Making the call. 

In 12 hours I will be taking off for my second half-iron triathlon. I’m more calm than I ever thought possible. I packed quickly, and have little stress about what tomorrow brings.

Except for one small thing. I haven’t run in two weeks. I had a fast 18k in the valley that brought on some pain that lasted for a large part of the race. The pain had started a few weeks before and was building at each run. I quickly got myself to physio, but I’ll confess, biking has taken the forefront in my training. And this week was filled with family, friends and many, many meetings.

There’s a voice in the back of my head that keeps saying “Tomorrow isn’t the A race”. “You don’t have anything to prove”. “You know what the right decision is.”

It’s incredibly hard not to get caught up with always pushing the hardest, making every race count and attempting to do better each time. I guess that’s what racing is all about.

For some people.

I know if I run tomorrow, I will have pain (I even had pain walking my dogs today).  I know if I run tomorrow, I could potentially injur myself further. I know if I run tomorrow, I won’t have my best time.

I know if I run tomorrow, it won’t be the right decision.

With a lot of thought put into it, I won’t be running tomorrow.

That is the beauty of the race I’ve signed up for. I can still swim and bike – both of which aren’t causing me pain – without sacrificing the race day.

I am worried about disappointing people and having to explain why I didn’t run. Lately, I’ve been doing a lot of work on figuring out what’s right for me and less about what I think people expect from me.

I am focusing on being authentic.

It’s time to get focused for what I want to achieve between now and ironman, while avoiding (further) injury.

I have a slew of physio exercises I need to focus on and a half marathon in mid-July that’s become a bit of a tradition for Tim and I. I will focus on making myself better for these future races and not push through tomorrow’s triathlon for the sake of finishing it.

I have to remember that 1800M swim and 90k bike ride are nothing to baulk at!

So in slightly less than 12 hours, I will be starting my Aqua bike race. Without shame.

 
Our swim start!

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Time is a tickin’!

I’ve been on a bit of a hiatus with writing in my blog. I promised myself that I would check in at lease monthly. Time seems to be slipping away and when I check on my countdown app it shows me that in 18 days I will be competing in a half-iron distance tri…and 67 days, the full.  A FULL IRONMAN. Am I where I planned to be at this point? Oh, hell no. I’ve completed one outdoor bike ride and my swimming seems to be digressing. My run is consistent, and sadly, that’s the positive news!

My parents meeting me on my first outdoor bike ride.

My parents meeting me on my first outdoor bike ride.

April was filled with heartache and my life was flipped upside down. I couldn’t run, or bike, or do anything at all. Breathing was a chore. The weather didn’t improve and I felt 2015 was turning into a huge crapshoot. I questioned all of my recent decisions, especially the plan to complete an Ironman. When I worked out, as infrequent as it was, it was over my lunch hour to clear my head. I skipped paid for workouts and avoided my friends. I spent a lot of time at home. I don’t want to get into the details more than to say things have certainly improved and I’m forging ahead with my training (and my life plan). I’ve come out of the fog and despair from April and now, into June I’m feeling drown right happy and blessed.

The beginning of May brought about the Fredericton Marathon with two of my closest girls, Karen and Sara. Karen aiming to qualify for Boston and Sara excited to have a weekend with the girls. Me? I was hoping to do a 4:25 marathon….except my longest run was a 16K in early March. (Gesssh!) My second-tier goal was to finish without injury in under 5 hours. The weekend turned out great. I really reconnected with my girls and it was nice to get out of the city. The threat of Spring was there and their was light at the end of this miserable winter tunnel. I did hit a PB – 4:35 – but the last 11K were killer. I felt pain that I’ve never felt before and it was only the help of a friend that kept me from crying/crawling/breaking. Ron and I crossed the finish line dancing and smiling. A friend of mine captured this on their phone. Every time I look at the photo, I smile. These are the memories I want to look back on when I’m 85.

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May brought on sickness – yes MORE! – and Tim was injured so we both stayed on the sidelines for the Bluenose race. Despite my hacking cough, I made posters, cut up oranges and had one of the best Sundays cheering the marathoners up Maple Street. It was so inspirational, I cried as people made their way smiling (or perhaps, grimacing) up my steep hill.

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Luckily, Tim and I pulled it together for the following week which brought the Cabot Trail. I could write an entire blog post on the CTRR. This is the reason I run and I think it’s impossible to have a bad time during this event. Tim and I completed our 4th year in the relay, both completing our respective mountains. Me, North. Him, MacKenzie.

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We celebrated with new and old friends in a cottage in Ingonish until the wheeee hours of the morning. We talked about our legs. And then we talked about our legs :). My goal is to someday complete all 17 legs!

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And now, delightfully, we enter June. My training is back on, but I’ve skipped a few races and a few training weekends. As I mentioned earlier I was hoping to be in a better position, but all I can do is make the most of the next 2 months.

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I need to get more sleep and I need to focus on healthier fuel. I have the desire and the support and I’m going full steam ahead. Tonight a few friends are getting together to bike hills. We all admitted that it may end in tears for our slackish training ways, but at least we’ll be in it together. I will not stay awake until midnight finishing an awesome book. I will not biggy size those fries…now is the time. I can do it. And I will cross that finish line knowing I gave it my all.      

…..And just in case you were wondering, North Mountain looks like this: 

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