I looked at my blog and noticed that is has been since November that I have last written. Wha? How did that happen? And now it’s the New Year, a time when people look back. So, what better time to do a catch up and look forward than after a long break and at the New Year? None from my point of view
So it is officially one year since I decided to start working on speed and endurance and towards a long-term racing goal. I didn’t expect to hit my goal in one year, it’s more of a 3-5 year item (with a lot of hard work and a little luck). But I am not quite sure what or how I would measure progress.
Yesterday I looked back and realized….that how I will get to my goal is starting to take shape.
Last year I focused on speed. I did longer events (half iron distances, marathon) but if you look, I really focused on the Olympic distance. Granted I didn’t do enough to make someone dizzy, but after focusing on long distances in the spring, I focused on the Olympic in the summer and fall. And…progress was made. I experienced that racing feeling – where you are strong and are doing the best you can at a hard effort, and it feels amazing. And I loved it. And I repeated it. And I know what I need to feel to really be racing an event. It’s all new. And pretty amazing.
In the fall I was going to do a half iron distance. I was anxious – waiting to see if my progress at the Olympic distance translated to the half iron distance. But, as many of you may know, an accident during the race foiled those plans. But, nothing is ever completely negative: I learned from it, I wasn’t injured badly (no broken bones or horror stories of appendages bending in directions they shouldn’t go…but did have colorful legs for a bit as shown in the picture, and had to spend some time letting my muscles heal), I met two fabulous women, and got a lot of support from friends and family.
And, I ended up getting a new bike due to damages to my previous bike. Matt at Podium set me up on a Felt DA4. It’s smaller than my previous bike, so I am more compact. My position is a little different too. So, my muscles are adapting. Not fast enough for my taste (of course), but it is happening. But, I am comfortable, and love the way I feel on it. And I know the only way to get back to where I was is to put on miles on my new wheels. So….that is what I am working on. It won’t take as long as before, but it will take a little time.
FYI – a picture of me and my new bike with one of my favorite training partners! Riding with Michael during 2012 got me to where I was, and although we can’t ride together as much in 2013, he still gives me insight and advice to keep me moving forward.
In 2013 I have a few races planned. And as I looked I realized that my focus will be the half iron distance. And I thought…that is actually rather perfect. Get the racing feeling for an Olympic, and then work to carry it up to a half. I couldn’t have planned it (in theory) better. Granted there are a few asides, and other items I am doing, but….I am pretty sure I have my focus for the year: accomplish at the half iron distance in 2013 what I did for the Olympic distance in 2012. Also, I will be doing an Iron distance tri with the Georgia TNT IronTeam. That is a distance that is hard to “practice” but practice it I will…and it will have its own set of goals and measurements. I will be pouring the best of what I have at the time in to each race.
And the fear of failing scares me. And the thought of measuring progress and advancing thrills me.
I am not taking the fast road. No short cuts here. I wish, but I know that as I watch other athletes progress faster than me, I am not them. I am working. And I am focused. I am pushing those imaginary limits. And I will ahieve my goal.
I know I have not really reached down deep to bring out my best. I have reached, but have yet to hit the depths. I have to work on improving my physical and mental strength. 2013 will be a challenge. There will be unknown challenges, surprises, and some challenges that I can anticipate.
And as I push, I get to watch fellow athletes push themselves to their goals. And for each I will celebrate. And for each I will see inspiration and learn from as I continue my adventure.
Best wishes to all for 2013! What are your goals for the year?