Well, I finally committed to my races for the season. I’m doing Tinman, Evergreen and NEMO. Three Olympic distance races. With all the debate and self doubt, as well as my poor training schedule thus far, I had to give in to the fact that I’m not ready for a half Iron distance race yet. Maybe next year.
I decided, instead, to focus more on training and just reward myself with a few races. I’m still going up in distance from Sprint to Olympic, but not the big jump I wanted. I signed up for a masters swim class for the summer, as well as a couple of swim clinics. I feel like doing this, plus extending my bike miles out, will make me feel more confident coming into next year. Who knows… Maybe I’ll do TWO half Iron events next year. But, for now, I just train.
I have a half marathon this weekend. It’s a tough one (hilly) and it might be hot, too. I have backed off all of my time goals for this race. I don’t really care about time. I’m just going to run hard and have fun. It kind of lost significance when I backed out of the half Ironman training. It’s sad because I used to look at half marathons as daunting races that took months to prepare for. Now, it’s just another race. I have barely given it a month’s serious effort. I can’t expect much in performance. Even so, I expect to knock about 5 minutes off of my PR for the race because I just run faster now.
Topeka (Tinman) should be a test of my new bike. It is mostly rolling hills and is only 20 miles. I’m sure it won’t be a wetsuit legal race so all my swims between now and then will be sans wetsuit. I’ll still be slower, but far more comfortable than I ever have been. Hopefully this first round of masters swims will give me some things to work on and help speed me up a bit. The run should be pretty flat and enjoyable as usual
I’ve been told Evergreen is a good race but not much more. It’s in Illinois (outside of Bloomington) and should draw some great athletes from Chicago and points north. Always fun to meet new people and see different race setups and styles. I might camp for this one, but I’m not sure. It might be too hot and I don’t do well sleeping in heat.
NEMO is a long running race in Kirksville, MO. Always hear good things about it and CMC usually sends a big group up to it. Should be a fun way to end my “season”. Although it would be nice to find something a little later. Maybe an adventure race or triathlon more south. In Arkansas or Oklahoma maybe? I just hate to be done with my season so early. I’m purple with envy at all the people going to Myrtle Beach for club nationals, but maybe next year.
It’s funny but I’m already looking ahead to next year. I want to do Memphis in May, Hyvee and maybe Branson for my half Iron. It all depends on the club nationals schedule. Hopefully we will know when and where that is pretty soon. This offseason will be spent in the pool and on a trainer. I may give my legs a good, long rest from running. …or not…!