My anxiety over the triathlon reached its peak last week. I had 5 weeks until the Accenture triathlon at the end of august and I hadn't been doing much. In fact, other than twice a week bike rides and gym visits, I hadn't done anything. Visions of me floating at the bottom of the lake were starting to occur on a regular basis. I kept holding out hope I could think of a valid reason to bail out of the event but none were forthcoming. So I bit the bullet and ramped up triathlon training last thursday. I'm going to try and complete my training in 5 weeks. I am hoping that I can use mind over matter to complete the event. After a week of training, a few observations on training:
- Swim googles are the worst. When I get done swimming in the pool my eyes make me look like satan. They are uncomfortable, don't keep eyes from getting red, and a little bit of water gets in, just enough to drive me slowly insane with each swim lap.
- Brick training leaves your body shot the next day. A brick is when you ride your bike and then jog afterwards. Your legs feel like bricks that can't get blood flow, almost like they have fallen asleep and you have to try and run with them. I figured there was no better way to ramp up training then to crank out a few bricks. I biked 14 miles and ran 3.5 miles twice. It is a pretty good feeling when you are done, but the next day I feel 75 years old.
- Swimming is tough. My body gets really hot and I feel kinda sapped when I am done swimming. I am more worried about the swim to bike transition than the bike to run transition.
- Not all triathletes are morning people! I checked out the Accenture triathlon website. I was hopeful of going to a Dave Matthews concert the night before. Triathlons have what is known as the transition area. This is where you grab your biking gear, or ditch your biking gear when its time to run. I have to get all my gear situated in the transition area, NO LATER than 545am on the day of the race. This single fact has me most irate about the whole tri deal.
The swim heat details are a little intimidating. Starting at 6am, waves of 80-130 swimmers enter the water every 4 minutes. Sounds like chaos. Apparently it is very common to get kicked in the face a few times. And someone on my dodgeball team informed me that one of the law partners at her firm drowned at a triathlon last year. I have decided to become very strong on the swimming over the last 4 weeks, and then take my sweet time on the bike and run. The goal is to finish with no worry on time.
The mind over matter part...I'm starting a daily visualization routine of how fun and satisfying the triathlon is. I've noticed that I have been associating dread and pain with the event. This is a bad thing to do, because that is exactly what I am going to get if I keep this up. When I ran the marathon, it was a great time until the last 90 minutes. I keep thinking of the last 90 minutes when I view the triathlon. That ends today. I am now picturing feeling strong and peppy after the swim, enjoying the bike, being relaxed and happy during the run, and elated when I cross the finish line. Wish me luck.