Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Motivation from unexpected sources

Last week I embarked on my newly crafted training plan only for my enthusiasm to peter out by Thursday. On Saturday I was home alone with my daughter who, as many teenagers do, slept in so I went for a 45' walk. Along this walk many of the TNT faithful were out putting in their miles for whichever event they were training for but my goal is to get to a solid 5k walking at a time. My ankles still hurt me but both Dr. Google and a real doctor said that is my new reality, at least for the next 6-9 months until my tendonosis heals.

I woke up Sunday completely unmotivated. My ankles were yipping. My back was hurting. The aches and pains of being me seemed to be winning the argument. I begged off my scheduled bike ride and sat around the house, flipping channels on the television, hunting for an interesting baseball game to watch while puttering around the house with the game as background noise. I instead found the rebroadcast of IMKona on NBC.

During the broadcast, Al Trautwig mentioned something like that there was no place quite like the finish line of an ironman and that unless you experienced it, even as a spectator, let alone as an athlete, you could never truly understand the emotions flying around. He said that the people that you meet while racing Ironman are unique and those short lived friendships can change your perspective on a bunch of things. I looked at myself lying on the couch and felt shame because these thoughts resonated with me. I only later realized that all may or may not have said those exact works but even so I now felt motivated.

There was a 5pm spin class still available so I signed up. Rather than a 45 minute class this was a 60 minute "survivor" class. Even so, I went and was glad I did. Monday I was flying out to Texas and hopped in the pool to have a quick swim before the travel began.

The motivation from that broadcast is still working for me. It is stupid hot here outside of Dallas so we'll see if I am still motivated tonight with the temperature hovering around 100 degrees. Too bad I don't have this recorded to watch the show again for another jolt of Trautwig motivation. May need to get it from some other unexpected source.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Who I am not who I was.

Last week was Ironman Lake Placid. While I knew some folks who were racing, there weren't part of my core group of training partners. Since this race conflicts with my family vacation, I decided to not go to Placid nor volunteer and instead spend time with the family.

It was a week of much needed downtime. In fact, I did close to nothing physically taxing. I did take a few extra naps, drank a few extra cheap beers (Rolling Rock for those scoring at home), ate a little too much food and read a good book. For activities, MrsRockstar and I went to Cooperstown and the Baseball Hall of Fame and later in the week saw a minor league baseball game. There was no training even though I brought my bike.

My friends who went to Placid to cheer and volunteer were texting me from Placid and afterward. Some signed up for IMLP2015 but many were trying to get a contingent to give Mont Tremblay 70.3 or some other HIM next summer a try. I realized that given my current condition, body composition and motivation, signing up would be a waste of money.

I wondered if my lack of motivation was a cause or symptom of my lack of training. To answer that question, I sat down and used my USAT-L1 coaching knowledge to craft myself a training plan that could get me to the last tri of the 2014 season, the Cedar Beach Sprint Tri on Columbus Day weekend. I figured if I could follow this plan for the month of August, it would be a good indication if I could give this tri a shot. Even if I'm not, trying to follow the plan would let me learn something about myself.

It isn't a crazy ironman plan but it looks doable. I know I have issues with my Achilles but that's ok. I wrote the plan based on who I am not who I was. The plan started yesterday with a bike ride scheduled. I ran instead and will swap a bike for tomorrow's scheduled run. Tonight, I get in the pool. It is focusing simply on moving most days with scheduled recovery time.

Most importantly, I got on the scale this morning. Yes, I probably have a few extra vacation pounds working their way through my system but my body composition is my biggest (pun intended) challenge. I am the heaviest I can ever recall but want to shoot to lose 2 pounds a week. At that rate I'll be ready to race........... sometime summer 2015.

Or maybe Columbus day 2014. That's who I am.