Monday, October 1, 2012

Atomic Man Half--Thoughts and Pre Race Recap

I always get depressed after a big race.  I didn't think it would happen this time, but I can feel it starting to wash over me like a drizzling rain.  When it's drizzling, you don't really notice you're getting wet, not like when it's pouring down rain.   There are a lot of reasons this happens.  I used to blame it all on being upset with my performance.  No matter how I did I wasn't happy.  However, this time is different.   I'm not terribly unhappy with my performance.  That's not to say I haven't already analyzed the things I need to do differently next time, but I'm pleased with what I did yesterday.

When I went to NOLA, I expected to finish in 6:30.  I hoped I would do better, I was going to be satisfied with anything better than 6:45, but I honestly expected to finish right at 6:30.  This time I really wasn't sure what to expect.   Hurting my knee earlier in the season caused me to be out of training for about a month, then I had so much going on with taking my daughter to college, going to do Hood to Coast, going to Rhode Island for my USAT clinic...and the list goes on.  I can honestly say I've been able to get about 80% of my training in, but only for the last month.  Let me be clear, a month is NOT long enough to effectively train for a half IronMan!  But, I also believed I had a decent base I could fall back on.  I wasn't ever worried about not finishing the race, but I wasn't sure 6:30 was realistic all things considered, especially looking at the course.

I haven't ever done a pre-race workout on the course.  My workout plan calls for a 20 minute swim/20 minute bike/20 minute run workout at transition, but this is only my 2nd race where it really applied, and it was raining and practically storming at NOLA so all I did that was was run 20 minutes.  Saturday I was with a friend who is training for her second IronMan (I need to come up with a name for her), as well as my coaches.  I didn't want to swim but had to do it anyway.  I didn't want to ride my bike but had to do it anyway.  By the time we got to the run my knee was hurting for some strange reason so I didn't want to run...I did run, but ended up walking quite a bit because I didn't want to "really" hurt myself the day before the race.

After the pre-race workout, I really didn't know what to expect at the race.  I wasn't swimming well and my knee wasn't feeling 100%.

Race morning I was strangely calm.  I have pretty much stopped having pre-race jitters.  Excitement, yes; jitters/nerves no.   But...I did NOT want to start swimming.  I didn't want to get in the water in the first place--it was COLD out there.  I was afraid I would be last out of the water.  This was a small race with only a few women (maybe 40 at most) and it's a tough course so the majority of people who show up aren't playing around.

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