I think that at times it is possible to have too much free time! Case in point: Yesterday, I had a free day--I didn't have home, husband or child responsibilities until after dinner. The weather was amazing, so I planned on a good bike ride. I would start out with several friends who are training for IM Arizona. See how I felt, how far I would ride.
The group we started with were planning on 30-35 miles. My friends were planning on a six hour ride. I thought maybe 3 to 4 hours. The group started faster than I was comfortable with. I knew that if I wanted to ride 60+ miles, I needed to take it easy. I trained hard during the week, and rode on my trainer hard Friday for 1.5 hours, and also did a hard 2500 meter swim. (Remember, I am not in training now, but I believe I am as fit as I've been all year!)
Iron Snoopy and I rode together for the whole ride. It was a beautiful day. A little windy, but it's always windy out in the corn fields, no matter which direction you're going. Actually, we did have a tail wind for a while on the way back, which really helped. Oh, did I mention that I decided to go the whole ride? It was such a beautiful day, and I knew I'd have great company with Iron Snoopy, and I did. Not many more weekends left like this, and I ride alone 98% of the time. Ended up riding 87 miles.
It was a good ride, but I learned several things about myself: I swim, bike and run because I really enjoy it. One of the group, as she sped past me, pointed out that I was crazy to be out here when I didn't have to be. Well, I WANTED to be. The last 15 miles or so were a little hard, but nothing I couldn't handle. I felt great when I finished. (Although I made the decision on the ride that I would postpone my Sunday long run until Monday. The kids are off school, so my schedule is very flexible. Did my Monday swim on Sunday instead!)
I also realized that I will probably never be able to ride a 6 hour iron distance bike course. I pretty much realized that in Louisville, but it was pretty much confirmed yesterday. My ride time for 87 miles yesterday was 5:28. True, I wasn't racing, but I was pushing a little harder than if I'd been riding myself. Seven hours or better is probably much more realistic. My average time for a half is about 2:45. One thing I learned, however: an ironman is much more than twice a half.
I also realized that I don't have to be as "fast" as people 15 to 20 years younger than me. Hey, they really SHOULD BE FASTER! I may have a little more experience, but they have age way in their favor. Not only that, but I don't HAVE TO BE AS GOOD AS ANYONE! I just need to be myself. I am so blessed to be able to do what I can, I have no reason to feel that I NEED to be better. Would I like to be faster, stronger, leaner? Of course, who wouldn't. But we all work with what we have. I am not a professional or elite triathlete and never plan to be. I repeat: I DO THIS BECAUSE I LIKE IT AND IT IS FUN. When it stops being fun, goodbye!
Another lesson: I still feel REALLY BAD about my DNF at Louisville. Kona was yesterday. I have several friends competing at Florida and Arizona. I'm so glad for all who had great races and who will have great races. I'm not going to be ashamed of my performance because I had a bad day. I did the best I could at the time. There will be other races, and my goal now is to complete an iron distance race in 2010, Lord willing. (I'll be 55 and in a new age group!) Next year will be the year of the half.
Today was the Chicago marathon. It was a little warm, but not dangerously so. Don't know how everyone did yet. Congratulations to all who raced!
Decided to post my weekly numbers. Not bad for "not training":
Swim: 7x for 12,000 meters
Bike: 2x on trainer: 51 miles; 1x outside: 87 miles
Run: 2x for 11 miles
Strength/Core/Stretch: 4 sessions for 176 minutes
Total time: 19 hours, 17 minutes
Total calories: 9,085
Hope everyone had a great weekend--have a great week.
Until next time--God bless!