of focus.




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