Monday, May 18, 2009

Triathlon Training

Some of you have very kindly asked me how my training is going, which I really appreciate. It's going very well, considering I'm less than three weeks from the triathlon and I've been training for less than two weeks. It doesn't feel like two weeks - it feels like for always, like I picked back up right where I left off training two years ago, when I was pregnant with Sammy.

Triathlon has been a journey for me, one with a deeper meaning than just a workout. It started with the 2003 season, the year before I had Zack. At the time, I had no interest in outdoor exercise (there are mosquitoes and sun and heat out there! And if there aren't, there's cold wind or rain! Yuck, right?), had never broken a bone or run in any kind of race (at least not as an adult). I knew nothing of the sport and little of any aspect of it. Now, I've run eight or so triathlons, done several running races, taken on some nice group rides and open water swims, participated in two years of group training programs, mentored in two years of group training programs, and coached a friend through preparation and completion of her first tri. I've broken two bones in the process and have run tris a little pregnant and very pregnant. Overall, I've developed an enduring love for triathlon. Triathlon has been my boot camp for being a mom of boys, my motivation to get out there, and a witness to what the most unlikely person can do through a bit of determination and a load of divine sustaining and protection.

Many, many people have said, with few shocked blinks, "Wow, you do triathlons? Gosh, if you can do it, surely I can!" They check themselves, not meaning to give insult, and start to apologize but I always take it as a great compliment. The unlikely athlete is a better witness than the natural talent!

This year I feel so much less rusty than I rightly should, having taken last season off. I hadn't been working out except for a very occasional swim or yoga class (to attempt to justify paying for my gym membership!). Now, it feels like I've stepped back in right where I left off. I keep surprising myself that I'm slower than previous race paces, which is a bit silly. Of course I'm slower! The great thing is that I'm functioning on any kind of similar level at all. And I'm back to enjoying it so much, and being able to do activities that involve the family (which was actually my whole goal to start with).

So far, I've done three swims, three bikes and two runs. If you'd like to see what I'm doing to prepare, there's a play-by-play of my workouts at the bottom of the left column. I'd love to find some workout partners; the only downside of my current training is that I'm a bit lonely on it. I miss my workout groups. I could have joined one, if I'd started much sooner and if I weren't working with very specific scheduling limitations. Think you could be interested in triathlon? Let me know.

But, family fun is good too - yesterday we went out to Decker Lake and I rode the (probable - it isn't posted yet) race course. It was a really fun time. The boys played a little, then checked in on me on the section of course that has no shoulder (which didn't work out very well, but we'll know that for next time), then fished for an hour or so while I arrived back and joined them. We came home to grill burgers and veggies for dinner and eat out on the picnic table. What could be better than that?


  1. Perhaps you'd like to lower your standards a bit and just try to beat one of my times? After all, aren't I the athletic sister???? ;)

  2. Haha, that is very flattering. You ARE the athletic sister, I don't think that will ever change!