Reflecting On Triathlon-ing

Make plans. Change plans. Be flexible.

The last six or seven weeks haven’t gone according to plan, or even close to plan. My swimming has been very technique-focused (but lacking in yards), I didn’t like how my training was coming together, and so I decided to make some changes.

I could probably have suffered through a .9 mile swim in 5 weeks but that was never how I wanted to approach my swim of an Olympic distance triathlon. My goal was to learn to swim the right way, enjoy it and not be anxious about swimming in open water on race day.

In late May, I reached out to Deanna of Athletic Pursuits, who I’ve worked with before (for running), and asked if she had the availability to work with me. She said yes and we met up last week for a swim evaluation + coached swim so she could truly see where I am with swimming. Spoiler alert: not the worst, not the best!

I have some goal races in mind, but haven’t committed to them (and won’t for a little while). The idea is to replace the original Olympic distance race weekend with a sprint triathlon. And then the A goal would become a mid-August Olympic distance triathlon.

My cycling and running have been going well. When I first went outside on my bike in April, it just clicked. It was just a completely different experience than any other time I’ve been on Lexie (my bike). I felt relaxed, calm, not anxious, and I enjoyed the hell out of that ride! Since then, I have conquered busy roads I’ve always said “hell no” to riding out of anxiety and climbed my fair share of rolling hills with ease.

Running hasn’t been extraordinary, but it’s been solid mostly. I’m trying not to look back on what I used to do and appreciate what I can and am doing now. The plan is still that late October marathon. A PR would be nice, but I just want to be healthy and enjoy it! My aerobic capacity is the best it’s ever been right now (thanks cycling!), but my turnover is just not there. My legs just can’t go like my lungs can right now. It’s not a bad problem to have honestly.

I did go to my Physical Therapist in late March for a thumbs up or thumbs down to train. Short version: got the thumbs up, but I don’t shift weight onto my left side when I run or walk (or pedal as my bike fit showed), so working on exercises to engage that shift and make it become second nature. I also got a legitimate bike fit and made some much needed adjustments to my riding position. My new seat feels like a dream after using a stock saddle for 2 1/2 years!

So there’s much work to be done. But I’m excited to get it done. I need to think less in the pool and go by feel, and do a better job with time management in general.

Jill


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