Managing the unexpected....
Training for endurance events is a combination of stress and recovery. When these two ingredients are combined in the right mix. Success happens.
The same can be said about the mental aspects of training and life.
Going into IMAC 70.3, I typically plan a low stress environment to keep even keeled and go into a race with a clear mind.
As the adage goes. We plan...G-d laughs
It started with my kids having social calendars that happen to fall out on race weekend.
Note to self. Remind the universe to plan their events around my race schedule
That meant I needed to drive up Saturday night and getting a few hours of sleep (Thanks for the room Willie) as I didn't want to abandon them for an entire weekend...
Instead to stressing, I said to myself... I am choosing to do this race. No one ever really sleeps the night before anyways. So be grateful you can be with your family and still race
I took my bike that Friday for a customary bike wash and pre-race check at my LBS. Then I got news that no one EVER wants to hear before a race. "Your drive train is shot". Your chain is stretched, the cogs on your big ring and cassette are worn out. Your oversized pulley and rear derailleur need to be replaced....
Say what! Rule #1 of racing. Nothing new on race day!
Took it in stride. Better to have an operating bike, than a mechanical apocalypse when you are hammering in a race.
Made the repairs. Blessing in disguise. Had we went for the weekend. Wouldn't have had time to make the repairs. Must have been part of the plan from the man upstairs
A little ⛈⛈ delayed the start by 30 minutes.
Always fun to get instructions on how to best exit the water in case of lightning.
Fortunately, the race was wetsuit legal.
Rubber > ⚡
Had a slow swim to my standards. Instead of allowing it to put me in a mental funk. I accepted it and said to myself, "what's done is done". Focus on T1 and be present on the bike
About a few miles into the bike, the sky opened and it started pouring cats, dogs, and ducks. Fortunately, I've raced in the rain before and said to myself - you don't have to worry about overheating.
Hard consistent work over the year and not allowing the stress of everything leading up to this moment affect my attitude delivered a split that exceeded my expectation in less than stellar conditions.
Naturally the clouds parted and the sun came out on the run. I remember the stress of heat in previous races and knew how to manage it. I was also hoping that others didn't learn the secret sauce by blowing up as I had in the past
My experience is similar to many others when training, traveling, and racing. We have families, work, and life events that throw monkey wrenches into our plans. It is our ability to overcome those obstacles that enable us to grow and become the best version of ourselves.
Nothing bad ever really happens in life. While things may not go according to our plan. That doesn't mean there isn't a plan.