Tuesday, June 18, 2013

A Conversation With Self on The Big Weekend


Building up to a long distance race (Ironman, or in my case Leadman) there's always a threshold you cross where suddenly the distances start to feel a little overwhelming. Okay, a lot overwhelming. The hours necessary to train begin to mount up, and inevitably you ask yourself the following question:

Me: Self, why am I doing these ridiculously long training rides and runs?

Self: So you can do a ridiculously long race, of course!

Me: Why would I want to do that?

Self: Because it's.... fun?

Me: I'm not sure I believe that anymore

Self: Because it's....healthy?

Me: I'm pretty sure it's really not

Self: Because there's an outside chance you'll someday qualify to go to the World Championships of people who train for ridiculously long races?

Me: Of course! That makes sense...

Yeah, none of it really makes any sense. Up to a certain point, the training makes sense. I know that I personally need a certain amount of time out there on the open road to keep my body functioning well, to keep my mind and soul balanced, and frankly to keep The Big Crazy at bay. But beyond that, training gets to be a strain. I don't know if this is the last year in a while I'll be able to train long, and maybe that's as it should be. This year, I'm committed.

So, this weekend included a 4.75 mile swim. A 10 mile run. An 82 mile bike. I woke up this morning feeling better than most folks do after a weekend spent gardening. Nothing hurts. Nothing sore, nothing tight, nothing painful. I'm sure if I took off in a slow jog I'd realize how fatigued the major muscles in my legs are right now, but beyond that my body has adapted really well to the ridiculous.

What lies ahead? For the foreseeable future, more of the same. It's just a tad demoralizing to realize at the end of an 80 mile ride when you just want to Get Off the Bike Already that in your chosen race distance you would still have 60 miles to go. What was I thinking? Oh yeah, I wasn't.

Take the bike in for service, Robin. Get some rest. Eat lots of high quality foods this week. Be prepared to hit the road next weekend. Shampoo, Rinse, Repeat.

1 comment:

Marvin Dittfurth said...

Body adapts to the ridiculous. Well said. Sometimes I think we know it makes sense but just don't know why. It is one of those wonderful things that we can't explain, leaving us with the notion that indeed there is much in all of life we can't explain: Thank God...Thank God there are wildernesses within and without to be explored, adventures in the world and our inner landscape, experience from which we might still not why.