Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Goal-> Make THIS year the year to remember

I'm a few months into my 9th year in Triathlon. The race calendar is starting to fill, the family calendar is Full, and my Training Calendar is now back to the way it should be.... full of lots of interesting swim, bike and run workouts that are now pushing me harder than ever before.

Last year ended late... a  December Ironman down in Mexico was a late season race but thankfully, it ended with my goal achieved. When I missed qualifying for Kona by a few short minutes & only 1 place at Ironman Texas, the ache grew deep. It was at that moment that I knew I wanted and needed to go back. At least one more time.

Why? Many reasons... and I  have said before when it comes to my 'why', it's personal.

I worked long and hard all fall and secured my spot at Cozumel. Then it was time for a much needed break. I put aside the gear and enjoyed Christmas, birthdays,  New years, more birthdays, lots of skiing and other things that just needed to be attended to. I did a little of this and a little of that but it was relaxed and mellow. I needed that 'time off.'

My plan for 2014 at that point was to coach myself. After all, I coach others successfully. Why not myself? I am completely disciplined. I have no trouble with motivation. I know what needs to be done. So I tried it.
In all honesty, it was a disaster. I floundered. I doubted myself, I cut workouts short because there are always 100 other things that I need to do, and I never felt pushed. There was nobody watching. I didn't have anyone on the other end who cared what I was doing. I felt alone.

I did not expect that. I've been at this a while and truly thought I could just get the work done and be prepared.
I was wrong.
The value in having knowledgeable and objective 'eyes' on your training is huge.  And,there are always going to be days that are harder than others to get UP and OUT the door for a run or a ride. Or days when hitting the alarm OFF at 4:03 a.m. without Throwing it out the window and punching something is a challenge, but if it is in my training log, I will do it. I do not miss workouts unless I'm sick with a fever.

I knew I needed that support again. I knew I needed the experience of someone else to look over me objectively, examine what I have done in the past and help determine what I need to do now to achieve the big goals I have for 2014.

I may be a little older, but I am still me. I can still do what I did a few years ago. I know this. I don't feel any differently and I am absolutely not viewing myself as past that point of finding my best. I don't give up very easily. In fact, I'm a little stubborn about these things.
It didn't take me very long to figure out who would also believe in me. And perhaps even believe in me more than I believe in myself.

I reached out to my friend Jeff Capobianco at Breakthrough Performance Coaching . We talked and he said Yes to coaching me and I've been on a new training 'high' ever since. THANK YOU Jeff!!!!!

I have known Jeff for several years as an athlete, friend, and as fellow Coach. I have watched not only the incredible success he has had as an athlete, but the successes of many of his athletes. I'm thrilled to be a new team member of BPC!!!!

Since starting with Jeff at BPC I have had excellent feedback and support and I am reaching new levels in some of my workouts. I am finding a new 'gear' that I hadn't even attempted before.

This is a big year for me. It's my last year in this age group. It's a year that will close out with a trip back to the Big Island for the Ironman World Championships. It'll be my 3rd time attacking that race.  I am lucky to have the ability to go to this again and I am not going to waste this opportunity. If I am going to reach the goals I have set for myself, the ones I think are achievable, I need to stay focused and driven. I need to pay attention to details like I never have before.

I am in very good hands now and feeling 100% confident in the plan that's being laid out for me. I am so lucky to have Jeff's support and expertise for this!!!

At the request of our kids, we sometimes plug in the old videos of the kids when they were smaller. One of our favorite quotes is from  Tommy, my middle boy, when he was about 3 yrs old. It was Easter and we were getting ready to hunt for the eggs. He was in his blue flannel pjs, bouncing around the room and throwing his little body on his bed over and over saying, "Can you SEE all my Excitment??!!!"   He was fired up!!

I feel like Tommy did that day. Fired up and excited.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

My head is swirling with so many different topics to talk about these days that I seem unable to write at all. I have started and even posted a few blogs, only to take them down because they sound pathetic. 

A few of the sources of my distraction are about things that have caused me to have hurt feelings and be sad and in the end, have Nothing to do with triathlon, so I am going to skip it for now and just throw out a few quick comments and observations I've been making and maybe an opinion or two. 

You know what? Today's blog is going to be a list--- that'll help me get things on paper a little faster.  

  • It's very cold here in Maine. It IS still winter. And I Love winter. We have a lot of fun doing a lot of things in the snow. It's our climate and we've embraced it. However...... I am getting tired of running in it.  I headed outside for a 14 mile run last week. It was between 12-18 degrees...I don't remember. I had checked all a.m. and it never was more than that. What did I wear?  ha- A headband AND hat, two pairs of gloves, 3 shirts and 2 coats ( yes, this is true), a neck warmer, TWO pair of running pants... add the HR monitor, the garmin, the shoes and socks, the three gels, the water bottle, the tissue paper, the extra headband ( not sure why ) and.... I had TOO much on my body. My elbows wouldn't bend. I was really uncomfortable. But.. I Was warm! Well, I was warm enough. And I ran all 14 miles. In fact, it was 14.19 I believe. 
  • I ran on Saturday-- only 7 miles this time. But when I left the house it was 5. Yep, 5 degrees. I wasn't at my house either so I didn't have as many clothes packed with me. My feet and legs Froze. My eyelashes froze. But, I had a great run!  I worked a little harder to get the miles done faster and I did survive. When I got back to the place I was staying, there was a plumber laying on the floor of the bathroom trying to fix the sink. The shower was unavailable to me. I showered in a locker room with water that never got hot. My legs were RED and splotchy from the cold. Brrr. But I lived. And after that, I went outside and went skiing. 
  • Yesterday I ran too. It was 19! Awesome! It'll feel "warm." ha. I bundled big time and headed out. WIND! Argh.... wind. I never ever felt ok. I was frozen to my core. My neck warmer got wet and iced over. I pulled it up over my face to breath in and try to keep my face from getting frostbite. My glasses fogged up and froze. Fun.
  • So.... when people tell me it's too cold to run outside, I chuckle. Ok... 
  • Someday, I will be racing and the weather will Not be good. It may be raining or may be very windy. It may be 99 degrees. Hard stuff. But, I will think back to some freezing miserable cold runs on icy roads and know that I have the  tough stuff inside to deal with any of it. That's just how I train. Train to be tough. Racing is tough. Train for it. 
  • Facebook-- what a curse. I am on FB... but wow... there sure are a lot of things that go down on that media site that can be hurtful and annoying and mind boggling. The psychological discussions and observations I feel like talking about with relation to the way people handle themselves on this site are overwhelming me. That's all I'm going to say about that. 
  • Raising 3 boys who are close in age-- wow. Manual? Anyone? My role as a Mom is ever-changing and it sometimes throws me for a Loop!!! My baby turns 10 next week. WHAT??? Sigh... All I know is I mess up a Lot and usually do not know the right thing to do or say, but I am trying and really really hoping I am doing ok. 
  • Kids and sports-- there's a loaded topic I would love to sit in a room and talk about with people. Chime in! I want to hear what people think.....I'll get specific next time. But if you have thoughts... go for it! please!! I want to hear.... and discuss. This is a big one for me. 
  • that's all I have time for today... scattered. I told you. Looks like my thoughts on running in the cold took over.  I didn't mean to go off on that so much.... 
  • But really...get out there & try it. Bundle up. You'll be ok. And, you'll feel so tough after!