Friday, May 17, 2013

The Schwartz's vs 36 hours

I never watched the show 24 but my parents did.  And right now I have that annoying beeping clock sound from the show in my head anytime I look at a clock.  In a little over 36 hours I'll be awake going through the motions to get ready for a race.  I'll wake up before the sun and go through all my pre-race to do's.  I'll pee about 15 times in the space of an hour without ever drinking a drop of water.  It's just what I do.  And I'll pray to the port-a-potty gods that I finish the other business before I leave my hotel room.  (Potty jokes! Maybe some of the old me did survive this training.  Ah, good times.)

Tick Toc.  Tick Toc.

I'll nervously try to eat something for breakfast though I'm not sure what that will be.  I've never had to think about how much carbs I'll need for a race of this magnitude.

Tick Toc.  Tick Toc.

I'll slather an entire stick of body glide every where I can think and hope it works.  I've only ever chaffed twice.  And both times were TERRIBLE!  But the one time I chaffed during this training was way worse than the other time.  I wanted to die for days until it healed up.

Tick Toc.  Tick Toc.

I'll head down to the corrals I guess.  I'm not sure if they'll be corrals or what exactly this is going to look like.  But I know I have to be there early so I can set up my transition area, get body marked, and think about warming up.  Never warmed up before a race before.  But I've also never done a race like this.

Tick Toc.  Tick Toc.

In a little over 36 hours I'll be face to face with what I thought was the greatest idea ever that somewhere along the way has turned into my worst nightmare.  And right now, the clock just isn't my friend.  I haven't really talked about what I've been training for on the blog which to me is actually a little funny because if you've talked face to face with me in the past 3 months I've worked it into the conversation at least a dozen times.  Not in a braggy way, but in a this-is-completely-consuming-my-thoughts kind of way.  But I haven't blogged about it for a couple of reasons 1) I firmly believe no one cares or wants to read about what I'm doing.  Y'all come here to read about my kids and look at their cute pictures.  And 2) my most important blog rule (which recently got lampooned by a friend) is "Don't Blog Angry".  That's not the same as don't blog real.  I do try to accurately capture our real life.  However, I don't want to have a blog full of my angry rants or sad moments.  This, like everyone else who participates in social media, is my highlight reel.  And I want it to be happy dang it!  So sometimes I do let unhappy posts, sentences, or rants through but I generally leave them up for about 24 hours to get it out of my system then either take them down or edit them.

Tick Toc.  Tick Toc.

So let's talk about what's haunting me.  Back in December, high on "I just finished my first half marathon" I was in search of a new challenge and a new goal.  Running is hard on my knees and mostly it's hard on my sciatic nerve.  And I realized after training and completing 2 half marathons that a full marathon is not something I'm interested in doing.  I'm more interested in walking when I'm 80 and so I need to be kind to my knees now.  Yet I did want to try to push myself a little further.  So I looked up triathlons.  I figured with swimming and biking both being low to no impact on my knees it would be a good match for me.  I found the Memphis in May triathlon weekend had 2 options a Sprint tri (1/4 mile swim, 12 mile bike, 3.1 mile run) and a full Olympic Distance tri (1 mile swim, 25 mile bike, 6.2 mile run).  Now, remember, I'm signing up for this just after getting a taste of my first race bling ever.  And I was a little bling addicted (still am).  Well the sprint tri, which is great for beginners who want to get an idea of what a triathlon is like, only gives you a t-shirt.  Whereas, the olympic distance boasted of a finishers medal.  So despite many people's advice and even my mom practically pleading with me to do the Sprint distance I signed up for Olympic distance triathlon as my first tri ever.  I figured I had 5 months to learn how to swim, borrow a bike, and I just needed to maintain my running.  No problem!  HA!  Of course I still had the Disney Princess Half in February so all I did before that was just swim a mile in the pool at the Y to make sure I wouldn't drown.  I did it; it took me about 45 minutes and I swam most of it on my back and side.

Tick Toc.  Tick Toc.

Then I didn't do any real tri training until March.  In March I printed out a 10 week training calendar that I found here and I merged the swimming portion with a plan I found that was compared to C25K but for swimming.  I must say I am amazed at that swimming program.  In 5 weeks I went from barely being able to swim 100 yards freestyle to swimming a whole mile freestyle with no breaks.  I feel really good about that!  I also got my swim time down to 36:20.  So I cut about 10 minutes off my swim time from beginning to now.  I think my favorite part about this training has been the swimming.  You know people often talk about how the run to clear their mind and I never have that.  I listen to music when I run and if I don't then unfortunately my negative inner self monologue usually dominates the conversation while I'm running.  But while I swim I really learned how to clear my mind.  I enjoyed the swim because all I could do was concentrate on the number I was on so I didn't lose count and loved listening to my breath bubbles as the passed my ear.  If anything I'll take away a new love for swimming from this.

Tick Toc.  Tick Toc.

And running wasn't a big deal for this one.  In fact, I might have under trained a little on the running for it.  Thankfully like I said I came into this training after have just done a half marathon.  So from 13.1 miles down to 6.2 it was nice to only have my long runs be 6 miles for this training.  I did throw one random 10 mile run in when a friend came to town.  I was really happy with that run.  It was slower for me then when I trained with the speedy girls for the St. Jude who had me running at a 10:00 to 10:30 min/mile pace.  When I did 10 miles with Bekah we ran at an 11 min/mile pace but it was great.  That's a really nice, comfortable pace for me for long distance runs.  And I was so excited and happy to finally have someone to run with me that I smiled the whole time and was even able to carry on a conversation.  Something I couldn't do when I ran with my speedy friends.  I usually just wheezed along and added the appropriate "uh huh" whenever I could huff it out.  


Tick Toc.  Tick Toc.

So that leaves us with the bicycling.  I really underestimated how difficult the bike would be.  In my mind, the swim would be the hardest.  I'd have to teach myself how to swim and then not drown.  Then running would be difficult because it's the last event and my legs would be tired and I'm a slow runner anyway.  But I just kept thinking the biking part would be easy and I'd use it as a bit of a recovery before the run.  HA!  It took me 5 weeks to even get my hands on a bike.  Before then I did all my training on the stationary bike and felt like I was doing pretty good.  Inside on the stationary bike I did 25 miles in about 1hr 45min.  Then when I couldn't find a real road bike, my awesome father-in-law offered me his hybrid bike.  It was the only bike I could get my hands on so I gladly took it.  And my first ride on that bike just deflated me.  It absolutely defeated me.  It was so hard to ride a real bike and I was so slow.  We switched the tires from the solid ones Dennis likes to use to regular ones and that made it a little better but still, every time I went for a long ride I came back feeling even worse about myself.  And even more dumb for signing up for this triathlon.  My best so far was 2 hr 17 min for a 25 miles ride.  I blew off a couple long rides just to save my sanity and to make my home a happier place.  Then last weekend I needed to do a long ride.  The calendar said to ride 30 miles and it was my last chance at a good long ride before the triathlon this Sunday.  I set out to ride from my house on back country roads to Arlington then down some main roads until I could get back on back roads into Lakeland to my in-laws house.  My husband set off to town with the kids and dropped my shower bag at his parents house.  Anyway, I'm peddling along and 17 miles into the ride my back tire goes flat.  I have no way of fixing it.  So I had to call Chris to come and rescue me.  Thankfully, it happened in the best place possible.  I had just made it into Arlington and was able to give him a place to pick me up.  If it had happened even 2 or 3 miles sooner I wouldn't have even been able to tell him what street I was on.  Monday we went to Bikes Plus and got the gear I would need to change my tire if this happens in a race.  I'm not confident I'll be able to do it, but I'm hoping having an extra tube and CO2 on me will help ward off and flat tire juju.  


Tick Toc.  Tick Toc.

Well, now we are under 36 hours from when I'll hit the water on Sunday.  I went to a transitions clinic yesterday and feel a little more confident.  I still despise the bike, but I'm hoping we can make peace and have a good ride Sunday.  I'm terrified that I undertrained the run because I never practiced any post ride runs.  I didn't have the gym time (only 2 hours for the nursery at the gym).  But I'm going to go out Sunday and give it my best.  I've been pretty miserable recently because riding the bike has really make me feel like a failure.  But I'm hoping this triathlon will be a great experience for me.  It's a cool adventure.  When I discuss it with other people and they find out that I'm not strong in any of the events but still pushed myself to do this they sometimes seem impressed, mostly they look at me with a little pity but still not everyone says, "hey, I suck at all three of these things so I'm going to do a full olympic distance triathlon."  Only someone who is Schwartztastic does something like that.   

Let's hope Chris gets some good pictures Sunday so I have something to post.  Until then...

Tick Toc.  Tick Toc.

3 comments:

  1. The training is the hard part. You've already done the work. Now it's time to kick back and ENJOY seeing it all pay off. You're already my hero. I wish I could be there! Best of luck!!

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  2. I am SO SO PROUD of you! You are an inspiration. Truly. I'll be thinking of you/praying for you during the race. You will ROCK it! Please update us.

    P.S. I wish I had had that "don't blog angry" rule. I was looking back over some old old posts and man, I ranted and hit publish a lot. Maybe I should have gone swimming instead! It sounds relaxing!

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