I could write a dissertation on developing patience in parenting...I have had six years of practice and the last two years have been the most challenging...thanks Jackson!
Instead, I will tell you about how I am learning to be patient with the sport of triathlon. I only started racing and seriously training for triathlons a little over a year ago. There is so much I still have not figured out. On Saturday, I spent a good hour in the grass in our yard practicing getting on the bike while my shoes were still clipped.
Needless to say, when I raced Sunday...I did not start with my shoes on my bike....
After my little sprint three weeks ago, I was discouraged....it was not the race I thought I was capable of and indeed I was slower than last year. At the time, I felt like it was an indication of where I was and that was unsettling. What I did not take into account, was that all three of our children were super sick the week before. On Thursday of that week we were talking about admitting all three of them for dehydration. It was scary and exhausting. I was worried about them and there was little sleep that week. By Saturday, they had turned the corner and I was determined to race on Sunday.
I did not take these factors into account after the race, I just looked at the results. Jen said something that is 100% true....you cannot out run stress or lack of sleep...it will get you every time.
So Sunday it was time....I raced the Upper Dublin Sprint Tri. A great little race that Fleet Feet helped with. We rode the course before with several new triathletes. Our little tri club had a bunch of people racing for the first time. It was a pool swim, 2 loop bike course and a 5k. I slept 11 hours the night before the race.
On Sunday morning, I met up with our little group and my boss Annmarie...she asked if I was nervous and honestly I was not. One of the most helpful things I have learned from Jen, is to develop a plan prior to the race and then just do the job on race day, do not think....just do the plan. I have been working hard at doing this in my workouts for Eagleman.
We were off quickly....the pool swim was great since it was a 10 lane pool....we swam up a lane and back another so there was little confusion. Out of the water and on the bike...swim was about 5:3x..
The bike starts downhill and then you wind through Upper Dublin. The nice thing about being a stronger swimmer was the first loop of the bike was empty...the second time was a little more crowded but soon we were done. My goal was to avg 20 mph on the bike. My garmin had me at 19.8 but the results show 21.2.
The run....when it started I had a cramp in my side and I felt sick....I just kept repeating...3 miles...all it is is 3 miles...get to the turnaround.....I had two males pass me on the bike....but no females. I wanted to place in the overall women but with a TT start you have no idea how it is all going to play out. After the first mile, I did start to feel better and then you hit the turnaround loop. The course was a little hilly but there was shade and since it was so early it was not that hot. Each mile I ran was faster and then I before I knew it I was done!
Ryan brought the kids....there was tons of Fleet Feet people, and we were able to just have fun after the race. When they posted the results, I was second overall..mission accomplished. I raced from the sprint...over to work.
After work, we were checking the results and I had gotten a couple of messages via FB....Apparently the women who won...really did not finish...I am not sure what happened but they adjusted the results this am...
YES YES....this was a great day. I WON a triathlon...never did I really expect that to happen. I totally appreciate the fact that much of this has to do with all of the stars aligning correctly. I had a great race and worked really hard. Sometimes, you can work hard and there are other factors that can influence your performance. Some you can control and others you can't.
In the end....I will have many races that do not go as planned...mistakes I learn from and lessons to help me become better. The ones where it all comes together make it worth it 100% of the time!