I was feeling calm, cool, collected and focused until yesterday when I clicked on the www.ironmancozumel.com link and without my permission it flashed in Giant numbers 12 DAY LEFT along w/ the number of minutes and hours and so on. AHHH! I clicked X and left the page. I despise countdowns. I don't let my kids tell me the # of days until summer vacation or Christmas. I can't stand when people say, "Time to get going! My race is in 366 days!" I can't explain it. It just bugs me. I think it's because I have my own personal mental calendar that works a certain way in my brain and when I see the countdown numbers, it just plays with my system. I know... I am crazy in my own special way. I've never denied that. That was yesterday, which means, it's now 11 days in counting. Personally, I prefer to say, "we leave in 1 week and then I have a few days to get settled, rest." Race day is in less than 2 weeks.
What does that mean? It's TAPER TIME!!!! For some people, it's not a happy place. However, I like taper. It means I can actually accomplish a few more things in my life! I'm not way way behind laundry. Bills are paid. I have started a few Christmas errands. AND... I can walk up the stairs without resting half way. I don't feel like I'm going to tip over in my dinner plate from exhaustion and I can hold my focus on conversations past 8:30 p.m.!!! I kind of like that!!!
I know how hard I have worked this fall. I have put in a LOT of hours ( hint... title of last blog...it's the # hours of training since.. ) and I have done the work. I deposited lots and lots of good stuff in that bank. I don't get worried about losing fitness because I know that if I show up with achy legs that are holding onto deep fatigue, I can kiss my goals goodbye. Rest is good.
While I swam competitively all my life and experienced some pretty cool taper periods, I still remember one experience I had with Rest as a runner.
It was a long time ago, and I'm not sure if I had two kids at that point or all three. I was running every day. Sometimes I'd go alone, sometimes I'd push a single baby jogger, sometimes I'd push two boys in our double. I ran and ran and ran and basically had no purpose. I was just enjoying the air, having time alone ( sort of... note baby jogger comments :)), staying in shape, and probably entering a race or two here or there. I had very small kids and I wasn't doing Triathlons yet. However, I did keep a log book and write down my times and other details about the weather and how I felt. It was summer and we took off for a week of vacation. I didn't run. Or, if I did, it was Very minimal. I remember feeling guilty. The day we got home from our trip, I unpacked and quickly headed out for my routine 6.1 mile route. I FLEW!!!!!!!!!!!!! My legs were fast and fresh and I knocked that run off a solid 3 minutes FASTER than I had ever done it before!!!! I was blown away.
Hmm.... Guess a bit of rest freshened me up!!!!
Yesterday, I started to feel it. That extra zip. It was bedtime, and I wasn't really feeling it. I could have stayed up and watched the Patriots ( they lost, glad I didn't ) and just hung out. Instead... I was a good little athlete in taper and went to bed. However, 4 a.m. came along this morning and I was ready to go. Wide awake. Grr...of course when I set my alarm for that tomorrow it'll be brutal.
I have more workouts to do and more sweat and hard efforts ahead. It's not time to stop yet. But it's close. And, I love it.