Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Taper, open water swims, o my!

“You just have to believe you belong. The rest will take care of itself. Of this, I have no doubt.” Selene Yeager.

My first triathlon of the season, Patriot Half Ironman is just under two week away. I feel more ready for it then I ever have for a 70.3. I am excited to race and test myself! It is a flat course with PR potential. Though I love me some hills, it will be nice not to have to climb a mountain this year! I am tapered and feeling rested. It is killing me a little *not* to go out and ride for 4-5 hours. I am being a smart triathlete and following my plan. I want to be well rested for Patriot and, well hopefully crush it! My 140.6 plan goes back into full swing two day following. The last thing I need is to over train in the last two months.

I have two open water swim under my belt for the 2011 season. Every year that I do my first open water swim I am terrified for the first two or three times out. Part of it is confidence, anxiety about drowning, anxiety that the Loc Ness Monster will get me! Don't laugh...he could be hiding out in Walden would be unsuspecting. This year, albeit slow (I had just done a brick and was tired from my week) I jumped in the pond and swam over. No freaking out, no panic attack, no breathing problems. I just sighted and swam across. The next time I improved my time by 5 minutes each way. Things are looking up!

There is a small part of me that does not think I "belong" in endurance racing. In my mind that overweight scared girl still exists. I don't belong in full body lycra on a $3,000 bike with who knows how much in gear. I don't belong at 70.3 and 140.6 races. I certainly should not expect to finish or contend for an age group finish. Not Kristi Paradis who can barely run to the tennis courts. BUT WAIT. I do belong. I worked my way up from a 10 min run to completing 2 Boston Marathons, 3 half Iron(wo)mans, multiple road races, and nearly 10 smaller course triathlons. All done on a heavy improperly fit road bike. So yes. I do belong. I have bigger and faster toys, am stronger, faster, and more confident. No, I won't win Vineman or Patriot. If I am lucky I may place well in Patriot. But I will finish both barring an unfortunate circumstances. And I will add one more thing to my long list of accomplishments. Because this is how I play. And because I can.

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