Last week, I finally took a look at my training schedule for the Racine 70.3 (half ironman). I’m finding myself in this unknown territory – I have never truly trained for an event like this – – I started 2 years ago, but once we found out O was a pea sized wonder in my belly, we decided it wasn’t the best timing to follow through with Steelhead 70.3. So, here I am, half ironman – take two. If I ever thought working out training schedules was hard before with the races I’ve completed, boy, was I wrong. This mom is finding it overwhelming juggling S’s schedule, O’s schedule, and my own schedule to make it to group trainings (thank goodness for the most understanding and willing to work with my schedule – trainers) and get in those very important miles in the pool, on the bike, and on the pavement. I’m already a couple weeks behind. WHAAAAA??? Didn’t training just start?!
This mom-in-training needs time to figure things out. Any other moms out there with littles that have trained for a long race like this before? I don’t know how you do it, honestly. I welcome any tips.
Someone recently asked me why would I ever want to do this. Well, I think there are lots of answers, and my reasons continue to evolve as the years and events go by. One of the biggest – I think – I love committing to something and following through with it. I love the feeling of accomplishment and I love that physically, I am the only person making it happen. I am putting in the hours, the sweat, the tears, the uncomfortableness. I am not competing with anyone else out there but myself. I am making it happen. God created my body and has given me the ability to beat it and break it. And as long as I can, I never want to give in or give up.
Four years ago, I signed up for the 10.10.10 Chicago marathon, and in the middle of training, I found out that I had a labral tear and cysts that formed in my right hip. It forced me to take a break, get surgery, and recuperate. That summer was incredibly hard. My body physically missed the push and pull of training in the summer heat. The fall/winter after the surgery, I got back on my feet and started (ever-so) slowly pounding the pavement. Thinking back, had I not had that kind of injury, I probably would not have gotten into triathlons – so for that, I am so thankful. Triathlons > Marathons. (Actually, I wish I could run one more marathon – at the end of two other events – that will be a later goal).
Coming back is SO hard. Since having O, getting back into running has been so incredibly hard. I never thought about how hard a toll carrying a child has on your body. Previous to O, I knew my body – I knew how far I could push myself. Now, it’s like I have a totally new and foreign body. I have aches and pains in most joints (even more than before!) my endurance has dwindled and running 40 minutes is a “long run”. Last summer, when O was 6 months old, I ran (my hardest and worst) half marathon – a month later, I completed the olympic distance triathlon. These 2 events slapped me in the face. It was a wake-up call. And what did I decide to do? A half ironman.
Of course, I could never even dream about doing these (some would call dumb) things if I didn’t have the support of S. Very often he thanks ME. HE thanks ME. For supporting him (we all know I have an honorary MD) through his journey to becoming a surgeon. He thanks me for being understanding, for working with his schedules, for loving him – even when he’s falling asleep at dinner. But really, I need to thank HIM. He is an honorary half marathoner, marathoner, triathlete. Without HIS support on those hot event days (I have so many photos of his sunburnt face cheering me on), HIS understanding (for my craziness), for working with MY training schedules, and for loving ME – especially when he has a free day and all I want to do is a long work-out and then crash. Sean makes sure (while he is uber busy pursuing his dreams) that I have the ability to pursue my new dream of being a mom, a wife, a daughter, a sister, a friend, a social worker, and a half ironman.
Chicago Triathlon (my first!) – 2011