Friday, January 30, 2009

Here we Go Steelers Here we Go and Coach Dave

As a lifelong Steeler fan, I am excited about this weekend. A team who sticks to the plan and through thick and thin stays the course. In my lifetime, I have only know of 3 Steeler Head Coaches, while many teams have had as many in the past 5 years. The take home lesson is that consistency and keeping one's goals in focus provides a pathway for success. Ironman racing is similar. It is easy to be persuaded to do the in-thing as far as training. A New wage training regime, using the newest techno gadget all are not substitutes for putting in the time and effort of training. I realised in training for Wisconsin, there was no substitute. It was my body that propelled me over the course. My result was the product of my training and focus on getting to the starting line. What I realized too was that these are also the lessons of Coach Dave!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Cold Ride preparing for the Fawn Grove...

It was cold this weekend! As I have become more active, my desire to get off the trainer and get outside to workout has gone through the roof. Computrainer is great, but doesn't compare to getting out and riding! I planned an hour and 20 minute ride on one of my favorite routes only to fin the forecast changed and rather than being 46 and sunny, it was 30 and snowing. This was not going to deter my riding outside and I got dressed and started out.

As I was riding I began thinking about the 09 season. I am starting the outdoor season in April riding the Fawn Grove Roubaix! A short 27 mile Cat 5 bike race with 7 stretches of packed dirt roads simulating the "cobbles" of Paris-Roubiax. I recall my friend Howard talking about his riding the cobbles of Belgium and thinking this is the closest this will come to a true Euro road race as April weather, dirt, and racing. I am hoping to just survive this race and what a way to begin my bike racing career. I am entering this with only one goal, finish this race and learn. I am entering a few more road races and criteriums, with the goal of competing in the Tour of Lancaster County in August (2 day 3 race Stage race). Learning how to bike race will present its challenges, but it has reinvigorated my training and "forces" me out on a cold snowy Saturday ride.

To the ride, despite being slow and low on the power output, I was just happy to be riding and riding with a renew sense of purpose. I look forward to seeing how this and the Carl Dolan Circuit race will hep me prepare for Columbia Tri and Rhode Island 70.3. Only time and training will tell.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

New Year- New Directions

It has been quite some time since my last post and I feel rejuvenated and ready to tackle 2009! In retrospect, I really needed time away from the blog, racing and even training. I understood the physical impact of Ironman Wisconsin, but came to realize the mental and emotional toll the race took on me. Last year I spent my year focusing on one day. Day in and Day out, the prize was getting to the start line in Madison. After a sub par 2007 Ironman experience, I primed myself to not repeat the mistakes I made in Lake Placid. When all was said and done, I deemed the 2008 Ironman finish a major success. Then it hit me, I was spent emotionally and mentally drained from the balance act maintained during the preparation. After many start and stops in getting more consistent with workouts, I decided to take a break and clear my mind of triathlon. I would keep up with the Triabetes posts, yet didn't post. I distanced myself for a while and took the necessary break from the intensity I typically put into many aspects of my life. I just was for a while, and it was uncomfortable at time, yet freeing. I heard a quote the other day that rings true, is real freedom is the need to not control everything. And, that's what I did and I am truly back in the bike saddle again! My pledge for racing in 2009 is to make triathlon racing fun again, not a means to an end. Enjoy the races I have entered and not be pressured about whether or not I am hitting my targets. For instance, I am racing Columbia in May and not focusing on hammering the swim and bike sections and hanging on in the run for a finish, I will actually approach the triathlon with a tri mindset. Pretty cool for a control freak like me. I look forward to posting more of my thoughts throughout the season with some regularity, yet continuing to remember my goal of having more fun this season. I am hopeful this goal will be met.