Sunday, April 24, 2011

It isn't about a list and bucket.

This post could have just as aptly been titiled "Never Say Never."

I went from having my list "first" at Welland Half Ironman last year to returning to marathon this year, and running an ultra or two in 2012. So yes, I have changed up a few things in my life recently and have found over the course of the past year the knowledge that I can do this, no doubts.

It isn't about a list and a bucket. It is about a LIFESTYLE.

I cannot argue who I am and I make no apologies for it. I am someone who is driven and is dedicated. But this is not about that. This is about the passion and excitement - the love.

2011 I drive to FL to strip wet people of their wetsuits and catch the final Ironmen finishers at this years Ironman Florida. The next day I sign up to be the one being stripped (oooh la la) and caught at Ironman Florida 2012.

I never had a desire for Ironman (and truthfully I am not so impressed with the MDot branding as this had to do with timing). Two years of long distance triathlon training has taught me some things, firstly that I really can do this and achieve my goals when I work for them, and secondly I need the outlet. I coped with many an issue on many 3-5 hour bike rides over the last two years and loved every moment of it. Well, maybe not loved every moment. I learned a lot over those miles. And that I love.

I know that this is going to be a large time commitment, but I picked this race with key things in mind:

1. - MIKE. He is my partner, my soon to be husband, and the reason I got into triathlon to begin with - healthy lifestyle changes so we can live a long happy life together.

2. - Timing. I will be coming off of an ultra first half of the season (Goofy, Trail marathon, DWD Devil's Lake, and North Country), so this will allow me to overcome some running issues and then recover while building up my bike and swim speed.

I knwo that this is going to be the most difficult thing I have ever done. The key here is that this is but ONE day of thousands of my life. Life happens and trainign days will be missed and I will ahve to make some sacrifices as will some sacrifices have to be made for me. But if you are reading this post - then you get it because you are my friend.

I am doing this for the "me" time quite honeslty. Yes I will still be training with my teammates and friends. Absolutely. I have major swim support in FAST. Major bike support in the RACING GREYHOUNDS. Major run support in Your Pace Or Mine. Major home support in Mike, and the Warstler-Kryvicky families, coworkers, and friends.

I have a network that extends well beyond my arms, and I am excited that I know that I am ready for this endeavor.

I decided to open back up the IM FL blog because I wanted a seperate place to keep this journey while not abandoning my regular blog where I keep track of everything else. So two blogs, rarely a double post (aside from this one), and the journey commences.

The big questions here I had were - exactly where do I start? How do I go from overweight Half Ironman finisher to Ironman Finisher?

The first step is to be realistic. I am not here to win, I am here to enjoy the journey, to enjoy the process and reep the reward come race day. This is not my job. I do not get paid to exercise and live a healthy lifestyle.

But then again, do I really live that healthy of a lifestyle? Hmmm.

The second step is to commit to the healthy lifestyle and not take training as liscence to eat anything I want at any time I want it. I am a vegetarian, but that does not mean that I cannot and do not eat crappy processed foods and fake foods. This must stop.

I have no doubts that I can finish 140.6 miles. The question is do I want to train carrying 40# of extra weight on my body? No. That hurts and sucks so much energy from me. It must go.

I am 15# away from my first baby goal, and ultimately 40# away from my fit goal. And, it will happen.

The third step is to be honest with everyone in my life as to why I am doing this. This is not about bragging rights and a medal. This is about doing something that I truly enjoy. I get this sport and it gets me. I find a lot of personal enjoyment in every finish - be it a podium at a sprint race, or running a first timer in to their first finish at a half marathon. I love the people in the sport and the excitement around it. Just being a part of it makes me want to challenge myself and hone my sport in more. This does not mean that I will neccessarily care about every little parameter in my performance. I have found my happy spot at Welland 70.3 last year - and I like it.

The fourth, and last step, is to work out a realistic (for my life) plan with the coaches I have hired to assist me along the way, and have faith in the plan. If it is not working then the plan will change. Fluidity. Zen.

I embraced zen at Welland and I am not letting it go. This peace is what keeps me happy and not burnt out. It keeps my head on a level and makes me realize that every moment is the moment to appreciate.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Still Going to IM FL in 2011...

Just as a volunteer not a racer as I had originally planned.

I decided that with my training schedule and how things will go the next few years, 2012 is the perfect time if any to go for Florida.

So - 2011 I go to sign up, 2012 I go to cross the finish line in under 17 hours. :-)